Monday, January 30, 2017

Into the Lake

Have you ever had an idea you thought was really great at the time, but...

So- in my current fundraising campaign, I am trying to raise money for camperships so that families with tight finances can send their children to a week of camp. Things were going good, but  I wanted to get momentum built up to hit our goal of $5000. So I tossed out the idea of doing something crazy if we hit the midway point by Wednesday.
Last year I dressed up in a pink tu-tu and a moosehat.

I asked people on our facebook page what I should do. Originally they wanted me to jump into the pool at camp with a kilt on, but I didnt want to damage the pool cover, and who knows how deep I would have had to dig to get to water under that ice. So I through out the idea of jumping into the lake.

Now mind you, I really didn't think we were going to reach the midway point by Wednesday....But my sisters got it in their heads that it would be fun to see their brother turn into an icicle. So they donated and the total went over the half way point. And I am a man of my word. 

So I called up Judi Zollweg, alumni and friend, and we planned when I would jump in. Judi volunteered to serve as lifeguard and photographer. I also enlisted Donna Benkovich (the Director of the Chamber) to help out, because she has been around when people did the polar plunge at New Years, and she could make sure I didn't turn into a human Popsicle.

The morning of the plunge (see photo of the temp?) Judi and I drove over to the chamber to pick up Donna. Penny Dunleavy and Bill Bucher of happen to be visiting the Chamber of Commerce (they were out taking videos of waterfalls) and decided to tagged along to watch' They even donated toward the camperships!

So I couldn't just abandon the quest. So I rolled up my sleeves, got into my summer camp clothes (they were under all my layers of clothes) and walked into the outflow stream of Lake Pleasant. I wont tell you how cold it was, or how cold my feet got, or how every muscle in my body the next day went on strike and said- "Jim, your too old for this...".  But I will tell you that is one more thing off my bucket list, and I know the money we raised so far is going to make a lot of happy campers this summer.

I am providing a link for the "trailer" for the full video.   . I'm holding the full video hostage until we break the $3000 mark- just $230  to go and , well, that will be on the internet....

But since you are being so great and reading this blog, I will give you a new brief snipet of the video... 

Why do all of this? Because there is nothing like a summer camp experience for a kid. And I will do everything I can to make sure they are able to come to camp, and have a great summer experience.

Thank you to everyone that has helped and donated- but we still have more to do.  I am looking for suggestions for breaking the $4000 or even $5000 mark by the end of February. If you have suggestion (that an old man like me can realistically do...) please send them my way or post them on our camp facebook page.

Thanks for reading our blog, thank you for supporting camp and see you soon!

Friday, January 20, 2017

You can have an impact!

Even though there is snow on the ground, I am always thinking of ways getting new campers to our camp.  Our fundraising campaign for camperships is going well (I will probably end up having to take the plunge into Lake Pleasant soon if things keep going the way they have been) and we have started interviewing young people for staff positions. Very exciting.

So- what can you do? We have so many amazing people around that are rooting for our camp- and others that have donated funds, sweat and tears to help me make this dream come true. But there are other things you can do.

We have flyers that people can put up in your local communities - I have a link here for a downloadable version you can print at home, or I can mail you a few flyers and brochures. And we have small flyers for available staff positions that I can mail you. Let me know what you need!

If you know of a family that may not be able to afford the full cost of camp, send them my way. In the 22 years I have been a director, I haven't turned away a child in need. We will do what we can to help people.

Are you on facebook pages with other parents? Share a link to our camp facebook page! Have friends with questions about camp? Send them my way. The more you talk to people about camp, the more they become interested.

According to the American Camp Association , well over 80% of campers learn about camp from other families.

So help us to reach out to those new campers!

Thank you for your continued support of camp!

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Camp Staff

(not an actual picture of Fred the Moose)
Fred the Moose is looking for a few good people....

We are looking for summer camp staff for the 2017 season. 
We need Camp Counselors (18 yrs and older) to supervise campers in an overnight camp setting, promote and actively participate in all camp activities while providing a safe and fun learning environment, and serve as a positive role models for campers. We need counselors with backgrounds in nature, outdoor skills, arts and crafts or life guarding.

We need Kitchen Staff and Cooks (21+yrs) to plan and prepare meals for 50 children. 

And we need an RN for our camp infirmary.  

A job at summer camp can be a life changing experience! Ask any of our alumni that were staff...they will tell you that is was one of the best things they did when they were in college!

Know of someone who wants a learning experience for the summer? Let them know!  Visit our staff page (  for details and our online application.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Heads in Beds...

Gabby likes the Snow
Camp is made up of a bunch of campers. Sounds obvious, but no camp can survive without having children sign up for camp. We are a new camp program, so it is extremely important for us to find new campers and have them be a part of the Camp Sacandaga experience.

Kids need camp today more than ever before to escape the crazy world in which we live.  At Camp Sacandaga, kids unplug, connect and discover who they are.  Campers live in a child-centered community where Kindness, Respect and Responsibility guide everything we do.  Through our intentional and engaging program, we encourage girls and boys to be proud of their individuality, develop authentic relationships and challenge themselves to be the best that they can possibly be.

Gwen's moose impression

We try to recruit campers in many ways. We send brochures, talk with groups, go to camp fairs, post flyers in local venues....but all of these really don't get kids to camp.  

Kids come to camp because their parents hear from other parents that the camp their child goes to is a great place.  Word of Mouth. According to the American Camp Association, over 80% of campers attend camp because they heard about camp from another family.

Last summer was a great start. We all had a fun time, and every camper said they would like to come back. And many people I talk to really would like to see camp be successful and to give children that camp experience they go when they were kids.  

We can only make camp sucessful if YOU...our camp friends, go out and tell people about this camp program. The more people we talk to, the more campers may come to camp. The more we get this summer, the stronger our "foundation" becomes, and the better the program will be.

So I am asking that each of you go out there and help us to "Get Heads in Beds"! The more you share about camp, your memories and all the great things you got out of camp when you were young, the better it will be.  And as I said earlier- Kids need camp now more than ever! So help us to share camp with others.

Thank you for supporting camp and being a part of our camp family!