Six-year-old raises more than $7,000 for Frost Valley camp scholarships

Claryville — Most kids love the opportunity to attend summer day camp. While six-year-old Grahamsville resident Samantha Houghtaling enjoys camp, her real pleasure is helping send others to camp.
During the past three years, Samantha has raised more than $5,000 for Frost Valley YMCA’s “Camperships” that cover the costs of day camp for students who cannot afford the program. This year, Samantha is on track to raise an additional $2,000.
Her efforts are part of Frost Valley’s sixth annual Bowl-A-Thon planned for Sunday, March 21 from 2-4 p.m. at Kiamesha Lanes in Kiamesha Lake. Samantha signs up sponsors who will support her efforts in the Bowl-A-Thon.
What makes Samantha’s work especially remarkable is that she makes her own sales pitch, relying on her parents only for transportation.
Samantha’s affection for Frost Valley is a result of having grown up there. Her father, Todd, is the organization’s IT manager. Samantha has always been part of the “Frost Valley family” and has a great fondness for the camp and conference center.
Samantha’s parents instilled the importance of the camp experience in their daughter. As a result, even at her very young age, Samantha felt the desire to help send others to day camp.
When she decided she’d like to solicit donations to support Frost Valley Camperships, Samantha’s parents, Todd and Holly, helped draft a letter detailing her efforts. Each year they drive Samantha to numerous homes and businesses so she can make request sponsorships in person. Needless to say, she’s been very successful.
The letter that Samantha wrote this year, stated, in part, “I have been raising money for underprivileged kids to go to Frost Valley day camp. There are many cool things to do, like swimming, relay racing and many other things.”
Samantha was old enough to attend Frost Valley’s day camp last year for the first time. She loved the experience, but gets even more satisfaction from making day camp possible for others. Prior to this year’s fund-raising, her work had enabled approximately 60 children to attend day camp.
“I’m really glad that I can help other kids,” commented Samantha.
All donations are tax-deductible. Financial aid is also available for resident summer campers. Anyone who would like to support Samantha’s fund-raising efforts is welcome to contact her at 845 985-2099.
For more information, please contact Melissa Pauls at 845 985-2291, ext. 208, e-mail: or visit Keep up with daily happenings at fvsummercamp.word or join Frost Valley on twitter at
Frost Valley YMCA is located at 2000 Frost Valley Road, Claryville.