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Published January 26, 2024
UW athletics hosts sports camps each summer that welcome the next generation of UW students, fans and athletes.
By Micaela Myers
Every summer, hundreds of children from around Wyoming — and the country — descend on the University of Wyoming campus to learn from the university’s coaches and athletes at basketball, football, golf, volleyball, swimming, tennis and wrestling camps.
“It’s the biggest form of outreach we can do,” says Tim O’Flannigan, director of operations for men’s basketball. “Giving folks the opportunity to come here and experience Laramie and UW is great.”
O’Flannigan himself attended sports camps at UW when he was growing up. Camps range from day camps to multi-night camps. Some camps are open to all ages and skill levels, while others target middle or high school students. In addition to upping their game, O’Flannigan says it’s the ideal way to introduce youngsters to UW during Laramie’s beautiful summers.
“Kids this age are starting to think about what’s next after high school, so it’s a great time for them to come here and see UW,” he says. The largest basketball camp they host is four days and three nights, and kids age middle school and up stay in the residence halls and eat at Washakie Dining Center.
“I think it’s really good for the university at large and great exposure for kids around the state,” O’Flannigan says.
While many universities have stopped offering overnight camps for kids, UW’s programs are going strong. This summer, men’s basketball hosted 200 students at the annual overnight camp.
“It’s how we as a team kick off each summer,” he says. “It’s an introduction to the community, the university and our program. The student-athletes get here, get their bearings, then dive in. It’s two weeks of working camp because we also offer a day camp that’s geared toward younger kids. The second week we do the overnight camp. We get kids from all different backgrounds. The guys do an awesome job with the kids. They were once one of those kids, so they cherish the opportunity to do a bit of outreach and make a good impact on the kids who come through.”
The men’s basketball program also offers a camp at the Boys and Girls Club of Cheyenne for children who can’t travel to Laramie.
O’Flannigan says these camps are the perfect way to give back to the dedicated UW athletics fans — and nurture the next generation of fans and athletes.