Self-improvement in sports is a focal point for hundreds of local students during the course of the summer, and the traditional assortment of camps is in gear this week, leading into about two months of instruction opportunities.

One of Aiken County's biggest camps is going on each morning this week, through Friday, in Riverview Park. Cross Training Sports Camp, an annual offering of TrueNorth Church, focuses on cheerleading, soccer and basketball, and the goal is "quality sports instruction with a Christian purpose," as stated on the congregation's website

On board this summer are 180 campers – the most in the summer program's history, according to the Rev. Steve Davis, TrueNorth's lead pastor. Basketball has the lion's share, with 83 kids on board. Soccer has 50 and cheerleading has 47.

Fundamental skills and techniques are a part of the mix, along with plenty of time for game and team play. 

The website notes, "We will help each student develop an understanding and love for the game through a positive and fun learning environment. Each day campers will also enjoy “Talk Time,” an inspirational and motivational talk that teaches them that God has created us to know Him and to use our abilities and talents to honor Him."

Basketball is to be in the spotlight again June 17-21 at Riverview  Park, with grades 1-4 guidance set for 8 a.m. to noon and grades 5-8 to be taught from 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. A basketball camp for ages 6-15 is set for June 24-27, and another, also for ages 6-15, is set for Aug. 5-8, coinciding with a cheerleading camp.

A British-style soccer camp is set for Aug. 5-9, also in Riverview Park, accommodating ages 3 to 16. Information on Riverview Park's various camps is available at 803-441-4311. 

A single-session football camp, as promoted in last week's Star, is set for July 12 at North Augusta High School, under the guidance of former University of Georgia standout players Elijah Holyfield and Mecole Hardman. 

North Augusta High had sports camps last week, during the final few days of school, and Fox Creek High has several camps set for the summer, including a team basketball camp (June 18 and 20), volleyball (June 27-29), baseball (July 8-11) and cheerleading (Aug. 1-3). Details on Fox Creek's camps are available at (803) 613-9435.