Reflecting back on the Scouting year that was 2007 I came to conclusion that we are a pretty busy Troop.
So let me take just a minute or two and share with you the 2007 year in review.
The boys from the Order of the Arrow kicked the year off by participating in an inter tribal Pow Wow up on Scouters Mountain. The following weekend the Troop learned the valuable skill of selective listening as we watched as Nick and Ely debuted their new smash hit “We are all gonna Die” Lucky for us they became one hit wonders that weekend and discovered that they in fact survived to enjoy egg Mcmuffins with the rest of us.
As is our annual custom we had a great turn out for Junior leader Training and a lock in to end January, a much need fun time to put the Cold Camp behind us.
February we celebrated Scout Sunday and held a Luau to celebrate the BSA’s birthday. The Assistant Scoutmasters showed off their new Campaign hats that night… now we are Scouting!February took us to Camp Meriwether where we were introduced to a new part of clothing.. Sally’s (the section of your pants from the cuff to just below the knee) were discovered and from then on we tried to keep them dry. It was a cold and wet weekend on the coast, but the humor at the campfire was dry and warm. Rob got his first taste on the Scouting Lampoon and took it well.. he’s a keeper.
Finally in February we started on a Journey to Wallowa. The saying that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step was etched into us in February.
March found us paddling our Canoes on a windy Cullaby lake. We learned that you need the bigger guys up front in the wind…. We also learned that Joel and Cameron on a windy lake makes for cookies in a canoe. Another great weekend at Royce Finel.. That’s why we keep going back. This was our Third trip to Royce Finel and the first time we need two trailers of Canoes.. We are starting to get big.
April lifted us up onto the backs of horses. We spent another wet weekend at Butte Creek for what was the best and worst day of riding. I’m not sure who led us up onto that windy ridge, but it was not me.. My horse was so cold it asked me for my rain gear. The following weekend, once we dried out all the young Scouts went to the Pioneering Merit Badge weekend. Our Scouts did exceptionally well.
May we tested our skills at the District Camporee at Martha Creek field. Eric and Kyle were tapped out by the Order of the Arrow. I don’t remember much about Camporee this year.. Onion Smothered Pork chops keep passing through my mind though! Camporee went well. Kyle entertained the entire district with his galloping on a Patrol flag and as usual a good time was had by all.
May was perhaps the best Service project of the year also. Placing flags on the head stones up at the Willamette National Cemetery. Even though they ran out of flags in our section, I think the Scouts got a better appreciation for the sacrifice of the many men and women that are eternally at rest in the field of honor. We showed our colors again assisting the Gresham hero’s memorial committee with a color guard. The boys really did a great job. I am extremely proud of them.
May took us out to a snowy Wallowa to check out the camp. We learned a lot out there. And I still have those wheat pancakes and little smokies in my stomach.
In June we strapped on our headlamps and took a hike in the Ape caves. June was the only “Perfect weather” month of the year. Camping at the Cougar Campsite right on the lake was a Rockwell moment for us. A perfect camp out. In June we also helped out the Gresham Hero’s memorial again with their Ride for hero’s rally. The community surly knows Troop 664.
In July we began our first real High adventure program. A hand full of Scouts from all the Patrols started the Backpacking Merit badge. A Trip to Eagle Creek and Bonneville dam took us under the Columbia River and a great look at the power it has. July we took some real big steps.. Not only on the trail for the merit badge, but in our Journey to Wallowa. The plan was coming together, resourcing and staffing and selecting merit badges. Summer Camp was right around the corner and the 11th hour jitters were starting to set in. Range masters were trained, CPR Training was conducted, shopping lists changed 25 times, merit badge lists were chopped and edited, and the great debate on how we were going to get 900 pounds of stuff across the state started.
August finally got here. On the 2nd of August the Advanced party arrived and a call from the ranch announced that it was “Show time”. We moved the Troop to the other side of the state for 10 days of the best summer camp ever. We won’t go into that again, but let’s just say it was the high light of the year. I think we can all agree.
So how do you top that? In September you Back pack 25 miles on the historic Barlow Road trail.. I was surprised when the majority of the Troop signed up to spend the Labor Day weekend with me hiking through some of the most beautiful country in America. Kent amused us by eating spaghetti from a strainer with a big spoon. John and Kyle provided a gut splitting laugh when they produced coconuts from their backpacks and gave us a sampling of Monty Pythons Holy Grail. I am thankful no one fell off of the bridge we stopped at for lunch.. That was just plain funny.
October we broke out the rain gear for another cold and wet weekend at Butte Creek. The Scouts were to participate in a Pioneering Challenge which ended up being canceled, but at least we showed up with two teams. The OA tribe set their sights on teaching first aid to Webelos Scouts that weekend, and even managed to get one of them to pass out. I of course had to test my skill at Chubby bunny. I believe the bar has been set at 13. Guys you can explain that one to your parents later.
November has to be one of my all time favorite camp outs in the Troop. We ventured off to Camp Cooper for a no holds barred Cook off. Back packing style, camp stove preparation, and Dutch ovens. The Scouts did a fantastic job with preparation, planning, and throwing down some of the best camp food I have seen in awhile. The Food network would have been impressed. We woke to snow on Sunday, but the taste of Falcon Pork Roast still lingered.. mmmmm.
As you can see it has been another great year. We accomplished a lot this year and had a great time doing it. Let me share some numbers with you as we wrap up the year in review.
In total there were 22 camping opportunities this year. That includes Troop Camp outs, Order of the Arrow events, and Adult training camp outs. Given the 21 active Scouts and 14 active adults that is a total of 866 nights of camping..
We held 55 meetings of one type or another.
We did 8 service projects totaling 345.5 hours of service.
We earned 103 merit badges.
We awarded 29 badges of rank.
8 Scouts earned more than one rank over the year. 5 earned their First Class this year.
Troop 664 is active and progressing well. Wrapping up our 4th year we can say that we have set a course of success for the future.