Go past Memorial Park in Quarryville any day of the week this summer and you'll see lots of activity happening at the pool, the playground and on the grounds of the Southern End Community Association.Now that school has been out for the past few weeks, there are kids in the SECA Pool taking swimming lessons, playing on the playground and participating in the activities at many of SECA's summer day camps, which started June 9 with day camp, the skateboard program and the Charles X. Carlson's summer art program.
Every summer, SECA offers 10 weeks of day camps that "provide campers with an opportunity to develop skills in an exciting and open setting."
Now in its fourth week, the main day camp for children ages 6 to 12 is well under way.
The camp is led by Lara Welk, who is in her seventh year as director. The 1999 Solanco High School graduate said she enjoys coming back every year because if she didn't she "truly would be bored not doing anything."
An emotional support teacher for grades nine through 12 at McCaskey East High School in Lancaster, Welk, of Quarryville, said she still loves directing the camp.
"The kids are what makes me keep returning," she said.
Welk, who will begin taking courses for a master's degree in psychology in the fall, starts planning for the camp each year on her break in December with Julie Collins, director of SECA.
During the 10-week camp there are two sleepovers and a picnic Aug. 7 at the pool where campers and their families are invited to attend.
Whether campers spend one week at camp or all 10 weeks, they can swim at the SECA Pool in the afternoon. All campers must take a swim test to determine what part of the pool they can swim in.
Every week during camp there is a different theme. Activities and a field trip relate in some way to the theme.
"There are field trips every week, arts and crafts every week and drama skits that try to go with the theme," said Welk. "It's a good time."
Last week's theme was "Bend a little, twist a little." Campers took a trip to the Sturgis Pretzel House in Lititz where they got to experience rolling a pretzel.
"It was neat to see," said Welk.
After their trip, the campers had lunch in Lititz Spring Park and went back to Quarryville to swim in the pool, something they can't wait to do each day.
The theme of this week's camp is "Summer Rollin.'" Campers went roller skating at the Castle on Tuesday. There is no camp Friday because of the Fourth of July holiday.
Next week's camp theme is "Down on the Farm." Campers will visit Cherry Crest Adventure Farm's Amazing Maize Maze in Paradise.
Other field trips include That Fish Place, High Sports in Lititz, the Science Factory in Lancaster and the Philadelphia Zoo.
This year there are six camp counselors, three assistants and a new arts and crafts director, Christine Cortez.
All of the assistants are Solanco High School students and the counselors are either already in college or will be freshman in the fall.
The camp also has a Counselor-In-Training (CIT) program. Children who are 13 and are no longer eligible to attend camp can become a CIT.
"Generally that's where our staff comes from," said Welk.
Even though there is one less week of camp this year because last year the last week of camp had such a low turnout, Welk said there are still openings.
For more information, call SECA at 806-0123.