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Charlotte Amalie
Thursday, July 18, 2024
HomeNewsArchivesSUMMER CAMP HOLDS ITS OWN OLYMPICS

SUMMER CAMP HOLDS ITS OWN OLYMPICS

It's not Sydney but there was Olympic-style competition Thursday at Magen's Bay.
Gail Deller, who teaches swimming during the year at the Ivanna Eudora Kean High School, directed the watersports competitions for the Reformed Church Summer Camp, one of the oldest camps on St. Thomas.
"We had some really great swimmers this year so we had a real medley relay with the butterfly, back, breast and freestyle which you'll be seeing soon in Sydney," she said.
Events staged as part of the summer camp Olympics included land and water based games, some with a purpose. A nylon grid mimicking lanes that would be found in a regulation swimming pool were set up in the water a few feet from the beach.
"Eight- and the nine-year-olds have to learn how to retrieve objects in the water as one of their Red Cross lessons, so their job is to find all the clams and the fish and everything else we threw in the water for them to retrieve," she said.
Younger campers swam through a series of hoops held underwater by their counselors. Five- and six-year-olds balanced cups on a styrofoam kickboard while kicking their way through the water to shore.
Land-based games were directed by Theresa Hodge, who also split competitors up by age group, putting them through two events apiece.
Deller explained between bites of a slightly sandy cheeseburger, the last beach day of the annual summer camp is set aside for athletics and swimming, "so the kids remember to come back again next summer."

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