Gear up for Spring and Summer Recreation with Olympia Arts, Parks & Recreation! Sports, media courses, dance classes, kid’s camps, family camp, art and even sailing, are all waiting for you and your family to try. See just some of the highlighted classes and available camps below. With so many options, you are sure to find something for every member of your family.

Little sailors find fair winds and following seas on the waters of Puget Sound in these adventurous classes for kids ages 8 to 16. Photo credit: P.J. Vanweir

Spring Classes and Camp Near Olympia

Sign up for the “Backyard Campout” and camp overnight at Squaxin Park, even without the necessities! Bring your tent and sleeping bags. Or not. If you have them, bring them. If you don’t, they can be provided. Learn about the basics of camping, including setting up a tent and outdoor cooking. Enjoy meeting other families in the Olympia area and spend time in the beautiful Squaxin Park. Grab lunch on May 18 before heading out to camp at 3 p.m. Dinner and breakfast are provided.

Join the “Sensory Friendly Creative Dance” class. Geared toward those who are developmentally between 5 and 9 and who are neurodivergent and/or on the autism spectrum. Dance to your heart’s content with these weekly dance and movement days presented by South Sound Dance Access and Sensory Tool House LLC. “Students learn various dance styles and concept-based dance games while learning about time, space, place, direction, levels, and more, all supported by sensory tools and props,” shares Veronica Gemmell, the recreation and facilities manager at Olympia Parks, Arts and Recreation. Participants are even given the chance to choreograph their own dance routine.

Take to the nature trails with your toddlers with “Trail Time for Tots.” This class is a weekly meet up for ages 2 to 5. Toddlers and their caregivers will sing through the forest, play games in nature and explore and commune with the trees and plants in their own way. Stretch your child’s imagination and love for nature with these weekly sessions.

Also offered are soccer, gymnastics, hiking and kayaking trips, along with over 200 more activities, classes and camps. See the full spring and summer schedule here.

Summer Classes and Camps Near Olympia

Send your kid sailing! Children 6 to 18 can learn to sail their own boat in week-long sailing camps. They’ll learn to launch and steer their boats, put up their sails and tack and jibe in the waters of Puget Sound. In STEAM Ocean Explorers, they will be part of crew on a larger sailboat, setting sail on a different adventure each day to monitor plankton, learn about sharks, and other aspects of science on the sea. Budd Inlet is their oyster. Brought to you by Parks & Rec partners, Olympia Community Sailing, both new and experienced sailors are encouraged to join.

Though many summer camp options are already full, there are still openings in Gymnastics CampsIntermediate Wilderness SurvivalAnimation CampsFun with STEAM, (as of press time) and there’s an active waitlist, so be sure to register your camper soon for some summer fun!

Adults can get in on the fun too! “Some of my favorite class offerings are the ballroom dance classes,” Gemmell shares. “Our dance instructor, David Lynch, has been teaching for us since 2008, and his classes are very popular!”

You’ll be as surprised and excited at the plethora of options for spring and summer classes and camps. Swing on over to the Olympia Arts, Parks & Recreation to find the best parks to visit and to sign up for classes and camps. Photo credit: Maggie Jay

Park Shelters Rentals in Olympia

Have an event that needs some space? Park shelter rentals in Olympia are available to rent beginning at 8 a.m. daily from November 1 to March 31 and on a first-come, first-served basis for the rest of the year. Amenities such as electricity, water, picnic tables, sinks and more.

Did you know you could host your wedding in a rose garden at Squaxin Park? Imagine it. The roses in full bloom. An intimate setting, with your closest friends and family. Take a walk on the beach for the perfect Pacific Northwest wedding photos. Then, take the party to the dance floor in the covered area of Squaxin Shelter #1. There are still openings left for this wedding season and with roses blooming into October, we suggest you book soon.

Barbecues and birthday parties are another serendipitous opportunity to use the Lion’s Park shelter. Send the kids along to the playground and bring some towels for the new splash pad, open during the warmer months. Decorate the space and then clean up the fun for the next group using the provided receptacles.

Bring your group together at the Harbor House, right at Percival Landing’s boardwalk. A solid space for meetings and small gatherings, the space is enclosed and available to rent by the hour. Amenities such as a gas fireplace, armchairs and a projection screen with microwave and refrigerator sound like a great place to host movie night with your besties. Or use it to tell stories like South Sound Story Guild does.

Donate to the Scholarship Fund

Love what Olympia Parks, Arts & Recreation is doing, but can’t find time for a class or camp? You can make it possible for others in our community to participate by donating to “Ina’s Fund.” Contributions make it possible for the department to provide scholarships to youth and families who might otherwise have financial barriers to participation.

Registration for classes and park shelter reservations are simple. Call 360.753.8380, visit the Olympia Arts, Parks & Recreation website, or stop by The Olympia Center at 222 Columbia Street NW in Olympia.