If youre eager to fill your childs Spring Break with learning and play or anticipate needing some quiet time for yourself consider registering him or her for one of these engaging day camps.
Children ages 5-12 learn about local and exotic animals through hands-on activities, animal observations, crafts and indoor and outdoor play. March 17-21 or March 24-28 at Vancouver Aquarium (845 Avison, Stanley Park). $350 at http://www.vanaqua.org/learn/camps/aquacamps.
Intensive art experiences for children ages 3-19. Half- and full-day programs include classes in dress-up drama, creative movement, drawing, painting, acting for the camera, hip hop dance, Shakespeare, computer arts, show choir, classical animation, and more. March 17-21 or March 24-28 at Arts Umbrella (1286 Cartwright, Granville Island). $230 to $530 at www.artsumbrella.com.
Kids ages 5-14 learn how to juggle, ride unicycles, jump on trampolines and build human pyramids. Camp concludes with a showcase for friends and family. March 17-21 or March 24-28 at CircusWest (2901 East Hastings). $150-$340 at http://circuswest.com/programs/camps.
Crafternoons for crafty kids ages 4 and up. Artist-led classes in painting, drawing, collage, sculpture, assemblage, and more. Each day includes time for snacks, stories and sketchbook drawing. March 17-21, March 24-28 or March 17-28 at Collage Collage (621 Kingsway). $200-$360 at shop.collagecollage.ca/products/march-break-at-collage-collage-march-25-29.
Vancouvers 24 community centres offer an array of half- and full-day programs for the Spring Break period. To find the programs being offered at the centre nearest you, visit http://vancouver.ca/parks-recreation-culture/community-and-cultural-centres.aspx.
Young chefs get an introduction to world cuisine thanks to the fine folks at PICA. Each day is themed around the cuisine from a different region, including Italy, South America, France, and Southeast Asia. Also included: a tour of the Granville Island Public Market, lunch at Bistro 101 and an Iron Chef Challenge. No need to pack a lunch: participants will work together to cook the entire meal. March 17-21 for kids ages 10-14 and March 24-28 for youth ages 15-18 at Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts (101-1505 West 2nd). $450 at www.picachef.com/Teen_Classes.html.
Kids ages 8-13 learn about forensics and other aspects of law enforcement through engaging activities. March 19-21 or March 26-28 at the Vancouver Police Museum (240 East Cordova). 604.665.3346.
This globe-spanning chain for creative kids offers art camps at each one of its Vancouver locations. Camps include mixed media, drawing, watercolour, and fun themed classes for young children. Prices and age ranges vary. To search for courses by postal code, visit http://www.4cats.com/british-columbia
Stories, games and play for the under-eight crowd. Daily themes include robots, winter sports, Arctic animals, knights and castles, mini chefs, fun on the farm, and pirates. Half- or full-day options available. March 17-28 at Jump Gymnastics (837 Beatty). From $45 per half-day and $65 per full day at www.jumpgymnastics.ca.
Young musicians will learn firsthand what it means to be in a rock band. Camp includes instrument sectionals, band coaching, a big pizza party and a live rock concert on the Tom Lee Music Hall Stage. March 17-21 at Tom Lee Music (929 Granville). $275 at 604.688.8929.
At YMCA camps, the emphasis is on play. Through fun physical activities, kids ages 6-12 learn about themselves and grow in self-confidence as they develop new skills and meet new friends. March 17-21 or March 24-28 at Vancouver YMCA locations. From $144 at www.vanymca.org/camps/daycamps_spring2014.html.
Five-day camp encourages playful imaginations and active bodies through yoga, crafts, stories and games. For kids ages 2-8. March 17-21 or March 24-28 at YogaButtons (2525 West Broadway). $100 at 604.739.9642 or firstname.lastname@example.org.