Top 10: Affordable summer camps plentiful in area

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Jacob Key works on drills with the help of MTSU trainer Matt Riley during the MTSU speed camp.
Money may be tight this year and some families may be thinking of skipping summer camp this year to save a few dollars.

But don’t worry about pinching pennies, when there are many local and affordable day camps in and around Murfreesboro for almost every interest imaginable.

Most of Murfreesboro’s organizations for children offer a camp. Murfreesboro Parks and Recreation alone offers 10 day camps with topics from tennis to reptiles.

And if day camps aren’t in the cards, many of the dance studios and karate centers offer summer programs for all the budding Baryshnikovs and karate kids out there.

With so much to choose from, we’ve compiled the Top 10 (11, because we try harder) affordable day camps in the Murfreesboro area to keep the little ones busy over the summer.

General Interest

The Boys & Girls Club in Murfreesboro offers Double Dare Summer Camp for any child, regardless of interest.

The nine-week day camp will provide a safe place to learn in a fun-filled environment. The camp is available for children ages 6-18 from 6 a.m.-6 p.m. and runs from June through August.

In addition to recreational activities and field trips, each week will also be themed and all the activities, including art projects and technology classes will be built around the theme.

To sign-up a child, simply come by the Boys & Girls Club, 820 Jones Blvd., and fill out a registration form between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.

For more information, call 615-893-KIDS.

Kids, ages 4-14, can also spend a week at Discovery Center at Murfree Springs.

Camp registration begins on March 1 for members and April 1 for non-members and will remain open until all spaces are filled.

Register in person or by mail at Discovery Center at Murfree Spring, 502 SE Broad St. Murfreesboro, TN 37130, or call 615-890-2300.

The Discovery Center also offers fall and spring break camps.

Sports Camps

MTSU has a multitude of sports camps lead by the Blue Raider Athletic Department and the Campus Recreation Department.

To browse through all the sports offerings from the athletic department, visit or call 615-898-2450.

MTSU Campus Rec offers Youth Sports Camp, Swim Camp and Adventure Camp. All camps meet on a weekly basis from 9a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday and run from May through July.

Youth Sports Camp, ages 7-13, includes a variety of athletic games, recreational games and wellness sessions.

Swim Camp, ages 8-17, helps campers to improve efficiency and time and enjoy the training process.

Adventure Camp, ages 14-17, gives teenagers a chance to explore the great outdoors and develop a lifelong appreciation for the outdoors and healthy lifestyle choices. Activities include canoeing, hiking, kayaking, rock climbing, caving and rafting.

Call Student Recreation Center Coordinator Jenny Tenpenny Crouch at 615-898-2104 or e-mail her at for more information.

For the soccer players out there, MTSU’s Rhoden Soccer Academy offers summer training for all ages and skill levels.

“Our camps are designed to create the best possible environment in which players can improve their technical skills and tactical awareness,” explained Aston Rhoden, MTSU’s head women’s soccer coach. “An emphasis is placed on giving individual instruction based on each player’s skill level and experience.”

For more information, visit or contact Rhoden at 615-898-5316 or

For all sporty kids, Murfreesboro Parks and Rec offers Sports Camp from June 1-July 24 at the SportsCom.

At Sports Camp, young athletes, ages 9-14, explore a variety of sports and activities from the traditional to the unconventional with an emphasis on good attitudes, teamwork and enjoyment. The camp costs $50.

For more information, contact Gary Arbit at 615-907-2251.

Art Camps

Murfreesboro City Schools Extended School Program offers Around the World in 35 Days at Bradley Academy, along with many other camps at other schools for varied interests.

The day camp includes music and art lessons with field trips to SportsCom, Barfield Crescent Park and the Discovery Center.

For more information about ESP day camps, visit or call the central office at 615-893-2313.

Murfreesboro Little Theatre and The Center for the Arts offer acting workshops for future Oscar or Tony winners.

At MLT’s PLAY-TIME theatrical workshop, young actors will learn about set design, lighting, costume design, poster making, mock auditions and acting techniques. For more information, visit or call 615-584-4684. Children must be registered by March 1.

Kids can also learn the craft in Center Stage Academy 2009
at the Center for the Arts.

Visit or call 615-904-2787 for more information.

Special Interest Camps

Murfreesboro Parks and Rec has a camp for every interest.

Budding naturalists can learn about the environment with Reptile Camp, Wandering Waters Camp, Wilderness Adventure or Nature Camp.

For information about any Parks and Rec camp, contact MPRD Program Coordinator Jeni Brinkman at or 615-642-1103.

Parks and Rec also offers Heritage Camp, where kids will put themselves in the place of early settlers to the area and experience their crafts, chores and daily life at Cannonsburgh Pioneer Village.

Contact Fred Trujilio at 615-890-0355 for more information.

Oaklands Historic House Museum also offers historical camps with the Front Porch Pastimes Day Camp and the Antebellum Academy.

Children, ages 6-12, will step back in time during Front Porch Pastimes Day Camp in June. Campers will play 19th century games and learn songs from the era, along with crafts and cooking. Tuition is $80.

“We look forward to engaging the children of our community in hands-on activities that will promote their understanding and appreciation of our local history,” said Mary Beth Nevills, Oaklands educational director.

Young ladies, ages 13 and up, can learn the ways of a true southern belle in July at Oaklands Antebellum Academy.

The girls will take classes in etiquette, dance, penmanship, music, art and needlework, all in period dress.

Space is limited for both camps. Reservations can be made at any time by calling Oaklands at 615-893-0022.

Peachtree Farms offers a Horsemanship Camp for all skill levels and riding styles.

Campers learn to care for and ride horses in the day or half-day camp.

For more information, visit or call 615-419-1089.

Overnight Camps

And if kids need to get away for a while, you can send them to La Vergne’s Youth Incorporated.

The camp offers both overnight and day camps, where kids participate in water sports, horseback riding, ropes courses, and Arts and Crafts.

Call Camp Director Kim Hutchison at 615-459-3971 or 615-504-5419for more details. Space is limited.

Michelle Willard can be contacted at 615-869-0816 or

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