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After the Bell

Park district provides after-school safety, fun

Published: Thursday, Oct. 25, 2012 9:00 a.m. CDT
Caption
(Photo courtesy of Channahon Park District)
Students participating in the Channahon Park District’s After the Bell take part in an arts and crafts project. Arts and crafts are included among the activities, which also include games, snacks, homework time and socialization with other kids.

CHANNAHON — The Channahon Park District’s After the Bell after-school program provides a safe and fun place for kids to go after school on school days, early dismissal days, and full days off of school. Winter and spring break camps are also available.

While kids are at After the Bell, they play games, enjoy a snack, complete homework, and socialize with other kids. The highly qualified staff is made up of a director, assistant director, and counselors who are all trained in CPR and first aid. There is a maximum ratio of 12 students per counselor.

After The Bell follows District 17’s school calendar and buses transport students in District 17 directly to After the Bell.

After the Bell is primarily located in Skateland Recreation Center for the majority of the year. During the months of August and September, the program is held at Arrowhead Community Center, where the kids can take advantage of the park amenities located in Central Park. During this time, they can get their fill of outdoor time while the weather permits and before cold and snow takes them indoors.

After the Bell offers two ways to register. There’s a yearly option, which is paid for with a monthly electronic payment, saving parents the time of coming in every month to register. For this option the pricing is $175/month for residents and $210/month for nonresidents. There is a multiple child discount available, which is 10 percent off after the first child. The monthly option includes all days except for the extended camps in the summer, spring break camp, and winter break camp.

The other option for registration is a daily drop in, which is $15/day for residents and $25/day for nonresidents. This is great for kids who may only need to attend one or two days a week. The great thing about this option is once all the paperwork is filled out, a simple call or email to the park district will register them for all future days your child might need to attend.

The cost of the full-day program is only $20/day/child for a resident and $30 for nonresidents, which makes it a very affordable option for kids on days off of school when parents still need to work.

It is a safe, fun, and supervised environment for kids to learn, play, and be creative.

The spring break camp in 2012 had a total of 301 kids participate over the six days. The program leaves a lasting positive impact on the kids who take part in it.

During the spring and winter break camps, each day has a theme, plus one trip is scheduled each camp. The winter break trip this December takes kids to the Water Works in Schaumburg, an indoor water park that is part of the Schaumburg Park District. The spring break trip in March 2013 is heading to the Shedd Aquarium.

Themed days range from Animal Adventure Day to Tie Dye Day to Pajama Party and everything in between. Snacks are provided, as are materials for all crafts and games… kids just need to bring their own lunches.

This fall, the park district received a PowerPlay grant from the Illinois Association of Park Districts (IAPD) in the amount of $1,000, which will allow it to introduce kids to new topics related to health and wellness. The purpose of the grant is to provide after-school programs with the funds to integrate programs and supplies that will help kids live healthier lives.

These items are usually costly, so the PowerPlay grant makes this possible. After the Bell will be including a healthy snack day with a chef, adding a Zumba fitness day, and introducing new sports to the kids. The district is proud to have received this grant and looks forward to not only improving the program, but also the overall lives of the kids by introducing them to new topics and ideas, and helping them think outside of the box.

For more information visit www.channahonpark.org or contact the Channahon Park District at 815-467-PARK (7275).

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