All posts by Communications

Good We Do 4/9/21

Second BSA Scout food drive fills Watertown Food Pantry shelves

Scouts collected 2.5 tons of food for the food pantry this past November, but both the Coronavirus pandemic and the resulting unemployment in Watertown has hit our community hard. At the November drive Kathleen Cunningham, Director of the Watertown Food Pantry made an unusual request: Could another food drive be held soon?

Scouting for Food is a service project the BSA Scouts have participated in for years: Supporting a local food pantry, scouts across the U.S. collect food once a year, usually around Thanksgiving when many are feeling generous.

Scouting for Food in Watertown is a tradition near to the scouts’ hearts: Both the Watertown Food Pantry and the scouts call the Watertown-Belmont United Methodist Church at 80 Mt. Auburn Street home.

The answer to Cunningham’s question was yes, and March 20, scouts from Troop 30 (age 10-17) and Pack 30 (age 5-10) responded, collecting 5186 pounds of groceries, cleaning supplies and personal items from Watertown neighbors.

Of particular note was the Bear Den of Pack 30, a group of third graders who together collected 1,500 pounds of food that had to be delivered to the Food Pantry in several cars and one pickup truck.

The individual scout who collected the heaviest load of donations was Webelos Scout Xavier Owens, who collected 814.7 pounds of food.

“The extraordinary team of scouts and leaders is overwhelming. The Watertown Food Pantry is truly proud to partner with this team,” said Cunningham. “When support is needed they really know how to get a job done!”

For those who missed the food drive, the Watertown Food Pantry is open Tuesdays for donations (9 a.m. – 2 p.m.) and for services (10 a.m. – 2 p.m.)

Summer 2021 at WTC

Hello Troop Leaders,

 

After much deliberation and thoughtful consideration, the Executive Board of The Spirit of Adventure Council has made the difficult decision not to run summer resident camp in 2021.

 

The economic impact of the COVID restrictions has made it impossible to run camp without significant financial deficit, or transferring those costs to an already burdened membership – you.  Special staffing requirements, COVID testing standards, higher food expenses, and uncertain attendance all were factors that went into the decision.  This was not an easy decision, and we ultimately needed to decide to do what’s best for our Scouts, and make sure that regardless of where they go, that we help ensure they get a quality summer experience.

 

It is with that in mind, that we are collaborating with The Daniel Webster Council (Griswold Scout Reservation) and The Narragansett Council (Yawgoog Scout Reservation), as the preferred recommendations for summer resident camp in 2021.  These camps have a larger membership and attendance base, allowing them to better absorb the increased costs of COVID.  The Adventure Card will be reciprocal at both camps.  So, our Scouts will receive any Adventure Card discount benefits for those camps.  We have been working closely with both camps to help make sure the transition to either would be as seamless as possible.

 

Griswold Scout Reservation located in Gilmanton Iron Works, New Hampshire.  Their weeks of operations are June 27-August 21.  The only week that is closed is the week of July 11-17.  Contact Skip Chase, [email protected] for more information, or visit www.NHScouting.org/outdoor-programs/summer-camp.

 

Yawgoog Scout Reservation located in Rockville, Rhode Island.  Their weeks of operations are June 27-August 21.  There is currently availability for all weeks. Contact Tom Sisson, [email protected] for more information, or visit www.Yawgoog.org.

 

Currently, there is a travel advisory for travel to and from MA.  If the advisory is still in place at the time of summer camp, we will allow travel for the purpose of going to summer resident camp.  If conditions get worse and stricter travel restrictions are imposed, both camps will fully refund any deposits or payments made.  So, don’t let that uncertainty hold you back from making plans for this summer.

 

Because of the contained conditions and frequent testing, we are able to allow travel during an advisory for summer resident campThose conditions are not in place with individual Scout units.  We are closely monitoring the state directives and hope to be able to add short-term camping in New Hampshire relatively soon.

 

SPECIAL SUMMER CAMP INFORMATIONAL ROUNDTABLE

A special Camp Roundtable with representatives from both camps will be held on Tuesday, April 13 at 7pm. To rsvp for the Roundtable CLICK HERE

 

We appreciate your patience as we continue to navigate through these challenging times, and endeavor to provide the best Scouting experience for our youth.

 

Yours in Scouting,

John Andres

Council Commissioner

 

Jerry Cross

Council VP of Program

 

Jonathan Pleva

Director of Field Service/COO

 

 

Message from the Spirit of Adventure Board to our Scouting community.

It is with regret that the Board of Directors of the Spirit of Adventure Council announces the resignation of our Scout Executive, Chuck Eaton. We are incredibly grateful for the leadership and energy that Chuck provided the local Scouting community over the past ten years. This departure certainly adds some near-term challenges that the Board and professional management team have already begun to address.

Over the longer horizon we feel that the Spirit of Adventure is well positioned for success in serving the diverse backgrounds of the youth, families, and communities that are part of our footprint. This is in no small part thanks to the unique pallet of skill sets and energy that Chuck brought to the Scout Executive job over the past decade.

We are excited that, as Cheryl Katon, she will be joining Fenway Health as Vice President of Resource Development and Donor Engagement. Located in Boston, Fenway Health is a $131 million health care, education, research, and advocacy organization. With 600 employees, they serve over 33,000 people in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and Fenway neighborhood community. This is a great career move for Cheryl and, while we will miss her leadership and voice in Scouting, we wish her much success.
The Board is pleased to announce that Jonathan Pleva, a 25 year Scouting professional, will serve as our interim Scout Executive. Jonathan has served as the COO/Director of Field Service for the Spirit of Adventure Council since its formation and has twice served other councils in the interim executive role. The Board is convinced that the management team is well positioned to provide the leadership required navigate the BSA bankruptcy process and transition away from the tougher times brought on by the pandemic.

Although Cheryl has decided to step down from her role as our Scout Executive, she will remain a member of the Scouting family. As she recently said to us “I’m an Eagle Scout, I’ve been in Scouting since I was in second grade, and I’ve spent my career trying to unlock Scouting for all families. I’d like to stay connected to Scouting, help where I can, and offer my talents when they are wanted.”

After a 27-year professional career in the Boy Scouts of America, we can look back on many accomplishments that helped better position Scouting for meeting the needs of today’s youth. Central in this reflection was her vision that helped turn an underutilized indoor pool facility into the centerpiece of the council’s New England Base Camp engagement and program strategy. This strategy spread to a multi-council collaboration that now serves three states through multiple outdoor education centers. Her passion for unlocking Scouting for all families has helped us become a role model of inclusive practices for other Scout councils.

We understand that upon reading this you may have questions regarding Cheryl and her journey. Cheryl’s story is Cheryl’s story to tell, and she will be sharing more of it through her social media platforms. Other inquires specific to the council may be made through our friends at Regan Communications (included below).

The Board asks that you all join us in wishing Cheryl much success and happiness as she continues her professional and personal journey. We look forward to her continued engagement with our Scouting family.

Jeffrey Reynolds
President of the Board
On Behalf of the Spirit of Adventure Council Board of Directors

For inquires related to the council, please contact Sean Martin of Regan Communications at [email protected]

Good We Do 2/26/21

Owen Raiche receives the National Certificate of Merit for Heroic Actions

Last night at Troop 160 Lexington’s Zoom meeting, Owen Raiche was recognized with a National Certificate of Merit.

On September 14, 2019 Life Scout Owen Raiche was attending a neighborhood association party at The Green Banana Park on Hayes Avenue in Lexington.  During the party Mrs. Cerise Keim started to choke on a piece of hamburger.  When Owen noticed Mrs. Keim was in distress, giving the universal chocking signal, Owen administered the Heimlich maneuver and helped dislodge the piece of hamburger allowing her to begin to breathe again.

Owen credits his quick response time to his Scout training.  He said, “as soon as I understood the problem I knew exactly what to do, remembering the training I went through to get First Aid merit badge, CPR/AED certification, and the Wilderness First Aid training course for Philmont.”

These are the actions we hope to never have to use but are so grateful to be able to do so when the need arises.

Congratulations Owen on a job well done!!

Good We Do 2/12/21

Cub Scout Pack 361 participated in Project Valentine and made Valentines as part of a service project.  Project Valentine is a handmade valentine card drive benefiting seniors with Valentines delivered to nursing homes, assisted living facilities, senior centers.