BIWABIK — Giants Ridge already has “a whole bunch of fun things for kids to do in the summer,” from rock climbing to kayaking.
So, why not offer a summer camp, says Benji Neff, Giants Ridge director of mountain sports.
The Ridge is doing just that with its new Summer Adventure Camp.
“We are combining all the great things we have to do on the hill” and at nearby Wynne Lake, he said.
The weekly three-day, day camp for ages 9 to 14 will begin this week. Camp is held from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday through Friday. Parents can register their children each week by 5 p.m. the previous Friday.
Drop off is from 8 to 8:30 a.m. and pick up is from 4:30 to 5 p.m.
Days will be jam-packed with activities including mountain biking, hiking, kayaking, swimming and climbing on the resort’s 32-foot outdoor rock wall, Neff said.
The age group was chosen to offer “more serious adventure,” he said. “That’s also the sweet spot for the kids who really like the climbing wall.”
The camp is put on through the Giants Ridge’s SnowSports Academy, whose director, Whitney Kulich, has a degree in recreation, Neff noted. Campers will “learn about trees and nature and how the forest works” during hikes along the many miles of trail.
Participants “are likely to see some wildlife,” also. Biking will be along parts of the Mesabi Trail.
“What a great way for kids to spend the day outdoors getting some exercise and fresh air and more exposure to nature,” Neff said. “It’s a really good opportunity for parents as a way to get kids outside and off their screens.”
There will be “a good mix of activities” during the morning and afternoon. Lunch of a sandwich and fruit, veggie or chips will be provided.
During the warmer parts of the day, “we will go over to the beach at the Villas” for water adventures, or swim in the pool, Neff said.
Indoor arts and crafts and natural resources-based projects will take place if it rains.
All weekly camp fees must be paid in full during registration. Cost is $135 for three days. Camp will be held each week through Aug. 30.
Kids are encouraged to bring a water bottle, a healthy snack (no soda or candy), a swimsuit and towel, closed-toe athletic shoes, sunscreen, bug repellent, a hat, and a jacket or sweatshirt.
Campers can bring their own bicycle or rent one for $20 on biking days. They may also bring a life vest; or one will be provided.
There is a five-child minimum and 15-kid maximum in order for camp to be held each week, Neff noted.
The Summer Adventure Camp is “a really good offering … and opportunity for anyone who has kids to get out of the house during the summer,” he said. “Myself at that age — I would have had a blast.”
Participants may register at the Giants Ridge gift shop or by calling 218-865-8016. For more information and to view the brochure, visit: www.giantsridge.com.