Tealeaf | Indy Week

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Re: “Staffers, parents concerned over kids' safety at Spence's Farm

I am the parent of a child who attended Spence's after school program until I read this article, and I've been following this thread with interest. I don't consider myself overly concerned with safety -- I loved the outdoors aspect of Spence's and believe that kids need to be free to explore and make their own mistakes. That said, my daughter is not a strong swimmer and I shudder to think what may have happened had I sent her to Spence's summer camp as I'd been planning to do. Even without that, there's simply too much here that speaks to a serious lack of judgment on Spence's part. With so many other good options in this area, the decision to go elsewhere was, for me, was a no-brainer.

I'd like to mention a couple of the other options for parents who may be reading this thread and wondering where else to go:

For girls who love horses, there's an alternative horseback riding after-school program that I've heard great things about. It's called Horse Play (http://nchorseplay.com) and they pick up from local schools like Spence's does and include one free riding lesson per week in the cost. I believe they have summer camps, too. They've recently come into new ownership but I've heard good things about the new owners as well as the old.

My top summer camp recommendation is for Learning Outside (http://www.learningoutside.org). They're located just a few miles southwest of Carrboro and my daughter simply LOVES their camps. They're perfect for nature lovers: they take place 100% outdoors and they bring in certified naturalists and wilderness experts to teach the classes. They don't offer horseback riding or swimming, but the counselors are so top-notch and good with kids that I sometimes joke it's more like nature therapy than nature camp.

Other horse and/or nature-themed camps include the Botanical Gardens, Blue Skies of Maple View Horseback Riding Camp, and just about a million others.

Good luck!

12 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Tealeaf on 01/16/2014 at 2:47 PM

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