Meet Marie McCool

US Lax Magazine’s May/June edition sports a great short interview with Marie McCool. Marie’s high school coach, Deanna Knobloch shares, “It’s not that McCool is a stick-skills wizard, Knobloch says. Both at Moorestown and today as an All-American midfielder at North Carolina, McCool’s game is technically sound but not edgy. Instead, the word that comes up repeatedly to describe her game is “flow.” She favors transition and unsettled situations, corralling loose balls and running past defenders who can’t keep pace.”

For details:  The Real McCool: How the UNC Star Found Her Sweet Spot



Learn 5 Baseball Tips from 5 Sports Professionals

Baseball is a long-time American passion and pastime, whether you are watching or playing.  But like most sports, as easy as the players make it seem, there is a unique combination of skills and thought processes going on throughout the game amongst all the different players.  Play Famously, shares 5 tips from 5 different sports professionals for you to see if you can learn something from them to improve your baseball form.

  • “You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them.” – Michael Jordan, Basketball
  • “Pay attention.” – Busterlover, Poker
  • “The more you know about the game, the better off you’ll be as a player out there.” – Jennie Finch, Softball
  • “Having a good coach is important.” – Usain Bolt, Running
  • “No days off. The higher up you get. The higher you need to climb.” – Carly Lloyd, Soccer

For in-depth infomation:  5 Inspirational Tips from Professionals Sportsmen and Women to Help Improve Your Baseball Game

Image Credit:  Future Stars Camps


Is Your Golf Swing Tense?

Robert Green, golf enthusiast and tutor of Hitting the Green, shares some tips on how to get rid of the tension in your swing.  Robert shares, “No matter the skill level of the golfer, the duffed shots I see are almost always down to some form of tension in the swing. In the vast majority of cases this tension in the swing originates from the grip, with people of the mindset that if they put their full force into the swing they’ll inevitably get more distance. The swing just doesn’t work that way!”  So how can you achieve a solid swing that gives you distance and is tension free:

  1. Relax – a stressed mind creates body tension
  2. Leave your ego in the car – remind yourself that hitting the ball hard and fast is not the goal; it’s about the feel of the swing
  3. Your core strength counts – Greg Norman once said: “Many golfers tend to think building the upper body is the way to go, but it’s not! You should do the opposite. Build up the base and your core, and let the upper body be flexible and loose.”
  4. Keep practicing and practicing – there is just no way around it, the old adage always applies, practice makes perfect.

For more details and instructional videos:  How to Achieve a Tension Free Golf Swing

Image Credit:  Future Stars Camps


2021 World Games Will Include Lacrosse

The  2021 World Games is being hosted in Birmingham, Alabama and for the second year, lacrosse is included in the program.  All the specifics of  the lacrosse competition have not been announced, but will be determined by the IWGA and the Federation of International Lacrosse.  The events will be from July 15-25, 2021.  It will be a landmark event, as the last time the World Games were held in the United States was in 1981.  The inaugural World Games was held in Santa Clara, California in 1981.

The World Games are an international multi-sport event, that feature sports, or disciplines or events within a sport, that are not contested in the Olympic Games. The World Games are staged every 4 years, one year after the summer Olympics.  It is organzied by the  International World Games Association (IWGA) and under the patronage of International Olympic Committee (IOC).

You may expect to enjoy dance sport, acrobatic gymnastics, water skiing, and others.  Some sports that were played in the World Games are now competing in the Olympics, such as badminton, beach volleyball, taekwando and others. Approximately 3,600 athletes from more than 100 countries will compete in 30 sports during The World Games.

Read more:  Lacrosse to be Included in The World Games 2021

Image Credit:


Easy Baseball Drills for Home Practice

For parents with active children, finding time to do the basics has become a mastery of juggling and a lot of positive thinking that all the balls stay up in the air.  If you have a baseball player in your family, 2018YouthBats shares 4 easy effective baseball drills that can be practiced in your backyard or even inside the home:

  1. Set-up a hitting net – outdoor area (50 square feet area), need baseball hitting net,hitting tee, baseballs, bat, and helmet
  2. Rubber ball toss against the wall – indoor/outdoor area (9 square foot area), need rubber ball and baseball glove
  3. Speed and agility drills – open flat indoor/outdoor area (25 square feet), need agility cones, agility ladders, and 1 foot tall orange cones
  4. Mental practices – indoor area, watch good instructional baseball videos

Setting up any or all of these suggestions at home will not require a lot of time but they will certainly help your young athlete improve their baseball skills and provide individualized practice time.

Fore more information and videos:  4 Quick And Easy Baseball Drills To Practice At Home

Image Credit:  Future Stars Camps


Essentials for Athletic Success

Athletic success can be achieved through a combination of factors, including genetics, innate talent, exacting coaching and practice, and just sheer luck.  “But performance is also greatly affected by what is between an athlete’s ears: mindset. An athlete’s state of mind is perhaps the single greatest factor that affects performance.”  Can the mindset of a player be maximized by reducing the interference to their sports potential?

Changing the Game Project shares 3 basic essentials they feel that every successful athlete needs to possess:

  1. Intrinsic motivation
  2. Enjoyment of their sport
  3. Autonomy over their sports experience

When there is enjoyment and autonomy over their sports experience, intrinsic motivation often naturally follows.  When your youth athlete has all three of these basic essentials in their grasp, your child will attain the best state of mind to maximize their potential, and then all of the other factors that come into play will fall into place and enhance their performance.

For details:  The Bare Essentials: Three Things Every Athlete Needs to Succeed

Image Credit:  Future Stars Camps


Spotlight on: Chris Griffin

“The biggest reward that I’ve received in my life is that after running Future Stars for 36 years is that, I’ve come into the second generation of campers. Parents that attended are now sending their kids to the camp, because they love Future Stars and they fondly remember their experiences.”—Charlie VanDercook

We are proud to be a family tradition.  Enjoy getting to know our Future Stars Camps family. If there is someone at Future Stars Camps that you want to know more about, let us know at:


Meet Chris Griffin, Site Director of Future Stars Camps at Farmingdale State College.  Chris is in his 7th year and previously directed the lacrosse programs at Farmingdale and Old Westbury.  Chris also worked at the camps when he was in college.  In addition, he helped oversee the indoor turf facility at Future Stars Southampton, when it opened 5 years ago.   Chris carries the Future Stars’ tradition of being a camper at SUNY Purchase in the 90’s and now a full-time staff member.

What was your most memorable 2017 winter moment?
Chris:  Drinking mint flavored hot chocolate that David would make in the office.

What are you most looking forward to at camp this summer?
Chris:  Nice weather! Making the rounds and seeing all the different programs in action is always nice. When you see the campers having a great time, it puts a smile on your face. Additionally, I like playing in the staff soccer game and hearing all the campers cheering for their coaches.

What are your hobbies?
Chris:  I like to surf when the waves are good, but typically the better waves happen in the fall and winter.  I’ve found myself surfing less and less through the winter months as I’ve aged, but I hope to still get out there in the future.

What is your favorite memory from camp?
ChrisI’ll answer this two ways, since I used to attend Future Stars as a child.  Back when I attended, there were really only two options, tennis and soccer.  I would attend both programs throughout the summer, and the awards ceremonies at the end of the week in tennis always stood out for me.  We would be having ice pops on the hill and Jordan, site director for SUNY Purchase, and his staff would make it so fun and be joking around.  For soccer, one day that stands out is when we were having a juggling contest, and the director was juggling for about 30 minutes straight, and only stopped because we had to go to lunch.  He even kept juggling as we made our way to lunch, but at that time, the path was like hiking through the woods, so I think he lost it on one of the hills.  I was amazed as a kids and it probably felt more like an hour back then.

Which part of your job do you enjoy the most?
Chris:  Being able to get outside and have some fun with the campers is most enjoyable to me. I love sports, so working in that field is pretty cool. I’ve been so interested in the STEAM programs lately, and wish I was able to spend more time learning and visiting them, but I probably wouldn’t get anything done if I stuck around too long.


What song do you play most often?
Chris:  One song in particular doesn’t stand out.  I love music and listen to everything from country to old school emo/punk rock.  I don’t really update my playlists, so I have  “workout”/”pump-up” playlists, from college, that I still listen to when I do get to the gym.  I just let my music app pick playlists for me.

Which exercise do you enjoy the most?
Chris:  Riding a bike.

What’s your favorite comfort food?
Chris:  Garlic mashed potatoes or mac ‘n’ cheese.

If you could be the better at something, what would you choose?
Chris:  Playing an instrument or drawing.  The arts are something I’ve never really been very successful at.  Don’t get me wrong, I can sing, but the last instrument I played was a recorder!  Would be great if I knew how to play the piano.  You could literally play anywhere that had one, and it’s pretty impressive.

What do you miss most about being a kid?
Chris:   Just having fun all the time, especially in the summer, when school was out.  Not a worry in the world and you didn’t really have any responsibilities, besides taking out the trash and recycling.


Chris:   Who is your favorite fictional character?
Ron Burgundy from Anchorman:  The Legend of Ron Burgundy

What kind of movies do you enjoy
Chris:   Comedy/Action

What’s your favorite outdoor activity/indoor activity?
Chris:   Outdoor: Hanging at the beach/surfing.  Indoor: Making Smoothies.

What was the first thing you bought with your own money?
Chris:  My first car.  The summer of my freshman year in college.

What is your favorite quote?

It’s better to have memories rather than dreams.- George Geiser

Image Credit:  Chris Griffin



Should Your Child Specialize in One Sport?

National Scouting Report (NSR) shares varying perspectives on the commonly asked question as to whether it is “better to be single sport or a multi-sport athlete?”   It is important to note that there is no simple answer and perhaps the answer lies more in knowing and understanding individual ambitions.

Many coaches and atheletes are outspoken around their stand on either side of the question, so you have access to a plethora of opinions.  Youth sports players start young, so there is a lot of time to think about the direction that your athlete can take.  Down the road, as an athlete or a parent, you should research and make sense of the pros and cons in relation to specific needs and goals.

Some pros and cons of being a multi-sports athlete:

  • skill set has variety
  • low burnout
  • difficulty making the decision to chose one sport for college recruitment
  • possibility of injury in off season sport

Some pros and cons of being a single sport athlete:

  • mastery of one sport skill set
  • increased confidence in specific abilities
  • increased burnout
  • injuries from repetitive motions

Be mindful in making this decision and keep in mind that nothing is cast in stone, you may start off in one direction and change direction as you become more attuned to your abilities and intentions.  However, if the goal is to be a college athlete you should know that, “college coaches tend to recruit or want multiple sport athletes”.

For more details:  Multi-Sport Athletes vs. Single Sport Athletes – The Pros and Cons

Image Credit:  Future Stars Camps

A young boy tries juggling against a bright blue sky.

How Do Circus Arts Bolster Educational Skills?

“Studies show that movement and stimulation of balance helps attentional disorders and improves reading.” C. Hannaford Ph.D

EclipseArts of England, shares some thought-provoking insights on how a circus arts instruction could enhance academic skills.  Their line of thought intimates that because juggling utilizes the part of the brain that processes visual/motion information, this may actually increase grey matter in those areas.

“Children get a great cardio-vascular and pulmonary work-out when they juggle scarves, exercising the big muscles close to the head and close to the heart.” Dave Finnigan.

That’s another reason for encouraging your child who may not be interested in traditional sporting activities to try circus arts.

Interestingly enough, when juggling, both the left and right hand sides of the brain are engaged. “The left hand brain is responsible for procedures, logic, maths, and gets a very thorough work-out from analysing where to aim that next throw, or where the hand should be positioned to catch it. The right hand, or creative side, is responsible for turning juggling into an art – choreographing tricks into routines, remembering to smile! This is the same for all manipulation skills. They get our brains working holistically and sharpen focus, which leads to improvement in academic performance.”

For students who are not comfortable with traditional sports or academic regimens, circus arts is an innovative and experiential arena for them to explore their unique abilities at their own pace.

Read more:  Educational Benefits of Circus Skills

Image Credit:  Deposit Photos


Spotlight On Emily Snider

“Future Stars Camps has been around for 37 years and keeping it fresh while maintaining the values that have made this summer day camp a family tradition are why parents, who attended as kids, want their children to come here.”  —  Jordan Snider


We are proud to be a family tradition.  Enjoy getting to know our Future Stars Camps family. If there is someone at Future Stars Camps that you want to know more about, please let us know at:

Meet Emily Snider, our first camper to be featured in our short interview series.  Emily embodies the family tradition, we are so proud of at Future Stars Camps.


How old were you when you started at Future Stars Camps?  If you have siblings, do they attend the camp too?  Did your parents go to Future Stars Camps?

Emily:  I started Future Stars Summer Camps when I was 4, and have gone every year since. My younger brother, Eli who is now 10 also goes to Future Stars. My dad, Jordan Snider went to Future Stars as a kid. My dad and mom actually met at Future Stars when they both worked there. Now, my dad is the director.

What are your favorite television shows?

Emily:  My favorite TV shows are Gilmore Girls and the Big Bang Theory. I never get sick of Gilmore Girls! The Big Bang Theory is hilarious! My dad can’t breathe throughout most of the episode because he laughs so hard.

Do you have a pet?

Emily: I do have a pet. I have a calico cat. Her name is Sunset and she is 5 years old. I love playing and napping with her.

What grade are you in?  What do you most enjoy about school?

Emily:   I am in 8th grade. My favorite part of school is seeing my friends.

What are you most looking forward to this summer at camp?

Emily:  This summer at camp, I am most looking forward to playing soccer and seeing my favorite counselors and friends again.


When you have some quiet time, what do you choose to do?

Emily:  When I have some quiet time, I like to watch TV and listen to country music.

Which program at FS camps do you attend?

Emily:   At Future Stars, I mostly attend soccer camp, while also spending a week or 2 at another program each year.


Share some things that are important to you?

Emily:   My friends are important to me. I love hanging out with them. We always have such a good time, laughing and talking.


What is your favorite memory from camp?

Emily:   My favorite memory from camp was a 3 v 3 tournament one week at soccer camp. 2 of my good camp friends were on my team. It was competitive and still a blast! We were joking around, and still putting in 100% effort. We ended up winning the tournament in Penalty Kicks!


Image Credit:  Jordan Snider