MAXTON — This summer, the area is offering a wide variety of camps for kids. The choices include everything from religious instruction to sports to the creative arts.
In Maxton, there is a camp that offers children a chance to gain work experience and provide a service to the community.
The Greater Maxton Economic Corporation’s Entrepreneur Camp is the brainchild of Lorenzo McEachin and his wife, Rita. This year the camp will be held from July 5-29. It is in its fourth year.
To participate, the students must be at least 14 1/2 years old and rising 9th grader. The students spend the first two hours of a four-hour day, working at a business in Maxton. The students then return to a classroom setting to listen to a speaker for an hour. The final hour, student work in groups on a business plan or project. Each group must present their business plan at the end of the camp.
One day a week, the youth participate in a community service project or take a tour.
McEachin said the camp also provide a sense of community for the student. He added that not having a high school in Maxton “is a big loss.”
“Kids are spread out now,” he said. “With the camp I am finding they bond together. It is great to see they have a support group. They are sharp kids and I want to see them keep going.”
The cost for the camp is $550, so McEachin and his nonprofit board of directors seek sponsors every year. He said Campbell Soup Company has been a great supporter as have of Maxton but he is hoping to get more people on board, so the program can continue.
He said that he would also like to be able to afford all of the students interested the opportunity to participate. There have been as many as 17 students to participate.
The camp recently held a fundraising gala in Maxton to raise money for the camp.
“I don’t do grants, because once the money is gone, the program is done, so most of the year I am trying to raise money. I want to keep it local,” McEachin said.
Other upcoming camps:
— Safety Town is June 20 to 24 from 8 a.m to noon in Laurinburg for ages 4 to 8. Cost is $10. The program is specifically designed to teach basic safety skills to prevent injuries and stay safe. Lesson topics include fire, bus, railroad, pedestrians/traffic, guns, water, and poisons/drugs. The program is sponsored by the United Way of Scotland County.
— Junior Braves is June 20 to June 23 or June 27 to June 30 for rising 4th through 8th graders at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke. Cost is $150. Participants get the opportunity to spend a week of fun, creativity and problem solving. For information, call 910-775-4000.
— UNCP All Sports Camp is June 27 to July 1 or July 11 to July 15 for ages 7 to 12. Cost is $150. The camp provides a combination of both planned and optional activities to expose youth to a variety of sports and recreational activities.
— Summer Youth Art Camp – Finders Keepers is June 27, 28, 29, from 9 am to noon for rising first graders and up. The cost is $40 for nonmembers and $36 for members.Participants learn how to make crafts using recycled material and objects found in nature. Register by calling 910-277-3599 or by downloading the registration form at www.storyartscenter.org.
— Entrepreneurship Institute Money Talks Camp is July 18 to 22 for rising 11th and 12th graders. Cost is $150. The camp teaches the ins and outs of starting a business. There will also be Shark Tank competition and prizes and cash. Participants will meet local successful business owners. For information, call 910-775-4000.
Summer Youth Art Camp – All About Me is July 18 to 19 from 9 am to noon for rising first graders and up. Cost is $30 for nonmembers and $27 for members. Participants will explore favorite themes and discover more about themselves as kids work with mixed media to create projects that reflect their personalities.
Reach Maria D. Grandy at 910-506-3171.