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Camp helps kids appreciate environment

A new kids camp for residents and tourists offers environmental lessons, thanks to the Miami Children’s Museum.

Special to The Miami Herald
Bal Harbour has teamed up with the Miami Children’s Museum and the Sea View Hotel to launch a kids camp where youngsters will be able to learn about environmental conservation.

“It’s part of a number of things we are doing to make Bal Harbour a better place to live and visit,” said Mayor Jean Rosenfield. “We want people to stay in Bal Harbour.”

The program will kick off Thursday at the Sea View Hotel, 9909 Collins Ave., which donated a room made kid-friendly with a chalkboard wall and cushioned carpet. The program, which will run Thursday through Sunday and holidays from 9 a.m. to noon, is available to children ages 5 to 12. It is open to Bal Harbour residents and their guests, as well as those staying at the Sea View Hotel and One Bal Harbour.

It marks the first time the Miami Children’s Museum has worked with a municipality to develop and run a camp program.

“The museum has always wanted to branch out and bring our vision of learning to the rest of the community,” said Danielle Black, associate director of museum experiences. “We saw this as a perfect partnership opportunity.”

There is a $25 daily fee per child, which will go toward funding the program.

The program will also be funded, if necessary, by up to $30,000 from the village’s resort tax fund, said Jay Smith, village director of community outreach.

Carolyn Travis, Bal Harbour’s director of tourism marketing, proposed the idea to the council, noting that children’s activities are a huge draw.

“Family in general travel together in a luxury market that we see today,” said Travis in a phone interview. “It only made sense to do this from a civic perspective, to make it available to residents and guests.”

Two teachers from the museum will be teaching the camp, which can enroll up to 25 children a day. Preregistration with reservation coordinators is recommended.

During class, children will make at least two different art projects along with indoor and outdoor activities including learning about the beach environment. Each week will feature a different theme such as Eco Explorers, where children will learn about recycling, conservation and what it means to be green, Black said.

The camp will run through early April, but Travis says she hopes the program will be extended through the year.

“As a community, we want to provide the needs of the community,” said Travis.

For information, call the Miami Children’s Museum 305-373-5437 ext 112.

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