Meeting Report – Aquehonga District Committee – 5 February 2013

As submitted to the Staten Island Advance:

Meeting at Berlin Lodge in Pouch Camp, Seaview, the Aquehonga District Committee of the Boy Scouts of America held its monthly meeting.  Aquehonga District Chair Brenda Gazinski called the meeting to order.

Two major youth events are this weekend.  On Saturday, the Boy Scouts will hold their bi-annual Klondike Derby at Pouch Camp.  Scouts must construct and race a travois, a sled used by the Plains Indians, as well as compete at nine different skill stations.  The Island-wide Finals of the Cub Scout Pinewood Derby will take place at the Staten Island Mall this Sunday, February 10.  Pinewood Derby cars are built from kits by each scout with an adult partner.  This year marks the beginning of a new format for race car classifications, so five Scouts from each Pack will come to the Staten Island Mall to compete.  The winners of each class (Tiger, Wolf, Bear, Junior Webelos and Senior Webelos) will advance to the citywide finals in the Spring.  The first group of cars from the Tiger Scouts will race starting at 11 AM.  Each group will follow, with the Senior Webelos racing at 3 PM.  The top three cars from each division will go on to compete in the New York City finals later this year.

This Friday, February 8, the Jewish Committee on Scouting invites Scouts and Scouters of all faiths to join them for Sabbath services at Congregation B’nai Israel, 45 Twombly Avenue, Bay Terrace.  The service starts at 8 PM, and all are welcome at the Oneg following services.  The Catholic Committee noted that nearly 50 Cub Scouts received their religious emblems at St. Peter’s.  Wednesday night, the Committee will hold the Board of Review for Boy Scouts wishing to qualify to receive their religious emblems at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhattan on April 7.

The Native American workshop for Cub Scouts has been rescheduled for March 2.  The 75th Anniversary of Aquehonga Lodge will be marked with a celebration at the Staaten on March 9.  This is the last activity of the Lodge as an independent chapter – all NYC Order of the Arrow lodges are merging into a citywide unit in April to conform to National policy.  (The Order of Arrow is Scouting’s Honor Camper and Service organization.)  The annual Wood Badge “Critter Dinner” will be March 10.  Planning is ongoing for the citywide “Big Apple Jambo” in New York on Columbus Day weekend.  Looking ahead, Scout units plan to participate in both the St. Patricks Day and Memorial Day parades this year.

Training opportunities for Scout Leaders continue.  The SFT staff is completing plans for the upcoming course.  There is a limit of 36 participants, and over half the slots have been filled.   The Advancement Committee said that seven Scouts received their Eagle Board of Reviews last night at Richmondtown, making a total of 15 so far this year.  Last year, 50 Island Scouts achieved the rank of Eagle Scout.

For information about joining Scouting or about any Scouting event or program, contact District Executive Greg Mustoe at (212) 651-2863.  Information is also available at is the local Staten Island Scouting website.

The next adult meeting will be the monthly District Roundtable on Monday, February 11, at Moravian Church, New Dorp.  The next District meeting will be March 5 at Berlin Lodge, Pouch Camp.

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