Outdoor Children's Camps Shepherdsville KY

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Jefferson Memorial Forest
(502) 368-5404
11311 Mitchell Hill Road
Fairdale, KY
Hours
Welcome Center Mon-Sat 8:30am-4pm; Sun 10am-3pm
Cost
Day visits free; Camping $15
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Lodgings, Stores, Tourist Spots

Riverside, the Farnsley-Moremen Landing
(502) 935-6809
7410 Moorman Road
Louisville, KY
Hours
Tue-Sat 10am-4:30pm; Sun 1pm-4:30pm. Tours occur every hour at half past the hour; the final tour each day takes place at 3:30pm
Cost
Adults $6; Youth (6-12) $3; Children (5 and under) Free; Family rate $15 (2 adults with up to 3 children under age 18)
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Entertainment, Tourist Spots

Louisville Zoo
(502) 459-2181
1100 Trevillian Way
Louisville, KY
Hours
See website for daily and special events schedules
Cost
Adults $12.95; Seniors $9.50; Children $9.50, (2 and under free)
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Entertainment, Tourist Spots

Kindercare
(502) 456-4660
3804 Klondike Lane
Louisville, KY
Hours
Mon-Fri 6:30am-6:30pm
Cost
Varies by program and age of child
Ages
0-12
Services Available
Camps, Childcare

Louisville School of Rock
(502) 266-5552
2303 Watterson Trail
Louisville, KY
Cost
Moderate.
Ages
17-Sep
Services Available
Camps, Classes

Abrakadoodle
(502) 314-4663
various locations
Louisville, KY
Hours
Check website for schedule.
Cost
Workshops: $16/class; $55/month
Ages
12-Feb
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Kids Resources

Southwest Family Branch YMCA
(502) 933-9622
2800 Fordhaven Road
Louisville, KY
Hours
Mon-Thu 5am-10pm; Fri 5am-8pm; Sat 6am-6pm; Sun 9am-6pm
Cost
Moderate.
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Kids Resources, Leagues & Teams

Louisville Nature Center
(502) 458-1328
3745 Illinois Avenue
Louisville, KY
Hours
Mon-Sat 9am-4pm
Cost
Free; Donations appreciated.
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps

Southeast Family Branch
(502) 491-9622
5930 Six Mile Lane
Louisville, KY
Hours
Mon-Thu 5am-10pm; Fri 5am-8pm; Sat 6am-6pm; Sun 9am-6pm
Cost
Moderate.
Ages
All Ages
Services Available
Camps, Classes, Kids Resources, Leagues & Teams

All-City Karate
(502) 449-4020
2708 Rockford Lane
Louisville, KY
Hours
Check website for schedule.
Cost
Moderate.
Ages
5And Up
Services Available
Camps, Classes

Great Big World

Spending time immersed in nature helps produce happy, well-adjusted kids.

By Violet Snow

April 2010

I like to play indoors better ‘cause that’s where all the electrical outlets are—a fourth-grader in San Diego, quoted in Last Child in the Woods (Workman Publishing Company, 2005), in which journalist Richard Louv introduced the concept of “nature deficit disorder” in children.

Freewheeling outdoor play, from building stick shelters to cloudgazing, that was once common for children is much less available to today’s youth—and Louv says they’re missing something vital. He blames influences such as the loss of green space, an obsession with safety, educational pressures and the fascination of electronic media.

Numerous studies show that problems such as obesity, depression and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) improve when kids are exposed to nature. Cornell University researchers found that children with ready access to nature handled stress more successfully (Environment and Behavior 5/03). Scientists at the University of Southern California found that children who had park space within 500 meters of home tended to be less overweight (Association of Research Libraries conference, 4/09).

One recent University of Illinois study, involving children with ADHD, may help explain why interaction with nature is so important for all youngsters. It is based on attention restoration theory. Most of the time we use directed attention, which lets us focus on tasks but also fatigues with use. Involuntary attention is spontaneous and does not require effort. Natural settings often contain elements that engage involuntary attention, which allows directed attention to rest and recover.

In this study, children with ADHD took guided walks for 20 minutes through three different settings: a park, a quiet downtown area and a residential neighborhood. The youngsters’ capacity for concentration was tested after every walk; they scored higher after walking in the park than after the other outings (Journal of Attention Disorders 8/08).

Nature’s regenerative effects can be observed in all children, but they often need encouragement. The second edition of Last Child in the Woods (2008) lists 100 suggestions for connecting kids and nature, such as buying a truckload of dirt to play in; going for a family walk when the moon is full; buying field guides to birds, trees and flowers; planting a butterfly garden; and studying animal tracking.

Andrea Taylor, PhD, one of the University of Illinois researchers, believes that these study results offer clear implications for public policy. “We have to make nature accessible,” she says. “It’s not enough to have a massive park six blocks away. There should be small pockets of natural area near the home.

Louv’s book sparked the creation of a Children and Nature Network ( www.childrenandnature.org ) to promote awareness and push for legislation. Such calls for action are starting to bear f...

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