September 12, 2023
Hello Hilltop Families,
Let us start by saying we are genuinely blown away by the response we have gotten about making the decision to cease the operation of Camp Hilltop. We are very sorry for the lack of response to your messages; it has just been overwhelming for us and impossible to keep up. We are working through emails and will catch up with everyone soon.
Having said that we did want to send you a letter that addresses 2 of the common themes we are getting in your emails:
- You would love to keep some familiarity for your camper and wondered if the new camp program on the Hilltop facility would be a fit for your family? It will be a single gender religious based summer camp, so most likely not what you are looking for.
- Many of our families have asked for camp recommendations and here is the honest truth, we know Camp Hilltop! We truly do not know the ins and outs of other children’s summer camps and would not feel comfortable enough to say go here or there. However, when we consulted with the same ACA referral agent whose link we provided to you in the email yesterday. She made a very interesting suggestion based on her expertise and knowledge of Hilltop and another camp with similarities. We have spoken to the owners and this could be an interesting option for you and your campers. Please do your due diligence in looking into the camp yourself to know if it is the best fit for your family and if it is what you are looking for in a camp.
Camp Southwoods in Paradox, NY which is about 90 minutes north of Albany in the south eastern Adirondacks, is a historic summer camp whose director passed away a few years ago. The camp was purchased by 4 stalwarts in the camping industry and for the past 2 summers they have been fully vested in the camp and their campers. They currently are running about 100 campers per session but have room for 300. So that means they could take the vast majority of our campers which is great for those of you that have expressed interest in keeping large friend/cabin groups together, etc. It appears that many of the philosophies that make Hilltop a special place for your families are shared at Southwoods as well.
The owners of Camp Southwoods have promised:
- To honor Hilltop pricing
- To honor bunk requests
- They are interested in bringing in any Hilltop counselors that wish to make the move as well.
We believe it is worth your time to talk to Southwoods, as this is an amazing opportunity to keep many of you and the Hilltop staff together in a new environment that is a similar size and has a similar philosophy to Hilltop. Our hearts are happy at the potential for our Hilltop families and campers to find a place together.
Please visit their website, www.CampSouthwoods.com to learn more, and contact them at your convenience.
The hardest part of the decision to close Hilltop was the impact on our campers and the inability of camp friends to experience camp together going forward. Our hope is that this will give many of you that chance.
We, again, wish to thank you for all of the messages of love and support that we have received. The impact that Camp Hilltop has had on those that have shared their time with us over the years is what we will miss and cherish the most. We are extremely honored to have been a part of your lives!
Scott, Ann, Melissa, Becky, Bill & Kathy