NOVEMBER BACKPACKING TRIP from Melissa Liazos
On November 9-11, 11 Scouts and 4 parents headed out for a 3 day/2 night (or for some, 2 day/1 night) trek on the Midstate Trail. We started in Ashburnham on a cold but clear day on November 9, with a hike to the summit to Mt. Watatic. Scouts enjoyed the beautiful views and even brought out the Troop flag for a picture. On the way back down we picked up our heavy backpacks and hiked to our campsite for day one on Fisher Hill. On Day 2 we picked up a few more Scouts and continued our journey, at times walking on the road and even through a cow pasture where we got some very puzzled looks from the cows and decided to continue our hike on the other side of the pasture fence, just in case … We camped at the Muddy Pond shelter, filtering drinking water from the pond and building a welcome campfire. The bananas with chocolate and marshmallows in tin foil were a big hit. The Scouts were helpful and supportive to one another, and displayed excellent use of the patrol method. Lessons learned included double-checking your backpack to make sure you had all the needed gear, but also not carrying unnecessary items. A big thanks to Scouts Ben Sprague, Lucas Anthony, and Jonah Carter for their leadership, and to parents Mike Sprague, Ed O’Neill, Arthur Anthony, and Melissa Liazos for joining the trip.
From our Scoutmaster:
Happy Thanksgiving to our scouting family and friends. We hope you enjoy the holiday with family and friends. I’m grateful for the support at last weekend’s Turkey Drive. Lots of help from adults, scouts, and youth at the parish collecting about 250 turkeys for CrossRoads Family Shelter. It was cold, wet, and we appreciate the donated turkeys and cash donations that were used to buy turkeys. Thanks for all of the support for this worthwhile cause. This made a difference for the many families for Thanksgiving and also for the upcoming holidays.
It was nice to see and connect with a few of our scouting alumni. John, Alex, Logan, Will, and Xander to name a few. Some of the alumni went to 5 Guys and a movie (Ford vs. Ferrari). We welcome all our scouts to join us any time during the holidays and thanks for keeping in touch. We know that you are all living the scout law in your adventures.
December is fast approaching and we have camping & shooting in December, elections, and appointments of positions of responsibilities coming on December 10 and we have our Holiday Party on December 17. The PLC recommended a $15-20 gift for the swap and this is optional and fun.
On the first Saturday in January we have our Christmas Tree Pickup one day blitz to pick up 700 or so trees and raise funds to support our Troop programs. We will need all hands (mandatory) to help. More details to follow.
Enjoy the Thanksgiving break and prepare ahead for some good scouting. There are ample opportunities to put the scout law into practice; Helpful, friendly, courteous….just to name a few!
Happy Thanksgiving scouts and families. This week the Patrol Leader Council (PLC) met on Monday, followed by a Christmas Tree Pick up Committee meeting for the adults, and then our Tuesday Troop meeting. The PLC made some schedule adjustments which I’ll describe below.
Congratulations to Marcus for earning 2nd Class. He passed his board of review Tuesday. Good work!
Just a reminder there is no meeting next week – Thanksgiving week.
Turkey Truck will be parked outside St. Bernards Church in Concord center on Sunday starting around 7:30AM to noon accepting 10 to 15 pound frozen turkey donations (or cash and we will purchase turkeys) and then to deliver them to Crossroads Family Shelter in Boston on Sunday afternoon. We hope you and your family can support a turkey donation.
Thanks for selling Popcorn. Good work scouts as this supports our council and Troop directly. Thank you.
Schedule adjustments. We begin an active period of scouting: Turkey Truck Sunday, a Camping trip in December, Holiday Party in December, and Christmas Tree pick up in early January. For new scouts, we need and count on the entire troop to help pick up over 700 Christmas trees for recycling and disposal. This fundraiser/service for the town helps us fund all our programs and new equipment purchases. Please plan on helping and we welcome new parents to help with support cars and all the work on this major effort.
The Klondike Derby has been dropped this year as it comes to close between Tree Pickup and Troop Ski trip. The Klondike is a great event and we have sharpened our skills at Nobscot, Resolute, and Sayre, but we would be asking too much of the scouts and families with too many Troop activities. Next year we will schedule the Klondike and do better planning with the various Troop activities.
The PLC expressed an interest in hosting a 1-day type inter-patrol Klondike with fire-building competition, lashings, and cook-off. Most likely we will put this into the calendar in January and invite the Webelos. Stay tuned for the specific date and agenda. The PLC decided on a close vote to go to Berkshire East on February 8 & 9 2020. Then there was some discussion and agreement on a March Mt. Washington trip that would be suitable for the entire troop. Some good adjustments on a tight schedule and some excitement on this new one-day winter troop skills. We also discussed the upcoming Leominster Sportsmans Association (LSA) camping and shooting trip in December.
So there was a lot to cover this week and more to come. Some senior scouts and scout alumni are talking about a 5 guy and movie trip (Ford vs. Ferrari) on Wednesday, Nov 26 event. Just email me for information and all welcome.
Not much to report on as I’ve been away on business travel and look forward to seeing the Troop. We have JJ’s project this weekend (Saturday) and please do your best to help. Reminder, there is our turkey truck drive next Sunday (Nov 24) to collect frozen 10-15 pound turkeys for the Cross Roads Shelter in Boston. Please see the announcement above. We also have our December Camping trip and please see signup (please see below) for that outing as soon as possible.
Good work putting into practice your compass and map skills at the New England Orienteering event. Many of the senior scouts participated, but many if not all would have benefitted. Thanks to Simon, Brandon, Matthew and Will for manning the booth and representing scouts at the Discover West Concord Day. We met many cub scouts and community organizers who support many of our projects. Even some new Eagle service project needs were discussed. Scouts, it is never too early to start the process of thinking about what you would like to do for an Eagle project. There are many needs and you might have some particular interest. This process of seeing what is needed against what you would like to do takes time and changes over time. The earlier you start thinking and talking to others about it the better. The general idea is for you to be passionate about your project and that your project will benefit an organization that you will take pride in years from now.
The next couple of months will be busy. November we have a backpacking trip, support Veterans Day, and the Turkey Truck. Christmas Tree lighting (good time to remind the town about Christmas tree pickup), a December camping trip, a holiday party, and Christmas Tree Pickup will keep us busy into the new year.
We certainly will need all our Troop to support Christmas Tree pickup, the first meeting which was planned earlier this week. We are off to a good start.
I’ll be away on business travel for 10 days starting next week and Mr. Rzepczynski & Mr. Sprague will be available. Please see Mr. Sprague for any new Blue Cards or sign off on completed ones.
Remember to invite a friend to a meeting or other event. Do your good turn…Daily. Mr. Duggan
From the Scout-O Honcho (Bjorn Bjerke)
Scout-O this year was a one-day event that took place at Nobscot Scout Reservation in Sudbury. Ten of our Scouts participated: Ben, Christian, Eric, Freddy, Grady, Jonah, Lincoln, Lucas, Lucian, and Marcus. The day started with map and compass instruction provided by NEOC members. We got to practice on a couple of mini-courses before moving on to the timed courses. There were three difficulty levels, white, yellow, and orange, with orange being the most challenging. Ben, Lincoln, and Marcus completed the orange course (3.2 km) in 67 minutes, which put them in the lead for a while until they were bested by a 39-minute sprint. It was a beautiful, sunny day in the woods and the Scouts learned some valuable skills while also getting some good exercise. Hopefully, next year's event will return to the two-day format.
This blog is a weekly message from the Scoutmaster.