Rec. Department hosts basketball and tennis camps

By Colin Rajala - Staff Writer
Enfield - posted Thu., Jul. 19, 2012
A camper works on her forehand volley during match play. Courtesy photos. - Contributed Photo

The Enfield Recreation Department is teaming up with Skyhawks sports camps to provide children in Enfield a unique opportunity to pick up their tennis rackets or basketballs and learn about the sports, building and honing skills and techniques as well as developing positive personal characteristics. The tennis camp will run from July 30 through Aug. 3 at the John F. Kennedy tennis courts, from 9 a.m. to noon, and is open to children ages 7 through 12. The basketball camp is a full-day camp for children 10 to 14 years of age, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Angelo Lamagna Activity Center. Both camps will be run by Skyhawk camp counselors who are college students majoring in related fields of sports and education.

“With all of our camps, no matter the age or sport, we want to teach our campers life skills through sports,” said Sarah Kelley, Skyhawk area manager. “That is our motto and we live by it. We not only want to teach children the sports and make better athletes, but we want to make them better all-around people. We have five core life skills we incorporate into camp: Good sportsmanship, leadership, responsibility, teamwork and respect.”

The tennis camp is open to beginning, intermediate and advanced players, with the campers being matched up by ability. The campers will refine their skills, learning proper grip, footwork, stroke and serving during a series of drills designed to teach in a fun and dynamic way. After the drills and practice, campers will develop their love for the game and become well-rounded players through match play and tournament-style games. The campers will also have an opportunity to learn the rules and etiquette of the sport.

“The camps provide a lot of positive youth development,” said Alison Alberghini-Durler, assistant recreation supervisor of the Enfield Recreation Department. “The tennis camp will be a great introduction to the sport and allow kids to get their feet wet in a sport that they may not know much about.”

The basketball camp is geared toward intermediate players and is designed to be fun and skill-intensive, with each day beginning with a skill of the day that will be emphasized throughout the day in various drills and games. The campers will play games and scrimmages against one another to further build the basic passing, shooting, dribbling and rebounding skills. Basketball campers will learn the value of respect, responsibility and teamwork through group exercises, team-building and ice-breakers. The camp will end with a tournament day and merit award ceremony open to parents.

“With all of our drills and games, we incorporate teamwork as an aspect because kids need to learn how to work together for not only sports but life,” Kelley said. “If one child is having a rough day and doesn’t want to participate, we encourage the other kids on their team to cheer for them and try to convince them they are needed by their team.”

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