Waterford Starts First Full-Day Summer Camp

Recreation And Parks, Youth Services Now Offering Town's First Ever Full-Day Summer Camp

In August of 2011, a single mother wrote a letter to First Selectman Dan Steward asking why the town does not have a full-day summer program for children. In the letter, the woman said daycare was expensive, and there was a large need for a municipal full-day summer program.

Steward directed Waterford Youth Services and Waterford Recreation and Parks to research and possibly create a full-day summer program. Waterford had offered a half-day summer program, but never a full-day summer program.

Well, the two departments have come together to build the Camp D.A.S.H. summer program, a seven-week full-day summer camp starting this year they are announcing today. The program is affordable at $100 to $150 per week, depending if the parent wants extended care, or $650 for the entire seven weeks.

“We are excited,” Waterford Youth Services Director Dani Gorman said. “It fills a need.”

The program will cost no extra money to the town, according to Gorman. Recreation and Parks Department Program Coordinator Kerry Sullivan and Youth Services Program Coordinator Erin Eccleston are most responsible for the camp, Gorman said.

The Program

Fliers will go home today will all Waterford students about the summer camp. The camp is for students currently in kindergarten through sixth-grade, and runs from June 25th to August 10th.

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Recreation and Parks and Youth Services will take the first 100 people who sign up for the program. To sign up, parents can contact Sullivan at recreation and parks at 860-444-5881 or Eccleston at youth services at 860-444-5848.

The program runs every weekday, rain or shine. Parents can sign up for the 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. hours for $100 a week or the 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. hours for $150 a week.

The students will go to Pleasure Beach every Friday if the weather holds up, Eccleston said. The camp will be based out of Great Neck School.

Kerry Sullivan April 27, 2012 at 10:36 AM
As noted in article flyers are being sent home with students. Also in Summer/Fall Program booklets mailed to homes between May 9-14. Registration forms on back of flyers and registration will be by mail with postmark of May 21. Parents please note Camp registration is different form and mail in date than registration for Recreation Programs. Please note you cannot call in to register
Foofaraw April 27, 2012 at 12:14 PM
What do you do if you get 200-300 applications in the mail on Monday morning? Just asking...I have a feeling it is going to open the floodgates...families are in desperate need for full day care in the Summer. Park & Rec should consider expanding before they even start---especially if it is not costing the taxpayer and there is a need.
Staff @ Waterford Youth Services April 27, 2012 at 01:02 PM
Since this is our first year, it's a pilot program so we can see how it all will run. We hope that in future years we can expand so that we can serve more residents. We will begin accepting registrations that are post marked on or after May 21st. The flier going home with students has all of the details. We're looking forward to launching this program which will be a nice mix of recreational and positive youth development activities. DASH stands for Daily Activities for Summer Happiness!
Jessica - April 27, 2012 at 01:46 PM
A few questions what will the staff the child ratio be? What are the qualifications of the supervisors? My child has a bee allergie can he have his Epi pen with him?
Samantha April 27, 2012 at 01:58 PM
Will you accept care 4 kids? They currently pay almost all of my daycare expenses
Tammy April 27, 2012 at 03:55 PM
I am so excited. I have to scramble my son around all summer long. This is wonderful news!
Yulonda Wilbur April 27, 2012 at 05:45 PM
I love this will the children have to bring lunch?
Paul Petrone (Editor) April 27, 2012 at 08:29 PM
I'm told if anybody has questions they can call youth services at 860-444-5848.
Cheryl L May 01, 2012 at 10:47 AM
Unless Ms. Gorman and Ms. Sullivan have done the prep work for this program on their own time, it has already "cost the town money". The Town has also now placed itself in competition with local taxpaying businesses.
Matt Bartkowski July 12, 2012 at 04:40 PM
And competition is bad... why???
Beth P July 12, 2012 at 07:28 PM
Until this program began, every town contiguous to Waterford offered a full day, not subject to the weather, summer program. If parents wish to continue to use the local taxpaying businesses, they are welcome to.
Michelle L. Mayo, Realtor, ABR, SRES July 15, 2012 at 12:06 PM
This has been such a great program so far! From experience the local tax paying businesses that offer this same service don't do nearly as much as what is being done for these kids at Camp Dash. Plus they are way to expensive!!!!! Thank you to Camp Dash and all the camp counselors and everybody behind the scenes for providing this wonderful service! Please bring it back next year.


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