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Photo courtesy Camp Chief Ouray

2017 Family Favorites: Lessons and Camps

From acting to ziplining, extracurricular activities play an important role in whole child development. Here are a few of the standout programs our readers suggest.

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Children’s Art Studio or Craft Center

Top Five

Art Garage

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artSPARK Creative Studio

Art Students League of Denver

Children’s Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus

Lalu Creative Art Studio

The Winner

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Lalu Creative Art Studio

4317 Tennyson St., Denver

720-773-1278 | laludenver.com

This cheerful Berkeley studio is all about helping artists develop life skills through art. Experiential morning classes encourage toddlers and preschoolers to explore their environment creatively, and after-school courses for big kids span a variety of topics, from drawing and painting to carpentry. Drop-in classes are available, along with custom playgroup and homeschool options.

Children’s Acting Lessons

Top Five

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Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities

Christian Youth Theater (CYT)

Denver Center for the Performing Arts

Noteable Kids Arts Center

Step It Up Performing Arts

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The Winner

Denver Center for the Performing Arts

1101 13th St., Denver | 303-446-4892 | denvercenter.org

Go ahead and act up at DCPA, where child and teen acting classes school kids ages three to 18 in everything from acting and singing to stage combat. Under the auspices of experienced instructors, participants will fine-tune their acting skills while building traits such as confidence, critical thinking, and discipline. Don’t miss out on thespian camps this summer.

Dance Studio

Top Five

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Colorado School of Dance

Leap Dance Studio

Park Hill Dance Academy

Parker Dance Academy

Premier School of Dance

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The Winner

Park Hill Dance Academy

4638 E. 23rd. Ave., Denver | 303-975-6111 | parkhilldanceacademy.com

Karlyn Griswold—owner of Park Hill Dance Academy—has been dancing since she could walk. Now, she shares her passion with students. Comprehensive and technique-based ballet instruction is available for all ages and ability levels, and pointe and contemporary classes are offered, too. Dance the summer away at ballet camps for children age five and up.

Musical Instruction

Top Five

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Altitunes Neurologic Music Therapy

Mile High Music

Rocky Mountain Aardvarks

School of Rock

Swallow Hill Music

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The Winner

Rocky Mountain Aardvarks

Six metro locations | 720-515-VARK

rockymtnaardvarks.com

Music for Aardvarks is a rocking alternative to traditional baby and toddler music classes. The songs are original, and the vibe is funky, as caregivers and kiddos three months and up sing, dance, and play a variety of musical instruments, including lollipop drums, tambourines, drumsticks, and shakers. Look for outdoor classes this summer.

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Overnight Camp

Top Five

Avid4 Adventure Colorado Mountain Camp

Camp Chief Ouray YMCA

Camp Timberline

Girl Scouts of Colorado Summer Camp

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IdRaHaJe Christian Summer Camps

The Winner

Camp Chief Ouray YMCA

1101 County Rd. 53, Granby | 970-887-2648 | campchiefouray.org

This century-old overnight camp for children ages seven to 17 is located on 5,100 acres of mountains, valleys, streams, and meadows. Campers live in old-school cabins with trained counselors and up to nine peers. The staff-to-camper ratio is never higher than 1-to-5. Activities include hiking, climbing, canoeing, and archery, along with arts and crafts, cooking, and horseback riding.

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Special Needs Camp or Class

Top Five

Adam’s Camp

Anchor Center for Blind Children

Rocky Mountain Village/Easterseals Colorado

Roundup River Ranch

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T.A.C.T.

The Winner

Adam’s Camp

6767 S. Spruce St., Ste. 102, Centennial

303-563-8290 | adamscamp.org

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Adam’s Camp provides a variety of intensive, personalized, and integrated programs—both therapeutic and recreational—for children with special needs and their families. Whether your child is ziplining at an adventure camp or horseback riding at a therapy camp, he or she will be receiving outcome-based treatment designed to help participants develop their strengths and realize their full potential.

Sports Camp

Top Five

CU Buffs Volleyball Camp

P.A.S.S. Camp at the University of Denver

Rodney Billups Basketball Camps at the University of Denver

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SafeSplash Swim Camps

YMCA of Metropolitan Denver

The Winner

P.A.S.S. Camp at the University of Denver

2201 E. Asbury Ave., Denver

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303-871-3845 | ritchiecenter.du.edu/youth/pass-camp

Entering its 23rd season, this energetic, multi-sports camp is a DU summer tradition. Campers ages five to 11 get a chance to try their hands—and feet—at everything from basketball, soccer, tennis, and lacrosse to martial arts and ultimate Frisbee. No matter what your child is playing, the focus is always on sportsmanship, teamwork, and developing fundamentals.

STEM Camp

Top Five

CU Science Discovery Summer Camps

Denver Museum of Nature & Science

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The Goddard School

Silicon STEM Academy

WOW! Children’s Museum Summer Classes

The Winner

Silicon STEM Academy

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4201 E. Yale Ave., Denver and 6300 S. Lewiston Way, Aurora

303-800-0011 | siliconstemacademy.com

Silicon STEM Academy is Denver’s one-stop-shop for tech training. Through its hallmark six-week sessions, the organization’s top-notch staff delivers lessons in computer programming, 3D game design, digital media, and robotics for adolescents, teens, and adults. The organization also hosts a popular summer camp featuring hands-on, interactive, and insanely fun lessons in coding, digital media, and engineering and robotics.

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