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Summer Arts Camps from the Y

The charitable, volunteer-based Treasure Valley Family YMCA has been do-goodering around this valley for over a century, with community programs, camps, health facilities and child care centers benefiting some 36,000 youth each year.

So now that summer's in full swing and the kids are bored silly with these, uh, halcyon days of youth (how many times can you play Halo 2 and Grand Theft Auto, anyway?), the YMCA is ready to save parental butts with yet another awesome program to help keep the kids occupied-and parents sane.

Two summer art camps (supported in part by dough raised at Boise Weekly's annual cover art auction-thank you, BW artists and readers) are coming up.

"Makin' Art," a program for children ages 8 to 12, explores various art media and techniques, including papermaking, collage, bookmaking, clay figuremaking, altarmaking and multicultural-inspired drawing. "Express Yourself" is for kids a bit older, ages 13 to 17, and introduces young artists-and fashionistas-to painting and printing on clothing and textiles, henna tattoo, precious metal clay jewelry, beading and other forms of wearable art. And what's more, local guest artists will take turns instructing the classes along with artist-coordinator, Blake Sherlock.

"These classes are really exciting and fun, especially given that a small group of artists are working together to create this project, lending their expertise and being interested in what other artists are bringing to the program," Sherlock told BW. "These guest artists are there to learn from the other artists as much as the kids are. We're trying to model for the kids how it is to be artists, sharing our artwork with the kids and sitting down and do the art with them, sharing ideas, sharing disciplines. This is like an open studio, a place where people are vibrant, artists making art together."

Classes are at the downtown YMCA at 1050 W. State, Monday through Friday, July 25 through August 5. "Makin' Art" runs from 9 to 11 a.m. and "Express Yourself" is from 11:20 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The cost is $40 for members and $80 non-members. Register online at www.ymcatvidaho.org (click on "youth" then "peace"), or drop by the downtown or west branches of the Treasure Valley Family YMCA. For more information on the programs, contact Laura at 344-5002 ext. 253.

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