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Experiences With Summer Camp, Boy/Girl Scouts?

Wed Nov 24, 2004 2:38 am

Was just wondering what your experiences were with these subjects. For me, I was a boyscout when I was younger and I also went to summer camp. It was your traditional stereotypical summer camp. Sailing, hiking, swimming sort of experience. We were woken up with "Taps" being played, and put to bet with "Taps" being played as well. We lived in shitty cabins with lots of bugs, no heat or air. It was in South East Oklahoma in the "Oklahoma Mountains." I hated it and wanted to come home the first week, but it was okay after that. We did the family style dinners in the mess hall and learned how to cook outdoors on a fire.

Also, when I was younger, I was in boyscouts. There was a boyscout handbook and to receive all of your badges, you had to do the things listed in the boyscout manual in order to go to Weeblow scouts. (sp?) Anyway, it was a fun experience. We also made those racing cars out of a block of wood. We got to carve them, then paint them, then we would race them down a track. Interesting experiences.

"Bangkok Tower, United 890 Heavy. Bangkok Tower, United 890 Heavy.....Okay, fine, we'll just turn 190 and Visual Our Way
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RE: Experiences With Summer Camp, Boy/Girl Scouts?

Wed Nov 24, 2004 5:15 am

Weeblow scouts. (sp?)'ll get all the anti-Boy Scout crowd really going on this  Laugh out's spelled Webelos, which if I recall correctly, stands for WE BE LOyal Scouts. It's the bridge between Cub and Boy Scouts. 10 years old, maybe?

Anyhow, I was a Boy Scout, and proud of the experience. I had a blast hiking and camping throughout Oregon as a young kid. It allowed me the opportunity to learn how to interact with others my age (something I critically needed at that age) and have a great time in the process.

In Oregon, we went to Camp Meriwether on the coast, which is about 2 hours west of Portland, and about a half-hour south of Tillamook. In order to get there, the troops had to meet at a trailhead on Hwy. 101, and hike down to the beach, across it, and then to the camp. I'd love to go back and see what it's like now. I'd love to return one day as a scout leader perhaps with my own son, if I ever have one.

I also had the unique opportunity of attending the World Jamboree in 1988 at Cataract Scout Park, south of Sydney, Australia. Before the 10 days of doing that, we got to travel around Melbourne, Sydney, and the north island of New Zealand. A trip I'll never forget!

As a result of all those positive experiences, I became a C.I.T., or Counselor in Training in summer 1988. This was at Camp Baldwin, which is in the high desert east of Portland and Mt. Hood. That was for two weeks, and then the following summer I was a staff member there, teaching the nature merit badges. Great time! I would have returned for another summer, but they were only paying like $400 for the whole summer, and I needed to really make some money for college.

Great topic! Thanks for letting me share some fond memories! One of the true bright spots of my childhood. It makes me SICK that there is so much anti-Boy Scout attitudes out hurts to see a great organization attacked by wacko groups like the ACLU and other groups like them. will be a very sad day if the Boy Scouts ever have to fold up their tent (no pun intended) as a result of these senseless, baseless attacks.
And the winner for best actress is....REESE WITHERSPOON for 'Walk the Line'!!!!!!!!
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RE: Experiences With Summer Camp, Boy/Girl Scouts?

Wed Nov 24, 2004 7:31 am

I have some camp memories of my own:

Summer 1984 (6 weeks--July 1 through first week of August): I attended Shady Trails Camp near Northport, MI, on the shores of Grand Traverse Bay. It was a speech camp--run by the University of Michigan for children with speech impairments. It was an intensive summer-long speech therapy program designed as a camp for children. I have so many fond memories of it that would fill a chapter in a book (which I am writing now). It was my first camp experience. It was in a beautiful setting--woods, the shores of Grand Traverse Bay, a sandy beach to swim at, and great facilities, including a beautiful dining lodge with great views of the bay. My cabin was called Park Avenue, and could sleep a large number of boys along with four counselors, and even had a wood-burning fireplace (great for listening to ghost stories). My favorite activities were arts and crafts, as well as the weekly "out-trips" into the nearby town of Northport and other areas. These out-trips were designed to give us children the opportunity to use our speech skills in public that we were learning in the daily speech therapy sessions. I also had my own camp "job"--being a mail-delivery boy. One of my biggest memories was sleeping outdoors one night and watching the sun slowly rise early the next morning. Awesome! Also, I caught a nice-sized fish once, took him back to camp, named him "George" and kept him in a water-filled tub outside my cabin as a "pet" for the summer! Of course, every day, each one of us campers spent some time in an intensive one-on-one speech therapy session with a therapist from the University of Michigan. There, I really improved my speech--before then, I was barely verbal at all! Sadly, the camp (Shady Trails) does not exist any more, but I still have the audiotape made of my speech by the speech therapist assigned to me! Often, I dig that tape out and listen to my 9-year-old speech from 20 years ago (what a difference from today).

The other camp I attended while a youngster was Camp About Face (during the summers of 1989, 1991, 1992, & 1993). Run by James W. Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis, it was designed solely for children with any kind of craniofacial deformities (from cleft lip/palate to full-blown syndromes like Treacher Collins syndrome, which I have). The camp was held at Bradford Woods, a beautiful nature preserve run by Indiana University as a site for all kinds of camping programs under the leadership of Riley Hospital for Children. Lasting a week, each camp session was designed to allow children with facial deformities to get together, have fun with others in the same situation, and have fun and share their lives with each other. We swam, sang, canoed, hiked for miles, and even had an overnight primitive campout one night during the week. We would carry backpacks loaded with camping supplies, hike miles through the beautiful woods to a remote spot, and pitch tents. Also, once during the week, we would have an all-camp picnic on the beachfront and have doctors, nurses, and others come from Riley Hospital, as well as parents, come out and spend that evening with us. Often, doctors and therapists would come out during the week and evaluate our faces, hearing, speech, etc.
As I was a patient at Riley myself, I got to meet my doctors that way outside the clinical environment. I made many friends there. One year (1991), a famous children's author (Jill Krementz) came out to Camp About Face just to interview me and help me write my life story for her book, How It Feels to Live with a Physical Disability, that she was writing that year. All the photos in my chapter were taken there at camp.

I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... (Psalm 139:14)
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RE: Experiences With Summer Camp, Boy/Girl Scouts?

Wed Nov 24, 2004 8:28 am

I went to Scout Camp 7 times, 5 times while a scout, twice as an adult leader (I was involved in my old troop for a little more than 3 years after I turned 18). As a scout, went to Camp Rainey Mountain (NE GA Council) outside of Clayton, Georgia in the North Georgia Mountains. Went every year from 1987-1991. My first year at camp, I took skill award classes (Back then, you had to earn certain skill awards for each rank from Tenderfoot to First Class). The next three years, I took merit badge classes, and my last year (1991), I participated in the High Adventure program. We spent part of the week rappelling up at Mt. Yonah (The US Army Rangers train on this mountain), we were supposed to have gone backpacking the next to last day, but it was cancelled because the rain (It always rained at least 2-3 times a week at camp) had swollen the river we were supposed to have crossed, and the last day, we went rafting Section III and part of Section IV of the Chattooga River. In 1992, I couldn't go due to Summer School, so I ended up joining the Junior Leadership Training staff since that camp started right after summer school ended. In 1993, I went to my first summer camp as an adult leader. Our troop went to the Woodruff Scout Reservation (Atlanta Area Council) that year (and for a few years afterwards) as a result of what happened to the troop @ Rainey Mountain the summer before. The troop had gotten up to the camp and were told that they didn't have a campsite for the troop (even though we were an in-council troop and had sent payment several months before), and the campsite the troop had reserved had been given to an out of council troop. They ended up having to call up some of the parents to bring up tents for the troop, and they had to spend the first night of camp sleeping under one of the activity shelters. They ended up setting up a campsite in an open area that wasn't setup for long term camping at that time. This led to the troop going out of council for a number of years. Woodruff is a nice camp, plus they take the entire camp whitewater rafting on Thursday. In 1993, I went for the entire week, and actually participated as a campsite inspector in the mornings, and assisted the staff member assigned to our campsite in the afternoons with his Leatherworking Merit Badge class. In 1996, the second and last time I went, I went up for a couple of days and really just bummed around the campsite, participated in the activities for the adult leaders, and went to the archery range and shot some (the staff member running that class was assigned to our campsite was the instructor and didn't mind me being there). I was one of those "cool" adult leaders since I used to be one of the guys before I turned 18. At times I miss the fun that I had at camp, even as an adult leader.
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RE: Experiences With Summer Camp, Boy/Girl Scouts?

Wed Nov 24, 2004 11:30 am

I spent part of four summers at a Boy Scout camp in Wisconsin in latter half of the 1970's and then worked at said camp for 7 summers between 1980 and 1991. LOTS of memories, some of my best friends to this day date to my days on staff. The most vivid ones are of learning to drink the summer I turned 18, which was the legal age in WI back then. The camp is located in the middle of a resort area which caters to a blue collar clientele from southern Wisconsin, and there are several dozen taverns or "resorts" within a short drive of the camp. The camp staff had more than its fair share of heavy (competitive) drinkers, and at 18, I was raring to run with the big dogs. Although we were discouraged from going out more than 3 or 4 times a week, a "hat trick" i.e. 3 nights in a row was common, and there were those who were known to have pulled off the amazing triple hat trick -- 9 nights in a row. The truly amazing thing is that nobody was ever killed, either in a car wreck, or by alcohol poisoning, as the amounts consumed were truly enormous. 64oz pitchers of beer were 3 dollars and shots of booze were 75 gents for the rotgut and $1 for top shelf. We would make it to breakfast at 8 with some difficulty, but the campers didn't seem too much the wiser. I will be celebrating New Years Eve up there once again this year, albeit far more responsibly.
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RE: Experiences With Summer Camp, Boy/Girl Scouts?

Wed Nov 24, 2004 3:18 pm

I can definately say that my best summer camp experience was the summer that I attended theTexas A & M Aviation Camp in Pensacola. Texas A & M had three summer programs based there at Pensacola, all of them two week affairs. During the program, we had a number of educational activities to teach about the science behind aviation and careers in aviation. We were taken to the NAS museum and also got to take a field trip to the commercial airport. The reason for that was our chief counselor. Dennis was ex-USAFand had fifteen plus years with Delta as a pilot. At the time, he was captain on MD-88s and couldn't resist showing us one of the birds if we were game for an extra early morning start. He had ok'd it with the station chief and they had a mechanic there extra early to set up ground power for us. We all went up on the flight deck two at a time and Dennis showed us all the bells and whistles while the others went through the remainder of the jet, poking and prodding things. Sitting in the right seat (FO's position) and taking it all in was a big thrill (second only to getting to visit the flight deck of an MD-11 on one trip). It was quite a learning experiance and amazing that the pilots who reported to the plane as we left had something to fly. I guess that Dennis figured at the end of two weeks that we were a pretty good bunch and probably wouldn't wreck the airplane. The other high point was getting to see the United States Navy (Go NAVY!) Aerial Demonstration Team-the Blue Angels practice while at home base. After the show, we got to talk with the pilots and get autographs. The aviation program director was pretty cool too. He was a project manager for Boeing Commercial Airplanes. All in all, a cool deal and one that will never be repeated in the fashion that our session was (you'll never get access to a commercial jet like we did then after 9/11).

[Edited 2004-11-24 07:21:46]
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