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Tutu Camp: Genevieve Custer Weeks

April 4, 2010

From time to time, I conduct interviews of camp directors to get their advice for parents. I recently exchanged emails with Genevieve Custer Weeks from Tutu Camp, at Tutu Ballet School. Tutu Camp has two locations, in San Francisco and Larkspur. The facilities are absolutely adorable and the staff is super sweet. It’s worth a taking a look for the little princess in your life.

With so many camps to choose from, any tips on how to pick the right camp for your kids?

In looking for the perfect camp, I believe it is important to consider both the special interests and favorite activities of your child, as well as to think about areas of play, education, and activity that they may not yet have explored. Obviously everyone wants to ensure that their child participates in a camp that they really enjoy, but summer can also be a great time to try new things and embark on fresh adventures!

What questions should parents ask a camp?

The importance of various logistical questions may differ pretty greatly from family to family, but what I think every parent really wants to know is, “What will my child experience at this camp?”, and “At the end of camp, what will my child take away with them?” Camp can be so much more than simply a place to leave your child during their summer days, and I think parents should really find out what each camp has to offer in that regard.

How should parents prepare their kids for camp?

Parents can start getting their kids energized for camp long before it begins. In the weeks leading up to the start of camp talk to them about how exciting their camp experience will be and give them as much a sense as possible of what to expect, then ask them what they are most looking forward to. If your child has any concerns about camp this is a great time to talk about those too, and, if necessary, to bring them to the attention of the camp your child will be attending.

Any last tips for parents?

Scheduling your child’s summer can seem like quite a headache, but it also presents a really special opportunity to expose your child to new, enriching experiences that they might not have during the rest of the year. If you can, try to think about summer planning that way, and you’re sure to make great camp choices and really savor the growth you’ll see in your child as a result.

Lastly, please tell us what’s special about Tutu Camp?

Tutu Camp is unique in the sense that it provides campers with an educational arts experience -exposing them to the beauty and culture of ballet through famous ballet stories- but with an emphasis on the magic of a world of swans, princesses, and fairies. Each week at Tutu Camp attendees learn a different ballet story (be it Swan Lake or Sleeping Beauty) and work towards a mini-production of their own, complete with hand-made props and adorable little dances. While no prior dance experience is necessary, at the end of a week at Tutu Camp every participant will feel like a prima ballerina.

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