for Providers

Eight Finalists Selected in the 2019 ActivityHero Grant Contest

Eight Finalists Now Qualify for the $10,000 Grand Prize to be Announced June 18.

Congratulations to the eight ActivityHero Grant finalists who have each won a $500 prize package from ActivityHero, 4imprint and They now advance to the final round in which the winner will receive the Grand Prize of $10,000 in cash and services. A panel of judges will make the final decision to be announced on June 18, 2019.

The Finalists

Over the past few months, our incredible grant applicants received many votes and reviews from their supporters. Here’s more about each of the finalists and how they would like to use the ActivityHero Grant.

Valkyrie RoboticsValkyrie is an educational non-profit that serves the South Bay Area through a combination of STEM student groups, community service and public demonstrations, and summer camps in math, science, and engineering, focusing on students in the 6th through 12th grades. Through the efforts of their staff and volunteers, hundreds of students from more than a dozen high schools in their area have developed vital skills in STEM, including programming, machine operation, and computer aided design.

Our ability to grow our services is limited primarily by our financial needs. Engineering programs have high demands for materials, tools, space, and safety equipment, and with our current budget expansion is steady but slow. This grant would allow our organization to expand our operations to up to 50 more students into our robotics programs and touch hundreds more through our outreach and community service programs, along with a geographical expansion to at least three more schools in the area.”

Seatrek BVI – SeaTrek students participate in a variety of engaging service learning and research projects that center around the exploration of the unique tropical environments that make up the Virgin Islands. These project options afford participants a variety of authentic, hands-on learning experiences designed to enhance both their content knowledge and skill sets related to experiential marine science education and conservation.

If Sea Trek was awarded the grant, half of the money would be put towards our scholarship funds and half of the money would be used for new equipment. SeaTrek does its part to give back to our communities. SeaTrek’s Pay it Shoreward in the Islands donations range from pantry food items and fleece blankets to brand new dive gear and full program scholarships. We try to give back to the people of the islands as much as we can.  Every year SeaTrek donates a full tuition scholarship to the Tortola Surf Classic, which aids in fundraising and allows a Virgin Island teen to participate in a SeaTrek voyage at no charge. For the past several years, SeaTrek has worked hard to provide new and used scuba gear, as well as program scholarships for local Jost Van Dykes students.”

Dikshaa Dance AcademyThe academy teaches young kids about the rich Indian culture and mythology through dance. It has helped teach kids to work as teams, help each other and build camaraderie. They also produce unique dance productions and help these kids learn about contemporary issues such as equality etc. through dance. On April 20th, the children are participating in a production celebrating women warriors across various cultures, in their production “veerangana – valiant women’.

Currently we do not have enough funds to move to a studio, so the school runs out of my garage. I would love to give the kids space to explore and blossom as dancers and come up with creative movements. We cannot do that in the current space restrictions. We could also host artistes from other genres and parts of the world to give lectures and workshops, if we had our own studio.”

RD EquineThey offer horsemanship classes, horseback riding lessons, and therapeutic horsemanship sessions to homeschooled children, as an approved vendor to a number of charter schools. They support FOLAR (Friends of the LA River) and the Rails To Trails Initiative. Additionally, RD Equine is in the process of getting involved with Trails For All and other relevant parties to try to improve the LA River Trail for all local users.

A grant would also allow us to open up the horsemanship, horseback riding, and therapeutic horsemanship services to a larger section of community – to children at risk, disadvantaged youths, and members of other youth based non-profit organisations, at a heavily discounted rate (perhaps even free).

In addition, we are joining forces with a 501(c)3 non-profit organisation named Off Track Rescue – we plan to create a program whereby we rescue horses off the track, retrain them on the LA river trail, and use them to teach local children’s groups about trail riding, horse care, trail management and conservation. A grant would allow us to get the program jump-started and begin without debt, and therefore able to offer our services to the public and to non-profit organisations much earlier than currently anticipated.”

New England Hemophilia Association (NEHA) – Since 1992, NEHA has proudly offered Family Camp to the New England bleeding disorders community at Geneva Point Center in Moultonborough, NH. They believe that living with a chronic disease doesn’t have to feel so isolating.

New family memories are made at NEHA’s Family Camp where children are encouraged to try new sports and activities. Medical staff is onsite 24/7 to handle any emergencies that may arise. They offer archery, arts and crafts, wood shop, waterfront, infusion classes and sessions for siblings. Everyone comes together as the sun sets to share the events of the day around the campfire with other families from the community.

We staff our camp with a medical team which is available 24/7 as well as experienced counselors. Funds from this grant will help NEHA expand and enhance our efforts to provide a fun and safe environment for our campers and for their families. Specifically, funds would be used to bring in additional educational opportunities, experts in the field to provide education, more facilitators to encourage continued growth and skill development, and a more robust staff training are three initial opportunities and ways the grant funds could make an immediate impact.”

Sarasota School of GlassSarasota School of Glass is a beginners’ school specializing in project based activities for children and adults. Their emphasis is fun, fun, and more fun. SSG offers small classes in the Sarasota area, attracting students worldwide. Family holidays are their biggest draw, catering to family parties and gatherings. They try to take the ‘mystery’ out of creating in glass and believe that they are successful in doing so, since students return again and again bringing friends and family with them.

The Grant would be a wonderful boost to our business. We are bursting at the seams and would use the Grant to expand our classrooms to accommodate more students. We would also expand our Open Studio area where students can work independently and have a special area just for kids. I would love to have separate a room where children could come to work independently, like the adults, freely expressing themselves without the restrictions of being in a classroom. I would also have private sessions with children that have a desire to do more advanced work and are serious about this art.”

Young Intellects – This after-school and camp provider is the only organization in Bay Area that focuses on collaboration between mainstream kids and kids with special needs. They have been featured in many magazines for our unique work.

“The grant will help us in spreading awareness about Inclusive Education. Our goal is to bring out a well-rounded and an empathetic society.”

Camp Super DuperThis Los Angeles camp is a “safe, magical place for kids from the community to discover, create, connect, laugh, play & grow.” They also host international students, exposing community kids to cultures from all over the world. Additionally the camp provides scholarships & grants to kids in the community (and outside the community in underserved areas) who could otherwise not afford it. The camp welcomes all genders, religions, races, abilities, orientations, family structures. 

We would use the grant to offer even more scholarship spots to kids in the community (and beyond) who could not afford it. Plain and simple. We want to provide a magical, enriching experience to help all kids thrive and shine their brightest possible light, especially the ones who need the most support.”

ActivityHero wishes the best of luck to all the contestants! Each of these organizations is doing incredible work in their communities and we are confident that no matter who wins our grant, it will be put toward a great cause.

Check back on June 18 to find out who the winner is!

for Providers

Nine Finalists Selected in the ActivityHero Grant Contest

Nine Finalists Now Qualify for the $10,000 Grand Prize to be Announced in August.

Congratulations to the nine finalists who have each won a $500 ActivityHero Grant, which includes services from ActivityHero, GoDaddy, 4imprint and PsPrint. They now advance to the judging round and the Grand Prize Winner of $10,000 in cash and services will be chosen by a panel of judges. Stay tuned for the announcement on August 15, 2018.

The July Finalists

The three July finalists received many votes and reviews from their supporters. Here’s more about each of the finalists and how they would like to use the ActivityHero Grant.

Youth Technology Learning Center – YTLC came into existence in the service of promoting and propelling the undernourished technology focus needed in this world by providing a nurturing and fertile soil to firmly plant the seeds of STEM in future generations. They prime and empower their students to meet the diverse and emerging needs of a technology driven world.

“Our ultimate vision is to provide a STEM center for children in need who may not otherwise be able to afford such classes. A grant would greatly help us in our efforts to bring this dream to fruition.”


Cook n Grow – Through interactive learning, children are taught cooking and baking techniques, etiquette and table manners, cognitive measuring skills and more. Adults can enjoy Cook N Grow to learn how to make an exquisite dish themselves, or for a fun date night!

We love our Community and give back constantly through our philanthropies. We give College Students an opportunity to have a flexible part time job while having a job they truly enjoy. Working with kids is so rewarding! We strongly believe that by teaching kids where food comes from and expose them to healthy habits, they’ll make better decisions about what to put into their bodies.”
project ember logo

Project EmberWe ask kids to dream big and work hard. Our projects are ambitious; creative thinking and curiosity alone won’t see us to the finish line. We need elbow grease and resilience to get it done. We need grit.Grit separates brilliant ideas from brilliant creations. Thinking is easy, starting is hard, and finishing can seem nearly impossible. Grit get us to the other side of the hurdles that stand between us and successfully bringing our ideas to life.

“We’re committed to making our program accessible to each and every child who wants to attend. Though we are still building toward solvency, we have said yes to almost 100% of the campers who have requested scholarships since our program began, giving away over $30k in financial assistance in 2018 alone…The ActivityHero grant would cover 1/6 of our scholarship requests, greatly alleviating the pressure on our organization to stay afloat while providing access to an inspiring group of young people.

The June Finalists

The three June finalists collectively received 800 votes since April 1, 2018. Here’s more about each of the finalists and how they would like to use the ActivityHero Grant.

Wild Blue Ropes Adventure Park -Wild Blue Ropes’ camp offers specific daily activities that are balanced between structured and unstructured play. Campers learn how to work with others, build meaningful relationships, accept guidance, and develop decision-making skills. All of these life skills nurture independence and confidence. The unique, co-ed program is designed for ages 8 – 14 years.

“An ActivityHero Grant would help us grow Wild Blue Ropes Adventure Park’s offering – specifically our new NinjaFit Course… Once completed, the NinjaFit Course at Wild Blue Ropes will offer classes, open course, and personal training for individuals of all ages and abilities. Our focus is to provide yet another safe, healthy, outdoor challenge for visitors to enjoy.”

Golden Bear Gymnastics At Golden Bear our coaches take great pride and care when instructing your children. Although a majority of our classes are as a group, our coaches pay close attention and work with each child individually to help build and emphasize their skill sets. 

“Given the extensive facilities and skilled coaching required to run a gym, the cost of competitions, uniforms and travel, participating in gymnastics is often accessible only to children of families with financial means. We believe that all children can benefit from the lessons learned through gymnastics: discipline, hard work, teamwork, strength and agility, empowerment…We would be thrilled to use an ActivityHero Grant to provide scholarships to lower income youth who may not otherwise be able to participate in this transformative sport.”

Empower and Help – At Empower and Help we create future leaders with integrity that make this world a better place for themselves and others.Our camps and year round classes teach students to reach their highest potential by deepening their experience of life, focusing on positive mindset, possibilities and understanding how to integrate and maintain values such as love, respect, integrity, etc

“The ActivityHero grant will immensely assist us in:
1) Offering our workshops and classes to families who cannot afford at a subsidized rate or for free.
2) Training our team on advanced techniques through various courses to support our goal of empowering and helping others
3) Building the “Help” portion of our website which will be dedicated for social good projects and creating a searchable database on Mental health aid and resources.”

The May Finalists

The three May finalists collectively received 500 votes and 100 reviews since April 1, 2018. Here’s more about each of the finalists and how they would like to use the ActivityHero Grant.

Rock Band Land

Rock Band Land – Offering camps and classes for kids ages 5 to 12 in San Francisco, California, Rock Band Land focuses on creative expression and collaboration through rock music, storytelling, writing, video arts, fine arts, and movement. Here’s how they would use the ActivityHero Grant if they win the Grand Prize:

“In September 2018, we are expanding into a space that is almost four times the size of the current Rock Band Land Headquarters. We are incredibly excited for this move as it means that we can expand upon our programming and projects for our rockers and artists…An ActivityHero grant would allow us to use funds towards the purchase of instruments, computers, and materials to best outfit our classes.”

Tri-City Storm Soccer ClubTri-City Storm Soccer ClubTri-City Storm Soccer Club provides members of all ages and skill levels the opportunity to play soccer and develop as individuals. They offer year-round programs for players as young as 4 up to 54 (or older). Between the Recreation, Academy, Select and Adult Programs, you are sure to find the perfect environment to play soccer and have fun! Here’s how they would use the ActivityHero Grant if they win the Grand Prize:

“Tri-City Storm Soccer Club is in the process of negotiating to purchase an indoor facility. This would allow us to grow our programs by providing us with a dedicated space to play soccer, even during our cold winter months. We also would like to expand our ability to provide soccer to the youngest members of our community through our Playground Legends program where we send coaches to daycares to hold camps at their facilities.”

Kerry Wynne, program administrator for the Club, said that in addition to the possibility of winning a grant, the grant contest is giving them an unexpected benefit of seeing how the community supports the club with votes and reviews. She says, “The reviews have come from participants in all of our programs, from recreational to competitive teams. It’s been so gratifying and motivating to see how much people care about our program.”

Kid Stock, Inc.

Kid StockAt Kid Stock, they believe that everyone should have the chance to shine. Their mission is to help children from all backgrounds realize their potential through musical theater and self-expression during summer camps and after-school programs. Here’s how they would use the ActivityHero Grant if they win the Grand Prize:

“An ActivityHero Grant will help our business threefold. It will cover the increased operating expenses for our summer programs; it will support our move to our new headquarters without putting strain on our programs budget; and it will allow us to continue expanding our program options to meet the needs of returning and new participants alike. All in all, support from ActivityHero and votes from our Kid Stock families allow us to offer more of our programming for more children—that means more camp locations around the Bay Area, more dates for popular sites, and more kids learning the joys of self-expression and having their best summer yet!”

Gift Card Winners

The final three $25 ActivityHero gift card winners have been randomly selected as well, and are now eligible to have their gift card value increased to $100 if the activity provider they reviewed or voted for wins the Grand or Silver prizes in August.

Congratulations to:

  • Heidi Vasconi (Voted for Golden Bear Gymnastics)
  • Lauren Jones (Voted for Wild Blue Ropes Adventure Park)
  • Brett Galvin (Voted for Empower and Help)
  • Sharon Aris (Voted for Rock Band Land)
  • Tina Stowman (Voted for Tri-City Storm Club)
  • Katie Miller (Voted for Kid Stock)
Contests for Providers

ActivityHero Grant Contest Top 10 Leaderboard

An update on the current Leaderboard in the ActivityHero Grant Contest.

With thousands of votes and hundreds of new reviews posted over the past few weeks, ActivityHero families are helping increase the odds that their favorite camp, class and activity providers will win a share of over $15,000 in cash and prizes in the ActivityHero Grant Contest. Congratulations to the six finalists who have been randomly selected from among the eligible contestants. In addition, the last drawing will take place on August 1 to bring the total number of finalists to nine.

Businesses need at least 3 reviews to be eligible for the monthly random drawings. For ideas, check out our recent blog post, Five Ways to Get More Reviews for Your Business with the ActivityHero Grant Contest.

These providers have made it to the Top 10 Leaderboard with the most entries based on their votes and reviews:

Rank Activity Provider Votes Reviews Total Entries
1 Freedom in Motion Gym 348 111 681
2 CD’s Kids Art Studio 333 17 384
3 Kidizens 149 50 299
4 Discover Science Center 155 34 257
5 Spartan Allstars 133 22 199
6 Andrew Simpkins Innovation Foundation 138 20 198
7 Coach Ken Soccer Academy 83 37 194
8 Youth Technology Learning Center (TYLC) 99 20 159
9 San Francisco Math Circle 116 12 152
10 Launch Generation 124 7 145

(*Results for eligible providers as of
July 19, 2018. Votes provide 1 entry and reviews provide 3 entries in the monthly drawings.)

Stay tuned for more updates on the Leaderboard throughout the summer. More entries increase the chance of winning, but don’t guarantee it. Any business who meets the criteria outlined in the Official Rules and has at least 3 reviews may be selected as a finalist. Activity providers can see their vote and review count by visiting their ActivityHero dashboard.

for Providers

Five Ways to Get More Reviews for Your Business with the ActivityHero Grant Contest

Online reviews can amplify the benefits of “word of mouth” referrals that are the lifeblood for small businesses. Here are five tips to getting more reviews for your camp or class.

By the ActivityHero Team

We all know that reviews are important – as a recent BrightLocal survey showed, 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. That’s why, in addition to the chance to earn a business grant worth $10,000, we designed the ActivityHero Business Grant Contest to help you engage with your customers to get votes and reviews. ActivityHero reviews are automatically seen on Google, plus you can use them on your own website.

The more votes and reviews you receive from families, the better your odds of winning the grant. Votes earn you one entry, while reviews generate three entries. Your ActivityHero listing already includes a “Vote Now” button. Plus, every voter is automatically asked to write a review for your business.

To increase your chances of winning, and generate reviews that will benefit your business long after the contest has ended, here are five simple tips to help get out the vote.

1. Add a “Vote Now” button on your website.

The voting period is from now until July 31, 2018. Here’s how to find a customized code snippet for the “Vote Now” button: visit your ActivityHero dashboard and click on the “Votes” circle to get your code. Then, just copy and paste to embed the code in your own website.

2. Add a contest link to your e-mail signature.

A short message like “Help us win a $10,000 grant. Vote for us!” can be appended to the bottom of your newsletters or auto-responder emails.

3. Use social media.


Share your ActivityHero listing page via Facebook, Instagram profile, Twitter and other social channels along with a brief explanation of what you would do with the grant money.

4. Direct appeal.

Make a personal appeal directly to your best customers. E-mail them or speak to them directly to ask for their help in voting and spreading the word to get more votes. BrightLocal’s survey showed that 68% percent of customers will leave a review if asked!

5. Posters.

Put a poster in your lobby or sign-in area asking your customers to vote for your business. Here’s a sample 8.5 x 11 sign you can download and print.  Or add this larger banner to your profile on social media.

About ActivityHero is the leading online marketplace for camps, activities, after school classes, workshops, and kids’ nights out. We reach more than 2.5 million families nationwide with our easy-to-use website and weekly newsletters. Providers can customize their listing and grow their registrations by visiting

for Providers

Win a Small Business Grant for Kids’ Camp and Activity Providers

ActivityHero’s Business Grant Contest will benefit kids’ camp and class providers with over $15,000 in grants. Apply by May 31, 2018.

If you’re an activity provider who struggles with the challenges of being a small business in a competitive marketplace, we hear you. “We see how hard owners of children’s camps and classes work to provide an enriching experience to their students,” says Peggy Chang, Co-founder and CEO of ActivityHero. A recent survey we conducted revealed that a majority of the respondents were  “doing okay,” were “struggling,” or “barely getting by.” Inspired by these stories, ActivityHero launched a Business Grant Contest where providers can strengthen their customer relationship base and apply to win over $15,000 in grants. Here’s what you need to know to win a grant.

The Prizes

The 2018 Business Grant contest will award over $15,000 in grants and prizes from ActivityHero and its Partners.

  • Grand Prize: Business Grant worth $10,000
  • Silver Prize: Business Grant worth $3,000

In addition, seven Finalists will each receive $500 in services from GoDaddy Website Builder, 4imprint Branded Promotional Products, PsPrint Online Printing Services and ActivityHero Online Marketing.

These services help small business look their best and attract more customers.

GoDaddy is a web-hosting platform and domain registrar that serves over 17 million customers while offering award-winning customer service. Their website builder makes it incredibly easy for anyone to build a modern, sophisticated website with top-of-the-line functionality.

4imprint boosts marketing power by providing companies with high-quality products such as water bottles, t-shirts, and booth signage that can be customized to promote their business. They offer expert consulting services like professional art assistance and help with logo design.

PsPrint offers quality printing, graphic design services and affordable prices. Popular items include postcards, posters, flyers and stickers.

ActivityHero is the leading online marketplace for kids’ camps and classes. Families find and book new activities near them and businesses can use ActivityHero’s online registration service on their website for a seamless experience.

Apply Online by May 31

There are two simple steps to apply for the Business Grant.

    1. Make sure your business has a valid ActivityHero listing. You can easily create a listing if you don’t already have one.
  1. Visit and answer some basic questions about your vision, inspiration, and the kinds of connections you as an activity provider have made with your community. Be clear and concise!

Apply by May 31, 2018 to increase your chances to win since you will be eligible for all three finalist drawings (one at the end of each month from May through July).

The more votes and reviews you receive from families, the better are your odds of winning. Families cast their vote on each business’ ActivityHero listing.

Get Valuable Customer Reviews

In addition to the chance to earn grants, the ActivityHero contest will help you garner customer reviews, providing you with insight on customer preferences. Take advantage of added customer engagement to help advance your strategic goals, like increasing overall customer satisfaction, reducing customer churn, or accumulating new clients through personal referrals.

Marissa Lucero, founder at Maker Studio SF, believes that hearing directly from families is great for business. “I’m excited to participate in the contest because nothing makes us happier than receiving feedback from parents and students on what we’re doing well and how we can improve,” she said, adding, “Winning a grant would let us expand our offerings to young makers”.

Pro tip: Are you looking to boost customer engagement and the number of reviews? Check out our recent post on how to garner more customer reviews via ActivityHero’s Business Grant Contest.

About ActivityHero is the leading online marketplace for camps, activities, after school classes, workshops, and kids’ nights out. We reach more than 2.5 million families nationwide with our easy-to-use website and weekly newsletters. Providers can customize their listing and grow their registrations by visiting