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Kids have choices for fun

Day camps throughout the city have a variety of prices, locations and times, but the goals are all the provide children with a safe, structured and fun place to spend their summer vacation days. Submitted Photo

To most kids, there were never two sweeter words spoken than those of “summer vacation.” 

To some parents, those sweet words translate into more of a phrase … one such as “What in the world are we going to do with them all summer?”

Never fear — there are options in Detroit Lakes.

DLCCC Day Camp

The Detroit Lakes Community and Cultural Center has only been offering its day camp for a handful of years, but Program Coordinator Dave Harman says they’re going strong.

“We’ll get between 25 to 35 kids a day, and each year we try to add a few new things,” he said, “We try to keep them moving and active and busy all day long.”

Harmon says that includes a full use of the DLCCC facilities, such as the pool, the gym and the Backyard.  But for this day camp, the real backyard is the city of Detroit Lakes, as field trips are also a big part of this program.

“We want to get out in our community, outdoor games at the park, maybe pitch some tents out there like in a camping adventure,” said Harmon, “We’ll have beach relays, build sand castles, hikes to places like the library and museum …. and then we’ll be taking trips to and Dunton Locks, Buffalo State Park and Tamarac.”

Targeted services are also offered, as well as arts and crafts.

Kids are required to bring their own lunches, but snacks are provided.

The DLCCC day camp opens up at 7:45 a.m. for kids ages kindergarten through sixth grade with a 5:30 p.m. pick up time.

The prices for this camp vary.  For DLCCC members signed up for five days a week, the cost is $22 (it’s a dollar more per day for kids signed up for fewer days).  For non-members it’s $23 a day for a five day sign up. 

Aside from an allotted number of vacation days (for five-day a week kids it’s five days of vacation time), parents still pay even if the children are not there.

The DLCCC day camp starts Friday, May 24. To sign up contact Dave at 4221 ext 118…or


Latchkey is a program that has been running in Detroit Lakes for 26 years — just ask Sandy Westrum … she started it.

“We start out by giving the kids a full breakfast,” said Westrum, who says the days are always full for Latchkey kids who begin filtering into the Lincoln Education Center at 7:45 a.m. and can stay until 6 p.m.

“We take them to swimming lessons at the Senior High; we take part in the summer library program, we take them to the Rec Center where the tennis courts are, we do craft projects, computers, Wii, plus we have a gym and full kitchen that we use,” said Westrum, who says they usually have roughly 30 kids each day from kindergarten through sixth grade.

Latchkey personnel are early childhood education professionals who are also CPR/First Aid Certified.

The cost for Latchkey is based on an hourly rate of $2.75 per hour with no particular time commitment.

Kids will have to bring their own lunch.

Latchkey starts Friday, May 24; for more information, pick up a registration packet at either Rossman, Roosevelt or the Lincoln Education Center or call 847-4418.

The Boys and Girls Club

The Boys and Girls Club is currently taking applications for its day camp, but it’s also currently maxed out — for now.

With approximately 170 children ages kindergarten and up, the club isn’t just full this year, they’re bursting at the seams.

“We did find space for the kids on our waiting list, but we need to wait a couple of weeks just to see how enrollment is,” said Program Director Tami Skinner.

A few weeks ago after summer sign up, the club was full with a waiting list of over 20 people. 

“We were able to find room for those on the list though,” said Skinner, “We are going to shift the third and fourth grade over to Grace Lutheran Church for a portion of the day and fifth grade and up will go to the tech college for part of the day so they’re divided up with age appropriate activities.”

The going rate at the Boys and Girls Club this year is $20 per child, per day and parents are not charged when the kids are not there.

Club staff takes kids on a variety of field trips including fishing, horseback riding and swimming at the DLCCC. All meals and snacks are provided by the club. This day camp starts Monday, June 3. For more information on how to apply, call 847-5700.