Local businesses turn classes into summer camps
Summer can be a slow season for small businesses who depend on kids. That's why some local shops are turning classes into camps. Our Megan Eaton reports.
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SLINGERLANDS, N.Y. -- It's a packed house at Twist-n-Flip Gymnastics in Slingerlands, as kids learn to tumble, turn, and cartwheel.
"I've been doing cartwheels on the trampoline, the balance beam, and the bars," said a camper.
However, the kids aren't learning these skills at a typical gymnastics class, it is a summer camp. Between vacations and outdoor activities, summertime can equal lower enrollment numbers for small businesses catering to kids. Last year, Twist-n-Flip expanded from their regular classes into a full day of camp activities.
"We want to make sure it is gymnastics based, but we want to incorporate out themes, incorporate into different fun activities," explained Alexa Lagrande, Twist-n-Flip.
Twist-n-Flip isn't alone in this new venture. Dozens of Capital Region businesses are looking to cash in during the slow summer months. Whether your kid is into kicking a soccer ball or playing the piano, chances are, there is a small business out there that can care for your children while entertaining them at the same time.
"I think the more programs we can offer, the more likely we are to get people to notice us, and come through out front doors, and that's what it's all about," said Ron Barnes, Twist-n-Flip owner.
Balancing a full day of summer camp activities is a little different than preparing for a gymnastics class.
"You need plenty of structure when you're here all day, not just for the kids, it helps us keep them organized on a schedule so they know what's coming next, kids need to know what's coming next," explained Irlene Mayo, Twist-n-Flip.
What was once a slow time for these businesses has turned into a summertime rush of kids, providing the area with a much needed economic boost that lasts all year.
"We sign a lot of kids up for the fall classes because of these camps," said Barnes.
For the kids who get to go to summer camp, it opens up their world to all new possibilities.
"when I grow up, I wanted to do ballet, but now I think I want to do gymnastics," said a camper.