Summer camp applications available soon

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, April 4, 2018

During the month of June, the Picayune Police Department will hold its 16th annual children’s summer camp.

Capt. Theresa Milar said children who attend will have the chance to go to the movies, go bowling and go to a mobile video game theater, among other things. Investigators from the department will also teach children how to gather fingerprints using powder, glue and other investigative methods at a crime scene.

While it has not yet been confirmed, Milar also said they are hoping to have speakers to discuss the dangers of bullying and smoking.

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In previous years, children attending the camp had a chance to visit the Children’s Museum in New Orleans, the Global Wildlife Center in Folsom, and the Slidell Rocks climbing gym in Slidell.

Milar said the annual summer camp gives children the opportunity to do things they might otherwise not have the chance to experience. Milar said their goal is for the camp to be half fun and half educational.

“Anyone can do something fun – we want to teach them something as well,” Milar said.

Milar said Picayune’s City Manager Jim Luke founded the camp while he held the position of police chief so children and police officers could connect. That connection allows the children to see that police officers aren’t someone to fear, but can be relied upon for help.

Milar said it has always been important for the department to make a difference in the lives of children in the community and to show them that police officers aren’t the bad guys.

As with every year, there will be two camps, one for children ages 7-9 from June 4 to June 8 and a second for children ages 10-12 from June 18 to June 22. Each camp will last for five days.

The main camp will be held each week from Monday to Thursday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Milar said the main camp will tentatively be held at the Picayune Junior High School, but final approval is pending from the Picayune School District.

On Friday of each week, a BBQ will be held for friends and families of the children from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at a local park and will include a picnic, waterslide and other attractions.

The event is free for any child who attends. Milar said she is currently seeking sponsors. One child can be sponsored to attend the camp for $50. The funds go towards bus fare, food and activity costs.

There will be 50 slots available for each camp, but Milar said openings fill up fast. Milar said last year, the 50 slots for the younger class filled up in less than an hour, so parents must arrive early to apply.

Applications will be available starting Monday, April 9 at 8 a.m. Availability will be decided on a first-come, first-served basis. For consideration, parents or guardians must provide proof of insurance and have the application notarized.

If anyone has questions, would like to donate, or would like to volunteer, Capt. Theresa Milar can be reached at 601-798-7411 at ext. 7.