The Circus is Back in Town!

10494446_10152561016731210_5887781627398215578_oThe circus has arrived! Beaver Camp’s amazing specialty program, that is. Where else will kids have the opportunity to participate in one or two two-week, fun-filled sessions learning what it’s like to be a part of a genuine, modern circus and developing a multitude of circus skills from experts?

Acrobatics. Wire walking. Stilt walking. Juggling. Aerial fabrics. Globe balancing. Physical comedy. These are just a few of the many thrilling areas explored by campers every day during the program. The sessions culminate in several shows performed for fellow campers and families. During the performances, which are designed in large part by the youngsters, circus campers showcase their choice of three skills they’ve worked on over the course of the session.

During their structured days which end with swimming, in addition to having an incredible amount of fun, campers improve focus and concentration, gain strength and flexibility, and build self-confidence. Additional benefits involved in Circus Camp include skill development. Says Jesse Dryden, co-director of the program along with his wife Alisan Funk, “One day you can’t do it and the next day you can.” Skill-related challenges are self set; everything is progressive. For example, when it comes to unicycle riding, campers proceed through three phases: they are companion walkers, wall walkers (using the wall for support), or, after being tested, independent gym walkers.

This year, Alisan and Jesse are excited about the many seven and eight-year-olds in the group of forty campers, as well as a few new additions to their equipment, which include balancing feathers and circus hula hoops. One third of last year’s campers are returning this summer! Another wonderful facet of the program, according to Jesse, is that “Kids can do everything they set their hearts on.” Jesse is creative director of Circus Smirkus; Alisan is head aerialist. For more details on their year-round program, check out their website.

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