The short film created by kids taking part in DACO's movie making summer camp in 2016.

Downtown Lancaster to Provide Ample Art Camps for Youth

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For many, some of their fondest memories stem from steamy days spent at various summer camps. Regardless of whether those memories consist of splashing through murky lakes or playing theater games for a few hours in the morning at an art camp – these memories make a serious impact on the people who have them.

This year, Lancaster’s Decorative Arts Center of Ohio (DACO), Art and Clay on Main, and the Ohio Glass Museum and Glass Blowing Studio have teamed up to create a suit of collaborative, day-long summer camps for youth grade four and higher in Southeastern Ohio.

“(DACO) has been putting on summer camps since our first year, and one of the things we had heard from parents again and again is that they wanted an all-day camping experience for their child – that it was very difficult to drop everything in the middle of the day to pick up their child from a camp,” said Trisha Clifford-Sprouse, DACO’s acting co-director. “So we all got together, as arts organizations, and thought about ways that we could provide an all-day camping experience for kids, since we are all in the downtown and all vying for the same students.”

The camps kick off on Monday, June 19, with the Marbles & Museums camp, which will focus on exactly what its name suggests: marbles and museums.

“Each organization will be focusing on separate projects having to do with marbles or marbling,” said Clifford-Sprouse. “The students are split into groups of five and they rotate at each organization throughout the day.”

The Ohio Glass Museum will be teaching students how to play the game of marbles, at Art and Clay on Main students will utilize a marbling technique on pottery, and at DACO students will learn about team dynamics, as well as marble paper and fabric. On the last day of the camp the organizations will hold a marbles tournament featuring all of the camper’s hard work in various ways.

The second camp, which takes place July 10-14, is entitled “FUNdamentals,” and will focus on the act of making art. Inspired by the current exhibition on display at DACO, Three Voices, campers will utilize drawing, painting, and ceramics throughout the camp at all three organizations.

“(FUNdamentals) is really about creating art; about the process of creating art,” said Clifford-Sprouse. “On the final day of the camp we will hold an exhibition of the camper’s art at DACO.”

The final camp, which takes place August 7-11, focuses on the art of movie-making, something that campers were able to experience at DACO’s summer camp last year.

The movie-making camp is a collaboration between DACO and Art and Clay, with Art and Clay providing for many of the props and costumes that will be used in the final short film that campers make. A photographer affiliated with DACO will handle the filming of the movie, which will be shown at the Ohio Glass Museum on the final day of camp, as well as at Destination Downtown Lancaster’s film night the following Saturday, August 12.

“I would hope that the way in which these camps are designed would instill in students a sense of community, since they are the product of a collaboration of three organizations in their hometown,” said Clifford-Sprouse. “I also hope that these camps show campers the different ways in which they can engage in creative thought and processes and utilize that to succeed and excel.”

Throughout the summer, DACO will also be holding a series of shorter summer camps. For a full schedule, check out this link.