By Alison Hogan

It's winter ... time to think 'summer camp'!

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It may be hard to think right now about our kids T-shirted in canoes, or wearing shorts and swinging a baseball bat, because summertime is not just around the corner. But now is the time to start thinking about summertime camp plans ...

If you're a parent new to the camp scene, or if your kid wants a change in venue next summer (or has decided to pursue a new-found interest at sleepaway camp), one of the most efficient ways to begin your search is through the Internet. Many camps now have websites, but you may want to start by contacting a camp consultant (or camp advisory service).

Like college counselors, camp consultants have on hand information on a large number of camps and once they know your child's interests, needs and desires can play matchmaker in tracking down a perfect camp match. More good news? Their services are free to you, the consumer; and many can be accessed online.

Here's a few to get you started:

www.acacamps.org www.campadvisor.com www.campchannel.com www.campfinder.petersons.com www.campfinders.com www.campnet.org www.campsearch.com www.frosts.com www.intercamp.com www.kidcamps.com www.summercamp.org www.thecampconnection.com www.ymcanyc.org For kids with special needs: www.nichcy.org

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