In Avid Pursuit of the Perfect Summer Camp Adventure
It’s early on Saturday and already I’m on the way out to Chatfield State Park with my kids and stuff for a fun day outside – maybe we’ll do some biking or take a little hike.
For lots of other Denver parents, this is probably typical, but I’m not really the outdoorsy type. I don’t know the difference between a canoe and a kayak, and I’ve only once been camping. Besides, what little free time I do have is often spent grocery shopping or cleaning, with the kids intermittently asking for more time on the computer. Still, I want my boys to learn about and appreciate the outdoors, to know that not all life experiences are best experienced in front of a screen.
So when I heard about Avid4 Adventure camp it seemed like a great way to get them introduced—if not by me—to many of the fun things you can do outside in a Denver summer.
Avid4 Adventure boast that they “reconnect kids with the outdoor world,” and their week-long summertime outdoor day camps, do just that. Even as early as age five, Avid campers can hike, go canoeing, and improve their mountain biking skills. What’s more, they learn all this in “real” parks like Cherry Creek State Park. Older kids head out to the hills for mountain biking and hiking, and try their hands kayaking, climbing, and stand-up paddleboarding at local sites, and they come back loving every moment. Thanks to Avid4’s army of patient and knowledgeable instructors, who start every day with excitement, even apprehensive kids return home with enthusiasm and pride in their new skills they learn. And I could keep track of their progress via a booklet sent home every evening filled with notes on that day’s activities and my kids’ progress in learning each of them. The camp sends photos to parents mid-week to showcase the kids’ fun as well.
At the end of the week, we were all sad Avid4 would come to an end: I would miss the perfectly organized activities that resulted in happily exhausted kids, and they would miss their new friends and daily challenges. Indeed, by Thursday I was feeling pangs of jealousy dropping them off in the morning, wishing instead of driving back to my office I was riding along in the slick Avid4 van with a camper full of canoes and bikes hooked up to the back, heading out somewhere to learn a cool new sport with the Avid instructors guiding me every step of the way.
But in fact, after their week at Avid4 Adventure, something bigger had shifted within all of us. Thanks to Avid4 camp, we all wanted more of the outdoors, even me, the indoorswoman. So instead of spending this weekend shopping or cleaning, we’re making it a priority to go outside together, even if only for a short while. The iPads and laundry, I know, will be there when we come back from our hike.
Avid4 Adventure offers day single- and multi-sport camps throughout Colorado, with sites in Denver, Boulder, Castle Rock, Highlands Ranch, Golden, and Lafayette. Multi-sport camps introduce kids to a variety of outdoor activities, while single-sport camps go in depth; choose from kayaking, mountain biking, rock climbing, stand-up paddleboarding, or outdoor survival skills. Learn more and sign up at www.avid4.com.
Guest Writer for Mile High Mamas – Elizabeth Senouci is a software localization engineer, translator, occasional writer, and mom of two boys. She enjoys traveling, running, and sitting on the couch