Skaneateles Boy Scout Troop 61 participates in 25th Annual “Operation Tenderfoot” camping trip

Assistant Scoutmaster Robert Sheppard passes down scouting stories by campfire during Operation Tenderfoot.

Assistant Scoutmaster Robert Sheppard passes down scouting stories by campfire during Operation Tenderfoot.

— The new scouts were then instructed on how to properly set up their camp stoves and use cooking equipment so they would be ready to cook breakfast come morning. The group then has a cracker barrel (snacks of crackers, pepperoni, cheese and apples), the boys were released for an hour of free time before lights out at 10:30 p.m.

With the excitement level of the new scouts at record levels, lights out was observed, but certainly matters didn’t quiet down for several hours as loud and exuberant conversations between tents occurred.

With the arrival of the sun at around 6 a.m., the young scouts were up and continued where they left off the night before (rise and shine wasn’t scheduled for 7 a.m.). For the older scouts and adult leaders, they capitulated and everyone was out of their tents and starting their breakfasts at 6:30 a.m.

After breakfast and a flag raising ceremony, the boys took several instructional classes during the morning, including: working with maps and compasses, how to tie knots, how to start a fire and boil water in a paper cup and how to identify 10 different plants and animals. Lunch was a welcome break and the scouts were then back for more instruction including topics such as: proper flag etiquette, how to properly use a knife, axe and saw; and basic first aid.

At 4 p.m., class instruction came to a close and the boys organized into two teams for a monster game of capture the flag. After the game, the boys cooked dinner and then prepared for the campfire program which included several skits and songs by the scouts and adult scoutmasters. After the campfire, everyone was treated to “dump cake,” cooked in Dutch ovens.

In addition to the instruction for the new scouts that was run by the older scouts, parents of new scouts were offered the opportunity to take adult leader training as well. Six new adult leaders took part in this training opportunity: Matt Sheppard, Bill Rutledge, Matt Parks, Michael Paciorek, Graham Ellison and Chris Smith.

The troop is blessed to have a large number of adult volunteers and is particularly grateful to these six new leaders for agreeing to step up and take an active part in delivering a quality program to the boys.

Troop 61 runs a year round scout program. Any boy in grades six through 12 that is interested in joining should contact Scoutmaster Andy Ramsgard at 685-0656 or Sherie181@verison.net.

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