Around the Campfire

Around the CampfireOccasional items of interest that you can search, discover, share, or toss in the fire.

 Upcoming events and nearby places to visit


Upcoming Area Events & Information - Posted 7.7.16


NEW - 2017 National Jamboree - MCC News!!

Please let this serve as a reminder of several upcoming events as follows:

May 21, 2016: Jamboree Expo - Beaver Weekend - MSR / Camp Grimes - 12:00 - 1:30 / dining hall
May 25, 2016: Jamboree Committee meeting - 7 pm / MCC Service Center

CLICK HERE for 2017 Jamboree information package!!


National Scout Jamboree - 7/19-28/2017 - Summit Bechtel Reserve, WV

National Jamborees are held every 4 years (more or less), when 40,000 or more Scouts from the USA and some foreign countries gather to camp and learn about conservation, science, and Scouting values, practice goodwill, trade patches, attend rock concerts and stage shows, cook and clean up, sometimes get wet, then get dry.
You can read about the history of BSA Jamborees at

At the next Jamboree in 2017 Scouts can try out new adventures, like shooting sports, water sports, serious mountain biking, rafting, and rappelling.  Merit badge courses will be offered.
Scout leaders have opportunties to meet new people, serve Scouting in new ways (manning mountain biking trails and zip lines, water sports and pioneering activities, food distribution trucks, subcamp medical facilities, trash and recycling collections), and lead units of Boy Scouts and Venturers.

Mecklenburg County Council will sponsor 4 Boy Scout troops and 2 Venture crews.  Registration for youth and adults is now open.

Scouts and team members
MUST have a current BSA membership with a Boy Scout troop or Varsity Scout team.
MUST be at least a First Class Scout.
MUST be at least 12 years of age by the first day of the Jamboree or an 11 year old that has graduated the 6th grade, but has not reached their 18th birthday by the last day of the Jamboree.
MUST be approved by the unit leader and local council.
MUST have appropriate parent/guardian to complete the online parental consent.  (An email will be sent to the parent/guardian during the application process.)
MUST participate in pre-Jamboree training experience with local council and unit leader.
For details see

Cost for youth is $1590.  Cost for aduls is $795.  For details see

Scouts can register online at

The Council Jamboree Committee will be holding a Jamboree Rally on Saturday, May 7, at the MCC Service Center between 9:00 and 11:00 AM.  Please consider this invitation to talk with Jamboree veterans about this opportunity and to answer your questions.


NEW ARTICLES - 7.7.16!


Just a reminder
How was summer camp?  We would like to hear from you, and we would like to share your brief comments with our scouting family.  Please send to Tony Roux, District Camping Chairman, at


Outdoor Leader Skiils

Starting on Saturday morning, November 12, 2016, and continuing until Sunday afternoon, November 13, 2016, Outdoor Leader Skills for Webelos Leaders and Boy Scout Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills will be offered at Belk Scout Camp.  Se


Outdoor Leader Skills for Webelos Leaders is an opportunity to take part in an enjoyable outdoor learning experience and discover what the outing in Webelos Scouting is all about! This course is for all adults connected with the Cub Scout program: Webelos leaders, assistant Webelos leaders, future Webelos leaders, parents of a Cub or Webelos Scout, Cubmasters, committee members, den leaders. It is required for Webelos leaders to earn the Webelos Den Leader Award.


Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills is required for Scoutmasters and Assistant Scoutmasters, and Venturing Crew Leaders whose Crews have Outdoor Programs, to receive the Trained Patch, and to attend Wood Badge.

Please register on-line by Wednesday, November 9, 2016 5PM and pay your participation fee of $35. Included with the flyer below is a map to the location, gear list, and any other information you will need to join us — and please "pass the word" to other Scout leaders in your Unit.

Flyer link:


Does your unit need to borrow tools?

Cub Scout Packs, Boy Scout Troops, and Venturing Crews are invited to borrow tools by the week at 3% of the retail cost of the tool for their service projects, including Eagle Scout Leadership Projects and Hornaday Conservation Award Projects, from Charlotte Community ToolBank.  The ToolBank is a non-profit agency serving other agencies with tools and special event equipment for all kinds of service and construction projects.  To borrow tools for a project, a non-profit group, such as a church or a Scout unit, must register online as a member.  A Scout unit would provide a copy its current charter and provide contact information for adult leaders, such as, Chartered Organization Representative, Unit Committee Chair, Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, or Crew Advisor.  When the membership application is approved for the Scout group, the group would be eligible to borrow tools.  The ToolBank does not lend tools to individuals and tools cannot be used for personal use.  Costs per week for tools range from $0.11 for a paint tray to $0.45 for a shovel to $56.97 for a generator.  If you need tools, check out the Charlotte Community ToolBank at


Museum of the Waxhaws


Located in Union County, just a short drive from Apache District, the museum and surrounding grounds contains a wonderful history of the Region and a memorial to Andrew Jackson.


Some Major Upcoming events include:

August 20th and September 17 Living History Days

August 27th  The Great Pirate Invasion and War of 1812  (10-4)

President Jackson. Come join the fight! Pirates, mermaids, cannons, sword fights, and even President Jackson.

October 22nd Haunted Legends

November 19th Lincoln and the Gettysburg Address.  President Lincoln, and other notables will be speaking.  There will also be reenactors, displays, and much more.


Gold and gem panning every Saturday10-4:30 and Sunday 2-4:30 until it gets too cold.


Open Thursday, Friday, Saturday 10-5 and Sunday 2-5. There is a small admission fee. Taking a group? Be sure to complete the online field trip form.   For further details call (704) 843-1832 or visit their website.




Keep the Outing in Scouting.  Check out the latest Where To Go Camping Guide


Looking for great places to camp? Each year the Catawba Lodge of the Order of the Arrow, prepares an update to the Where To Go Camping Guide (WTGCG).  The 2016 version has now been published to the web at


The WTGCG contains information on Mecklenburg County Council and BSA camping policies and our Council camps.  You can discover where your unit might go car camping or backpacking or canoe camping with sample trips that units have taken.  The Guide also contains information on camping in association with unit, council, regional, and national training programs, on camping at BSA National High Adventure Bases and at National and World Scout Jamborees



Camping Reviews


Do you a favorite place to camp?  We would like to hear about it and share it with our readers. Please send your brief comments to: Apache




2015 Apache District Award Recipients


District Award of Merit

Christopher Gamble (Troop 56)

Monica Zelenick         (Pack 167)

Mike Husak                (Troop 8)

Michael Carey           (Pack 249)


Commissioner of the Year 

Chuck Butler


Scout Leaders of the Year

Don Leswing  (Pack 8)

Jay Brietz       (Pack 3)

Mitch Cox      (Troop 8)


God Send Awards


1          Albert Schilling

3          Jennifer Clutter

7          Kelly Jordan

8          Donna Lynch

9          Steve Hughes

45       Tony Johns

55       Andy Hale

80       Jeanne King

114     Sarah Amador

167     Jamey Baysinger

174     Leslie Tesch

249     Chris Weaver

256     Tanya Hicks

265     Michael Hattenbach

465     Bert Wray



1          Graham McGoogan

8          Dan Burns

9          Jason Permenter

11       Devin Ware

34       Curtis Blaine

55       Andy Bell

116     Tim Calkins

119     Andy Kramer

165     Jeannette Hewitt

167     Paul O’Shea

236     Jeff Kuk

249     Liz Farley



Preventive Foot Health:  What the Public Can Learn from the Boy Scouts - by W. Stuart Tucker, Jr. MD - Boy Scout leader in Mecklenburg County Council


Same Journey, Different Trails – Encouraging Leadership in Older Scouts - December

Last weekend I went on an overnight trip with my son’s Troop. The younger Scouts attended a merit badge program, rock wall climbing, and other scheduled activities while the older boys, as usual, went off to do their own thing only showing up for meals and lights out. The adults were disappointed. It is a relatively new Troop and they are trying to make the transition to being a truly boy-led unit. But that is hard to do if the boy leaders disappear the first chance they get.

It is important for several reasons to get the older boys involved with the younger boys. Among them are sharing their knowledge of Scouting, creating and continuing Troop traditions, and most importantly motivating younger Scouts to advance in rank. A 15 year old is a rock star to a 12 year old. They can be much more effective than us old folks in getting a young Scout’s attention and motivating him to learn the important skills and ideals of Scouting.

So how do we encourage diversity and inclusion among the different ages and ranks within our units? Scouting Magazine has some ideas:

·       Give prizes to the Scout who helps the most other Scouts get started on their goals.

·       Make teaching part of the weekly meeting agenda. Have the SPL assign a Scout who is First Class or above to teach a lesson to the younger boys each week.

·       Recognize Scouts for finishing requirements at the closing of each meeting. Perhaps they could also mention the Scout that taught the requirements.

·       Send older Scouts to leader training such as SEALS or NYLT and encourage them to practice the skills they learn.

·       Plan a group activity with the older Scouts set up at different stations around the room teaching different skills

·       Assign older boys as Troop guides for younger patrols.

Same Journey, Different Trails is a monthly article related to the topic of Diversity. To suggest a topic contact Tim Hall at



Carolina Outdoors Radio Show

Looking for some great information on hiking, fishing, camping or wonderful places to visit, camp, or hike?  Listen to Bill Bartee and Don Yager on “Carolina Outdoors Radio Show.   You can hear them on WBT radio (1110 AM or 99.3 FM) on Saturday mornings at 5 a m. Or better yet, or download their podcasts and listen to them at your convenience.  You can access their podcasts from

Bill is an Eagle Scout and the owner of Jesse Browns.  He and Don have been doing the show for nearly 20 years.



Carolina Thread Trail

Looking for new places to Hike, Bike Walk, Run, Paddle, Learn, or Volunteer
Check out Carolina Thread Trail -

Also view the excellent interactive Map -

The Carolina Thread Trail (The Thread) is an exciting project that’s creating a regional network of greenways, trails and blueways that reaches 15 counties, 2 states and 2.3 million people. There are 141 miles of The Thread open to the public – linking people, places, cities, towns and attractions. 


Fishing Resources

Looking for places to take your kids fishing?

Both the Mecklenburg County Parks and Recreation Department

And the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission have EXCELLENT websites.  The N C Fishing Access map is AWESOME!

For further details please visit:




Eagle Project availability!!


Potential Eagle Projects

Midland Commons Apartments 

Midland Commons is a low income senior housing community.  It is owned by National Church Residences a nonprofit organization that provides affordable housing to seniors 62 years old or older and persons with disabilities.  They have several potential project, but especially the need for a raised community garden.

Background information from the Service Coordinator:

“Last year we started our first community garden which took the majority of my residents back to their gardening days. Everyone was excited and worked hard making our garden the best. However, Midland Commons has some residents in wheelchairs and lack range of motion to bend and kneel; this prevents them from participating in our garden.

As Service Coordinator, I am attempting to add some cheer to their lives during this spring and summer time by having raised garden beds installed and wanted to know if your Boy Scouts Unit would take this project on? I hear the Boy Scouts have an “Eagle Project” and can’t think of a better project where the boys would gain wisdom from Midland Commons residents and improve their gardening, project management and construction knowledge.”

For further details, please contact Jonas Richardson, Service Coordinator at (704) 395-8777 or 0827.  His email address is


Hemby Program  Center – affiliated with the Siskey YMCA
The Hemby Program Center is located at 9760 Happy Valley Drive in Charlotte.  It is   a 21-acre site housing a Preschool, Afterschool Program and Eagle Rock Day Camp.

There are several opportunities for Eagle Scout Service projects.  For further details, contact Mr. Rich Gallagher School Age Program Director  (980) 322-7338


James K Polk Masonic Lodge
Scouting and the Masonic Fraternity have a long history together.  The James K. Polk Masonic Lodge 759, located in Pineville, has a potential Eagle Scout Service project.  They are looking to make a nice memorial garden with lighting and benches around the lodge flagpole.   For further details, please contact Randy Richardson, the lodge secretary at  (704) 910-3628.   For further information about the Lodge please visit


President James K. Polk Historic Site - EAGLE PROJECTS CURRENTLY ON HOLD
While several projects have already been completed, there is a continuing need for more projects at the President James K. Polk Historic Site.   Wow, what a great opportunity to do a service project at the birthplace of the eleventh President of the United States. For further information, please call Mr. Scott Warren at (704) 889-7145. He is usually there Monday – Friday 8:30 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. After hours you can leave a message. 


Reed Gold Mine

Located in nearby Midland, NC, not far from the Belk Scout Camp, and just a 30-minute drive from the Ballantyne area, this is the site of the first gold mine in the United States. For information about merit badges and Eagle service projects call Mike Scott at (704) 721- 4653. 



Comments, suggestions and potential Eagle Service Projects


If you have comments, suggestions or potential Eagle Service Projects, send an e-mail to:


Around the Campfire heard it is definitely worth the visit.

Be Prepared!

Now is the time to double check your hurricane/home emergency supplies and make sure you have a plan. Better still, now is a great time to involve your scout with the family planning.  Give him some tasks so that he is invested in the process.

Some ideas of 'scout appropriate' tasks
- Print a checklist of supplies for your emergency kit (see link below)
- Make sure the Emergency kit is fully stocked; make a list of items you need to replenish
- Clean up the yard of things that can fly around in a windstorm.
As a family, talk about what you will do if the hurricane approaches, when you will evacuate and to where, or what to do if you are staying home and the storm intensifies unexpectedly.  Most important, emphasize that while a hurricane sounds scary, it's manageable, and to stay calm.
Be Ready (kids site)
Crossword Puzzle related to emergency planning
North Carolina Department of Public Safety,000010,000019
Many Cub Scout rank achievements are satisfied by emergency planning.  The following document details the Cub Scout and Webelos Emergencey Prep requirments.

District News!!!!


Highlights from the 2016 Council Recognition


Mecklenburg County Council and Apache District Receive Gold Level Journey to Excellence Award


Two of Apache’s own Awarded the 2016 Silver Beaver!


Congratulations to James Todd - Charter Organziation Representative / Pack & Troop 79, and James C. Smith - Charter Organization Representative - Pack & Troop 356 on being awarded the Silver Beaver.  This award is well deserved by two of Apache’s own very hard working, very dedicated Scouters.  


Pictured above from left to right are:  James Todd and James C. Smith.


Congratulations to our four new 2015 Apache District Award of Merit recipients


Pictured above from left to right are:  Christopher Gamble(T56), Monica Zelenik(P167), Mike Husak(P8) and Michael Carey(T-249).

Upcoming Events

Salisbury Historic Trail

A neat 6 to 6 ½ mile day hike starting at the Military Cemetery and ending at the Rowan museum.  Allow 2 to 3 hours at the museum.  There are plenty of places to stop and shop.


Visit the:

Old English Cemetery (where several of General Cornwallis’s generals are buried).

Confederate Cemetery

 Union Cemetery

 African American Cemetery

 Old Courthouse

 Rowan County Museum


Trolley Tours run on Saturdays; there is a fee


For further details on the walking tour, please see attached pdf file.

For further details on attractions in Salisbury , please visit



Nearby Places to Visit!!!

Looking for some neat things to do this summer?  Here are a few.  Some are free, while others have a small admission charge.   Consider connecting them to Boy Scout Merit badges (such as American Heritage, and Indian Lore), or to the Cub Scout belt loop and arrow point electives.

Andrew Jackson State Park

Andrew Jackson State Park combines history, art and community activities into a setting that has made it one of the S.C. State Park Service’s most popular attractions.

Popular features of the park include living history programs, an Andrew Jackson museum that details his boyhood in the South Carolina backcountry.  Great opportunities for picnics, boating, hiking and fishing.

Lansford Canal Park

Stretched along the Catawba River on the South Carolina fall line, Lansford Canal State Park is home to the well-preserved remains of the canal system that made the river commercially navigable from 1820 to 1835.

Favorite activities in this Piedmont Park include picnicking, nature watching and studying the canal structures. Fishing is permitted along the Catawba River, and a paddling trail runs through the park for canoes and kayaks.

President James K. Polk Historic Site - EAGLE PROJECTS CURRENTLY ON HOLD

This site is located on land once owned by the parents of James K. Polk, the 11th U.S. president. The state historic site commemorates significant events in the Polk administration: the Mexican-American War, settlement of the Oregon boundary dispute, and the annexation of California. Reconstructions of typical homestead buildings—a log house, separate kitchen, and barn—are authentically furnished. The visitor center features a film on Polk's life and exhibits on his family and tumultuous presidency.

Cowpens National Park  

A pasturing area at the time of the battle, this Revolutionary War site commemorates the place where Daniel Morgan and his army turned the flanks of Banastre Tarleton's British army. This classic military tactic, known as a double envelopment, was one of only a few in history.

Kings Mountain National Park

Kings Mountain State Park has miles of forested trails perfect for supreme Kings Mountain hiking, two fishing lakes, and sits adjacent to Kings Mountain National Military Park,  one of many national park Revolutionary War sites. Local crowds flock to the park during regularly scheduled special events, especially every November when living history demonstrations are held at the park’s replica 1800s Piedmont farm.

Latta Plantation Nature Preserve

The Latta Plantation Nature Center has an active program of advancement and camping programs for Cub Scouts at all levels.  If your den or pack does not have access to a critical skill, or if your Cubs are seeking adventure not far away, please check out the opportunities on Latta Plantation Nature Center and Preserve.

Please call Latta Plantation Nature Center well in advance to work out scheduling details.

A nominal fee is charged.  Please see attached pricelist.

Mecklenburg County Nature Preserves

Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Department operates 3 Nature Centers:  Reedy Creek, McDowell, and Latta Plantation.  You can link to these Centers from

Rankin National History Museum

The Rankin Museum is fun for all ages. Take yourself away from your everyday world and explore faraway places and times past in our exhibits. Imagine what it would be like if you were there! Take a walk in the jungles of Central America, in the backwoods of the Carolinas, or go on a safari in Africa and encounter animals closer than you could ever get in the wild.

Town Creek Indian Mound

Located in Mt. Gilead, NC, Town Creek, has been the focus of a consistent program of archaeological research under one director for more than half a century.  It is one of the most popular State Historic Sites in North Carolina.

Indian Rock

In Charlotte an Indian landmark in the Big Rock Nature Preserve - South Charlotte

Walking and driving tours in Charlotte

Cane Creek Park – Waxhaw, NC

Fishing, swimming and hiking.

Waxhaw Museum

The museum's permanent exhibit is focused on the rich history of the Waxhaws region.  Beginning with its Native American roots, the exhibits trace the history of the region to the turn of the twentieth century. Particular attention is given to Scots-Irish immigration and the rural life of these early settlers to the Waxhaws.

In addition there are exhibits interpreting the American Revolution in the region, as well as exhibits on agriculture and important crops and the Civil War. The turn of the century exhibit gives a unique look at the town of Waxhaw as it existed around 1900.

Charlotte Nature Museum

Located in Freedom Park, not far from up town Charlotte, the museum offers nature-based fun and learning for the family. There is a modest admission fee for non-members. For further details please visit:

North Carolina Transportation Museum

North Carolina Transportation Museum, in nearby Spencer.
This is a great place to visit.

Other Resources:

Insiders Guide- Fun with the Family North Carolina – Hundreds of ideas for day trips with the kids.  by James L. Hoffman

City and county, and state web pages offer great information about parks and upcoming activities.

Resources for hikers

Jesse Brown Outdoors
Sierra Trading post
Backpacker Magazine

Have Fun – Be Safe, and Have a Great Summer!!!!!

2015 Apache District Silver Beaver Recipients

The Silver Beaver Award is the highest recognition, which may be awarded to Scouters within the jurisdiction of a local council territory by the National Court of Honor, based upon research and nominations by the local council. The award is presented for noteworthy service with exceptional character on behalf of youth to registered Scouting volunteers.  

Silver Beaver RecipientsCongratulations to all of our 2012  Mecklenburg County Council recipients, especially to  George MacBain, Dwayne Thomas, and Mark Spisak from Apache District.

Pictured here are Dwayne Thomas,  George MacBain, and Miriam Olynick, a Silver Beaver recipient in 2010.  




Potential Eagle Service Projects!!!

Comments, suggestions and potential Eagle Service Projects


If you have comments, suggestions or potential Eagle Service Projects, send an e-mail to:





Send comments, questions or suggestions about the Apache District Sections of this web site to the Apache District Webmaster / Al Nedrich.