The City of Marco Island Parks and Recreation Department has created a new camp for middle school aged students. It’s called “Camp Stellar” and it runs Tuesdays through Fridays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Mackle Park.
Camp Stellar was designed specifically to cater towards the sixth, seventh and eighth grade students who have grown too old for Camp Mackle. It puts a strong emphasis on completing summer schoolwork and preparing the children for the upcoming school year. “I had numerous parents contact me before school was ending to enquire as to what they could do with their children who had outgrown Camp Mackle,” said Recreation Manager Lola Dial. “They were concerned that their kids would not be able to complete their math and reading materials required by the Collier County Schools for the school year.”
So Dial, with the help of Natasha Gengenbach of the Parks and Recreation Department, decided to create a camp that was both affordable and productive while also being fun and engaging. “It was important to me that we provide a service for the parents, knowing that their children were productive and also in a safe environment because we truly monitor what they are being taught,” said Dial.
Eachday Camp Stellar dedicates time to summer school work while also interjecting fun activities and group crafts. The activities scheduled for the camp change on a daily basis so that there’s never a dull moment. For instance last Thursday it was “Mad Scientist Day.” Camp goers were encouraged to “put on their white lab coat, safety goggles and waist-high boots for a day of science experiments and figuring out formulas of the universe.” While Friday was dedicated to the great outdoors, complete with water games, obstacle courses and nature walks.
Instructor Ellen Angerbasch leads the camp. Angerbasch has previously worked as a Leader in Training for Camp Mackle and is a seasoned player at the park. “She [Angerbasch] is talented and she is full of energy, fun and creative and these kids adore her personality and sense of adventure,” said Dial.
Currently the campers are working on a working on a to-scale replica of the solar system that will be put in the new building upon completion. The craft will allow the campers, to as Angerbasch says leave “their own footprint on the new building.”
Camp Stellar costs $20/per day or $60/per week and runs Tuesdays through Fridays From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information call 239-642-0575.