Summer Camp 2021
We attended summer camp at J N Webster Scout Reservation in Ashford, Connecticut, for our first time this year. We camped in Site 4A, which was the half of Nashawog site without the latrine or hard shelter.
We had 5 Scouts and 2 leaders participating the whole week. All of our Scouts were first year campers (mostly because there was no camp the previous year). 22 troops were represented in camp, including the provisional troop. Our troop was not the smallest contingent at this session of camp.
Our Scouts all participated in First Class Path , the first year camper program. As part of that, they had Swimming merit badge and Leatherworking merit badge. They took Fishing merit badge, which started at 6:30 AM. They also started Radio merit badge or Paddle Boarding, but by two days in, all had dropped those to spend the time having fun at the Waterfront. There, our Scouts could be seen kayaking, swimming, diving, going down the huge slide, paddleboarding and sailing. Some of them made it to the ranges for some rifle shooting and archery.
The entire troop toured the pond in a single “war canoe” one day. Mr. MacNeal volunteered as a driver for the golf merit badge outing.
The only direct COVID-19 impacts to the experience were the requirement that everyone wear a mask while inside any building and the change from family style to cafeteria style serving. Food was served inside the Dining Hall, and we all ate all of our meals inside it (outside tables or “to go” were other options).
One evening, the camp had a neat ceremony in which all of the troops filed quietly onto the parade field. There, each troop was guided by a staff member in launching a Chinese Lantern. The collection of lanterns rising into the sky and then flaming out was impressive. At the end, each first time camper at JNW (our entire contingent) was presented with the camp's version of the World Crest Patch.
It rained or was wet most of the week, so we got used to having a lot of wet stuff as nothing dried except on one nice day. As a result, the twice daily flag assembly was moved to the end of the parade field opposite the flags to get to slightly higher and less muddy ground. Such strong rain struck the camp Friday afternoon that the camp had to delay the closing ceremony by about an hour and relocate it from the parade field to the higher ground around the camp headquarters building. The closing campfire was canceled due to additional forecast rain. Most of the week, Mr. MacNeal's tent was encircled by a small pond. Still, we were lucky compared with the previous week that had sent everyone home on Thursday or the following week that had delayed arrivals to Tuesday; both of these were due to severe rain.
Keith MacNeal was awarded the Scoutmaster's Award for completing 8 of 13 possible activities called Scoutmasters Merit Badge.
Our Scouts earned a total of 15 merit badges with each of them earning Leatherwork, Fishing and Swimming. This was our 151st consecutive month with at least one overnight camping trip.
The other patches we received:
Page updated 7/28/21