Eleven-year-old Wichitan Carly Bretherton wowed the crowd with her footwork.
"I like the self-defense thing," Carly said, even though she couldn't quite kick through the board held by a detention deputy.
Carly is one of nearly 150 kids participating in the Sedgwick County Sheriff Office's free Leaders, Achievers and Winners (L.A.W.) Camp.
The camp, which began Tuesday, runs through Friday at Lake Afton Park.
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During a martial-arts demonstration Tuesday afternoon, the kids — ages 11 to 15 — received instruction in self-defense from Sedgwick County detention deputies Brandon and Garry Tate. The two are brothers.
"It's fun and you can learn some of the self-defense stuff," Carly said, "and you can learn stuff about law enforcement."
The 16th annual camp is a partnership between the Sheriff's Office, Army National Guard, Wichita Crime Commission and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Sedgwick County. It gives area kids the chance to receive one-on-one mentoring from law enforcement officials while having fun, said Sheriff's Lt. Brenda Dietzman.
"It gets kids out and gives them a lot of life skills," she said.
"It gets them to know us as people," Dietzman added.
Despite the string of 100-degree days this week, the kids ate outside and spent their nights on cots set up in large green tents.
"I'm starting to miss the air-conditioned buses, but I'm having a lot of fun," said 12-year-old Tony Wingfield, a first-time camper and Haysville resident.
Traditional camp activities like canoeing, fishing and swimming were on the schedule this week. Kids also had a chance to shoot laser and BB guns and learn to climb walls.
They also received talks on financial responsibility, gangs and violence.
"This is a perfect example of being pre-emptive," said Sedgwick County Sheriff Bob Hinshaw. He was the first L.A.W. Camp commander when the program started in 1994.
"If we can instill self-esteem in kids, self-confidence," and show them that they can have fun and have a lifestyle that doesn't involve drugs or gangs or violence, he said, "then we've done our community a favor five, 10, 15 years down the road."