Christmas trees in July? A relocated day camp program helps kids get creative outside in Maple Valley.
Tomato Tomato camps have moved to Maple Valley, as creator Kelly Affleck tries to reinvent the programs after losing the Renton Kennydale Lions Park Building in late April.
The preschool summer camps, called Tomato Tots Day Camps, are now being held at Papa’s Tree Farm.
Affleck began her time with the city of Renton in 2015, when she asked to do her art classes out of the park building. She managed and ran her own program, including purchasing supplies for every craft class, planning the lessons and taking care of her classroom.
As the years continued, Affleck sort of “ran her own island” out of the building, being away from the city and recreation center.
After going through her options when she lost the park building, she realized her parents owned 12-acres of christmas trees.
So she took the day camps over to their farm, surrounded by evergreens and horses. They use the area where there’s a large space, meant for the pre-cut trees in the winter.
Affleck said the amount of space creates a whole other element of exploration for the kids, who go on trips to the horses, play with water, and at the camp Wednesday, June 26, made apple pies in honor of the Fourth.
“We’re having so much fun,” Affleck said. “We get to do all the things we did in Renton, but we’re outside all the time.”
More information on the Maple Valley classes, and signups, are at tomatotomatocreative.com.