Camp is over and everyone is home safe and maybe a little tired. Hopefully glad for the experience. I know I can speak for the adults who were privileged to spend a week with our scouts when I say thanks for entrusting us with these wonderful boys. Our young leaders shined and our veteran scouts all pulled together in a single goal which ended up better than could have been expected.
They were disappointed in an 81 out of 90 score at their first inspection. That’s 90%, an “A”. They wanted more. They got the flag raising ceremony for the Fourth of July, the only one of the day. They practiced for hours the night before. It rained the next morning and despite the camp being dismissed because of rain they went ahead. In front of ┬ájust a few troops and the staff on the parade field they went forward with the ceremony. They were told by the staff afterwards that it was the best flag ceremony all summer. That’s best out of 48 previous ceremonies. I was told that the head of the TNT program told one of them that he was disappointed all the troops weren’t there so they could see how a flag ceremony should be done. Wow, what a compliment.
We had six swimmers get up 4 days in a row at 5:30 in the morning to practice for a mile swim. They were led by two veterans. Those two veterans led the four others, two of them at their first summer camp.
They marched together and sang cadences together. They were a team, a unit. The older scouts helping and teaching.
They participated in the scout skills contest. They thought the may have come in second because they used 3 matches to start a fire. This fire, started with wood that had been rained on for days. When they announcement was made at the award campfire lat night, third then second were announced and we were not there. One scout said we must have been fourth, a little dejected. They announced the time, five minutes faster then the next best team. The troop . . . 514.
The spirit troop was announced, not us.
The best award was next, Honor Troop. 514. The best of the week.
Yes I am proud as any parent or leader should be. That’s the reward we get and why we are there to watch our boys grow to be leaders of our future.

Bill Faulkinberry,
Scoutmaster, Troop 514

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Friday, July 5, 2013

It’s our last full day at camp. Scouts are finishing up merit badges and skills. Spirits remain good. The weather this morning …DRY… Rain is to start early this afternoon and continue. Once our site has been inspected we will start taking down the gateway and flag pole and when the boys finish class they will start to pack before the evening activities start.
The evening campfire will take place rain or shine. If it rains we will all meet in the mess hall for the “campfire”. They boys have high hopes of winning Honor Troop for the week. Something they came in working towards. They have done well. They have done all the activites to get the award and we will know our final score this afternoon on our camp inspections. The were first or second in the scout skills competition and the adults beat the staff in their volleyball game.
I think they had a good time. They are up at 6:30 everyday and are still talking when taps is played and light are out.
Tommorrow we have the trailer’s scheduled to be picked up at 7:30 from the campsite and delivered to the parking lot so we can hook up and get them home. Our additional driver’s are scheduled to arrive at 8:30 and we will be on our way home shortly after that. Tentative arrival time will be between 10:00 and 11:00. As usual, we will pass the cell phones about 20 minutes out to give you a heads up on our arrival.
We will see you tomorrow in the lower parking lot of the Church.


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July 4, 2013 – Happy Independence Day

Still having lots of rain but the boys are sticking through it. The campfire last night was cancelled as were the fire works. If the weather permits they will be on Friday night.
We had the flag ceremony this morning. The camp staff said is was the best of the entire summer! I didn’t see it as I was cheering on the last of our six swimmers to finish the mile swim. Several told me at the beginning of the week they were not sure if they could make it, but they were diligient we their practice and it paid off. We will award them with the special walking staff’s made by our Mr. Webb at our campfire (with or without a fire) tonight after dinner.
Mr. Fleeson and Nathan arrived yesterday evening and we start preparing dinner for 70 people who have said they will be here for dinner. I knew his lasagna was good, but wow what a turn out. We expect more rain and have done everthing to make as much room for our guests as possible. Be prepared for rain and mud because that’s what we have. Seating is also limited so bring a chair if you want to sit down.
The scouts have one more day of classes and then the final awards campfire tomorrow night. They will have something to look back on when they remember this summer camp. They have come together as a unit and can say they were able to make it through several days of rain. They remain in good spirits.
At least it hasn’t been hot.

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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Started raining off and on last night, and started up again when we got up this moringing. We now have only six mile swimmers. One dropped out wanting more sleep and to take a shower in the morning. They swam a half mile this morning.
Everyone is in good spirits and things are going well. Having somewhere dry to sleep at night helps, but 100% humidity makes things moist.
Scout skills compitition took place last night. The guys tell me we finished second, but we will find out the results at Friday’s Closing Campfire. We are still shooting for honor troop. The campsite is looking good with several of the older scouts making an extra effort to make sure all the aderondaks were in good shape. They are taking some pride in the troop and want honor patrol.
Rain is expected to continue the rest of the day and into Thursday and Friday. We have almost as many people coming to dinner tomorrow night as we have scouts at camp. We will manage, but space is limited and you may want to bring something to sit on. You will need to walk from the parking lot to the campsite as vehicles are not allowed past the gates of the administration building. Please don’t plan to pick up your son tomorrow night as they will not complete their classes and frankly gives them an easy way out.
Thanks for all your support and allowing myself and the other leaders to work with your young men and watching them learn and grow.

Bill “Turtle”

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Summer camp update, Tuesday, 7/2/13

We went to bed last evening with raindrops which got harder but stopped sometime at night. People pay money for machines to do what we get to experience. We all fell asleep at 11 when B played taps. I woke up this morning at 5:25 to overcast skies. Our seven mile swimmers were awakened shortly after that. None hesistated as they know if they miss one practice they won’t be able to participate in the swim on Thursday morning. The skies cleared later this morning and we have had a sunny afternoon. Temperatures remain in the low 80’s.
All the scouts are well and enjoying their classes. Its alot of fun to ask them about their classes and what thay learned. We get great responses from them. They are busy from the time they get up to after dark. Tonight, they will be going to qualifiying if they are taking a shooting merit badge, or participating in the scout skills compitition, or attending either the tech show or reptile show.
They are adjusting to camp life and all seem to be getting along well. Our troop score was an 81 out of 90. Great score considering we lost point because the gateway was not up and bunks, although neat, were not orgainized real well. Both of these have been retified. We even have our 50′ flag pole up and it is the highest in camp.
The scouts are getting ready for dinner. We have the second shift so they go to dinner at about 6:30. I’m not sure what they will have.
Weather for the rest of the week is not looking as good as today. The weather man is saying 80 to 90% chance of rain the next two days. If it is raining that badly tomorrow night, then the fireworks will be delayed to the awards campfire on Friday.
Our new SPL is doing a great job in his new position. He is keeping the scouts organized and informed. Of all the scouts he has the busiest schedule, not only attending his own classes, but also the SPL meetings.
That’s all for now from the Upper Bridges campsite at Rainey Mountain
BF “Turtle”

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Safe arrival

We all arrived safe and sound and check it went well. Thanks to Mr. S for handling the medical forms. Dinner was chicken followed by church services and the opening campfire after that. Had a rain hit last night at 11:00. It rained about an hour. All are dry and secure as we did get the campsite we wanted, Upper Bridges. This means all the scouts are in aderrondacks.
This morning we are up and at it. Had SEVEN swimmers take their first leg on earning the mile swim. it takes dedication to get up and be in the lake at 5:45. They wave longer swims tomorrow and Wednesday. The mile swim will be Thursday.
Mail call started the earliest it ever had with two packages and a card waiting for us on arrival.
Classes start at 9:00. All are in good spirits and you can hear them across the lake as they march to the parade field for flags.

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