The holiday break for students at Detroit Lakes Public Schools officially begins Monday, Dec. 23, and continues through Jan. 6.
Once the excitement of Christmas has come to a close, how can lakes area kids spend the rest of their winter vacation? If their parents haven't planned a family getaway, there are still plenty of options available right here at home.
Over at the Becker County Museum, the staff is busy putting the finishing touches on the schedule for their two-day STEM camp, which is open to all area youth between the ages of 7-14.
For $35, kids can enjoy two full mornings of science, technology, engineering and mathematics activities including robotics, circuit building and more, from 9 to 11 a.m. Thursday and Friday, Dec. 26-27.
"Christmas will be over, so it's a good time for kids to come over to the museum and practice some of their critical thinking and team building skills," said museum director Becky Mitchell.
Then on Tuesday, Dec. 31, the museum will be hosting its very first New Year's Eve bash from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. There will be party hats and favors for every kid who visits the museum that day, while supplies last.
While they're there, visitors can also check out the "Electrifying Minnesota" interactive exhibits scattered throughout the museum's upper and lower levels, go on a scavenger hunt, try out some special NYE party games, and celebrate the end of 2019 with the museum's friendly staff.
There is no cost to attend other than the museum's regular admission fee; museum members and all kids age 18 and younger are admitted for free, while the cost for nonmember adults is $5.
For more information on these and other upcoming events, contact the museum at 218-847-2938 during its regular operating hours, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. The museum is at 714 Summit Ave. To learn more, visit www.beckercountyhistory.org.
Right across the parking lot from the museum, the Detroit Lakes Community & Cultural Center will also be offering its annual KIds Day Out activities Thursday and Friday, Dec. 26-27, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For a fee of just $32 (DLCCC members receive a small discount, with the amount depending on their membership level), kids can enjoy all that The Center has to offer — from swimming in the BTD Aquatics Center pool to playing in the Backyard, The Center's three-story indoor playground, as well as the gymnasium and other fitness facilities. Call 218-844-4221 to register, or visit www.dlccc.org/register.html.
The Center will also be hosting its annual Family Friendly New Year's Eve Bash on Tuesday, Dec. 31, from 4 to 7 p.m. Admission is $5 per person or $20 per family, which includes usage of all of The Center's above-mentioned facilities as well as enjoying snacks and (nonalcoholic) beverages, bingo, a cannonball contest in the pool, the Center's giant slide and more.
There will even be a 6:45 p.m. balloon drop in the Center's fieldhouse in honor of the annual Times Square holiday tradition. There is no pre-registration or ticket purchase required; call 218-844-4221 for more information.
Just a short drive east of Detroit Lakes, Detroit Mountain Recreation Area will also be offering an Introduction to D-Team camp for prospective Alpine skiers between the ages of 4 and 17 on Friday and Saturday, Dec. 27-28, from 10 a.m. to noon each day.
Pre-registration is required, says Detroit Mountain Trails Boss Tony Schmitz, and the cost is $75 per child, covering both days of the camp.
"This camp will go over basic fundamentals of our D-team racing program and introduce your child to a new competitive side of skiing," Schmitz said. "This will be a good experience for your child to see if they have an interest in the sport of ski racing to possibly join our D-team next year."
He added that the camp will end with "a fun race that will mimic a D-team race experience."
No ski racing experience is necessary, but Schmitz said that participating skiers should be able to ride the chair lift "with little to no help," and should also be able to come to a complete stop without assistance.
To register, or for more information about the camp, call 218-844-SNOW or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.