Posts Tagged ‘summer camp’


MPSC 2016 patchThe Boy Scouts of Melrose Troop 68 have completed their weeklong summer camp for the year. Once again, the troop went to Many Point Scout Camp which is located northwest of Park Rapids in Minnesota. Only four Scouts of the troop attended camp because the older boys will be going on a high adventure trip this week.

Three adults spent a week at the camp, two fathers and Eymard, our 89 year old assistant scoutmaster. I believe this was Eymard’s 27th year attending summer camp, and his 24th or 25th year at Many Point. I did not spend the week at camp but did take one day off work to visit the troop, and it was a full scheduled Thursday that I picked to spend with the boys.

I arrived at camp an hour later then I had planned. I forgot it took 2.5 hours to get there. For some reason I was thinking it was only going to take two hours. I walked into the Seton Campsite at the Buckskin Camp at 10:00 that morning. I was not to worried about missing anything though. I knew the Scouts had merit badge sessions in the morning and would be scattered around the camp. I took a few minutes to chat with Eymard and Dave, the dad who was there for his second year of camp, to see how things were going before I grabbed my camera and started the hunt to find the Scouts. Jason, the other dad and first time camp attendee, was checking out the older boy program camp.

I discovered I was not the hunter, or at least not a very good one. The Scouts found me. As I walked past the old handicrafts lodge, which I now call the gaming lodge since it is the location of the Chess and Game Design merit badges, I heard someone yell my name. As I turned around I saw three of the four Scouts standing in the doorway inviting me into the lodge to see what they had been doing. I quickly discovered all four Scouts were in the building working on the Game Design merit badge.

As the next merit badge session began, the boys separated as they headed to three different classes. I visited each class and took a few pictures of each of the Scouts. After all, that was my unofficial job, troop cameraman. It was funny when one of the Scouts made a comment that now someone will be taking pictures during camp. I guess he thought the dads had been a little lax in this area. But than, in their defense, I am well known for taking lots of pictures. I do mean lots of pictures. I went home after that one day of camp with nearly 180 pictures. Yeah, maybe I take too many, but you know, everyone likes to look at them later.

We did not eat lunch in the dining hall. Instead, we grabbed bagged lunches because we were going on a field trip. We were going to spend the afternoon at Itasca State Park, which is located only 45 minutes from camp. It was time for the Scouts to see the headwaters of the mighty Mississippi River. There would be a lot of photo taking opportunities for me.

We arrived back in camp the the 4:00 merit badge session. There was a little free time after that session to goof around and chat. Then it was time to retire the colors and head to supper at the dining hall. After being well fed the Scouts did some merit badge homework and attended some of the  open programs. When the boys started coming back to the campsite about 8:30 we prepared to start a fire for making s’mores. I had stopped on the way to camp that morning to pick up the ingredients.

Unfortunately, I was not able to stay around to enjoy the campfire. I had to go to work the next morning. I left camp at 9:30 that evening to start the long journey home. I walked into my house at midnight, tired, but glad I had spent a day at camp. I had a good time, and it looked like the boys and adults were having a great time.

IMG_7657

This week nine Boy Scouts from Melrose Troop 68 are attending summer camp at Many Point Scout Camp in northern Minnesota. I was there with them from Sunday through Wednesday and I can tell you, they are having a blast, even though the weather could be a little less humid and a little dryer. It rained almost every day I was there.

The adult leaders gather every Wednesday at the Buckskin dining hall for a leader’s recognition dinner. The camp leaders tell us about the new programs and additions to the campsites, and they also play a video made from pictures taken earlier in the week. The pictures is this year’s video highlighted the adults who attended MPSC with their troops. Dave, a father of one of our Scouts, and I both made it into the video. We were both surprised by that. Neither of us knew that our photo was taken. I was playing lacrosse with the Scouts while Dave was watching the boys play gaga ball.

The team at Many Point have posted the video on their Youtube page. Here it is for you to enjoy. It is a little over three and a half minutes long.

Bear Skin SignWhat do you think of when you hear the words “bear skin”? Is your first thought a bear skin rug? Maybe a sporting game between the Bears and the Redskins? Maybe a sunburn after sitting with bare skin in the sun too long? One of the things I think of is summer camp. It was the name of the campsite my troop used for two years when I attended camp as a youth.

I attended Parker Scout Reservation of the Central Minnesota Council for three years during the mid-1970’s. It is a small camp by some summer camp standards, but it was the home of Troop 68 and other troops for a week of fun and excitement. In its earlier days it was called Camp Clyde. These days it is sometimes called Camp Parker. It closed as a summer camp in the late 1970’s but is still used as a weekend camp for council Boy Scout and Cub Scout activities. Troop 68 has used the camp on several occasions over the years for their own weekend activities.

The council has done several major renovations and additions to Camp Parker during the last few decades. The old dining hall was completely renovated and an addition was built onto it. A storage building was added next to it at the same time. A new shower house was constructed back in the nineties. Several older buildings have been remodeled with new heating systems installed. The biggest addition to Camp Parker took place when the castle was built. Yes, you read that correctly. A castle. (Pictures of the castle can be seen at http://www.bsacmc.org/photo_gallery_miller_castle.html .)

A few months ago I received a phone call at work asking if the lumber yard would like to donate some cedar lumber so new signs could be built for the campsites. The signs were getting pretty run down and looked rather shoddy. I did not even give my boss a chance to reply to the request. I used this as a chance for myself to give back a little to the place I have been going to for four decades. I donated the materials.

But I had one request. I wanted the old campsite sign of the camp I stayed in as a young Boy Scout. I wanted the old Bear Skin sign. I was told that should not be a problem and that they would set it aside for me.

That was a couple months ago. Yesterday, when I arrived back home from working at my parents renovation project, I found something placed between my front door and combination door. Later in the morning my district executive had stopped by my house on his way through town and dropped off the sign. Other than patches and pictures, this is the first item from Camp Parker I have been able to add to my Scouting collection.

The sign was actually in decent shape considering it has weathered several Minnesota winters and summers. I really have no idea how long this sign has marked the campsite. I would doubt it is the same sign that welcomed Boy Scouts in the 1970’s, but it is a piece of camp history and I am happy to have it in my collection.

Below you can see a map of Parker Scout Reservation from a camporee probably held in the early 1990’s. As you can see, Parker is not a big camp but it really does not matter. I have made a lot of great Scouting memories there.

ParkerMapb

MPSC2014P1The opening campfire of a week of Boy Scout summer camp. It is time to meet the staff that will play an important role during the success of your troop’s time at camp. Is the staff enthusiastic? Are they energetic? Are they ready to provide you with the totally awesome program you have come to expect from camp? Are they a little bit crazy? In the case of the 2014 Many Point Scout Camp Buckskin staff, the answer is yes to all the above, and their opening campfire was a great demonstration of how enthusiastic and crazy they could be.

This video was recorded during the July 6, 2014, opening campfire. This will be the first of a few videos filmed during the campfire that will be posted to the Melrose Scout Productions Podcast. As you can see when you watch this, this year’s staff was pumped to start working with a new week of Boy Scout campers. This video features the staff introductions and the singing of the Many Point Rouser. As all “repeat after me” songs, it gets pretty loud and rowdy by the end.

Video Information: 960 x 540, time 05:22, 145.4 MB. m4v format.

Click here to DOWNLOAD and watch this Podcast.
Subscribe to the Melrose Scout Productions Podcast at http://feeds2.feedburner.com/melrosescoutingproductions
or through iTunes  (and rate the show).
Don’t forget to leave a comment below, or at the iTunes store. It is great to read what you think of these videos.

mpsc2014bThe Boy Scouts have come home. About an hour and a half ago the ten Boy Scouts and two adult leaders of Melrose Troop 68 arrived home from spending the week at Many Point Scout Camp in northwest Minnesota. From the few minutes I was able to talk to them I discovered they had a great time but were ready to get home, clean up, and get back to life with their families.

The ten Scouts did an excellent job earning advancement while they were at camp. When I left them Monday afternoon I made a deal with them. I told them that if they earned a total of 25 completed merit badges during the week I would host a movie/pizza party. Eight of them were earning the Cooking merit badge which I did not think they could complete during camp so I did not count these against the total. I thought that 25 badges would present a good goal but would still be challenging.

Someday I will learn my lesson for betting against the Scouts. They earned their goal and went beyond it. They came home with 33 completed merit badges. It might be 34 after we check one Scout’s camping outings to see if he completed his Camping Merit Badge. Eight of these merit badges were the Cooking badge. It seems that with the new requirements this year the boys can complete the award during the week at camp. Oh well, even if I took the eight Cooking merit badges off the total it still leaves 25 completed badges, which met the goal. I guess I better get ready to buy some pizzas.

Here is a breakdown of the merit badges earned at summer camp this year:
8- Cooking, 2- Climbing, 2- Environmental Science, 4- Fishing,
1- Fish and Wildlife Management, 1- Forestry, 3- Game Design,
2- Geocaching, 1- Kayaking, 1- Lifesaving, 1- Mammal Study,
1- Nature, 1- Rowing, 1- Shotgun Shooting, 3- Weather,
1- Wilderness Survival (and possibly 1- Camping).

Congratulations to all the Boy Scouts for doing a great job at camp this week. Even though they earned a lot of badges while at camp they still managed to have a lot of fun and participate in in lots of activities.

carly-rae-jepsen-call-me-maybeI admit it. Once in awhile I get bored. And when I do strange things sometime happen. Like the other week for example.

I was listening to the Carly Rae Jepsen song, Call Me Maybe, when other words started popping into my head. For some reason I saw a Boy Scout at summer camp walking up to his merit badge councilor, hand him his blue card and ask, “But here’s my blue card, so sign it maybe?”

Hmmm. Could this be the start of a campfire song? I soon had pencil and paper out and was writing down words for a new version of the song. A couple lyrics gave me a spot of trouble, but I think I have it. Here is what I came up with:

Scoutmaster gave me a list,
Merit badges with a twist
My hand turned into a fist,
Nervousness in my way

Summer camp is coming soon,
Packed my clothes, shoes, food, and a broom
What is this feeling of doom?
Nervousness in my way

Your stare was holdin’,
My head, eyes are rolling
Hot night, wind was blowin’
Where do I think I’m going, baby?

Hey, I just met you,
And this is crazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!
It’s hard to earn one
When you are lazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!

Hey, I just met you,
And this is crazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!
And all the other boys,
Are really lazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!

You took your time with the crew,
I did not know what I knew
You gave all lots to do,
But still, you’re my councilor
I beg, and borrow and steal
My need for this badge is real
I didn’t know I would feel,
Like it’s some Indian Lore

Your stare was holdin’,
Beads of sweat were showin’
Hot night, wind was blowin’
Should I cry like a baby?

Hey, I just met you,
And this is crazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!
It’s hard to earn one
When you are lazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!

Hey, I just met you,
And this is crazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!
And all the other boys,
Are really lazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!

This merit badge I need for Life
I need it so bad
I need it so bad
I need it so, so bad
This merit badge I need for Life
I need it so bad
And you should know that
I need it so, so bad (bad, bad)

It’s hard to earn one
When you are lazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!
Hey, I just met you,
And this is crazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!

And all the other boys,
Are really lazy,
But here’s my Blue Card,
So sign it, maybe!
This merit badge I need for Life
I need it so bad
I need it so bad
I need it so, so bad
Tenderfoot, First Class, and Life
I need it so bad
And you should know that
So sign it, maybe!

Your goal is now to have your Boy Scouts sing this during the evening campfire at summer camp and send me the video!

mpsc2000The Boy Scouts of Melrose Troop 68 used to be very good with performing campfire songs and skits. The troop looked forward to performing at camporees and summer camp campfire programs. There were many times we would take a popular skit or song, change it up a bit, and make it something new. Today’s post to the Melrose Scout Productions Podcast demonstrates one example of that trait.

Our troop had been attending a week of camp at Many Point Scout Camp in northern Minnesota for a few years when we came up with the idea for a new song to perform. We wanted to do something that poked some fun at the camp, and something the campers could identify with. We picked the popular song by the Village People because everyone knew the tune to YMCA. We completely changed the lyrics and the actions and came up with our version of M.P.S.C.  The song was a hit when we performed it at the closing campfire.

This video features the Boy Scouts of Troop 68 performing this song during their 2000 Laughs For Lunch Show, held at the Melrose High School auditorium. So get out of that chair, stand up, and join the Scouts as they sing their version of M.P.S.C.

Click here to DOWNLOAD and watch this Podcast.
Subscribe to the Melrose Scout Productions Podcast at http://feeds2.feedburner.com/melrosescoutingproductions
or through iTunes  (and rate the show).
Don’t forget to leave a comment below, or at the iTunes store.

I may not have spent the week with The Boy Scouts of Troop 68 at Many Point Scout Camp this summer, but I did spend Friday with them, and I had a great time. Of course, when it came to meal time, I had to stand in line with the troop and wait to be dismissed to the dining hall with the Scouts. The staff always leads the campers in a song before the meal. This time the leaders picked their “faaaavorite song”, My Dog Rover. It is a simple to learn song that enjoys pun filled humor. I am sure you have heard it before at a camp somewhere, but if you have not here is a new song that your troop can add to its list a fun campfire songs.

What pun-named dogs would you add to this song?

Click here to DOWNLOAD and watch this Podcast.
Or watch it online at the Melrose Scout Productions Podcast channel at PTC Media.

Subscribe to Melrose Scout Productions Podcast through iTUNES  (and rate the show)
or at http://feeds2.feedburner.com/melrosescoutingproductions
Leave feedback here, at iTunes, or on the forums at PTC Media.