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Summer Camps for Teenagers in Gainesville, Florida

by Amy Sutton

Gainesville, located in north-central Florida, is the largest city in and county seat of Alachua County. As of the 2010 U.S. Census, around 124,000 people call Gainesville home. Teens in Gainesville have the opportunity to attend a broad range of summer camps, ranging from sports camps to educational camps, that prepare them for college.

Parks and Recreation Camps

Your teen can choose from an array of summer camps offered through the City of Gainesville Parks and Recreation Department. Middle school teens can go to the Get Up, Get Out and Get Moving day camp, with themes like "Steppin' to the Beat," "CSI Cool Science" and "Get Out and Play." High school teens can participate in the Counselor in Training program to train to become a summer camp counselor. Teens work to help organize activities, games and field trips for day campers.

YMCA Camps

At the North Central Florida YMCA, your teens can attend the YMCA summer day camp and participate in swimming activities, character games and specialty classes of their choice. They can also attend field trips to local places. Alternatively, your teen can sign up for Camp McConnell, the residential YMCA camp. Teens aged 16 and under can attend this one-, two- or three-week camp and participate in activities, such as arts and crafts, fishing, hay rides, outdoor skills, climbing, skeet shooting, archery, dances, carnivals and zip-lining.

Educational Camps

If you're looking for a more educational type of summer camp for your teen, you can check out the UF Young Entrepreneurs for Leadership and Sustainability summer camp for high school teens. Teens who attend get to live, eat, work and play on the University of Florida campus, all while learning about how to solve social problems and entrepreneurship. If you have a budding chef on your hands, sign your teen up for the culinary camp, with sessions such as "Pies and Tarts" and "Cookie Camp." Alternatively, the Oak Hall School offers an assortment of summer studies camps for teens, including high school study skills, college essay writing and SAT prep.

Sports Camps

University of Florida Gator camps and clinics are offered to area teens, as well. Summer soccer camps include the Junior Elite Camp for girls 10 to 13, Elite Camp for boys and girls who are freshmen through the age of 17 and a high school team camp available for high school soccer teams. You teen's high school volleyball team can attend the high school volleyball team camp or your teen can attend the individual skills camp alone. Your teen daughter can attend one of the softball summer camps, choosing from a hitting camp, pitching camp, defense camp or advanced skills overnight camp.

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