Posts Tagged ‘activities’


2014pinewoodderbyThe Scouting program snuck up on me a little as this week became a bit busier than usual. I guess I knew of everything that was coming up, but I was not really paying attention. Oh well, I can not think of many other programs I would rather spend my time on.

On Monday the patrol leader council of Troop 68 met at my house for their monthly planning meeting. It did not take them long to plan the three March meetings, the court of honor, and other things, plus review how things went in February. They began at 6:30 and were finished before 8:00. That included eating the meat and cheese tray I set out during the meeting.

On Tuesday I attended Cub Scout Pack 68′s Pinewood Derby. Thirteen Scouts participated in this year’s event. It was the first time I had seen a derby since the pack bought a new track with an electronic timer. I attended the activity to take some pictures. I ended up being the official photographer. I might have gone a little overboard. I ended up with over 100 pictures of the boys and their cars. I am going to burn the pictures to cd’s and give one to each family who had a Scout participate in the derby.

On Friday the members of the Striking Cobra Patrol will be coming over for pizza, sodas, and a movie. They won the patrol flag competition in December. I am not sure what movie the Scouts will decide to watch but I have a feeling I better have at least two large pizzas ready for them. Boy Scouts always seem to be hungry, especially for pizza.

How has your Scouting week been going? Is it a busy one?

Pinewood Derby StandsIt is that special time of year. Plans are being made. Special designs are being considered. Bodies are being formed. Weights are being adjusted. Tracks are being calibrated. No, I am not talking about your local Snap Fitness center or the local gym. It is Pinewood Derby season! It is time to create those cars for the big races in Cub Scout Packs across the country.

The Cub Scouts of Melrose Pack 68 kicked off their season on Tuesday, January 28, by making display stands for their cars. Cubmaster Mark and his brother Gary had cut out and prepared the wood pieces. The Cub Scouts, with a little help from their parents, screwed and glued the pieces together. The next step will be to paint or stain the stands at home and then bring them to the Pinewood Derby.

I have not been to a Pack meeting for a year so I decided to attend this one. I did not realize the Cub Scouts would be assembling display stands. I did have my camera along so I made myself useful and started taking pictures of the Scouts and their parents. Once all the stands were assembled I took a group picture of the boys holding their project. The cubmaster will send it to the local newspaper for a short article.

Cub Scout Pack 68 will hold its Pinewood Derby on Tuesday, February 25th, at the local Lutheran Church. I will probably be there, with my camera in hand, snapping lots of pictures.

First of all, let us get something straight. When I say camping I mean staying overnight in a tent or sleeping under the stars. I do not consider staying in a cabin, lodge, or barracks as camping. Camping is sleeping outside, not in a building. Now that we have that understanding…

I have not camped out even one night during 2012, and it looks as if this year will be my first year without a camping trip since 1979. I began camping with the Boy Scouts of Troop 68 when I became an assistant scoutmaster in 1980. There were a lot of camping trips during the next 32 years, both long term and short term outings.

This is not to say that I did not attend any troop activities this year. I did attend a weekend outing at Camp Stearns in  March, but we stayed in a lodge. I did spend most of a day at Camp Watchamagumee in May but I did not spend the night. I did visit the troop for a day at Many Point Scout Camp in July but left when it was time for the evening campfire program. I was going to spend the weekend with the boys for a June camping trip at Kings Lake but it was cancelled due to a lack of participants. The August canoe trip was attended by several parents so there was no need for me to tag along. I was going on a weekend camping trip with some former troop members in May, but it rained that weekend and everyone backed out.

It seems strange not to use my camping gear. Usually, I would have to pack up for at least five or six outing each year. My rain gear remains dry. My cot remains folded and my mat remains rolled. My eating utensils remain clean. It is kind of weird, but it was my own choice. I wanted the Scouts, parents, and new adult leadership to understand that I really have stepped down as the scoutmaster and that they should not be relying on me to attend the troop’s outings as they have in the past.

Will I get back into camping with the troop during 2013? I am not sure yet. We will have to see how things turn out, but yes, I would enjoy camping with the Scouts again in the great Minnesota outdoors. I think everyone now understands that we have a new scoutmaster but that I am there if I am needed. Besides, I enjoy camping and I think I still have a skill set to offer the troop.

I had a dandy dream this morning. I paid an “out of season” visit to the Buckskin Camp of Many Point Scout Camp to check in on the campsite Troop 68 has been using for a number of years. I was quite surprised to find the camp staff at the Seton campsite preparing to set up the new climbing towers. This shocked me! But I knew the camp was making improvements. After all, in real life a new Handicrafts Lodge and Nature Lodge had been built this year. Back to the dream, I decided to help the staff prep the site for the new towers. The campsite would actually be a decent site for the towers, more centrally located, but I had always thought the old site was a good place for the towers also. Oh well, our troop would have to move to a different campsite next year.

In the dream I left the campsite for a moment (it seems to be just a few minutes). When I came back not only where the two towers completed but other things had been added. There was a new course for gas-biking (?), and a short zip-line which ended at a new small manmade lake. And there was still more construction going on for other things. My first thought was that the Seton Campsite is not this big! (Typical for a dream, isn’t it?) My next thought was that they are turning summer camp into an amusement park. It is at this point that I woke up.

Needless to say, I was a little upset and confused when I woke up. Then I began thinking. I hope I never see a Boy Scout summer camp turn into an amusement park atmosphere. That would really kill the whole premise of the Scouting program. Valleyfair, Six Flags, and Disneyland are not good places to earn merit badges and learn life skills. This is one dream I do not want to see come true.

It has been said that Boy Scout leaders will do nearly anything for a patch. I guess I may fall into that grouping. I have been to many camporees and Scouting activities over the last three decades, and yes, I attended a few of them just to get the patch, but I have to add that I did have fun at the events. Many of the activity patches I have collected are found on a 4′ x 4′ sheet of paneling that is hanging on a wall in my basement family room.

However, the sheet was filled a few years ago and now I am looking for a different way to display them. A patch blanket quickly come to mind, but I do not like sewing. There are probably about 150 patches on the sheet of paneling and another 30 or so patches waiting for a home.

How many patches do you have? How do you store or display them? Leave a comment and let us know.

100 Days Of Scouting: Day 90.