Children notoriously look forward to the last day of school, only to complain of boredom just a few days into the summer. However, youngsters in Lawrence area communities have little time for such concerns.
From school-sponsored enrichment programs to swimming to special library activities to summer ball, their biggest problem is finding time to do it all. Following is a list of area towns and how the children there are keeping busy over the summer months.
BALDWIN youngsters can flock to the city pool from 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday. Special hours for July 4 will be 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. "Fun Fridays" at the pool feature themes that tie in with a decrease in the admission price, such as every person wearing polka dots gets in for half price. There's a different theme each week.
Baldwin City Library hours are 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Monday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday, 12:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, and 9 a.m. to noon Saturday.
The library is participating in the statewide summer reading program, "Feed Your Mind Read!" Children in preschool through eighth grade have until Aug. 9 to read 12 books. Those who do will receive a certificate and a special prize, said librarian Kathy Johnston.
The library holds a story hour for youngsters in preschool through second grade at 10 a.m. every Thursday.
Kathy Davis, Baldwin recreation director, said youngsters have a variety of activities to choose from this summer. The junior high day camp recently wrapped up, but kindergartners through sixth-graders are taking part in morning activities such as golf, tennis, art and swimming. Other young people help make up the cast and crew of the upcoming community production of the musical "Annie," and are keeping busy with practices every night. The show will air at 8 p.m. June 28-29 at Baldwin High School.
About 350 girls and boys are involved in the city's softball-baseball program, Davis said. A batting workshop will be held Saturday and June 29.
The Baldwin School District is sponsoring a summer school and enrichment program. Gus Wegner, director of summer school, said one aspect of the program focuses on reading and math skills. The other aspect helps students pursue interests in fields such as art, band, algebra, classic literature, computers, gymnastics, science and Spanish.
He said about 250 students, which equals a quarter of the student body, are enrolled in the classes. High school students receive -credit for each class.
IN EUDORA, the city pool is open 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. daily. The Eudora Public Library hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday and Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.
The library also is taking part in the statewide reading program, said Marlene Evinger, librarian. Children visiting the library can view films or take activity sheets home, in addition to checking out books. At the end of the summer, the library will sponsor a pool party for those who read 20 books during the program. Evinger said about 200 children have signed up.
Don Durkin, Eudora recreation director, said the city sponsors a girls softball program for ages 7-18, Little League T-Ball for girls and boys ages 5-12, and Babe Ruth Baseball for boys ages 13-18. Youngsters also can attend the city's upcoming basketball camp and volleyball camp.
The school district is offering summer driver education and enrichment courses. About 73 students have signed up for the driver education class, with more than 230 enrolling in the enrichment program.
The classes include math, reading, art, computers, French, German, and camp, focusing on first-aid and crafts. They meet Monday through Thursday and are open to students entering first grade or above.
MCLOUTH youngsters are taking to the playing field. Steve Robson of the McLouth Ball Assn. said about 180 boys and girls ages 5 to 18 are taking part in the baseball-softball program.
The McLouth School District is offering an enrichment program for kindergartners through eighth-graders. James Campbell, elementary school principal, said the activities are intended to develop self-esteem and confidence, encourage critical thinking, improve reading and math skills and develop a desire for lifelong learning.
About 30 McLouth High School students are enrolled in the district's driver education program.
PERRY AND LECOMPTON children are active in summer ball. Susan Warriner, an organizer of Perry's softball-baseball program, said children of all ages have opportunities to play ball this summer.
Youngsters in the two towns have their choice of 15 different activities in the third annual summer recreation program, sponsored by the city of Perry and the Perry-Lecompton School District. Wayne Ledbetter, an organizer of the program, said about 150 students in grades one through eight are enrolled in 500 slots during the six-week program, which includes volleyball, basketball, football, soccer, wrestling, golf, tennis, gymnastics, dance, arts and crafts, and access to the elementary school library.
IN TONGANOXIE, the pool hours are 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. daily and the library is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday and Friday, 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday, and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.
Children ages 4-6 can play on the co-ed T-ball teams, while older boys and girls take part in the city's softball and baseball programs.
Jan Shoemaker, Tonganoxie recreation director, said 110 youngsters ages 7 through 12 are enrolled in the city's summer recreation program, co-sponsored by the Recreation Commission and the Tonganoxie Volunteer Center. It features drama-theater, eurythmics (so called because boys wouldn't come if it was called music and dance, Shoemaker joked), and arts and crafts. Volunteers lead the workshops, which will run Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings through the end of the month.
Fridays provide a special treat, alternating between fishing trips and the "Incredible Journey," a sort of mental obstacle course. Shoemaker said children in groups wander through a series of stations, where they are required to complete a task.
About 90 Tonganoxie High School students are attending the district's driver education program.
WELLSVILLE'S city pool hours are 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. The library is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Children in preschool through junior high school meet at the library at 10 a.m. Wednesdays for the summer reading program, which ends July 17.
Boys and girls ages 5-15 are playing T-ball, softball and baseball in a program sponsored by the Wellsville Recreation Commission.
The Wellsville School District is offering summer driver education and band classes for high school students. Elementary school youngsters are enhancing their math and reading skills in the summer school classes, which end June 28.
IN OSKALOOSA, the city pool is open 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. daily. Library hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to noon Saturday.
Paula Ware, librarian, said youngsters through sixth grade can participate in the summer reading program. "The goal is to read 20 books by the end of the summer," she said, adding that those who do will receive a certificate and a coupon for an ice cream cone. The library is offering Monday Movies at 1 p.m. every week except July 1. The movies generally are based on books.
Kindergartners to second-graders are getting an early start in the ballfield with the city's instructional league, which meets 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Saturdays. Older athletes play on the softball and baseball teams.
More than 30 Oskaloosa High School students also are attending the school district's driver education class.
DESOTO youngsters can swim in the city pool 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. every day, or head to the library 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.
Sue Peavy, librarian, said children participating in the summer reading program receive a gold star for every 10 books they read and will receive a certificate at the end of the summer. Starting today through Friday, the library will sponsor "Storybook Art" for children ages 6-10 from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Other library activities include "Wild Things," an art project focusing on jungle creatures, 2 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. July 3 for children ages 3-12; and a puppet show for young people 3 years old and up at 1:30 p.m. Aug. 14.
The library hopes to start a Young Writers Club for children ages 9-12.
DeSoto has a softball-baseball program for the city's boys and girls.
Also, about 80 10th- through 12th-graders are enrolled in driver education offered by the school district. They should be licensed drivers after Aug. 2.
IN LINWOOD, the city library hours are 9:30 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, 9:30 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday, and 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday.
Juanita Sheets, librarian, said the summer reading program has met with resounding enthusiasm from the city's young people. Preschoolers meet at the library from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Wednesdays, but the older children have no set meeting time.
The library also will sponsor summer craft projects, Sheets said. "Paper Factory" will involve making recycled paper, Japanese fish prints and vegetable block printing. It will be 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. July 3. "Incredible Edibles," 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. July 17, will include making marzipan cookies, gumdrop and toothpick structures, and vegetable sculptures.
Linwood youngsters also are active in the town's softball-baseball program. More than 65 teens from Linwood and Basehor have enrolled in the school district's driver education program this summer.