Holiday break can be a tough time for parents. You’ve still got to work, but your kids have no school. It’s too cold for a lot of outdoor camps, but you don’t want to leave your child alone…Well, no worries, because there are a bunch of camps, events, and activities for children in the Columbia Area this time of year! Read below to find something you like.
Crooked Creek Park, 1098 Old Lexington Hwy. | 803-345-6181 | Website
December 15. Join us for a one-of-a-kind candy cane adventure! Santa and his elves will be hiding candy canes along the trail at Crooked Creek Park for kids to find. Children should bring a basket or bag for their candy canes.
There will also be prize candy canes hidden along the trail. Bring a new unwrapped toy to donate and decorate a cupcake!
North Pole U Winter Break Camp
Crooked Creak and Seven Oaks Parks | 803-345-6181 or 803-772-3336 | Website
This is a holiday camp for children in K-6th grade (ages 4-12), held at Crooked Creek Park and Seven Oaks Park. Daily activities include crafts, organized games, social time and field trips. Morning and afternoon snacks are also provided.
Children must bring a lunch.
Camps run from December 20-21, and 26-28, 31 and Jan. 2. You can register from Nov. 12-Dec. 14 by calling the numbers listed above.
Seven Oaks Park, 200 Leisure Lane | 803-772-3336 | Website
December 1. Join us as Santa reads his favorite holiday book to all the boys and girls on his nice list. Participants will also decorate cookies, sip hot cocoa and create a holiday craft.
To end Santa’s Storytime, there will be a candy cane hunt for all the good boys and girls. All families are invited to shop at the Santa’s Market Craft Show before or after the event.
Bricks 4 Kidz After School Classes
Crooked Creek and Seven Oaks Parks | 803-345-6181 or 803-772-3336 | Website
These LEGO brick-building classes provide fun and enriching experiences for kids! They’ll construct new projects from LEGOs each week, based on a 6-week overall theme.
Classes are designed for Grades 1-5 (ages 6-11), and take place on Wednesdays at Crooked Creek Park (803-345-6181), and Thursdays at Seven Oaks Park (803-772-3336). $10/class.
Lexington County Winter Break Camps
227 Highland Avenue | 803-359-4048 |Website
The Lexington County Recreation & Aging Commission will be running winter break camps at a few of their centers.
The Lexington Leisure Center (108 Park Rd) and the Gilbert-Summit Multi-Purpose Facility (411 Broad St) will each hold camp from Wednesday, Dec. 26 – Friday, Jan. 4.
The Batesburg-Leesville Leisure Center (227 Highland Ave) will hold camp Wednesday, Dec. 26 – Monday, Jan. 7. Cost is $30/day or $95/week.
Winter Break Camps at SC State Museum
301 Gervais Street | 803-898-4999 | Website
The South Carolina State Museum in Columbia offers camps during Winter Break for children aged 6 – 12 years old.
Each day will focus on a different subject matter and even includes a special Polar Express Day!
Additional camp experiences include: It’s the Gingineeringbread Plan!, Winter Skies, O’Tannenbaum!, Dashing (and Dotting) through the Snow, and more! Camps run Dec. 20-21, 26-28, and Dec. 31-Jan. 4.
Stringer Discovery Center
301 Gervais Street | 803-898-4921 | Website
The Stringer Discovery Center at the SC State Museum is a family engagement space full of exciting activities designed for children ages six and under.
Kids will have a blast exploring the Center’s Overlook Theater, where they can dress-up and perform, Finn’s Workshop, complete with hands-on tools and a Lego™ wall, plus the Imagination Playground, Create and Shape area, Reading Station and Tree House!
Free with museum general admission or membership.
EdVenture’s Gingerbread Jamboree
211 Gervais Street | 803-779-3100 | Website
Running on weekends from November 23 – December 31, this weekly event features holiday fun for the whole family!
Enjoy photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus, mini gingerbread house decorating, special visitors, and holiday arts & crafts.
The Jamboree will conclude with a Ball Drop for kids at noon and activities celebrating New Year’s Eve around the world on December 31.
Backyard Buds: Nature’s Ornaments
1300 Botanical Parkway | 803-779-8717 | Website
The Backyard Buds classes at Riverbanks Zoo are garden adventures for kids ages 2-5 that includes a lesson, craft and story.
On Dec. 13 at 9:45am and 11am, kids can create unique ornaments using natural materials and a bit of creativity!
Classes are held at the Waterfall Junction Learning Center in the Botanical Gardens. Cost is $6 for one child (with one adult) per class.
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