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Basketball Camp Hopes to Put Kids on the Court

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A sports camp coming to Niverville this summer hopes to get local youth off their couches, out of their homes, and onto the hardcourt to learn a few things about the game of basketball.

The pandemic has changed a lot for young people in the rural southeast as many have been forced to spend more time indoors and away from their usual friends and activities.

Cassandra Falk, camps and recreation programmer for the Town of Niverville, has been actively looking to create ways for youth to stay active while staying safe this summer.

“Things like sports camps are a perfect chance for kids to finally feel some normalcy after they have endured a very challenging school year,” Falk says. “They will give them a fun but safe opportunity to meet new friends and be active.

In August, Niverville Rec will host the Junior NBA Youth Basketball Camp, a national youth basketball program designed by Basketball Canada for young people between the ages of five and 12. The camp will be hosted at the brand-new CRRC, which is slated to open in early July.

“This program is set up to develop fundamental skills, sportsmanship, and a love for the game of basketball,” Falk says. “The camp is set for August 9–13 and the kids can expect to play hours of basketball each day, while also participating in other camp activities.”

Falk said they aren’t looking for any specific skill level as the camp will be tailored to people of all skill levels and to give those who sign up a chance to learn the fundamentals of the game.

“The opportunities for playing basketball outside of school in our community are very limited, so this will be a great chance for the basketball-loving kids to develop their skills, or maybe someone is not sure if they like the game but want to try something new, then this camp is great for them too,” Falk says. “No experience in basketball is needed. This is a perfect chance for them to learn the basics. The great thing is we can adapt the program to any skill level.”

Falk added they have two adult volunteers who are registered to act as coaches and will be perfect mentors for the youth who take part.

“We are actually very fortunate as two local individuals have stepped forward to help with coaching,” Falk says. “They both have a tremendous amount of experience coaching kids in basketball, so we trust they will be able to run with this program and provide a safe and fun learning environment.”

As the COVID-19 pandemic sees activities adjusted and modified to keep people safe, Falk says they will be sure to keep the camp safe for youth and adults, no matter how the pandemic situation sits later in the summer.

“We do not know what COVID-19 will look like in August,” Falk says. “But we will have all the proper sanitizing, distancing, and mask-wearing measures in place, as well as limiting registration numbers based on the province’s public health orders.”

The basketball camp is just one of many camps and activities Niverville Rec has planned for when kids are out of school.

“We have 18 week-long camps planned for this summer starting in July and running through August,” Falk says.

And many of those camps this summer will also provide opportunities for residents to check out the brand new CRC.

“With the new facility opening, we wanted to expand our camp program and offer a larger variety of camps to Niverville youth,” Falk says. “Some of the other new themes we have planned are culinary camp, volleyball camp, Olympics camp, and nature explorers camp.”

Registration is now open for Niverville Rec’s summer camps, including the Junior NBA Youth Basketball Camp, with early bird pricing available until May 14.

For more information

More information on the camps and how to register can be found by visiting www.whereyoubelong.ca and clicking the children’s camps tab.

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