Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Congratulations to our Newest Eagle Scout!

Troop 466 would like to congratulate Ben C. on passing of the Eagle Board of Review, on Friday, August 16, 2019.    

A special debt of thanks are owed to his parents, siblings and all of the Scout leaders over the years, who have had a hand in this achievement.

Congratulations on a job well done!

Ben C. with his parents!

Proud Mom!

Proud Dad, who is also an Eagle Scout.

With his former Cubmaster and Scoutmaster.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

A Camp Bowman (Goshen Reservation) Diary Entry #Final (July 19, 2019)

Troop 466 attended Camp Bowman (Goshen Scout Reservation) from July 13th through July 20th.  Here is last "diary" entry of one parent.  Enjoy!


As Friday began, the routine had set in and everyone felt at home in camp.  Another interesting transition happened almost at the same time, by the end of the day everyone started to realize the week was more than half over and we were on a path  forward to finishing up and returning home.  

Cooking was getting more reliable as everyone understood how to get their propane going in time to get their food cooked, and everyone understood how to prepare to eat at the same time they prepare to clean up after dinner.  

Friday’s closing ceremony commenced with a sense of accomplishment and a serious comparison of what it means to be a leader vs a boss. Leaders lead by example and a desire to bring out the best in each team member, while bosses coerce with threats and intimidation valuing the outcome over the process. 

Our Troop’s closing German submarine skit performance was a hit and the evening was magical as the campfire melted away over the dusk soaked lake. Laughter, inspiration, motivation, and adrenaline set in as we prepared to pack up all our belongings, memories, lessons learned, and merit badges to share with those back home. 

We grew as a troop, as a patrol, as friends, as leaders, as parents, as scouts, and as Christians.  We advanced in patience, trust, kindness, moral character, leadership and virtue, understanding that we inevitably share each others successes and failures, weaknesses and strengths, for we are only as strong as our weakest link. At week’s end we could confidently say that we ventured to fly “Higher than Eagles”.

Until September…

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

A Camp Bowman (Goshen Reservation) Diary Entry #5

Troop 466 attended Camp Bowman (Goshen Scout Reservation) from July 13th through July 20th.  Here is fifth "diary" entry of one parent.  Enjoy!


Thursday we awoke at 6:45am and in the brisk morning air we made our way down to the commissary to pick up our breakfast and take it down to the waterfront for Pirate's Breakfast adventure.  We donned our life jackets and set out in 4 paddle boats on the still, mist covered waters of lake Merriweather. It was a great opportunity to gather everyone as we ate and paddled about on the lake taking in the chill air and overcast sky. Playing catch and tossing breakfast packages and water shoes, we formed a boat caravan and towed each other around while desperately trying to hold on to our boat oars and sanity. The clouds formed an interesting backdrop as the mist burned off and by 8:30am we were all done and the boys had plenty of time to get ready to go to morning classes. It was also time for the daily leadership meeting and Ms. K’s mid morning nap (which generally occurred during the meeting). Thank goodness!

At lunch one senior patrol leader made an outstanding beef stew with potatoes that we saved in containers for the next couple of days. In the evening dinner was foil dinners of sausage and potatoes and delicious dressings with a touch of broth. Then we played a round robin game of “Would you rather?” For example, would you rather be a fly on a tent wall or a beetle in the campfire? Well?

After flags we had a delicious cracker barrel of hershey smores and campfire favorite tunes courtesy of Mr. Darrell S,, which included such classics as old Irish pub song rounds, German submarines skits and traditional scout songs. As the smoke wafted across the campsite from the juicy sausages and the occasional grease flare,  the adults wondered if the friendly neighborhood black bear that had been spotted in the next door camp would stop by for a bite.  

The dinner cleanup was another monumental effort, but, motivated by the desire to have no midnight visitors, we got the camp spic and span and all the food and smellables into the bear box.  We decided to leave a few extra lights on in camp as an addition to our normal chorus of adult snorers for bear deterrence. The night passed uneventfully.

Friday, August 9, 2019

A Camp Bowman (Goshen Reservation) Diary Entry #4

Troop 466 attended Camp Bowman (Goshen Scout Reservation) from July 13th through July 20th.  Here is fourth "diary" entry of one parent.  Enjoy!


On Wednesday, and for the next few mornings, we found ourselves waking to the harmonious sound of senior patrol’s shrill commands of camp preparation and time management instructions. By noon we weathered the changing of the guard as Mr. Rodgers departed to welcome Mr. R. and Mr. S. to the leadership circle joining Ms. K. who, by some miracle, was still alive. :)

At lunchtime, in an effort to improve our collaborative momentum we cheerfully worked to the familiar sounds of shared musical selections to include genres from modern country, indie pop, rap, alternative, musical numbers, christian rock, electronica and even some 80s and 90s music for the rest of us. Evening cleanups began to become a bit more hectic as after dinner classes commenced, to include the endless fishing, fishing, fishing and then some more fishing. Don’t bears love the smell of fresh fish??? Hmmm.

Of special note, Wednesday evening heralded in the overnight wilderness campout at the legendary Chambers Hollow preceded by a spaghetti, meatballs and salad dinner.  

Our three brave scouts ventured to join the other 20 survivalists on the 
overnight journey in the woods with nothing but the clothes on their backs, 
rain coats and space blankets. We wished them well despite
 the fact they were greeted with a downpour of torrential rain which 
did not let up till the waking hours -just in time for them to become 
castaways for the next morning Pirate’s Breakfast! 

Monday, August 5, 2019

A Camp Bowman (Goshen Reservation) Diary Entry #3

Troop 466 attended Camp Bowman (Goshen Scout Reservation) from July 13th through July 20th.  Here is third "diary" entry of one parent.  Enjoy!


On Tuesday, the entire patrol was stirred by the voice of the their senior patrol leaders at 630 AM so they could fire up the propane grills, eat their breakfast, clean all their gear, before classes started at 9am.  Patrols were reasonably successful in this goal and they had a decent breakfast of eggs and ham or turkey, bread, fruit, yogurt, apples, raisin bran, milk, and juice and everyone who needed to made it out to their classes.  

In the afternoon the scouts made their way back to camp and geared up for lunch and camp inspections and afternoon classes.  The Patrol tried to get their cold lunch done and cleaned up as quickly as possible so that camp could be readied for the first daily inspection.  The day passed pleasantly with a few very brief rain showers and relatively cool temps.  

After dinner, a couple of us rushed over to camp Olhmstead, a nearby scout camp, for Catholic religious services.  Over the course of the week, we were blessed to continue to incorporate grace and spiritual intentions during our meals and daily gatherings. Even the Bowman Camp Director emphasized the importance of connecting with our religious and spiritual core as he distributed a small booklet called “Higher Than Eagles”. The 92 year old priest and author of this little booklet was the officiant of the mass and so we got an autograph and earned our reverent chip!

In the evening the troop was able to practice and have a good showing at flags with energetic renditions of our favorite troop cheers, but our inspection score, which was good, did not put us at the top to earn troop of the day. Boooooo!

Back at our campsite, evening cracker barrel consisted of hardy complaints “where are the smores, who forgot the smores?” While we dreamed about smore snow cones, caramel apples and funnel cakes we vowed to be ready with delicious desserts for the next few nights!  Meanwhile, the senior patrol emceed a rousing game of “most embarrassing life moments” which brought out the best and the worst in each of us. 

Although we agreed to pass on campfire karaoke/sing-a-long, we began to discuss our interest in auditioning for the closing campfire ceremony which was open to troop wide participation for the first time. The group teetered between practicing traditional campfire skits and having to hear Ms K and Alex K sing a Goshen adaptation of "take me home country road" by John Denver. Gradually the patrol was beginning to realize their unlimited potential as “Scouts Got Talent!” and set their sights on Friday’s audition.

That night it was a tough slog of cleaning to get everything squared away for those who had to do the clean up, but everyone did a great job and we all slept well knowing we would be up early for classes in the morning.  The rain returned overnight, almost a regularly scheduled event now

Thursday, August 1, 2019

A Camp Bowman (Goshen Reservation) Diary Entry #2

Troop 466 attended Camp Bowman (Goshen Scout Reservation) from July 13th through July 20th.  Here is second "diary" entry of one parent.  Enjoy!


On Monday morning we awoke to a relatively dry camp as the rain had finished several hours before we got up. The patrol got to work igniting propane and cooking their first breakfast which included eggs, bacon or an equivalent, hash browns, milk, cereal, yogurt, and apples (and tiny bugs).   For each meal, the patrol invited a pair of adults to join them, as well as the Senior Patrols, and on the first day we also had a guest from camp staff - Anders.

After breakfast the scouts did a clean up, and then they did various other activities preparing to start the program such as: 
  • Learning how to clean and disinfect the latrines from our camp guide.  I will not elaborate on the details other than to say one person scrubs the latrines every day on a rotating basis.- 
  • Going down for the briefing on water safety and taking the swim test at aquatics. Everyone who took the test was able to either pass or at least get a beginner swimmer designation. 
  • Mr. Rodgers and the troop began multiple campsite improvement projects which consisted of hand painting a Troop 466 sign to showcase, proudly displaying the American flag, diligently carving out new foot paths and road markers for improved camp appearance and foot traffic safety.

In the afternoon, after a lunch of cold meat sandwiches, and salad,  they began their formal program going to their afternoon classes. Couples were gathered up by the patrol leaders and or adult leaders and walked down to their program area while the rest of the boys made their way with a buddy to their respective classes.

Dinner was tacos and salad with pound cake for dessert.  The boys worked on their cheers and made a good showing at flags.  

Friday, July 26, 2019

A Camp Bowman (Goshen Reservation) Diary Entry #1

Troop 466 attended Camp Bowman (Goshen Scout Reservation) from July 13th through July 20th.  Here is first "diary" entry of one parent.  Enjoy!


After a smooth but rowdy three hour bus ride, Troop 466 arrived at Goshen Scout Reservation Sunday afternoon and made our way to Camp Bowman site #5 with all of our gear intact. Our participants this year consisted of two senior patrol leaders (Conrad and Femi), four scouts (Alex, Daniel, Luc and Henry), three scout leaders (Scoutmaster Tom Rogers, Steve R. and Darrell S.)  and one full time parent volunteer (Jenniffer K), who needed a small Sherpa to accommodate all her luggage. 

Upon arrival we surveyed the area, and encountered a small threat of rain but nothing other than a brief and light sprinkle materialized.  We went straight to medical check, then toured Camp Bowman with our awesome assigned site guide, Anders. He showed everyone the main features of the camp including the well stocked trading post, showers, flushing toilets, aquatics area, all the different program areas and the importance of the bear box!

As evening fell, we picked our tents, unpacked our gear, and ate our first official dinner together. Flags were at 8:30, we just managed to get there in time in full class As. After flags we were all lead down, signs up and silence, down to the lakefront amphitheater where we enjoyed a campfire program of sign-a-longs and corny skits, illuminated by two huge bonfires. Then it was back to camp for some sharing of spooky Goshen Legends and tall bear tales just to make the first night especially cozy. Thanks guys!

Overnight, with everyone tucked into their tents, (including the bears) we had some light rain which was a pleasant sound in the woods as temps dropped to a comfortable lower 70. But the humidity insisted on sticking around through the week making for damp clothing the refused to dry, necessary cooling cloths and lots of very sticky strange bugs.