Friday, December 31, 2010

2011 Merit Badge Schedule

The 2011 Camp Minsi Summer Camp Merit Badge Schedule is now available for your summer camp planning! This schedule includes a listing of the merit badges, organized by program area, that are being offered at Camp Minsi this summer. The listing includes meeting times, prerequisite requirements, approximate costs associated, and other information for each merit badge class. Our more detailed 2011 Camp Minsi Program Guide will be released later this month. This guide will include detailed information on each individual merit badge program, additional program schedules, camp-wide events, evening activities, special awards and opportunities, and much more! While summer camp is still months away, it is never to early to start planning and preparing. If you have any questions about the advancement opportunities at Camp Minsi, please feel free to contact the program director at CampMinsiPD@yahoo.com

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Trail to Eagle Week at Camp Minsi

Trail to Eagle Specialty Camp
July 31 - August 6, 2011
Camp Minsi - Minsi Trail Council, BSA

Join us for an exciting specialty week at Camp Minsi this summer. The "Trail to Eagle" specialty camp program will once again run at Camp Minsi! Scouts are invited to come participate in this exclusive opportunity and work on four Eagle-required Merit Badges, learn about the planning and requirements of an Eagle leadership project, understand the specific parts of the Trail to Eagle process, and experience advanced leadership development. This special one-week program will be run July 31 to August 6, 2011 at Camp Minsi.

In addition to being able to participate in the wealth of acitivites Camp Minsi has to offer, Scouts will be given an opportunity to work on Citizenship in the Nation, Citizenship in the World, Communications, and Personal Management Merit Badges. With highly-qualified instructors leading the Merit Badge sessions, Scouts will have a unique and meaningful learning experiance with each of these badges. Scouts will spend their week as a member of the special Trail to Eagle troop, which will have adult staffmembers serving as Scoutmasters to supervise them in their own Troop site as they function in a model Boy Scout troop.

Be prepared! Some Merit Badge requirements involve a long timespan or special conditions to complete; such requirement must be completed prior to camp. Pre-requirements must be done to the satisfaction and standards of Camp Minsi's Trail to Eagle counselors. The pre-requirements (listed below) will not be completed in camp and should be completed by Scouts prior to coming to camp.

Merit Badge pre-requirments
  • Citizenship in the Nation - Requirement 2
  • Citizenship in the World - Requirement 7
  • Communications - Requirements 3 and 8
  • Personal Management - Requirements 2, 8 and 9

Due to the advanced level of the program, Scouts must be at least 14-years-old (as of June 1, 2011) and have attained the rank of First Class in order to participate in the Trail to Eagle program at Camp Minsi.

Spaces are limited, sign your Scout up for the Trail to Eagle specialty week at Camp Minsi today!

Rates: $275 per Scout

Questions: Contact Mike Wiencek, Camp Minsi Program Director at CampMinsiPD@yahoo.com

Register: Contact Jane Chase, Field & Camping Secretary at the Minsi Trails Council office (610-465-8568 or Jane.Chase@scouting.org).

Friday, November 26, 2010

Beaver Day: Saturday, May 14, 2011

Beaver Weekend (May 13-15, 2011) is a unique opportunity for service, fellowship, recreation, and camping! Take the opportunity to bring your unit to Camp Minsi in order to check out the camp, meet the staff, participate in some programs, and give back to Scouting through friendly service.

This event is completely free! Camp Minsi will provide your unit with a site, tents, and cots. All your unit needs to do is provide your own food and any additional equipment you feel you may need. A complimentary lunch will be provided on Saturday for all who are participating in the day's service projects. In addition to the volunteer work, Scouts will have an opportunity to take advantage of several open program areas on Saturday afternoon to meet staff and get a feel for the camp experience.

If preferred, your unit can come up and actually camp in the site that you will be staying in for your week at summer camp, and you’re free to make any improvements and preparations to your site. The staff will also be open to suggestions about what we can do to improve the campsite as a whole. If your unit decides not to make a weekend out of the event, you are invited to come up just for the day on Saturday to participate in all the fellowship events, service projects, and other festivities.

On Saturday evening there will be a Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser in the Dining Hall to benefit Crew 940. Cost per plate is $7.

If interested, please register your unit before April 9th by contacting the council office (610-465-8568 or Jane.Chase@scouting.org). More information, including a list of the service projects, will be made available at campminsi.org closer to the event.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

A Message from the Directors

It is hard to believe it is already time to start thinking about summer camp 2011! We are extremely excited to begin this planning process with you. This summer promises to be the best yet as we introduce a variety of new programs along with continuing to improve our lasting traditions.

At Camp Minsi, we pride ourselves on our knowledgeable, enthusiastic, and energetic staff. All of our program area directors are experienced camp staff members and are truly dedicated to the summer camp program. Here at Camp Minsi the scouts come first. Our staff is ready to guide you on the experience of a lifetime. Whether it be sailing a boat, shooting a shotgun, or even hiking through muck over your head, the Camp Minsi staff does it all!

Our program is already shaping up to be the best we have seen in years! The 2011 Summer Camp Program Guide will be available by the end of January 2011. This guide will include: merit badge schedules, program schedules, evening activities, and awards. This guide allows us to guarantee an accurate description of our full program months before the summer camp season begins.

Our 2011 Leaders Guide is your first resource to answer your summer camp questions. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact us. We are always open to new suggestions and ideas. For more information check out our website: www.campminsi.org. On behalf of the entire 2011 Camp Minsi staff, we thank you for choosing our camp. We look forward to seeing you for the best camp experience you can imagine!

Yours in Scouting,

Lisa Empfield
Camp Director
Michael Wiencek
Program Director

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Webelos II Week at Camp Minsi

Ready to take your Webelos II experience to the next level?

This summer, take your Webelos II to Camp Minsi’s Webelos II: Bridge to Adventure week (July 31 through August 6). This exciting new program is sure to challenge Scouts as it focuses on elements of team-building, outdoor skills, and character development.

The Webelos II: Bridge to Adventure program is sure to be a huge success as we have developed a top-notch program to help with the transition from Cub Scouts to Boy Scouts. Each den will receive a personalized schedule based on the activities and advancements your den wants to work on. Along with advancement and general character building, the Webelos II: Bridge to Adventure program is jam-packed with tons of fun Scouting activities, events and adventure.

Bridge to Adventure Programs:
  • 314-acre lake for boating
  • Outdoor Skills Challenge
  • Archery range
  • BB-gun and pellet-gun ranges
  • Wooden stool project
  • Basic first aid training
  • Swimming in Stillwater Lake
  • Whittlin’ Chit
  • Outpost camping
  • Scouting Olympics
Activity Badge Options:
  • Artist
  • Aquanaut
  • Forester
  • Geologist
  • Readyman
  • Naturalist
  • Outdoorsman
What: Webelos II: Bridge to Adventure
When: Sunday, July 31 - Saturday, August 6, 2010
Where: Camp Minsi - Pocono Summit, PA
Cost: $300 per Scout

Sign-up your Den Today!

Download: Bridge to Adventure Brochure
Download: Leader's guide - Coming soon!
Download: Den preference form

Questions: Contact Michael Wiencek: CampMinsiPD@yahoo.com
To register: Contact Jane Chase: Jane.Chase@scouting.org or 610-465-8568

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thursday, September 9, 2010

2011 Summer Camp Brochure


Click on a page to enlarge.

2011 High Adventure Brochure

Click on a page to enlarge.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Camp Minsi Chainsaw Weekend

You may have noticed that there are a growing number of dead and dangerous trees throughout camp. In order to combat any potential issues, our camp ranger will be hosting a "Chainsaw Weekend" on October 22nd and 23rd at Camp Minsi.

If you have your own chainsaw and the skills to use it, we need your assistance! The camp has reserved a cabin for adult volunteers to stay in on Friday evening. Part of the program will include the delivery of the BSA required Chainsaw Safety Course on Friday evening. A Friday evening cracker barrel will be provided along with breakfast and lunch on Saturday. On Saturday morning, volunteers will be broken into teams and sent out to remove previously marked hazard trees throughout camp.

If you are one of the few, the proud, the Lumberjacks of the Minsi Trails, then please contact Todd Heyn at either todd.heyn@scouting.org or 610-465-8576 to reserve your spot.

September 18th Stillwater Lake Clean-Up

The water in Stillwater Lake has been drawn down in preparation for the Stillwater Lake Dam construction project. With the receding waters there are items surfacing that must be removed from the lake to provide a cleaner and safer environment for the wildlife, Scouts, visitors and residents of Stillwater Lake. Venture Crew 940 will be hosting a "Stillwater Clean-Up Weekend" on September 17-19, 2010 at Camp Minsi.

The purpose of this weekend is to remove the trash, tires, metal objects and other debris that has surfaced since the water receded. Troops are invited to come and camp for the weekend - free of charge - in one of our campsites (you will need your own tents, as the summer camp canvas has been put away for the season). Scouts will spend Saturday doing a good turn as they clean and remove debris from the shores and lakebed of Stillwater. Crew 940 will provide lunch on Saturday afternoon to all those who assist in this very large task. Wear sturdy shoes and come prepared to get wet and muddy working (showers will be open afterwards)!

Please register for this event by contacting Lisa Empfield (Camp Minsi Summer Camp Director and Crew 940 Committee Chair) with your unit's information and the number of youth and leaders attending by September 15th.

To register, or if you have any questions, contact Lisa Empfield, lempfield@aol.com or 610-751-0849.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Stillwater Lake Dam Update

Work on the Stillwater Lake Dam is now getting underway. Stillwater Lake began the drawdown process on August 11th and the initial phase of construction is expected to start later this month.

In 2002, Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) reclassified Stillwater Lake Dam as a "high hazard dam" and informed Minsi Trails Council that significant dam renovations were needed. Engineering plans and the permit applications were completed in November 2009 for the estimated $1.7-million project. Initial construction work will begin after the lake is drawn down and construction will continue through fall and into winter so that the 314-acre lake can refill in time for the 2011 summer camp season.

Camp Minsi will remain open to all units with camping reservations. However the drained lake bed and all construction areas are closed to all campers (no access allowed). Camp Minsi is closed to all other visitors during the dam construction. Safety first … always!

Future updates will be provided as the Stillwater Lake Dam construction progresses.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Camp Staff 2011: The Experience of a Lifetime

Are you tired of doing the same old routine? Did you know that Camp Minsi offers exciting opportunities in a variety of summer camp staff positions? Being on camp staff provides a unique and exciting outdoor work experience. Staff applications are now being accepted for summer camp 2011! You can fill yours out today at www.campminsi.org.

Why Apply for a Camp Staff Job?
Here are a few of the countless reasons that are frequently expressed:

  • To make lots of new friends with Scouts from your area, other states, and even other countries.
  • To share your skills, talents and knowledge with others.
  • To spend a summer in the great outdoors where nature prevails.
  • To acquire experiential education (learning by doing) and new skills that will last a lifetime.
  • To be a key part of an effective team.
  • To build and apply leadership skills.
  • To undertake and fulfill meaningful challenges.
  • To work with youth and adults of all ages.
  • To serve others (the most noble and fulfilling pursuit of all).
  • To give something back for the opportunities you have received.
  • To live in a wholesome environment based on the Scout Oath and Law.
  • To be paid (and receive food and lodging) in return for something challenging and fun.
  • To be considered for jobs of greater responsibility.
  • To have a lot of fun!

National standards require that all paid Scout camp staff members be at least 15 years of age. The Boy Scouts of America is an equal opportunity employer that hires both females and males, as well as people of all ages and ethnic groups, diverse cultures, and abilities. Staff members must be, or become, registered members of the Boy Scouts of America. Salaries are based on position responsibility with consideration given to the individual's qualifications and experience.

Camp Minsi also offers an outstanding Councilor in Training (CIT) program designed for Scouts ages 14 and older. The program helps prepare Scouts that may be interested in serving on staff in the future with experience, service, excitement and leadership training. The program is 100% free and allows Scouts to get a taste of what it's like to be a summer camp staffer. The program gives Scouts a taste of what it is like to being a member of the Camp Minsi staff.

Interested applicants can complete the online staff application located at CampMinsi.org. For more information regarding summer camp staff, how to apply, or for information on current or anticipated openings, feel free to contact us.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Camp Minsi Kicks-Off 2010 Summer Camp Season

The long awaited start of the 2010 summer camp season at Camp Minsi is finally here! This year Camp Minsi celebrates its the 100th anniversary of the Boy Scouts of America. This summer Camp Minsi continues its tradition of providing unique and exciting programs for Scouts of all ages. There are lots of great things happening at camp this year.

This summer Camp Minsi will host 5 exciting weeks of summer camp – welcoming over 55 Troops and serving more than 850 Scouts and 225 Scouters, plus countless families, volunteers and friends.

We look forward to sharing all the fun of camp with you online – check back for updates throughout the summer.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Adult Leader Trainings at Camp Minsi

Training helps adult leaders deliver quality Scouting experiences to their youth. While at camp this summer, leaders can utilize their time to get trained (and have fun) with a variety of adult leader training opportunities. Leader-specific training will be offered to any interested adult leaders throughout the week.

Our National Camp School certified Commissioners will lead the training sessions. These sessions include hands-on practical training in the program areas alongside the Scouts, plus several evening sessions that occur while Scouts are at evening program. This is a great opportunity for leaders to get these essential trainings completed! A detailed schedule of the trainings is provided below.



Scoutmaster & Assistant Scoutmaster
Leader Specific Training

Monday (7:00-8:30PM) at the Ad-Pad
Introduction: Fast Start

• This is Scouting
• Youth Protection
• Position Specific Training
• and more!

Tuesday (7:00-8:30PM) at the Ad-Pad
Session I: Getting Started: The Role of the Scoutmaster in a Boy-Led Troop

• The Role of the Scoutmaster
• Troop Organization
• Troop Meetings
• Working with Boy Leaders – The Patrol Method
• Patrol Leader’s Council
• and more!

Wednesday (7:00-8:30PM) at the Ad-Pad
Session II: Lighting the Fire: The Outdoor Program & Advancement Program

• Sizzle of the Outdoor Program
• Nuts and Bolts of the Outdoor Program
• Outdoor Program Patrol/ Group Activities
• Advancement Program
• and more!

Thursday (7:00-8:30PM) at the Ad-Pad
Session III: Keep it Going: Program Planning & Troop Administration

• Program Planning
• Membership
• Paperwork
• Finances
• The Uniform
• Other Training Opportunities
• and more!

Friday (all day) at the Ad-Pad
Make Up Session(s)
• Any missed session can be scheduled for make up on this day.


Introduction to Outdoor Skills Leader Training

Monday Morning (9:00-11:50AM) at Trail to Adventure
• Flag Etiquette
• Ropes (bowline, clove hitch, square knot, two half hitch, taut line hitch, whipping/fusing)
• Woods Tools

Tuesday Morning (9:00-11:50AM) at ScoutCraft
• Lashings (Square, diagona, shear)
• Safe Hiking & Trek Safely
• Map & Compass
• Fire Prep & Safetly

Wednesday Morning (9:00-11:50AM) at E-con
• Plant and Animal Identification

Thursday Morning (9:00-11:50AM) at Health Lodge
• First Aid

Friday Morning (9:00-11:50AM)
• Make-up session(s). Any missed session can be scheduled for make up on this day.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Camp Minsi GPS Coordinates

Want to navigate around Camp Minsi with ease? Be sure to bring your GPS to know where you are and where you're going at all times.

Aside from simple navigation, this summer Scouts and Scouters will be able to use GPS units to search for several new geocaches hidden throughout Camp Minsi. Geocaching is an exciting sport that uses GPS navigation to find hidden treasures. Whether you;re a novice or experienced cacher, you’ll find these caches to be both fun and challenging. A special geocashing session and training course will be held at E-con on Tuesday afternoons, followed by a special nature-based geocashe challenge. This is also a great way to prepare for Scouting's newly announced Geocaching Merit Badge.

Below is a list of coordinates for some important landmarks within camp; feel free to program any of these Camp Minsi locations into your GPS unit before coming to camp to help you get your oriented throughout your summer adventures.

Dining Hall N41 07.317 ’W75 25.450’
WaterfrontN41 07.103’W75 25.431’
Ecology-Conservation (E-con)N41 07.204’W75 25.363’
Trail to Adventure (TTA)N41 07.166’W75 25.334’
ScoutcraftN41 07.289’W75 25.405’
HandiCraftN41 07.380’W75 25.381’
Archery RangeN41 07.585’W75 25.327’
Rifle RangeN41 07.619 ’W75 25.332’
Shotgun RangeN41 07.607’W75 25.374’
Activities FieldN41 07.151’W75 25.361’
Trading PostN41 07.379’W75 25.380’
Central ShowersN41 07.342’W75 25.462’
Health LodgeN41 07.275’W75 25.447’
Administration Building (Ad-Pad)N41 07.231’W75 25.475’
Minsi RockN41 07.203’W75 25.432’
ChapelN41 07.369’W75 25.358’
Fire CircleN41 07.361’W75 25.370’
First BridgeN41 07.077’W75 25.513’
Second BridgeN41 07.628’W75 25.118’
Hunter's CabinN41 07.869’W75 24.448’
Site 1 (Mohican)N41 07.354 ’W75 25.457’
Site 2 (Tuscarora)N41 07.436 ’W75 25.419’
Site 3 (Iroquois)N41 07.426 ’W75 25.399’
Site 4 (Mohawk)N41 07.445’W75 25.422’
Site 5 (Onondaga)N41 07.412’W75 25.520’
Site 6 (Onieda)N41 07.361’W75 25.580’
Site 7 (Cayuga)N41 07.286’W75 25.550’
Site 8 (Seneca)N41 07.280 ’W75 25.504’
Site 9 (Lenape)N41 07.377’W75 25.677’
Site 10 (Shawnee)N41 07.438’W75 25.301’

Monday, June 7, 2010

Camp Minsi Goes Green!

Camp Minsi is taking numerous steps to make its summer camp operations even more environmentally friendly. A new camp-wide recycling program will help reduce waste and help support the environmental ideals of the Scouting program.

This summer Camp Minsi will launch a new recycling effort to reduce waste in camp. Special recycling dumpsters will be located in camp along with new recycling receptacles at campsites and select program areas to collect plastic, metal, glass, cardboard and other recyclable items.

At camp, recycling is but one factor in a broader effort towards better environmental stewardship. For example, we will continue to use reusable plates, cups and cutlery at our Sunday night barbeque; plus reusable mugs will now be available at our Scoutmaster coffee station to reduce the need for Styrofoam cups. Our trading post will also continue the push towards more environmental responsibility – special reusable cups and mugs will be utilized to help reduce the need for unnecessary bottles and cups used for beverages.

This summer will also introduce newly enhanced and expanded ecology-conservation programs at our E-con Lodge. Throughout the past 100 years of Scouting, Scouts have been challenged to explore, learn about and care for the outdoors, our environment and our world. Scouts will have the opportunity to participate in numerous conservation projects throughout camp, and new educational opportunities, trainings, and experiences will be also available for Scouts and leaders of all ages.

In addition to working to protect our environment, it is hoped these and other programs will also help reduce costs, allowing more money to go directly into our quality programs and not landfills. For more information, be sure to ask the Camp Director about our new recycling program and other environmental initiatives throughout the summer.

The Outdoor Code
As an American, I will do my best to
be clean in my outdoor manners,
be careful with fire,
be considerate in the outdoors,
and be conservation minded.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Camp Minsi's "Adopt a Campsite" Program

Do you or your Troop have a personal connection to a campsite at Camp Minsi? Ever wish you could do more to make that site “your own?”

Now, with the Camp Minsi "Adopt a Campsite" program you can help to improve a campsite and bring a true sense of ownership to your Troop!

Adoptive Troops will have a special plaque placed at the entrance to the site to acknowledge their service and generous support to Camp Minsi. Troops enrolled in the program can be as involved as they would like. This could include monetary donations, service projects, supplies donations, or contributing other improvements. All monetary donations you make will directly go towards whichever specific campsite improvements you designate.

What could adoption involve?

  • Donation of a storage shed (approx. $500)
  • Latrine improvements
  • Addition of platforms
  • Repairing platforms, canvas, and cots
  • Improving patrol sites and fire circles
  • Set-up of tents prior to summer camp season
  • Take down tents after summer camp season
  • Donation of picnic tables (approx. $250)
  • Donation of a site pavilion (approx. $1,000)

Additionally, Troops participating in the "Adopt a Campsite" program will will be able to reserve and use their adoptive site year-round with NO FEES attached. For more information, or to sign-up for the "Adopt a Campsite" program, please contact Mike Wiencek at campminsipd@yahoo.com.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

2010 Camp Minsi Directors

We are pleased to introduce your 2010 camp hosts. Our roster of summer camp directors is full of experienced, dedicated, and nationally certified staff members. If you have any questions regarding Camp Minsi or our 2010 programs, please feel free to contact Lisa Empfield at campminsiCD@yahoo.com or Mike Wiencek at campminsiPD@yahoo.com.

Camp DirectorLisa Empfield
Program DirectorMike Wiencek
RangerJohn Leach
Camp EngineerDon Freidhoff
Head ChefWilliam Broderick
Health OfficerJay "Boston" Falcone
Training CommissionerPatrick Maranuk
CIT Director/CommissionerEric "Bubba" Gross
Dining Hall StewardBarbara "Aunt Barb" Emert
Waterfront DirectorRyan Lilly
E-Con DirectorGreg Larson
Handicraft DirectorSarah Emert
Scoutcraft DirectorWill Greb
Shooting Sports DirectorJim Emert
Trail to Adventure DirectorSidney Lariar
Trading Post ManagerSean Sanner

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Camp Minsi Silver Turtle Award

The Silver Turtle is a new award unique to Camp Minsi. As a 5-year progressive award, the Silver Turtle gets more and more difficult at each stage. The Silver Turtle has been created to encourage Scouting spirit throughout camp while promoting the values of the Scout Oath and Law. Scouts must participate in certain program activities, learn of camp history, participate in service projects, and perform some extra fun activities.

The Silver Turtle tracking sheets will be distributed at the Sunday Night leaders' meeting. Since this is the first year of the Silver Turtle program, only level 1 is available. Scouts will be able to get their tracking sheets signed by staff members for certain requirements, but unit leaders will also be asked to sign for certain requirements pertaining to the Troop.

All scouts who complete level 1 of the Silver Turtle program will receive a special patch to wear on their uniforms. As each level of the Silver Turtle is earned, Scouts will earn special beads to add to the turtle's tail.

We hope to see many Scouts earning their Silver Turtle this year... and be sure to come back in 2011 to earn level 2.


Camp Minsi Silver Turtle Award
-Level I Requirements-

Scout Spirit: Complete all of the following:
_______ Display Scout Spirit throughout your week at summer camp
_______ Complete a conservation or service project with your Troop
_______ Perform a skit/song/cheer at the Friday night campfire
_______ Teach a Scout a new skill
_______ Earn a Merit Badge
_______ Have your Troop host a staff member in your campsite

Minsi Spirit: Answer all of the following:
• What year was Camp Minsi founded?
• What is the translation of Klampeecien Chuppecat?
• What Native American tribe inhabited Camp Minsi until 1784?

Program: Do five of the following:
_______ Shoot a bow and arrow at Archery
_______ Shoot a rifle at Shooting Sports
_______ Attend a cooking demo at Scoutcraft
_______ Take a boat out on the Lake
_______ Go swimming in the Lake
_______ Work on a project at Handicraft
_______ Go on an E-Con hike

Miscellaneous: Do five of the following:
_______ Enjoy a slushie at the Trading Post
_______ Waiter a meal
_______ Participate in the Troop Olympics on Tuesday evening
_______ Attend the OA Ceremony on Wednesday evening
_______ Give the Program Director a high five
_______ Attend Minsi Legends on Thursday night
_______ Go to Frigid Froggy at least one morning
_______ Participate in a flag ceremony in your site

Monday, April 12, 2010

Trail to Eagle Week - Date Change & Pre-Reqs

Trail to Eagle Specialty Camp
Week 5 - July 25-31, 2010*
Camp Minsi - Minsi Trail Council, BSA

Join us for an exciting specialty week at Camp Minsi this summer. The new "Trail to Eagle" specialty camp program will be run for one week only this summer at Camp Minsi! Scouts are invited to come to camp to participate in this exclusive opportunity to work specifically on four Eagle-required Merit Badges, planning and understanding Eagle leadership projects, understanding the specific parts of the Trail to Eagle process, and experiencing advanced leadership development. Due to the Boy Scout's National Jamboree and centennial celebration at the end of July, we have decided to change the week of this program to accomodate more Scouts; the special one-week program will now be run July 25-31, 2010 at Camp Minsi.

Scouts will gave an opporturnty to earn Citizenship in the Nation, Citizenship in the World, Communications, and Personal Management Merit Badges. Scouts will spend the week as a member of the special Trail to Eagle Troop, which will have adult staff Scoutmasters to supervise them in their own Troop site as they function in a model Boy Scout troop.

Be prepared! Some Merit Badge requirements involve a long time span or special conditions to complete; such requirement must be completed prior to camp. Pre-requirements must be done to the satisfaction and standards of the Camp Minsi Trail to Eagle counselors. The pre-requirements (listed below) will not be completed in camp and should be completed by Scouts prior to coming to camp.

Due to the advanced level of the program, Scouts must be at least 14-years-old (as of June 1, 2010) and have attained the rank of First Class in order to participate in the Trail to Eagle program at Camp Minsi.

Spaces are limited, sign your Scout up for the Trail to Eagle specialty week at Camp Minsi today!

Rates: $260 per Scout

Questions: Contact Mike Wiencek, Camp Minsi Program Director at CampMinsiPD@yahoo.com

Register: Contact Jane Chase, Field & Camping Secretary at the Minsi Trails Council office (610-465-8568 or Jane.Chase@scouting.org).


Merit Badges Pre-reqs:
Citizenship in the Nation
2. Do TWO of the following:
a. Visit a place that is listed as a National Historic Landmark or that is on the National Register of Historic Places. Tell your counselor what you learned about the landmark or site and what you found interesting about it.
b. Tour your state capitol building or the U.S. Capitol. Tell your counselor what you learned about the capitol, its function, and the history.
c. Tour a federal facility. Explain to your counselor what you saw there and what you learned about its function in the local community and how it serves this nation.
d. Choose a national monument that interests you. Using books, brochures, the Internet (with your parent's permission), and other resources, find out more about the monument. Tell your counselor what you learned, and explain why the monument is important to this country's citizens.



Citizenship in the World
7. Do TWO of the following and share with your counselor what you have learned:
a. Visit the Web site (With your parent/guardian's permission) of the U.S. State Department. Learn more about an issue you find interesting that is discussed on this Web site.
b. Visit the Web site (With your parent/guardian's permission) of an international news organization or foreign government, OR examine a foreign newspaper available at your local library, bookstore, or newsstand. Find a news story about a human right realized in the United States that is not recognized in another country.
c. Visit with a student or Scout from another country and discuss the typical values, holidays, ethnic foods, and traditions practiced or enjoyed there.
d. Attend a world Scout jamboree.
e. Participate in or attend an international event in your area, such as an ethnic festival, concert, or play.



Communications
3. Write a five-minute speech. Give it at a meeting of a group. (Have speech written and prepared, it will be given at camp)

8. Plan a troop court of honor, campfire program, or an interfaith worship service. Have the patrol leaders' council approve it, then write the script and prepare the program. Serve as master of ceremonies.
Interview someone you know fairly well, like, or respect because of his or her position, talent, career or life experiences. Listen actively to learn as much as you can about the person. Then prepare and deliver to your counselor an introduction of the person as though this person were to be a guest speaker, and include reasons why the audience would want to hear this person speak. Show how you would call to invite this person to speak. (Conduct interview prior to camp)



Personal Management
2. Do the following:
a. Prepare a budget reflecting your expected income (allowance, gifts, wages), expenses, and savings. Track your actual income, expenses, and savings for 13 consecutive weeks. (You may use the forms provided in this pamphlet, devise your own, or use a computer generated version.) When complete, present the results to your merit badge counselor.
b. Compare expected income with expected expenses.
1. If expenses exceed income, determine steps to balance your budget.
2. If income exceeds expenses, state how you would use the excess money (new goal, savings).

8.Demonstrate to your merit badge counselor your understanding of time management by doing the following:
a. Write a "to do" list of tasks or activities, such as homework assignments, chores, and personal projects, that must be done in the coming week. List these in order of importance to you.
b. Make a seven-day calendar or schedule. Put in your set activities, such as school classes, sports practices or games, jobs or chores, and/or Scout or church or club meetings, then plan when you will do all the tasks from your "to do" list between your set activities.
c. Follow the one-week schedule you planned. Keep a daily diary or journal during each of the seven days of this week's activities, writing down when you completed each of the tasks on your "to do" list compared to when you scheduled them.
d. Review your "to do" list, one-week schedule, and diary/journal to understand when your schedule worked and when it did not work. With your merit badge counselor, discuss and understand what you learned from this requirement and what you might do differently the next time.

9.Prepare a written project plan demonstrating the steps below, including the desired outcome. This is a project on paper, not a real-life project. Examples could include planning a camping trip, developing a community service project or a school or religious event, or creating an annual patrol plan with additional activities not already included in the troop annual plan. Discuss your completed project plan with your merit badge counselor.
a. Define the project. What is your goal?
b. Develop a timeline for your project that shows the steps you must take from beginning to completion.
c. Describe your project.
d. Develop a list of resources. Identify how these resources will help you achieve your goal.
e. If necessary, develop a budget for your project.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Beaver Day 2010 - Saturday, May 8th

Beaver Day is fast approaching! This event (May 8, 2010) is a special opportunity for Scouts, Scouters and volunteers to come to Camp Minsi and participate in service projects essential to preparing the camp for another busy season of summer camp.

We hope that you are able to join us for a fun-filled weekend of service, fellowship, recreation, camping, and fun! Bring your troop, your patrol, your friends, or your family. Beaver weekend is a great oppertunity to get out, explore camp, and give back.

Be prepared! Below is a list of some of the projects currently planned for Beaver Day. Dress appropriately for the jobs and the weather. If you have any special skills, tools, interests or expertise that could help with any of these projects, please be sure to bring them and let us know.

Lunch on Saturday will be provided (free of charge) to all Beaver Day participants; and in the afternoon you will have an opportunity to explore camp and participate in special open programs. We also hope that you plan on joining us for our annual spaghetti dinner in the Camp Minsi dining hall for a delicious meal and great Scout fellowship.

For more information on any of the Beaver Day projects, please feel free to contact us (email CampMinsiCD@yahoo.com). Hope to see you there!


2010 Camp Minsi Beaver Day Projects:

  • Set up all campsite canvas on frames
  • Disperse campsite cots to individual tents
  • De-winterize Ecology Lodge
  • De-winterize Handicraft Lodge
  • Move sailboats to Waterfront
  • Replace Health Lodge porch roof
  • Clean kitchen and paint dividing wall
  • Refurbish hand-crank ice cream makers
  • Disassemble and store wood donations (2 locations)
  • Start construction of Shotgun pavilion (Crew 1928)
  • Paint fuel storage tanks
  • Repair cots
  • Assemble large tent in parking lot
  • Install light pole at maintenance shop
  • Finish electrical work in staff site
  • Finish electrical work in Trading Post
  • Repair roof leaks (Trading Post, Staff Cabin, Central Showers)
  • Replace roof on last bay of maintenance shop (wood storage area)
  • Clean-up brush and clear trails
  • Camp-wide clean-up

Monday, April 5, 2010

Fishing on Stillwater Lake

Camp Minsi;s Stillwater Lake covers approximately 315-acres. Located on the Pocono Plateau at an elevation of 1,811 feet, the lake is home to a variety of freshwater fish and other aquatic creatures. Aside from Fishing Merit Badge, the summer camp program offers ample angling opportunities for Scouts who enjoy fishing.

Lake Stillwater holds Smallmouth Bass, Perch, Crappie, Pickerel, Sunfish and Catfish. The tailwaters of the lake compose Tunkhannock Creek and offer Brook and Rainbow trout fishing as well.

Scouts can enjoy fishing our waters throughout the week. However it is required that Scouts follow all rules and regulations set forth by the PA Fish and Boat Commission, which means that anyone over the age of 16 must carry a current Pennsylvania Fishing License. Also, with few exceptions, our policy on the lake is "Catch & Release".

Camp Minsi does have a limited supply of fishing equiptment available to borrow from the quartermaster; and a moderate selection of bait and other supplies are also available in the trading post. However it is highly recommended that Scouts interested in fishing bring their own poles and tackle to camp.

For more information on Stillwater Lake's fishing opportunities and to find out about the "hot spots" on the lake, be sure to talk to the Ecology-Conservation staff at the E-con lodge throughout your week.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Join Us for the Beaver Day Spaghetti Dinner

Please join us on Saturday, May 8th for the third annual Beaver Day Spaghetti Dinner. Coinciding with the Beaver Day festivities at Camp Minsi, the dinner is a way of bringing together the entire Camp Minsi community – Scouts, leaders, families, friends, staff, alumni, and neighbors - for great food and funfilled fellowship. The dinner is open to all, with open seating from 5:30 - 8:00pm at the Camp Minsi Dining Hall.

The dinner costs $7.00 per person and all proceeds will be used to support Venturing Crew 940, a Scouting group with a focus on carrying out service projects and providing leadership at Camp Minsi.

Bring your whole Troop, your entire familiy, your friends, or just yourself! We hope to see you there and enjoying the great Italian food. If you have any questions about the event please contact us at campminsi@gmail.com.

What: 3rd Annual Beaver Day Spaghetti Dinner
When: Saturday, May 8, 2010 from 5:30 - 8:00pm
Where: Camp Minsi Dining Hall - Pocono Summit, PA
Cost: $7.00 per person

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Leave No Trace Trainers Course at Camp Minsi

Interested in becoming a Leave No Trace trainer for your Troop or Crew? Sign up for the Minsi Trails Council Leave No Trace Trainers Course at Camp Minsi and receive both the BSA and the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics Trainer certifications!

When: Friday, April 30 (7pm) to Saturday, May 1, 2010 (7pm)
Where: Camp Minsi (Pocono Summit, PA)
Who: Open to all unit leaders and youth leaders (14 and older) within Minsi Trails Council (Boy Scouts and Venturers).
Cost: $45.00 per person (includes food, training materials, recognitions and certifications)
Trainers: LNT Mater Educators Wayne Gross and Steve Mehl
Registration deadline: April 19, 2010 (registration form)
Questions: Contact Wayne Gross, Minsi Trails Council Outdoor Ethics Advocate, at wegseg@msn.com or 570.595.2904


Download the registration form

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Order of the Arrow in Camp

The Order of the Arrow (OA) is Scouting’s national honor society. Their mission is to fulfill its purpose as an integral part of the Boy Scouts of America through positive youth leadership under the guidance of selected capable adults. Its purpose is: to recognize those scouts and scouters who have given extreme service to their unit and best exemplify the Scout Oath and Law in their daily lives, to promote camping and the camping spirit, to develop leaders with character, and to crystallize the Scout habit of helpfulness into a life purpose of leadership in cheerful service to others.

The OA serves as a service task force for the camps and the camping spirit. They promote both year long and residential camping through several events and organizations. They hold two annual service weekends as well as several weekends as needed at our Council’s Camps. The OA is an integral part of camping and the Boy Scouts of America.

But the OA isn’t just about service. The Order of the Arrow has many events where working never takes place. The OA holds a NOAC (National Order of the Arrow Conference) every two years. For one week arrowmen from around the country invade a college campus. There are plenty of competitions and games as well as useful training. The OA offers a weekend called, a Conclave, filled with fun and fellowship, with 4 of the closest lodges in our area. Held at the host lodge’s council camp, you can meet new friends as well as participating in some really cool stuff. The OA offers their own specific high adventure programs which allow for you to participate in more programs than an average high adventure trek for a fraction of the price. These are just some of the programs available for both active youth and adults.

Wednesdays are OA Day at camp. OA members are encouraged to show their lodge spirit by wearing OA t-shirts throughout the day and their OA sash when wearing the field uniform.

On Wednesday evening the Order of the Arrow will perform their public recognition ceremony, known as the Call-Out. Arrangements for those who will be called out should be made with the OA Summer Camp Coordinator on Sunday. All Troops are encouraged to attend the ceremony.

Some Important Notes:

  • The contact person for the Order of the Arrow in camp is the OA Summer Camp Coordinator. Any questions may be directed towards him. To find out who is the OA Summer Camp Coordinator, talk to the Camp Director.
  • All elections for the nomination of candidates must have taken place before summer camp. NO elections will be conducted at summer camp. Please bring a copy of your unit elections results so that any misunderstandings may be avoided.
  • If your unit is not from Minsi Trails Council, Witauchsoman Lodge #44 cannot call-out your candidates without proper authorization. You must have a signed letter from your Lodge Chief or Lodge Adviser including the names who should be recognized. This letter must be given to the Camp’s OA Summer Camp Coordinator at Sunday check in.
  • Witauchsoman Lodge #44 merchandise is being sold in the trading post. Feel free to stop by and check out our current lodge flap and other items.
  • Any help from arrowmen for Wednesday night’s call-out ceremony will be greatly appreciated. Whether you like making humongous fires or just enjoy adding to the fires of cheerfulness, they can always use a hand.

For more information Witauchsoman Lodge #44, the OA lodge that has been supporting and serving Minsi Trails Council for over 40 years, visit www.witauchsoman.org.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Become an Aqua-Knot This Summer!

Camp Minsi's Aqua-Knots is a brand-new summer camp program at Camp Minsi. The Aqua-Knots are a group of elite Scouts who demonstrate leadership, resourcefulness, and teamwork through a series of fun and challenging events.

The program combines two of Camp Minsi's most popular areas - Waterfront and ScoutCraft - for a week of special events and activities. Scouts are required to attend a certain number of events along with several optional challenges throughout the week. The purpose of this program is to provide Scouts with recreational challenges, team-oriented activities and a sense of special achievement.

Some of the events that are sure to make a splash with any Aqua-Knot hopeful include a triathlon, a "Lost At Sea" outpost where the participants build a survival raft and paddle to a remote destination, and a gigantic water battle to close out their week! Announcments will be made at the meals throughout the week with details on upcoming Aqua-Knots events.

The Aqua-Knots will begin their journey on Monday evening after dinner, and will conclude on Friday during siesta. Many of these events will take place during open program periods in early evenings. Optional events may be offered during program times and are generally very flexible. While this program is geared towards older Scouts who are looking for a more advanced aquatic challenges, all Scouts are welcome to participate.

We hope to see you join the elite and become an Aqua-Knot this summer!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Stillwater Lake Dam Renovation Update

In late January 2010, Minsi Trails Council received notice from the State of Pennsylvania that a grant was approved for more than $1.3-million for repairing and updating the Stillwater Lake Dam at Camp Minsi.

In 2002, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) reclassified the Stillwater Lake Dam as a “high hazard dam” and informed Minsi Trails Council that significant dam renovations were needed. Stillwater Lake is a Monroe County resource shared by Camp Minsi and Stillwater Lake Estates. The Council has an approved plan and construction timetable with the DEP and work on the dam will begin following the 2010 summer camp season. At that time, the lake will be drawn down for construction to begin. Construction will continue through the fall and will conclude by early winter so that the lake can refill for the 2011 camping season.

A letter writing effort to our State legislators by 17,000 Scouts, volunteers, parents, and concerned citizens brought the issue of Stillwater Lake Dam to their attention. Through the hard work of our legislators the $1.3 million grant was approved and will fund nearly 70% of the project’s expected costs. Fundraising efforts will continue to help raise the roughly $450,000 amount remaining between the Pennsylvania State grant amount and projected repair costs.

Stillwater Lake Dam Renovation – Background:

  • In May, 2008 the Council entered into a consent order and agreement with the DEP specifying a timetable to make the required dam repairs.
  • The Council finalized engineering plans and completed the dam permit application in November 2009.
  • Once the Dam Permit Application is approved by the DEP, construction is slated to begin in August, 2010 with completion by spring 2011.
  • The dam renovation includes a new spillway, gate, and a 400 foot rollercompacted concrete dam.
  • The project cost is estimated at nearly $2 million.
  • On January 26, 2010 notification was received from the Commonwealth Finance Authority approving a grant of $1,312,500 through the H20 PA program for repair of the dam.
  • Including funds already spent on the dam project, that leaves roughly $450,000 remaining to be raised for the repair work.
  • Additional fundraising will take place in the local communities and municipalities that are served by Stillwater Lake and the Tunkhannock Creek watershed.

While the dam construction needs to be completed and additional funding secured, obtaining the State grant was a huge step in saving Stillwater Lake. The letter writing campaign certainly helped make this possible, and we thank you for your efforts. Please be sure to thank your local State legislators for their help with this project. Future updates will be provided as the Stillwater Lake Dam construction progresses.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Pre-Camp Leaders Meeting Set for March 15th

Minsi Trails Council will be holding an informational summer camp meeting for leaders on Monday, March 15, 2010 at Northeast Middle School in Bethlehem, PA. The gathering will start at 6:30PM, with the meeting starting promptly at 7:00PM. The purpose of the meeting is to share information with unit leaders regarding the council's summer camp programs. The meeting also gives leaders an opportunity to ask any questions, connect with other leaders, give feedback, and meet some of our key staff members.

All unit leaders are invited to attend this meeting. If you are have any questions, or need directions, please contact the Minsi Trails Council office at (610) 264-8551.

And be sure to mark your calendars, because a comprehensive pre-camp leaders' luccheon, meeting and open house will take place at Camp Minsi on Saturday, June 19, 2010 (click here more information).

Thursday, February 25, 2010

NEW - Trail to Eagle Specialty Camp

Trail to Eagle Specialty Camp
Week 5 - July 25-31, 2010*
Camp Minsi - Minsi Trail Council, BSA

Join us for an exciting specialty week at Camp Minsi this summer. The new "Trail to Eagle" specialty camp program will be run for one week only this summer at Camp Minsi! Scouts are invited to come to camp to participate in this exclusive opportunity to work specifically on four Eagle-required Merit Badges, planning and understanding Eagle leadership projects, understanding the specific parts of the Trail to Eagle process, and experiencing advanced leadership development. This special one-week program will be run July 25-31, 2010 at Camp Minsi.

Merit Badges:
  • Citizenship in the Nation
  • Citizenship in the World
  • Communications
  • Personal Management
*If you already have one of these Merit Badges you will be able to work on other Merit Badges offered in our regular 2010 camp program.

Be prepared! Some Merit Badge requirements involve a long time span to complete, these must be completed prior to camp. Pre-requirements must be done to the satisfaction and standards of the Camp Minsi Trail to Eagle counselors. The outline of pre-requirements and how to complete them will be made available in April on CampMinsi.org.

Due to the advanced level of the program, Scouts must be at least 14-years-old (as of June 1, 2010) and have attained the rank of First Class in order to participate in the Trail to Eagle program at Camp Minsi.

Scouts will spend the week as a member of the special Trail to Eagle Troop, which will have adult staff Scoutmasters to supervise them in their own Troop site as they function in a model Boy Scout troop.

Spaces are limited, sign your Scout up for the Trail to Eagle specialty week at Camp Minsi today!

Rates: $260 per Scout

Questions: Contact Mike Wiencek, Camp Minsi Program Director at CampMinsiPD@yahoo.com

Register: Contact Jane Chase, Field & Camping Secretary at the Minsi Trails Council office (610-465-8568 or Jane.Chase@scouting.org).


Update: April 12, 2010 - Dates and price change*

Historical Merit Badges Provide Unique Opportunity For Scouts This Summer

In honor of the Boy Scouts of America's 100th anniversary, the BSA's has launched a special centennial Merit Badge program for Scouts. The 2010 Historical Merit Badge program features a set of four previously discontinued Merit Badges. Scouts will get the opportunity to experience some of the activities their predecessors enjoyed by earning these unique badges.

This is a limited-time program and boys must start and finish all requirements within the year 2010 - because on December 31st these badges go back into the vault. However these are full-fledged Merit Badges and, just like any other Merit Badge, these special badges can be used towards rank advancement.

This summer Camp Minsi will be offering Scouts a chance to earn all four historical Merit Badges - Carpentry, Pathfinding, Signaling, and Tracking! These are badges aren't easy, but you won't want to miss out on the once in a lifetime opportunity to earn them!


Carpentry
History: First offered in 1911 and discontinued in 1952.
Location: Handicraft (11:00-11:50am)
Sample requirements: demonstrate the use of tools, such as a miter and bevel; build a simple piece of furniture for use at home.
Notes: Scouts should have prior experience working with wood tools. This badge challenges Scouts to make a piece of furniture while using various carpentry tools and techniques.

Pathfinding
History: First offered in 1911 and discontinued in 1952.
Location: Scoutcraft (Open in afternoon, MWR)
Sample requirements: be able to guide people to important places within a three-mile radius of your home; submit a scale map of your community.
Notes: Counselor’s will work with Scouts on an individual basis. Scouts must come fully prepared to show they can satisfy all requirements.

Signaling
History: First offered in 1910 and discontinued in 1992.
Location: Scoutcraft (2:00-2:50pm)
Sample requirements: build a simple buzzer or blinker capable of sending Morse code messages, and send a message of at least 35 words; send and receive messages using semaphore flags at a rate of at least 30 letters per minute.
Notes: Scouts must bring a hand-made device that can be used to send Morse Code. Scouts should practice their Morse Code and Semaphore prior to camp to earn this difficult badge.

Tracking
History: First offered in 1911 (as Stalking) and discontinued in 1952.
Location: Ecology Conservation (3:00-3:50pm)
Sample requirements: recognize the tracks of 10 different animals; give evidence to show you have tracked at least two different kinds of birds or animals, documenting their speed and direction.
Notes: This merit badge involves a lot of independent field work. Scouts must bring a digital camera to capture their findings. Scouts are encouraged to begin capturing animals on camera prior to camp.

Detailed requirements and additional information will be posted to a special section of the BSA's web site, located at www.scouting.org.


Update: April 7, 2010
Below are the complete requirements for each of the Merit Badges.

Carpentry
To obtain Carpentry Merit Badge, a Scout must:
  1. Demonstrate the use of the rule, square, level, plumb-line, mitre, chalk-line and bevel.
  2. Demonstrate the proper way to drive, set, and clinch a nail, draw a spike with a claw-hammer, and to join two pieces of wood with screws.
  3. Show correct use of the cross-cut saw and of the rip-saw.
  4. Show how to plane the edge, end and the broad surface of a board.
  5. Demonstrate how to lay shingles.
  6. Make a simple article of furniture for practical use in the home or on the home grounds, finished in a workmanlike manner, all work to be done without assistance.

Pathfinding
To obtain Pathfinding Merit Badge, a Scout must:
  1. In the country, know every lane, bypath, and short cut for a distance of at least two miles in every direction around the local scout headquarters; or in a city, have a general knowledge of the district within a three-mile radius of the local scout headquarters, so as to be able to guide people at any time, by day or by night. 2.
  2. Know the population of the five principal neighboring towns, their general direction from his scout headquarters, and be able to give strangers correct directions how to reach them.
  3. If in the country, know in a two mile radius, the approximate number of horses, cattle, sheep, and pigs owned on the five neighboring farms; or, in a town, know, in a half-mile radius, the location of livery stables, garages and blacksmith shops.
  4. Know the location of the nearest meat markets, bakeries, groceries, and drug stores.
  5. Know the location of the nearest police station, hospital, doctor, fire alarm, fire hydrant, telegraph and telephone offices, and railroad stations.
  6. Know something of the history of his place; and know the location of its principal public buildings, such as the town or city hall, post-office, schools and churches.
  7. Submit a map not necessarily drawn by himself upon which he personally has indicated as much as possible of the above information.

Signaling
To obtain Signaling Merit Badge, a Scout must:
  1. Make an electric buzzer outfit, wireless, blinker, or other signaling device.
  2. Send and receive in the International Morse Code, by buzzer or other sound device, a complete message of not less than 35 words, at a rate of not less than 35 letters per minute.
  3. Demonstrate an ability to send and receive a message in the International Morse Code by wigwag and by blinker or other light signaling device at the rate of not less than 20 letters per minute.
  4. Send and receive by Semaphore Code at the rate of not less than 30 letters per minute.
  5. Know the proper application of the International Morse and Semaphore Codes; when, where, and how they can be used to best advantage.
  6. Discuss briefly various other codes and methods of signaling which are in common use.

Tracking
To obtain Tracking Merit Badge, a Scout must:
  1. Demonstrate by means of a tracking game or otherwise, ability to [track] skillfully in shelter and wind, etc., showing how to proceed noiselessly and “freeze” when occasion demands.
  2. Know and recognize the tracks of ten different kinds of animals or birds in his vicinity, three of which may be domestic.
  3. Submit satisfactory evidence that he has trailed two different kinds of wild animals or birds on ordinary ground far enough to determine the direction in which they were going, and their gait or speed. Give the names of animals or birds trailed, their direction of travel, and describe gait and speed; or submit satisfactory evidence that he has trailed six different kinds of wild animal or birds in snow, sand, dust, or mud, far enough to determine the direction they were going and their gait or speed. Give names of animals or birds, their direction of travel, and describe gait and speed.
  4. Submit evidence that he has scored at least 30 points from the following groups:
    brGroup (f) and 4 of the 5 groups (a), (b), (c), (d), (e) must be represented in the score of 30 and at least 7 points must be scored from (a), (b), or (c). Make clear recognizable photographs of:
    (a) Live bird away from nest - 4 points each
    (b) Live woodchuck or smaller wild animal - 3 points each
    (c) Live wild animal larger than woodchuck - 4 points each
    (d) Live bird on nest - 3 points each
    (e) Tracks of live wild animal or bird - 2 points each
    (f) Make satisfactory plaster cast of wild animal or bird tracks with identification imprint on back of cast - 2 points each

Monday, February 8, 2010

The Boy Scouts of America Celebrates 100 Years!

CLICK TO VIEW FULL PICTURE

On this date in 1910, the Boy Scouts of America was incorporated by publisher W. D. Boyce. Boyce first learned about Scouting when a Scout refused payment for helping him through a fog. He was simply doing a Good Turn. For 100 years, Scouts across America have kept to that example, doing Good Turns daily.

Having served more than 100-million members since its founding, the Boy Scouts of America has made a lasting and positive imprint on the fabric of the nation. Its mission: "Preparing young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law," enables Scouting to address many issues that are important to young people and families, including health, civility, education, leadership, diversity, and service to others. Today, Scouts celebrate the 100th anniversary of this great movement and begin our next 100 years of service.

"This country needs strong leaders and healthy young people more than ever before, and that is what Scouting is all about," said Bob Mazzuca, Chief Scout Executive of the Boy Scouts of America. "This is our time in history to remind the nation that Scouting is more vibrant, more vital, and more relevant than ever before. Every day, millions of Scouts and adult leaders make a huge difference in our society. We look forward to continuing that commitment in the next century."

This landmark anniversary provides a great opportunity to remember how the Boy Scouts of America got here, and to re-explore the deep traditions that make us unique. For that, check out Scouting Magazine's comprehensive BSA timeline, or pick up Chuck Wills' outstanding new book The Boy Scouts of America: A Centennial History. This historical knowledge serves as an excellent foundation for moving into the next 100 years of the Scouting.

However, though Scouting is firmly rooted in a steady set of core values, Scouting is committed to remaining current and relevant by adapting how it delivers programs and reaches it audiences.

"During this year we recognize the achievements of our past, but our focus is on the future of millions of young Scouts, their communities, and the nation as a whole," Mazzuca said. "Scouting is ready for the next 100 years!"

In honor of the 100th anniversary of Scouting, Camp Minsi has assembled a summer camp program packed with lots of exciting opportunities for celebration, fellowship, adventure, advancement, and fun. Special centennial events include: a camp-wide 100th anniversary Troop challenge, unique historical Merit Badge programs, special "Scouting Through the Years" events and demos at ScoutCraft, plus tons of other special and enhanced programs for Scouts and Scouters of all ages.

From all of us at Camp Minsi: Happy Birthday, BSA!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

2010 Summer Camp Brochure

Click on a page to enlarge

Saturday, February 6, 2010

The Tale of the Unknown Scout

Scouting was brought to America by William D. Boyce, a Chicago publisher, and the way Boyce discovered Scouting is one of the movement’s most colorful stories.

Boyce, it seems, was in London in the fall of 1909 and was out in a famed London fog looking for an office in the center of the city. Nearly at his wit's end, Boyce stopped a young man and asked directions. Not only did the youth tell Boyce how to reach his destination, he actually led Boyce there to make certain the American found his way without becoming lost again.

Boyce, to show his gratitude, offered the youth a tip, but the youth would not accept it. When asked why, the young man told Boyce he was a Boy Scout and taking a tip would negate the good deed he had done and violate his Scouting code.

The youth's gesture impressed Boyce, who later visited with Lord Baden-Powell himself. Boyce was so taken with Baden-Powell and the Scouting idea that back in America he and other men interested in youth development founded the Boy Scouts of America in Washington, D.C., on February 8th, 1910.

No one knows who the Scout was who performed his Good Turn for Boyce, but he has not been forgotten. In Gilwell Park in London, American Scouts had a statue erected in his honor. The statue bears the inscription, "To the Unknown Scout Whose Faithfulness in the Performance of the Daily Good Turn Brought the Scout Movement to the United States of America."

Text adapted from: Troop Program Resources: Founders of the BSA. Scouting.org

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Beaver Weekend: May 7-9, 2010

Beaver weekend at Camp Minsi (May 7-9, 2010) is a unique opportunity for service, fellowship, recreation, and camping! Take the opportunity to bring your unit to check out Camp Minsi and its facilities, meet the staff, participate in some programs, and give back to Scouting through friendly service.

This event is completely free! The camp will provide your unit with a site, tents, and cots. A complimentary lunch on Saturday will be provided by Venturing Crew 940 for all who are participating in the weekend. All we ask is that you give a few hours of service to the camp on Saturday morning. In return, Scouts and leaders will have the opportunity to take advantage of several open program areas on Saturday afternoon run by summer camp staff.

If preferred, your unit can come up and actually camp in the site that you will be staying in for your week at summer camp; and you’re free to make any improvements and preparations to your site. You can help improve your site, or participate in one of the other service projects happening around camp to prepare for the 2010 camping season.

If your unit decides not to make a weekend out of it, you are invited to come up for the day on Saturday to participate in some of the fellowship events, service projects, and other festivities, including a special campfire on Saturday night.

If interested, please register your unit before April 9th by contacting the council office (610-465-8568 or Jane.Chase@scouting.org). More information, including a list of the service projects, will be made available at campminsi.org closer to the event.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Camp Minsi History: The Ice Harvest on Stillwater Lake

Long before modern day refrigeration was available, people relied on ice to store their perishable foods; and from the late 1880s until the 1930s, the ice industry of the Poconos was king!

During this time, ice was harvested from the shallow freshwater of Stillwater Lake by the Pocono Mountain Ice Company. Run by industrialist Samuel Rubel, the Pocono Mountain Ice Company was the leading ice company of the area, supplying ice to New York City, Philadelphia, and many other areas.

During the winter, Stillwater Lake will freeze to a depth of about 8 to 14 inches thick. And so the ice company would glean the lake for its natural ice. The ice harvesting process was labor intensive. Crews of men using teams of horses would clear the ice field of snow. Then men measured and marked grids on the ice (usually at 22" x 32" to 44" square). Then horses would pull a tool that cut a groove along the grid. The next step was to cut through the grooves until the blocks broke off. The men would float these massive blocks of ice down a cleared channel to a chute, where they were hauled up and into an ice house.

Men used one-handed crosscut ice saws to finish cutting the blocks of ice. Each block was moved up chutes with hooks to various levels as the ice house filled with layers of ice separated and surrounded by layers of sawdust supplied by lumber mills. The sawdust helped insulate the ice from thawing. If properly stored, the ice in a fully stocked ice house would last throughout the year. The ice was shipped by train from the ice house to the various cities as needed.

Pennsylvania was the nation's third largest producer of ice, following Maine and New York. Pennsylvania consumed about 1 million tons annually, cut on the state's lakes and rivers. The Pocono Mountain Ice Company employed over 500 men during the height of the harvest. It was reported that the Pocono Mountain Ice Company was harvesting ice for 6 cents per ton. Ice workers out on the lake were paid 30 cents an hour, while those working in the icehouse, where 300-pound ice cakes were being pushed around, were paid 35 cents an hour.

However, with the advent of refrigeration in the 1930s, the harvesting of the ice from the lakes became less and less profitable. Eventually, the ice company folded. In 1949, Samuel Rubel donated the company’s land surrounding Stillwater Lake to the Bethlehem Area Council (now Minsi Trails Council); allowing the Scouts to set up a permanent camp in the Poconos.

In Camp Minsi’s early days, many of the original ice company buildings were used for programs and lodging. It was not until the 1950s that the more permanent camp facilities were constructed for the Scouts on the western side of the lake. Remnants of many of the old ice company facilities can still be seen on the south and eastern side of the lake. The remains of the central ice house are fun to explore (and are only a short hike or canoe trek away from central camp). Relics from the ice harvest operations are displayed in the trading post (many of these were found by Scouts exploring the ruins).

Below is a video of the actual ice harvest operations on Stillwater Lake in 1921.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Pre-Camp Leaders Meeting Scheduled for June 19th at Camp Minsi

Camp Minsi will be holding an informational leaders' meeting and luncheon on Saturday, June 19, 2010. The gathering, which will include a complimentary lunch, will start in the Dining Hall at 12:00PM (noon). The purpose of the meeting is to share important information with unit leaders regarding their Troop's week at camp. The meeting gives leaders a chance to ask any questions they may have regarding camp, a place to connect with other leaders, an outlet to give feedback, and an opportunity meet some of our key staff members.

Unit leaders are strongly encouraged to attend this meeting. It is important that your unit is represented, so you are prepared for your week at camp with all the latest information. Scoutmasters, Assistant Scoutmasters, Summer Camp Coordinators, and Senior Patrol Leaders are all welcome.

We recommend that you prepare a list of any questions that you or your unit may have regarding camp, so that we can be sure to address them all at the meeting. If you are unable to attend, please contact the Camp Director, Lisa Empfield (CampMinsiCD@yahoo.com), so we can distribute any vital information and answer any questions.

You are invited to come to camp as early as 10:00AM to take a look around camp. This is a great opportunity to check out your camp site, preview the program areas and facilities, or just enjoy the beauty of the Poconos. If you are new to Camp Minsi, you are also invited to remain after the meeting for a tour of the camp.

The Council's Field & Camping Secretary, Jane Chase, will be at camp to settle up any last minute registration or financial transactions for your unit.