"There's just no place between here and there like this," said Amy Ambler, a resident of Myakka City and Sun N Fun day pass holder.
If you're a parent who's searching for a way to get your kids to look up from their tablets, computers, and phones (phones are OK if they're looking for Pokemon at one of our two stops) we've got the perfect solution.
It's summer family fun time at Sun N Fun.
Like Everything Chocolate Weekend August 5 – 7. What could be better – and better tasting – than a weekend of Chocolate Slip-N-Slide, Candy Bar Bingo, Chocolate Finger Painting, Chocolate Pie Eating Contests and make your own Chocolate Sundaes? All in addition to our usual Friday Night Dive-In Movie and Saturday night with live music poolside. It's the perfect Florida vacation for the kids and adults!
But why wait for the weekend? The sight of smiles and the sounds of laughter fill every day at Sun N Fun. You see and hear the joy everywhere. In the pool where a Dad tosses a squealing little one in the air. When a youngster confidently swims for the first time without water wings. And when a couple of friends catch up while the kids make their way to the Wibit Water Obstacle Course, take another turn on the four-story Mega Slide, or try to outlast and outsmart the Meltdown.
"It's great seeing the kids just playing outside and loving it," said Lynn Heisler, lead counselor for Camp Sun N Fun.
Everywhere you turn there are families. Some who purchase summer passes so they can come as often as they'd like while others are here for the day. What they all have in common is that they are spending time together, playing, laughing, and sharing.
Debbie and Jerry Roberts get a family pass so they can bring their grandchildren to Sun N Fun when they visit. When we caught up with them their six-year-old grandson, Michael, was showing his cousins Chloe, 10, and Jada, 11, the grit, determination and skills that have made him a champion on the Wibit Obstacle Course. He was also trying to give a lesson to Sydney Marsh, 17, one of our recreation team members, who just couldn't quite make it past the second lily pad before tumbling into the water. No matter. All sported smiles as big as the indoor Olympic-size pool that's home to Wibit, just another reason this is the perfect Florida vacation spot for the kids!
"The kids turn activities into competitions. But they always end up laughing," said Austin Spitz, a fourth year recreation team member.
Nine-year-old camper Cameron Ehrlich was introduced to us as the Meltdown Champion in his group, but he was quick to add that he faced stiff completion this year from his pals Caleb and Grace.
That's what camp's all about; good times spent with old and new friends. The little ones screeching with delight in the splash pool and on Xtreme Combo – Angus the cow (our very gentle version of a bucking bull ride), paddle boats, and the jumping pillow. Miniature golf and nature walks, along with art and crafts activities, story time, and breakfast and lunch round out their busy days.
For the older camper's there's the pool, the Mega Slide, the Wibit Obstacle Course, the Meltdown, and a host of other activities including Mini and Disc Golf, Pickleball, Arts and Crafts, Basketball, tennis, nature walks and theme weeks with specific special events. Of course, everyone has a favorite.
Happily, it's not too late to sign the kids up for a one-week session at Camp Sun N Fun and make this their most awesome summer ever. We have groups for four- and five-year-old children, as well as groups for kids six to thirteen.
"It's pretty clear that adults who visit the resort are having as much fun as the kids," said Cydney Cammarata, Sun N Fun activities adviser.
We wouldn't want to leave anyone with the impression that Sun N Fun is just about the kids. The poolside bar makes it easy to enjoy a cold beer or cocktail while you catch up with friends. And there's no reason an adult can't try the Wibit Obstacle Course, Mega Slide or Meltdown.
Take an adventurous mom like Amy Ambler, who travels all the way from Myakka City to race her two sons, Tristan and Liam, for a place in line at the Mega Slide so she can thrill to the ride's twists and turns before she gives six-year-old Liam a swimming lesson.
"There's just no place between here and there like this," she says to explain why she and kids come every year.
Or the wise and witty Judy Kendall, who, along with her friend Erika Augsburger, bring their teenagers – Judy's son Adam and Erika's twins Max and Doc - for a day every summer.
While the kids tried to conquer the challenges of the Wibit Obstacle Course, Sarasota resident Judy explained with a glint in her eye that for her and Erika, coming to Sun N Fun was their way "to wear down our teens so we could have some quiet time in the afternoon."
"Our goal is to make sure everyone's safe and having a great time," said Raymond Bell, recreation supervisor.
The only piece of electronics we saw on our visit was an iPhone on which lead counselor, Lisa Stanley, showed us a photo of two little ones holding hands on their way to the splash pool. "We know we're doing a good job when we see things like this," she said.
The definitive proof was provided by the sounds of pure joy that surrounded us everywhere. Truly fun under the sun.
Visit our Camp Sun N Fun Facebook page or visit us online or download our summer fun guide! Then grab the family and head on over for a vacation to remember!