Put Me In, Coach

If your kid is pouting because you get to go to sports fantasy camp and she doesn't, don't worry -- there are sports fantasy camps for kids, too. They usually last only a day or two and are geared more toward the younger player. Children as young as six years old are eligible for some camps. Kids typically receive team T-shirts and hats, practice their skills on the field and get tickets for a game to watch their heroes in action.

A Day at Sports Fantasy Camp

Let's ­walk through a day at a typical baseball fantasy camp. Here's what it might be like:

After you arrive and check in at your hotel, you sit through an orientation where the staff let you know what to expect during your stay. Next up is dinner or a cocktail reception, where you meet your fellow campers and perhaps a few major league players. You and the other fantasy campers are separated into teams -- you'll be competing against each other during camp.

In the morning, a shuttle delivers you to the stadium. When you arrive at the clubhouse, you find a personalized jersey and equipment waiting for you in your locker. It fits perfectly. You join your team on the field for warm-up and batting/pitching clinics. You recognize some of the trainers and coaches as retired players from days gone by. You pose for team photos on the field.

Game time! You and your team take to the field and play ball. You can't believe you're pitching fastballs on the same mound as your heroes have for years. After the game -- congratulations, your team wins! -- you return to the hotel to change out of your uniform. Another cocktail reception in the lobby gives you the chance to hobnob with several more major-league players, with photo opportunities aplenty.

The next few days continue in the same vein. On the last day, your fantasy camp team even gets a chance to compete in a friendly game against former pro players. That night, the staff honors you and your fellow campers at a banquet, with trophies and awards.

And then, the next day, your life as a major league ball player is over. You head back to the airport, shoulder sore from pitching, with your team jersey and trophy packed safely away in your suitcase. Later that summer, you'll meet up with your team again at the stadium for a reunion.