Head into Space, Learn Improv, Take a Global Art Tour 

By Eva Potter

Could your child be the next comedy star, explorer of faraway planets or a new Michelangelo? The best way to find out is to provide your kids throughout their lives with a wide range of creative experiences — their talents will quickly become obvious.

The Springville Center for the Arts offers an interesting variety of options for kids and their families through their Summer Spark series for ages 2–5 and 5–7. The program runs from July 7–Aug. 11 and includes theatrical storytelling, painting and dance, as well as guest artists who bring inspiration.

Musical theater camps run June 28 through mid-August. Topics include Shakespeare, ukulele songwriting, tech crew how-to, puppetry and a production of “Sleeping Beauty.” Art camps will enthrall kids in grades 3–5 and 6–8, as well as high school-aged students, as they experiment with art and make projects, including public art. Media and sound workshops will focus on stop-motion animation, sound design and short films.

Limited scholarships and discounts are available. Contact the arts center at (716) 592-9038 to register or visit

If your kids are explorers by nature, then a trip to space — the final frontier — will be just the ticket. The Challenger Learning Center has partnered with Twin Tier Aviation to create a unique camp experience for those entering eighth grade or older. If you can dream it, you can do it, and this is sure to be an inspirational experience. The camp, which runs July 27–29, will take place at the Bradford Regional Airport in Bradford, PA, for a base price of $279.

Kids can look forward to an intro to aviation mechanics, tours of the airport by Transportation Security Administration (TSA) personnel, flight simulators and practice, as well as a visit to the Buffalo Niagara International Airport’s control tower for a live look into the approach/departure radar control room and the control tower. Plus, they can even fly in a WWII Stearman biplane. Carpooling is available from the Challenger Learning Center in Allegany.

The annual Space Racers kids’ camp runs Aug. 3–7 and is geared toward those entering fifth grade or older. Activities include CO2 cars, rockets, a full space mission, remote control planes, to mention a few.

To register for any of these camps, call (716) 379-8686 or email More details are at

Did you know that art and fun go together at the Cattaraugus County Arts Council’s Summer Art Camps? CCAC’s talented art instructors have developed a series of five-day art camps that will immerse kids in fun projects while exploring new mediums and art forms. The camps are feature age-appropriate activities for kids ages 4–14.

ClayVenture explores the use of clay to create sculptural and functional pieces, learning how to use a pottery wheel and the process of wheel throwing. Comics Camp will teach kids how to develop their own storyline and traditional comic techniques as they create their own stories and characters. CCAC’s first-ever Dance and Movement Class will explore a variety of dance styles. If your kids love puppets, then the puppet theater class is perfect for them, culminating in a show at the end of camp.

ArtVenture, for ages 4-7 and 7-11, offered Aug. 3-7, covers different mediums and includes a wide variety of projects. Art Around the World, for ages 4–7, is a global tour of how artists make art around the world and includes lots of hands-on experience. This camp runs Aug. 10–14.

For a detailed list of camps, please visit the CCAC website at Except for the wheel-throwing pottery camp, all of the camps are $65, including project supplies. The wheel throwing class is $85. Camps are held at the CCAC studio, 100 West Main Street in Allegany. You can register and pre-pay online at or by calling (716) 372-7455.