Huge Summer Camps Try to Squeeze Out Kids' Boredom With Activities Including Cooking, Bowling

This summer Alex Nieman has been spending a lot of time bowling with friends and perfecting his moves during his modern dance class.But his parents don’t need to worry about long drives or carpool arrangements to get him to a bowling alley and a dance studio several times a week. He’s able to do both at Children’s Learning Adventure -- the big box store of summer camps."It's really cool and since they have such big spaces there's so many different things you can do,” Nieman said. “There's always something you want to do there.”The McKinney location alone hosts 400 to 600 children from six weeks to 13 years old each week. At 33,000 square feet, it features an art studio, theater, indoor gym, culinary classroom, dance floor, reading room and a bowling alley. Outside, there are sports fields and playgrounds and a garden.Besides summer camp, the business includes year-round daycare, preschool, kindergarten and extracurricular programs including martial arts and dance classes.The first CLA opened in 2008 and the idea is growing in Texas. In North Texas, Coppell, Keller, McKinney and West Plano each have a center, and two new sites will open in 2018 in Allen and Flower Mound.Employees say CLA offers something for everyone in one giant facility, with prices that are comparable to other summer programs. At the McKinney center, summer camp costs between $175 and $265 per week, depending on the number of days, and includes field trips and lunch."‘Can we enroll here?’ That's the most common comment that I get from our parents when they come in for a tour,” Director Suzi Wine said.  Continue reading...

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