Adventures in Cardboard

Imaginative castle-building camp comes to French Park.

Minneapolis visual artist Julian McFaul is bringing his popular Castle Adventure Camp to French Regional Park next month. Campers ages 8 to 15 can design and build their own suits of armor out of cardboard and construct a giant castle. They’ll raise towers, install a gatehouse with portcullis, and add arrow-loops and drop holes to defend the entryway.

As part of this imaginative camp concept, McFaul and his team of local artists lead children in creating group identities and team strategies to defend or storm the castle in daily competitions of capture the flag and other games. Plus, there are plenty of paved paths for bicycle patrols, open fields for pitched battles, shoreline beaches for longboat raids and wooded trails for haunted towers and wizardry. And no camp would be complete without swimming breaks to round out the long summer days.

If July camps are already full, don’t despair. Come for the open house on the last day of the session, complete with a live band, in which the kids invite their parents and the community to tour the castle.

McFaul also does birthday parties where a giant backyard maze becomes the setting for tag games, hide and seek and other spontaneous play. Artists arrive at your home with a trailer full of boxes and help birthday kids design and create a maze of any shape and size.