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This Week's Student Spotlight: Kathryn (Katie) Bottitta

The Lemon-Aid Kid

School: Fourth Grader at Highview Elementary

Age: 9

Katie Bottitta has been watching her father, C.J., for months pound the pavement to raise money for the Highview Playground.

"My dad told me the Playground didn't have enough money yet and I wanted to help," said Katie Bottitta.

With the build beginning today, Katie took matters into her own hands a few weeks ago and made plans to set up a .

"A lemonade stand was the first idea I had to raise money," said Katie.

With the help of her parents, C.J. and Paula, she was able to set up a tent in front of Highview Elementary school, across from the playground site.  Her father contacted Stop & Shop in Nanuet and they graciously donated all the lemonade mix, all the cups and most of the poster boards used to make signs.

"I told my friends about the lemonade stand and they loved the idea so they wanted to help me and I thought it would be better to have more kids, so I also mentioned it at my Girl Scouts (Troop 40211) meeting so more could come," said Katie.

On Saturday, Sept. 24, Katie along with Josh Bottitta (Katie's younger brother), Kaila D'Elia, Anthony D'Elia, Valerie Portelle, Taylor Plunkett, Jessica Hayes, Alanna Wamsley, Julia Bilcik set up their .

The crew had a perfect spot allowing cars to pull right up along side the stand where they were able to deliver the drinks right to the car. Fortunately for everyone the rain held off. In fact, the weather was unusually warm which probably helped sales.

The total amount raised was $402. Not bad for a days work! With the money they raised, Katie, along with her brother and her friends are planning on sponsoring a tree from "The Lemon Aid Kids".

"I was so excited about having a Lemonade Stand.  It started to sprinkle when the tent was set up, but then the rain went away.  It was humid and my feet hurt from standing with the signs and bringing people their lemonade to their cars, but it was worth it for the money we made for the playground," said Katie.

A very impressive feat for this fourth grader who also enjoys reading workshop and loves writing. Katie keeps busy with her Girl Scout Troop 40211, playing OMM soccer in the spring and playing the violin throughout the year. She enjoys swimming and over the summer she joined the Clarkstown Swim Team—The Green Machine—and also attended the summer reading clubs at the library.

As the saying goes, 'The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.' Katie's father C.J. has dedicated countless hours as the vice president of the Highview Playground Steering Committee and her mother, Paula, is also very active in the Nanuet community and schools. However, Katie gets all the credit for this fundraiser since it was her idea and plan.

With such a successful first fundraiser keep an eye out for this budding philanthropist in the future. Great job Katie and the rest of the Lemon-Aid Kids!

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