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Summer camps promote a healthy lifestyle for kids
By Lori Ann Prado, Intern
292-7311
Posted: 06/10/2008
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Pictured from left to right are Emiliano Cuellar, Justice Rivera and Nick Enriquez playing a game of basketball during the Wellness and Recreational Sports Complex summer camps.
For 10-year-old Aaron Regalado of Roma, his summer days are not spent in front of a television screen but rather playing tennis, golf, basketball, soccer, volleyball, swimming, making art, playing team sports and climbing. These are all activities he enjoys at The University of Texas-Pan American Wellness and Recreational Sports Complex (WRSC) Summer Youth Camp.

Regalado said that his preferred activity is swimming, because it involves free time and playing with his coaches, who many children at summer camp see as role models. These trained instructors, and/or varsity UTPA athletes teach the kids the importance of living a healthy life and continuing the fight against child obesity.

“I think it’s going to help me in the future to be more active and healthy and I’m going to play a lot,” said 10-year-old Alessandra Martinez from Edinburg.

Assistant Director of Wellness and Recreational Sports Travis Hughes said the main goals of the summer camps are to keep children healthy, active and off the couch. According to Hughes, parents of participating children are happy to see that their child is staying fit and going to sleep early because of their daily activities.

Children are also pleased with how they are being taught to do certain activities such as the climbing wall. According to Hughes, the camp is designed to teach kids how to do various activities they can play in the future on their own or with siblings or friends.

“They tell you how to climb and they give you hands-on learning. They teach you first and then they let you do it by yourself,” said 11-year-old Joshua Garza from McAllen.


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Julian Enriquez kicks the ball during an indoor soccer game at the sports summer camps. Following behind him are Audry Gonzalez (left) and Cindy Cantu (right).
WRSC summer camps are currently taking applicants ages 6-11. The two-week sessions will run from June 16-27, July 7-18 and July 21-Aug. 1 from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m.

The fee is $220 for children of the general public, $200 for children of UTPA students, faculty, staff and alumni who are non-WRSC members, and $180 for children of UTPA students, faculty, staff and alumni who are WRSC members. There is a $60 fee per session for each late program.

To register, visit www.utpa.edu/wellness and download the registration form. Once it is filled out, it should be brought to the WRSC and turned in with payment in the form of cash, check, MasterCard or Visa.

For more information about the UTPA Summer Youth Camps, call 956/292-7808 or e-mail recsports@utpa.edu.