Hasn’t summer 2020 just been the funkiest ever?! I know it’s been tough - and it’s KINDA finally winding down - but it’s KINDA not winding down since schools are starting later this year (HISD is starting September 8, yikes!). Don’t worry - I’m going to help you get through this pandemic pandemonium. I have a LOT of ideas about things you can do to enjoy these final weeks, so follow me and be a tourist in your own town. I’ve been a Houston mom since 1995 and am bursting with fun adventures! I’ll be doing a Facebook Live video every Monday at noon - starting next week, July 27, with some suggestions for family fun. And actually - the things I mention will be fun for adults without kids too. Tune in and learn a lot.

If you are interested in staying up-to-date on the re-openings of our arts institutions, stick with me! My weekly arts & culture blog is now focusing on my ARTS PICK Spotlight -- an organization that is open -- and all of their activities. I’ll sometimes include a video to bring it to life and, as always, we’ll explore all the fun Houston has to offer. There are several museums open on a limited basis right now, including the Asia Society Texas Center, the Children’s Museum, the Holocaust Museum Houston, the Houston Museum of Natural Science and The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. And there’s some movie fun: your family can enjoy drive-in films at the Showboat Drive-In and Rooftop Cinema Club.

And if you are looking for summer camps, here you go: my latest list of CAMP PICKS. Have fun finding a great fit for your child! Many of the camps are continuing past their original ending date due to the school schedule changes so BE SURE TO CHECK WEBSITES AND FACEBOOK PAGES FOR THE LATEST UPDATES. And please rest assured that all of the camps I PICK are following safety protocols so you and your family don’t have to worry. I am always researching and finding new CAMP PICKS and - especially this year! - keeping all my information updated. Stay tuned via GISH PICKS for all my CAMP PICKS, coming at you each holiday season. Be sure you’re on my GISH PICKS KIDS email list here and you can also follow all my CAMP PICKS on my Facebook page! I’ve been researching Houston area DAY CAMPS since 2003 and love finding cool-n-unique ones. I’m all about IGNITING LIVES (see why here) and exploring interests through day camps are a great way to do that.

Enjoy my CAMP PICKS, and here’s to a happy and healthy end-of-summer!




Alliance Fencing Academy

Summer Fencing Camps
Alliance Fencing Academy
PHONE: 713.410.6655
DATES: June 22-August 7
TIMES: 9am-1pm
AGES: 5-14 years old
COST: $325/week or $75/daily

The fencing camps offered by Alliance Fencing Academy are an incredible opportunity for your child to have tremendous amounts of fun while learning skills that will last them a lifetime. Renowned instructor Andrey Geva and his highly trained coaching staff provide a fun and exciting setting for kids to learn the fascinating sport of competitive fencing. Their relaxed and comfortable setting ensures your child will grow and mature through peer interaction and validation. Camps take place in Houston and The Woodlands.

Artist Boat

Summer Eco-Camp 2020
Artist Boat
PHONE: 409.632.0388
DATES: weekly through August 7
TIMES: 8:30am-4:30pm
AGES: 11-15 years old
COST: $275/week

Campers will learn to kayak with American Canoe Association’s QuickStart Skills course, take nature walks, observe, and journal, learn multiple fishing methods: seining, crabbing, and cast netting, attend wildlife rehab presentations, and experience hands-on oyster and sea star dissections. They will also create -- hand building with clay, plein air acrylic painting, and so much more! The week of July 20 is for kids who love to paint: there will be less time spent on kayaking and more time on painting a spectacular mural of coastal birds on Artist Boat’s Barn. Kids will be outdoors all day, so send them prepared!

Camp Invention Connect

Camp Invention Connect™
National Inventors Hall of Fame
DATES: through September 4
TIMES: vary
AGES: Rising grades K-6
COST: $175

Imaginations soar with their new at-home program, Camp Invention Connect™! Children in grades K-6 receive four exciting activity kits packed full of materials to get them outside and active as they explore concepts of flight, tackle environmental challenges, build the ultimate sports complex, design the next great invention and gain confidence as innovators and entrepreneurs! This flexible program reinvents distance learning - it can be screen-free and self-led, or it can be enhanced through online collaboration sessions with Coaches and fellow participants. Visit or call 800-968-4332 to register.

Cypress Trails Ranch

Summer Day Camp
Cypress Trails Ranch
PHONE: 281.446.7232
DATES: ongoing through September 4
TIMES: 9am-6pm
AGES: 8 years old and up
COST: $110/1 day; $500/5 days; $850/10 days; $1,600/20 days

Day Campers spend their time experiencing the challenges and responsibilities of loving, riding, and taking care of horses. Whether the Day Camper comes to Camp as a novice or experienced rider, they will leave with more confidence and new equestrian skills. Cypress Trails Ranch offers riding programs suited for various ages and abilities. The property is conveniently located on a large, semi-wooded piece of land close to Houston and riding is done along beautiful, wooded, shady, and secluded natural trails along Cypress Creek.

Discover Gymnastics

Discover Gymnastics Summer Camp
Discover Gymnastics
PHONE: 713.680.0045
DATES: through August 21 (summer camp) and August 24-October 16 (fall day camp)
TIMES: 8am-3pm with early drop off from 7:30-8am for $5/day
AGES: 3-12 years old (must be potty trained)
COST: varies

Your kids will enjoy hours of fun gymnastics, activities, weekly themes, and crafts at the Discover Gymnastics Summer Camp. Please click here for Discover Gymnastics’ COVID-19 plan, and please note that there are some new regulations, all listed here. Guidelines include: all campers must have reservations (no walk-ups allowed); social distancing and all CDC protocols will be followed by campers and staff; camp groups will be smaller; all mats and surfaces will be cleaned on a regular basis; and children will be asked to wash their hands in between rotations. Safety is their first priority so you can rest assured! Campers can come for a day, for a week, or all summer. Please note: kids will need to come to camp with a lunch, snack, and a change of clothes. Thank you.

Elite University

Elite University Summer Camps
Elite Music and Fine Arts
PHONE: 855.931.2586
DATES: June 8-August 21
TIMES: 7am-6pm
AGES: 4-12 years old
COST: $325/week

Elite U Summer Camps have a variety of summer camp programs that will keep every child engaged, including athletics, performing arts, robotics, culinary arts, engineering, and visual arts. Kids are active, imaginative, creative, and curious! At Elite, kids are challenged to be all of those things while having fun. Join Elite today for an educational program that will inspire your child to make new friends while learning new things and having fun. The Elite University summer camp is proud to be Houston's quality summer camp for ten years.

Ensemble Theatre

Young Performers Program (YPP)
Ensemble Theatre
PHONE: 713.807.4309
DATES: June 15-August 7
TIMES: varies
AGES: 6-17 years old
COST: starts at $125

YPP is for young people who want to explore their creative and artistic talents. Since 1983, more than 3,000 Houston area youth, including some who are now professionals on Broadway, film, and television, and a variety of other successful career paths. The program combines the study of theatre, dance, music, arts education, technical skill, creative dramatics, and performance for a well-rounded educational experience. This year’s summer camp has been reformatted for robust digital learning.

Holocaust Museum Houston

Summer Learning Experiences
Holocaust Museum Houston
PHONE: 713.527.1633
DATES: June 15-July 31 (various sessions)
TIMES: 10am-3pm, with a one-hour lunch break
AGES: varies (middle school and high school)
COST: starts at $100

Summer Learning Experiences at Holocaust Museum Houston is an online program that will provide a space for young change-makers to engage in the arts, experiential learning, social justice, community service, and advocacy during the summer months. Students will work with local artists and educators to learn, to create, and to inspire the community with their voices and their work.

Houston Center for Contemporary Craft

Virtual Craft Camp 2020
Houston Center for Contemporary Craft
PHONE: 713.529.4848
DATES: June 8 through August 14
AGES: 5-12 years old
COST: starts at $130

This summer, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft is going digital! Join HCCC for week-long virtual craft camps for kids between the ages of 5 and 12. Virtual Craft Camp is designed to encourage creativity, experimentation, and self-expression, while introducing kids to a variety of craft materials and processes. Camp options include an in-depth exploration of fiber art or clay, or a tour of various craft processes in their mixed-media camp.

Houston Museum of Natural Science

Virtual Summer Camps at HMNS
Houston Museum of Natural Science
PHONE: 713.639.4625
DATES: through September 4
TIMES: daily for one hour via Zoom
AGES: 6-12 years old
COST: varies

HMNS is excited to offer virtual camps this summer! Although not as extensive as their in-person camps, virtual camps will provide around an hour of educational engagement for your child every day with many opportunities to practice new skills outside of class time. They are offering a limited selection of camps for each age group covering topics like space, science magic, and paleontology - and an HMNS Educator will be on a virtual call with the class to interact with campers, lead them in activities, and answer questions. The camp will take place at the same time every day for a full week for 1 hour. Supplies will be mailed to participants, so registration is required 1 week in advance (click here to register).

Main Street Theater

Main Street Theater Summer Camp 2020
Main Street Theater
PHONE: 713.524.7998
DATES: June 8-August 21
TIMES: 9am-3:30pm (full day); 9am-noon or 1-4pm (half day)
AGES: 4-18 years old
COST: varies

Their summer camp for ages 4-18 features both in person and virtual camps; the live camps take place at Rice Village (Main Street Theater). In both types of camps, students collaborate to create an original play and dance piece, taking charge of all aspects of performance while professional teaching artists provide guidance and know-how. One- and two-week sessions for ages 4–14 are available for their general camps (before & after care is available for their general camp sessions in Rice Village). They also offer one day "Turbo Camps" (ages 6-11) at different times during the summer: sign up for as many or as few days as you wish!

For more about my personal, family, and business enrichment company, Gish Creative, and the services we offer, please click here.
You received this email because you are on the GISH PICKS blog list and in order to serve you better, we will occasionally send out separate promotional information. Please feel free to tell your friends to subscribe by clicking here.

Sarah Gish
1940-A Fountainview, PMB 116
Houston, Texas 77057
phone: 713.492.1173

© 2020 Sarah Gish

Designed by West of the World