CyberCamps, University of Baltimore and University of Maryland campus locations, (888) 904-2267, www.cybercamps.com. Bill Gates probably didn’t spend his summers wasting away by the pool. Let your pint-sized programmers learn how to create video games, produce digital movies, design web pages, and dabble in robotics. After they follows in Gates’ footsteps they’ll have plenty of adult summers free to spend by the pool.
DayJams Rock Music Day Camp, the Park School, 2425 Old Court Road, Brooklandville, (800) 295-5956, www.dayjams.com. Beginner and experienced rock stars in training can jam away at this camp for kids ages 9-15. Instructors give lessons for bass, drums, guitars, keyboards, and vocals.
Family Fun Days at Whole Foods, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Fridays through summer, Whole Foods, 1330 Smith Ave., (410) 532-6700. Keep your kids entertained while you shop for wholesome whole foods for their growing bones. There’s story time in the café area, a rubber duck pond to pick a duck from, goody gift bags, and balloons.
Hooked on Fishing, Not on Drugs, various sites in Baltimore, Harford, Howard, Cecil, and Washington counties, (410) 260-8721, www.dnr.state.md.us/education/hofnod.html, free. Don’t let the catchy title fool you. These three- to four-day clinics throughout the summer are about fishing, not some Just Say No crusade by the DNR. They supply the fishing gear, you supply a nutritious snack and non-alcoholic beverage for your children ages 8-15.
Modeling Camp, Holiday Inn, 2 Montgomery Village Ave., Gaithersburg, (888) 757-5575, www.modelingcamp.com, for ages 5-17. This camp promises an empowering experience for girls of all ages, featuring fitness, fashion, and lessons in social graces. Just promise us the second she starts wearing more makeup than Jon Benet, you’ll drop her off at nature camp.
“The Navy Way” Boot Camp, U.S. Naval Academy, 52 King George St., Annapolis, (410) 263-6933, www.navyonline.com, $26. Show your 6-12 year olds what it’s like to be a swabbie in this Saturday activity. “Recruits” get Dixie cup caps, learn Navy terms, and presumably make a mess in a simulated mess hall.
Open Minds, Enoch Pratt Free Library, 400 Cathedral St., Baltimore, (410) 396-5430. Pratt Library has teamed up with the Creative Alliance in this free book-based art program. Groups of kids ages 8-12 and 13-16 listen to a story then create art in response. Locations vary depend on age group. Register at your local Enoch Pratt Free Library branch.
Silver Penny Summer Theatre, Towson and Forest Hill locations, (410) 704-3503, www.towson.edu/silverpenny. It’s okay to be a drama queen (or king) in this summer experience. Kids ages 8-14 will learn how to express themselves artistically from the professionals. Finally those temper tantrums are put to creative use.
Summer Nature Adventure Camps, Discovery Creek, Glen Echo Park, Glen Echo, (202) 337-5111, www.discoverycreek.org. Sign your kid up for some hands-on, minds-on activities that put them up close with Mother Nature. Day camp includes field trips, hiking, rock climbing, arts and crafts, and educational stuff. For ages 4-11.
Downtown Sailing Center, Baltimore Museum of Industry, 1425 Key Highway, Baltimore, (410) 727-2884, www.downtownsailing.org. Sailors ages 10-16 learn teamwork and seafaring skills on board the 43-foot Pintita cruising yacht in the Youth Cruising Program.
Frontier Town, Route 611, Ocean City, (410) 641-0880, www.frontiertown.com. Dust off that tent and treat the kids (aka cowpokes) to a Western-style vacation. This camping resort features hundreds of campsites and a theme park celebrating the Old West. If for some reason the Wild West Show doesn’t meet expectations, the beach is only five minutes away.
Funland Family Fun Center, 24450 Garrett Highway, McHenry, (301) 387-6168, free. Your kids will surely fall asleep on the ride home after hitting the go-karts, bumper cars, carousel, mini golf, carousel, and climbing wall.
Irvine Nature Center, 8400 Greenspring Ave., Stevenson, (410) 484-2413, www.explorenature.org. For 30 years now, the center has been helping children get close to nature. There are tons of events throughout the summer from hikes to stream explorations and even a summer camp.
Kings Dominion, 1600 Theme Park Way, Doswell, Va., (804) 876-5000, www.kingsdominion.com. Treat your kids to a day of interactive overstimulation featuring their favorite cartoon stars. There’s Scooby-Doo and the Haunted Mansion, Kidzville and its Hanna-Barbera characters, more of their TV favorites in Nickelodeon Central, kid-sized cars they can drive along the Rugrats Toonpike, and Kidz Construction Co.
Little Picasso School of Visual Arts,1331 Rockville Pike, Rockville, (301) 294.3600, www.littlepicassoart.com. Does your preschooler excel at finger painting? Maybe your teen is more than just a doodler. Give them all that extra edge in this camp focusing on drawing, painting, clay work, and paper sculpture. For ages 3-17.
Pirate Adventures on the Chesapeake, 311 Third St., Annapolis, (410) 263-0002. $8.50-$17.Treat your little pirates to a swashbuckling experience on board the mighty Sea Gypsy. They can dress the part with the help of tattoos, face paint, and pirate fashions while they learn how to read a treasure map and defend the ship with water cannons.
Port Discovery, 35 Market Place, (410) 727-8120, www.portdiscovery.org. Toddlers to pre-teens are welcome to expand their imagination in this museum of interactive, educational exhibits.Six Flags America, 13710 Central Ave., Mitchelsville, (301) 249-1500, www.sixflags.com. If that annoying Elmer Fudd lookalike from the commercials hasn’t brought you here recently, maybe the new Tornado ride at Hurricane Harbor will do the trick. For the kids who don’t want to get wet, let them fly high on the BatWing or try to hold onto lunch as the Mind Eraser takes them for a twist, dive, loop, double spin, roll, and, of course, “intense corkscrew.”
Velocity Sports Performance,1427 Clarkview Road, Suite 300, Baltimore, (410) 583-9235, for ages 11-18. Help your athletic kid take his or her skills to the next level. Field hockey, football, soccer, weightlifting and speed and agility camps promises to make your kid a faster, more powerful athlete. Suddenly Division I scholarship seems like less of a fantasy.
812 Park Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21201