The City of Chambly is defending a day camp for girls that offers activities including a fashion show as well as makeup and hair tips for girls aged 5 to 12.
Some Montrealers told CBC's Daybreak they thought the camp was inappropriate. However, the municipality and camp officials both said they had not received any formal complaints.
A spokesperson for Chambly, Micheline Le Royer, appeared on Daybreak to discuss the girls' week day camp.
“I think maybe it’s a misunderstanding of the camp. It’s like dress-up. It’s not about putting on make-up to look like models. It’s really like playing costume,” said Le Royer.
The equivalent of the girls' week camp for boys offers activities including hockey, a "spy mission" and modified kickball.
The city’s day camps are programmed by an outside company and Le Royer said the camp in question has been “very popular” in other cities.
The company that runs the camps declined an interview with the CBC.
“Little girls who get together on a Saturday afternoon, what are they going to do? They play dress-up with their mother’s dress and things like that,” Le Royer said.
She said it’s one of many day camp options offered by the municipality. Other day camps focus on interests like magic, health, exotic animals, cartoon drawing and golf.
Le Royer said the overall program runs over eight weeks each summer and attracts around 1,500 children.
Registration begins in two days. Le Royer says If the girls' camp isn't popular, it won’t return next year.