Program News 2011
End of Summer Show at PS/MS 15 & 291 Summer Camp
Youth at our PS/MS 15 & 291 summer camp entered the magical world of Walt Disney for their annual end-of-summer show. The show, which took place at the school on August 19th, was the culmination of the seven week summer camp which served 75 youth. In keeping with the camp's summer-long theme, "Dream, Design, and Diversify," which was woven throughout camp activities, the final show was based around the dreamy sights and sounds of the Disney movies.
The event kicked off with a picnic in the school's courtyard, where children and their families were treated to grilled food, salad, and cold drinks to help beat the heat. The crowd then moved into the school's auditorium, where the stage was decked out in sets designed and created by the youth themselves - paper monkeys swung from palm trees; a lion and zebra decorated the backdrop beneath the sun, moon and stars; and fish and other sea creatures swam along the bottom of the stage. Also displayed were pieces of Disney-themed artwork youth made for the event. Campers were seated in the front of the auditorium, waving excitedly at their parents and friends. After the audience took their seats, program director Yvonne Williams took to the stage to welcome everyone and introduce the campers and their counselors, praising all for "working very, very hard this summer" to put the show together.
As the lights were dimmed, the campers took the stage wearing self-designed costumes, performing short dances to songs from Disney movies such as "The Lion King," "The Little Mermaid," and "Beauty and the Beast." After the dance performances, another group of youth put on a fashion show, wearing costumes to represent their favorite Disney characters, from Winnie the Pooh to Aladdin. Ms. Williams commended many campers for "blossoming" during the summer, leaving their shyness behind and opening up and becoming more confident. This was plainly evident as youth happily danced across the stage to cheers from the audience.
And campers weren't the only ones getting in on the fun - during a performance break, camp staff brought up several audience members to compete in "Minute to Win It" style games. Parents took part in challenges that they had to complete in 60 seconds such as catching ping-pong balls in a stack of cups, and keeping three marbles rolling on a table simultaneously. The games were an enjoyable, interactive way to get the crowd involved, and they gave campers the chance to cheer on their parents and counselors.
At the conclusion of the performances, campers and their families and friends were invited back out to the courtyard to enjoy sweet treats before leaving camp for the summer. The children were excited about the day, but sad to say goodbye to their friends and counselors; many hugs and well wishes were exchanged. One camper exclaimed, "This was the funnest summer ever!" Good Shepherd's summer camp programs in Brooklyn and the Bronx keep hundreds of youth safe and engaged during the summer break. It was evident our program at PS/MS 15 & 291 did exactly that.