MACON, Ga. — With school officially out of session for most students, there is no shortage of summer camps for kids to participate in. One in particular, the Otis Music Camp, is immersing its campers in the music industry.
The Otis Redding Foundation started hosting the camp in 2007 in honor of the iconic Macon singer.
"The camp is here to nurture young musicians," says Otis Redding's daughter, Karla Redding-Andrews. "It was something my father always wanted to do so we picked up the pieces and said, 'Let's do a music camp.'"
At the two-week-long music camp, kids have the freedom to explore their interests in music. Campers work with coaches in areas spanning from songwriting and musical theater to producing and sound engineering.
"The camp is a really good way to figure out what I wanna be when I get older," says 12-year-old camper Emerson Ivey. This is Ivey's second time at the camp, and this year, she is focusing on songwriting.
"It's good to know that even if you come from a really small town, you can still do something really big like Otis Redding did," says Ivey.
The camp is already halfway over, and campers are preparing to show off all of their hard work at the camp's finale next Saturday.
"You get to see how they blossom and perform on that stage for their parents and their friends in the audience," says Redding-Andrews. "And that is the highlight of everything we do."
The finale is open to the public and will be held at the Grand Opera House at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 15.