Bear Camp registration draws 3 a.m. crowd

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By Carol A. Clark

Determined parents, some equipped with lawn chairs, braved the 3 a.m. darkness and cold air Friday to secure their children’s place in this summer’s Bear Camp. There are just 75 slots available in the 11-week program, open to youth entering K-6th grades in the fall.“I came in (to the Aquatic Center) at 5:30 a.m. and I’d say at least 40 people were outside; a lot had their lawn chairs and I heard some people had been out there since 3 a.m.,” said Customer Service Supervisor Anna Galvan.Because of the cold, parents were let into the building ahead of schedule and given hot coffee and donuts. They received a number by place in line, Galvan said, adding that application processing didn’t begin until 7 a.m.,  as advertised.“We started entering everybody into the computer system at 7 a.m. and by 11:30 a.m. the camp was full,” she said.There were comments of concern expressed by some parents that some camp staff lived off the Hill, yet their children filled slots that perhaps should have gone to children living in Los Alamos County, Galvan said. “It’s something we did discuss,” she said. “Currently, the program is open to the children of anyone who lives or works in Los Alamos County. This is something we’ll take a look at for next year. We try to improve the program every year.

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