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Ken Dutcher Elected as District Chair (Feb 5)
Ken Dutcher was elected as District Chair during the 2015 District Annual Meeting along with Alex Morales, who will serve as District Vice Chair for Outreach. A second vote that same evening approved a slate of District Members-at-Large, and a third vote approved recommending Barry Goldman to continue serving as District Commissioner, pending final approval by the Council Executive Board.
Ken's transition was easy, since he had already spent the last three months as the interim Chair after Pat Stamato had to step down due to a change in his day job responsibilities. Ken was sorry that Pat was not present during the meeting in order to be thanked in person for "three solid years of leadership."
Ken announced some "structural changes" to the district's organization and passed out a set of charts to explain them. Ken cautioned that the charts are a "work in progress" and invited people to spot errors and especially to suggest names to fill in the "to-be-determined" blanks. At the top of the chart were two Vice Chairs, with Alex Morales handling "Outreach" and a TBD Vice Chair for "Development." Also reporting to Ken were 8 operating committees responsible for all the tasks that members of the District Committee already handle plus a few new tasks. The operating committees and their chairs are:
o Activities and Civic Service (Mark Wrightington)
o Advancement and Awards (Ed Ference)
o Camp Promotion and Outdoors (Barry Messner)
o Communications and Publicity (TBD)
o Finance (TBD)
o Membership (TBD)
o Nominating/Manpower (John Felice)
o Training (Bill Severino)
Each of the 8 operating committees had its own chart showing tasks it is responsible for, with many of the tasks already having a name filled in. For example, even though the Finance Committee had no chair formally named, the task of "Family FOS" was assigned to Biff Van Kleef, and the task of "Golf Outing" was assigned to Dave Wolf. Mark's Activities Committee will be the busiest with 18(!) tasks assigned to it.
A Nice Turnout for the Tiger Tumble (Jan 17)
Event organizer Mark Wrightington reported that 139 Tiger Cubs showed up with parents for the 11th annual District Tiger Tumble in Palisades Park. Tigers went around the gym floor to each of the 10 fun stations. As always, "Donut Eating" was the most popular, with a Tiger and his partner trying to eat a donut hanging from a string without using their hands. Some of the other stations were Rubber Band Guns, Marble Painting, Stomp Rockets, Scooter Races, and the Raingutter Regatta. New this year was "Paper Plate Gliders," introduced by Eric Makar, who is also a counselor for the Boy Scout Aviation merit badge. If you would like to make one yourself, the merit badge pattern for an FPG-9 glider can be found here: http://www.nationalmuseum.af.mil/shared/media/document/AFD-070419-017.pdf
Mark said that he had lots of staff help, with about 50 adults and Boy Scouts. District Chair Ken Dutcher said that he stopped by after hearing Leslie Sonkin tell how seeing a Tiger Tumble will "restore your faith in the Scouting program." Ken reported "Nothing but smiles from the kids and even the parents." At the closing campfire, Barry Goldman introduced a new song called, "The Short Navajo Happy Song," consisting of a single word: "HA!".
January Klondike Derby Postponed to February 28
The January 24 Klondike Derby was canceled at the last minute due to too much snow! Event organizer Allen Sterk explained that Campgaw Mountain phoned him early in the morning to say they would not be able to clear the prior night's 8 inches of snow in time for the Klondike. The first available date for a postponement was February 28, because, for example, Feb 14 will be tied up by President's Day traffic at Campgaw's ski slope.
Three Rivers District Pinewood Derby (Mar 14)
Don Ware Classic 2015
Link to a flyer:
Link to Pinewood Derby rules
March 14 (Saturday)
1200 Koelle Blvd., Secaucus, NJ
$5 per entry (pay at the door)
Tigers and Bears
Registration: 10:00 AM
Race begins: 11:30 AM (approx)
Wolves and Webelos-1&2
Registration: 11:30 AM
Race begins: 1:00 PM (approx)
Send your pack's first place winners - one from each rank. Maximum entries per pack: 5.
Cubmasters: Please declare your pack's entries by March 11 (Wednesday) so the organizers know how many patches to order. Contact Ernie Sprance at
Mark Wrightington to be Honored as Scouter of the Year (Mar 26)
Mark Wrightington will be honored as the Northeast Region Scouting Museum's Scouter of the Year during the museum's annual dinner. From the very beginning of the Three Rivers District, Mark volunteered to be the lead organizer for one event after the other, such as the Bowl-a-Thon, the Tiger Tumble, the Gold Rush, the Pirate Quest, and the Window Display Competition. For events where Mark was not the lead, he could always be counted on to be deeply involved in some other capacity. Most recently, Mark volunteered to head the district's new "Activities and Civic Service" operating committee, where he will have general oversight for all of the districts many events.
The Museum's dinner will take place on March 26 at the American Legion Hall in Rochelle Park, registration cost $25 ($35 at the door). Details can be found at:
Editor's note: The Northeast Region Scouting Museum is separate from the Northern NJ Council and the Three Rivers District. However, it is closely affiliated to both because its membership and activities often overlap those of NNJC and TRD.
Awards Dinner for the District Award of Merit (Apr 19)
Nominations for are still being accepted for a deserving Scouter to receive the prestigious District Award of Merit (DAM). If you know of a deserving Scouter who meets the qualification, fill out a copy of the nomination form and forward it to Rich Curran:
The deadline for DAM submission is April 2, which is when the Three Rivers District Committee will hold its April meeting. The nominee must be currently registered with the Scouts and "Must have rendered noteworthy service to youth in Scouting, outside Scouting, or both... [and have rendered] outstanding service beyond the expectations of [his or her] Scouting position.
There's more! The awards dinner is also a good time to recognize a deserving parent or other adult in your troop or pack who has made above-and-beyond contributions. Contact Rich and ask him to prepare a "Service to Local Unit Award" certificate. The application form and a sample certificate are posted here:
There's more! This dinner would be a great occasion to honor your Scoutmaster or Cubmaster or Crew Advisor with a "Unit Leader Award of Merit." For this award, the unit Committee Chair should contact the council (not Rich Curran) and let them process it. They'll get back to you with a certificate and two uniform patches to present, a square knot and a bold-border position patch. For Scout troops and Venture Crews, the application needs an endorsement by the SPL or Crew President. Click here for the application form:
Date Changes for two District Camporees
The TRD World Conservation Weekend will take place on the weekend of June 6-7 (was June 13-14).
The TRD M*A*S*H Camporee will take place in the fall, probably Nov 7-8 (was Mar 21-22).
Activities Chair Mark Wrightington explained that the June event ran into a conflict with a Cub family camping weekend that the Council was anxious to run in order to promote its Cub camps. We agreed to shift our date.
Mark gave two reasons for postponing the M*A*S*H Camporee. One was that the Klondike Derby was postponed to February 28, which didn't give enough time for proper planning of a March event. Another reason is that Three Rivers has traditionally run a fall camporee every year, and so it was an easy choice to select November as the new date.
Change to Three Rivers District Execs
Starting in mid-January, the Three Rivers District have been served by Joel Lieberman, Oliris Ramos, and Katelyn Merritt. The announcement was made by Steve Leonardi, who said that he will step back in order to resume his actual title of Field Director. However, Steve said that he will still keep close contact with Three Rivers, and so we can think of ourselves "as having 3½ DEs."
Joel is an old friend. He served as one of the DEs assigned to TRD when we were first organized in 2011, was transferred to Ramapo Valley in May, 2014, and has just been transferred back again. Kate was a "swap" involving Joe Mertens, with Kate coming from Ramapo Valley District and Joe Mertens going there.
A "Gold" Journey to Excellence Award for Three Rivers District
Steve Leonardi announced that Three Rivers had achieved gold level in its Journey to Excellence for performance in 2014, making us the only district of the three in NNJC to do so. We achieved silver in 2013.
The award is based on totaling scores in 18 categories, each with its own private bronze-silver-gold level. We reached gold in 5 categories and silver in 3 others. The gold categories were Fundraising Manpower, Membership Growth, Youth Retention, Voice of the Scout, and District Committee Positions Filled. Clearly the one to be most proud of is "Membership Growth." Steve said, "Northern NJ was the only council in our area to show a positive growth – and this in spite of our recruiting in metro areas, always the toughest." He was also pleased with "Total Visitations," even though it was only at bronze. It showed that TRD was making good progress in having Unit Commissioners check in with the units that they serve.
Minutes from the District Annual Meeting (Feb 5)
A copy of minutes taken during the Three Rivers District Committee meeting of February 5 can be found here:
It covers the annual election along with other business and reports from the various operating committees.
Popcorn Champion Units Announced
In Three Rivers District, Paramus Troop 138 topped everyone with nearly $13,000 in sales.
Anthony Chirdo, Staff coordinator for the 2014-15 popcorn sale, recently published the top 20 sellers for each of NNJC's three districts. Close behind T138 were Paramus Pack 245 and Rutherford Pack 168.
As for the other districts... Fuhgeddaboudit! Pack 216 in the Lenape Trails District sold three times as much as our T138!
Looking Ahead to Scout Summer Camp
All the information you need to know about NNJC camps for Cubs, Scouts, and high adventure has been consolidated into a super-fancy online "flip book":
The display starts out looking like page 1 of a multi-page paper brochure. When your mouse clicks on the upper-right corner, the display animates to look like you're turning the paper page to view page 2. Very elegant!
Please note the April 15 deadline for early-bird camp fee discounts, which typically can save you $50 per Scout (Floodwood and NYLT save $25 -- see the following article for more about NYLT).
National Youth Leadership Training (Aug 16-22)
National Youth Leadership Training is the premier leadership course for Boy Scouts and Venturers!
August 16-22, 2015
It's exciting and fun!
It's awesome and incredible!
It's NYLT !!!!
It's one of the best youth leadership training opportunities in the Northeast Region!
Let them be leaders!
Give your youth a chance at making a difference:
• Teach them how to lead
• Show them how to lead
• Let them lead!!!!!!!
YOU can make a difference...
Let THEM make a difference...
To be eligible, Scouts must
• Be 14 by Aug 1 2015 and have completed 8th grade
• Be no older than 18 by Aug 23, 2015
• Be at least First Class or a Venturer by Aug 1 2015
• $50 non-refundable deposit to hold a space (acct #936)
• $325 per Scout to be paid by June 30, 2015 ($350 after that)
• Camperships are available - see the contact below.
Register early because:
• Course closes when registration reaches capacity
• Course has SOLD OUT quickly in past years
• Further information e-mailed after registration
Some Upcoming Training Sessions
Feb 19 - Merit Badge Counselor Training
Mar 14 - District Committee Workshop
Mar 28 - Merit Badge Counselor Training
Apr 10-12 - Outdoor Skills Weekend (BALOO, OWLS, IOLS Combined Course)
Apr 24-26 - Leave No Trace Trainer Weekend (for youth)
Order of the Arrow Election Season
Scoutmasters should make it a point to have their best Scouts become members of the prestigious Order of the Arrow, Scouting's honor organization.
The way to do it is to ask the OA Election Team to come to one of your Scout meetings to hold an election. Use this link: http://bit.ly/1BkfNdD
You can find out about eligibility requirements and other questions by contacting Sean Skinner, Lodge Vice Chief for Administration: LodgeIXElections@gmail.com
Cub Recruiting - Advice from the Experts (Feb 25)
BSA National will run a web-cast on February 25 devoted to helping Cub packs do better recruiting. Execs from National will first describe the program they call "Build the Adventure - Cub Scout Recruitment Initiative" along with tools and resources. "We look forward to sharing our 'Best Practices' with you."
They will feature "Presentations from local council guests who have had great success in Cub Scout recruiting. They will share 'how they did it'." One council will tell how they posted an 18% increase in Cub membership.
Working Towards a Zip Line at Camp Turrell
Larry Tosi announced that the Friends of Camp Turrell had raised an additional $2,200 toward the purchase and installation of a zip line for Camp Turrell.
The money was raised at their February 5 "beer and pig roast," which was held in a German-style Biergarten. The roasted pig was accompanied by German sausages and various Ramstein beers. Photos were posted, including one with Biff Van Kleef: http://scout201.smugmug.com/Friends-of-Camp-Turrell/Beer-Tasting-Dinner-2-2015/n-K4RbM
A Death - Henry Golubiewski
Henry E. Golubiewski, 99, died on Jan. 16, at Twin Cedars Senior Living in Shohola, Pa.
Born in Minneola, N.Y., he previously lived in Bayonne and Rockaway Twp. for many years before moving to Pennsylvania in 2005.
Golubiewski served in the Army during World War II in the 609th Tank Destroyer Division, and in the Marine Reserves during peacetime.
Golubiewski was employed by Picatinny Arsenal in Dover, retiring in 1973. Prior to that he had worked at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.
He was formerly a parishioner of Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in Rockaway, a member of the Boy Scouts of America, a Camp Ranger at Camp Lewis in Rockaway Twp., and a member of the American Legion.
Golubiewski is survived by five step-children, Dorothy Bower, Dolores Fallon, Diane Garity, Walter Gursky and Stanley Gursky; two sisters, Irene Golubiewski and Regina Rogacki; 14 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
He was predeceased by his wife, Gladys in 1996.
Funeral services were conducted by the Whitham-Kanapaux Funeral Home. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Boy Scouts of America, Northern N.J. Council, 25 Ramapo Valley Rd, Oakland NJ 07436.
This note from Fred Creswick of the TRD Advancement Committee:
As the Ranger at Camp Lewis, Henry was a superman who pulled in the floating dock every year by himself. He started in the 60's when he was working at Picatinny Arsenal part time and watching the camp on weekends. He became our full time Ranger after retiring from Picatinny.
If you have a question, comment, or suggestion, please e-mail: District Director Steve Leonardi