Circus camp coming to Terrace Sportsplex

Terrace youth are getting ready for the annual circus camp held at the Sportsplex.  - CONTRIBUTED
Terrace youth are getting ready for the annual circus camp held at the Sportsplex.
— image credit: CONTRIBUTED

For the third year in a row, circus professionals are touching down in Terrace to teach a five-day circus skills camp for Terrace area kids.

The afterschool camp, held at the Sportsplex from April 29 - May 3, is open for kids 9 and up, and for younger kids as long as their parents accompany them to the camp.

The kids are doing activities like walking on stilts, said Kim MacDougall, program supervisor at the Sportsplex, so there is a bit of risk involved.

But it’s a great chance for kids to get active in a non-traditional way – stilt walking, wire walking, juggling, trapeze, acrobatics and clowning – are all ways for participants to develop balance and core strength, flexibility and stamina.

The three instructors, Dean Bareham, Jessica Barrera and Mike Battie, come from all over British Columbia and have taught the Terrace program before.

Bareham and Barrera have experience working with Cirque du Soleil and Battie is considered the most experienced juggling instructor in B.C., having taught more than 10,000 people the joy of juggling.

MacDougall says the camp has been growing in popularity each year, with 36 students registered last year, and aiming for around the same this year. There are always a few returning faces, but lots of new recruits, as well, she said.

The camp cumulates in a Friday night performance where the kids show off the skills they have learned.

“It’s an amazing performance,” she said.

And the newly crowned clowns get an unexpected bonus when they graduate from circus camp – they now have a skill they can sell as they please.

“A number of the kids after camp went on to perform as buskers and got paid for it,” laughed MacDougall.

To register call the Sportsplex at 250-615-3000 or the Terrace Aquatic Centre at 250-615-3030, registraation is limited.


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