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scotteg83

Troop Hosted Summer Camp

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With the current unknown, it was suggest by my committee that we have a backup plan if COVID-19 closes summer camp this summer.  We have access to a water front camp for the week.  It has its Pro/Cons, but I was wonder what some of you have done in the past to host your own week of camp.  The camp will have a cabin with bunks for the adults, and room for the scouts to have tents.  Canoes are provided as well.

 

Thanks for any input.  Currently we have 14 scouts and 5 leaders planning to go to camp.  I am also an ASM for a girls troop, and will offer a similar backup plan for them (just on a different week)

Scott

Edited by scotteg83

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2 minutes ago, scotteg83 said:

With the current unknown, it was suggest by my committee that we have a backup plan if COVID-19 closes summer camp this summer.  We have access to a water front camp for the week.  It has its Pro/Cons, but I was wonder what some of you have done in the past to host your own week of camp.  The camp will have a cabin with bunks for the adults, and room for the scouts to have tents.  Canoes are provided as well.

 

Thanks for any input.  Currently we have 14 scouts and 5 leaders planning to go to camp.  I am also an ASM for a girls troop, and will offer a similar backup plan for them (just on a different week)

Scott

It's a lot of fun and A LOT of work. The main difference is logistics of food. How much to buy, how much it will cost, when to purchase it, where to store it and how to distribute it. It's not reasonable to think a Patrol can manage a weeks worth of food. You will need a mature Quartermaster Corp.

The other challenge is program and who will run it. We found that just about every adult is needed as a resource. The scouts lead the planning, with equal help from adult assistants. Lots of planning meetings with a lot of action items. Even Woodbadge spends several months planning and they have instructions.

I will say that planning and running such a thing matured our scouts and the boy run program more than any other activity we did over the years. You will have a different troop after you are finished. Everyone will also be exhausted.

Barry

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Our troop hosted a motor-boating weekend last summer, and the host parents got certified as counselors and did nearly everything to make sure things went smoothly. The parents were so generous that I gave them a stern lecture that next time the boys can plan and purchase their own meals, pitch in for refueling the boat, and generally spoil them rotten by keeping house for them during their stay.

I think nearly all of the boys attending earned the badge.

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Program is doable.  Two travel days to & from camp, maybe one day with 10 or 15 mile hike, that leaves four days with free time, advancement, games and cooking…  similar to extra long weekend camp trip.

The challenge is probably insurance and regulatory to varying degrees depending on property ownership.  In my State due to the number of youth and hours, this would be subject to Health Department laws for Children’s Camps which for a Troop would likely be insurmountable. 

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Scoutteg83:   I have no doubt that your Troop can have a wonderful time,  learn the Scout stuff they should have as a Scout's legacy, if you have a suitable "Property"  ,  parents willing to do what needs to be done, and the desire to let go and let your Scouts be Scouts.  The planning, and execution of such an endeavor can only add to your friendships and memories. 

Way back in protozoic Scout time,  my Troop's dads and (I guess) moms decided to sponsor a summer camp for our Troop.  Somebody's brother's cousin owned some property up by Germantown MD.  We soon were camping there on weekends.  A spring was discovered and it was dug out, capped with a big concrete culvert and top, and a pipe inserted  that provided good water.  The stream that ran thru the valley was blocked sufficiently that we had first a place to cool food stuffs and then, further down, was dammed up to give us a deep spot to splash in  if not actually swim. A privy was dug, and yes, Scouts dug that.  Next, a three sided Adirondack (we learned that name) was built into the hillside with old phone poles. ( Mr. Atwell worked for the C&P Telephone company !)  The old phone poles he obtained (!) were dragged in with Mr.  Leaman's old war surplus Jeep.  That became Mr. McDaniel's Quartermaster's cabin. He always had a cream seperater full of "Bug Juice"  for passing Scouts.  During our summer week stays, our Patrols would visit there everyday to draw our food supplies and such. 

It was  a little more than a  quarter mile hike into the camp ( I measured it for my Surveying Merit Badge) from the parking area, which itself was a couple of miles in on  dirt roads from the paved ones.     Everything came in on someone's back, or the Jeep.  

"The Property", as it was called,  developed with two  Patrol campsites on each side of the stream,  with a bigger clearing for a Troop Campfire and "Scout's Own".   On the west end, was a knocked down grove of dead American Chestnut, "the Dead Forest", where the nearby Patrols collected the best firewood for camp cooking.  Chestnut burned with a blue hot flame, I have never seen the like since.  We cooked or we went hungry. We drank water, reconstituted Tang, dry milk and hot cocoa.  Mr. Walters taught us how to cook an entire pound of bacon in one pan all at once.  We learned to work for and with each other, or we  learned who we could NOT depend on, and thus charity.   Other than the "official"  Scout camps , and Philmont, I think we Scouts went to "the property" at least every other month, no matter the weather. We knew we could always hike and camp at "the Property".  A one or two week long summer stay there was operated every summer of my later Scout career. 

In my collection, I have the woggles we made labeled "CF" for "Camp Freedom"  . The Troop utilized  The Property for many years after I moved on into adulthood, but was eventually sold,  at least part of it, to a religious retreat center.  I went up there with Scoutson, some years ago, and found the ruins of the cabin, and the concrete cap of the spring, now sunken into a marsh area.  Scoutson often mused he would've liked to have been in "my" Troop. 

Scoutteg83, I can think of no better , more wonderful project than the one you envision.  Good  Scouting  to you. 

 

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