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Sydney has a myriad of things to do for children during any given school holiday period, from art and craft activities to exploring science and getting active in various ways. This article focuses on sports activities, some free and some at a cost.
Centennial Park is always a great place for kids to run around in and the parklands are putting on multiple events these holidays that provide something for all types of children. A fun-filled 3-day sports camp running from 3-5 October (9am-4pm each day) includes track and field, soccer, cricket, Oz tag, AFL, athletics, an obstacle relay and a whole lot more for kindy to Year 6 students that will get them outdoors learning new skills and making new friends. They will be in good hands with expert coaches. The cost is $180 for the entire 3 days. Bookings and further information can be found here.
If your children are into fish then they might want to participate in the Kids Big Fish where they will fish for carp in the ponds of the park. They will learn from Tony the Fish Whisperer how to bait a non-barbed hook, how to cast out, then catch and land a fish. Suitable for 8-15year olds, it's priced at $30 and who knows they may bring home the dinner. It takes place on two dates – 28 Sept & 6 Oct – from 9am-12pm. Visit the website to make a booking.
Sydney Olympic Park is another popular venue during the school holidays that sees a hive of activity. StarsTV with their yellow Sports Stars are providing FREE sports camps and programs with a Commonwealth Games theme, complete with mock batons. From 9am to noon, 25 Sept to 6 Oct in Cathy Freeman Park, children can get active and energised on the sportstar circuit and learn fundamental motor skills, play games of badminton, table tennis, bowls, handball, volleyball and touch footy, and even participate in cheer leading.
This is just one part of the Kids in the Park scheme of which many activities are either free or come with a small cost (usually under $25). Other offerings include archery at the Archery Centre, skateboarding and BMX at Monster Skate Park, netball clinics and Rugby League footy clinics at the Sports Centre, water polo at the Aquatic Centre and a relatively new outdoor game called disc golf (on at Newington Armory) where you throw a frisbee from tee-off points into metal baskets.
Two of many activities on offer through the Kids in the Park program
Sydney Park at St Peters is a huge park that has a FREE fun family event on for one day (7 Oct) during the holidays. It's called The Big Adventure and it involves parkour, breakdancing and dance workshops, rock climbing, mountain boarding, bike riding and balance bike clinics, cricket workshops, an NRL clinic and other fun displays in unicycle ballet shows and BMX tricks. Food trucks will be onsite or you can bring a picnic. It's all part of the Sydney Rides Festival.
Margaret Whitlam Recreation Centre at Bondi has a number of workshops that include an Intro to Taekwondo, hip-hop dance, basketball, netball, soccer and T20 Blast cricket to get you warmed up and game-fit for the summer season. There's also Four Sports Friday with sessions for both 6-8 year olds and 9-12 year olds that comprise of soccer, basketball, Oz-tag and table tennis (or T-ball for the young ones). Most are under $20. Check out the full program and timings here.
There's a cafe here should parents wish to stay and enjoy a coffee or a bite to eat overlooking Waverley Oval to the sea.
Lake Parramatta Reserve and Parramatta Rowboats are hosting 'Paddle About', an event for children on 26 September from 9am-10.30am where they will exercise their muscles and learn new skills in rowing and balance using paddleboats and rowboats. Normally, you would have to pay to hire these boats but this event is FREE.
Each child will be assessed on their ability and experience so that the most suitable boat can be allocated and then other water craft may be used as the session and skills progress. There will be fun racing other boats and they can make as much noise as they want. You will need to register to ensure a spot.
Ninja Kids on the north side at Brookvale have some holiday classes to suit 5-12 year olds that will help them improve their fitness, flexibility, coordination and confidence, and are heaps of fun at the same time. There's various balance and speed obstacles for them to get through as well as conditioning circuits, gymnastics, parkour, swinging and tumbling, plus games. Their full day classes are already booked out but they do have afternoon beginner and intermediate class spots available at a cost of $20 per child. For all the dates, timing and additional information, visit their website here.