New adventurous camps in Montreal for active kids

The Vida Sana Centre in Outremont offers a variety of camps for kids who like to move around.

The Vida Sana Centre in Outremont is a family affair – run by husband and wife team Shawn Bowen and Nora Jones, “Sana” is an anagram for the names of four of their kids (their fifth, born after the centre opened, was named Victoria “so she wouldn’t be left out,” Jones said) and their logo depicts Bowen and Jones playing with their kids. The centre offers fitness classes for adults, free play time for children, and a space to hold birthday parties. They also have four day camps, two of which are new this year: the Active and Adventure camps.

The Active Camp is for 4- to 10-year-olds who enjoy being active but don’t necessarily want to play sports all day. The campers will play sports but will also do treasure hunts, arts and crafts and other activities.

The week-long Adventure Camp is for kids 8 to 12 and not for the faint of heart – it’s a week of high-octane activities such as canoeing, ziplining and hiking. “It’s never going to be the same so we keep them curious about what will happen next,” Jones said.

The Explorers Camp is for kids 5 to 12 who want to get out and explore the city. Campers go on one big outing a week, visiting museums, checking out events such as the Jazz Fest and the circus festival and even heading to the beach.

The Basketball Camp is for kids 10 to 17 and runs for two weeks in August. Coached in part by Bowen, who played basketball in Europe, kids will bone up on the fundamentals of the game and improve their skills.

The Vida Sana camps have ratios of one counsellor per five children (1:8 for the basketball camp). The Adventure Camp runs from the week of Aug. 8, Basketball Camp is from Aug. 8 to 19, and the Explorers and Active camps go from June 27 to July 15 and then from Aug. 1 to 19. The camps, which are run from nearby Collège Jean de Brébeuf (because of the extensive facilities available) cost between $180 and $250 a week (daycare is available at an extra cost). For more information, call 514-903-8432 or visit vidasana.ca.