Charter Year at Woodruff Scout Reservation
- Today, I changed the Soapstone Yahoo! Group's website
(http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Soapstone/) description again, but I
composed much more than we would want to or can place in this area.
Therefore, what is seen on the website's home page has been
significantly edited down from what I wrote. I thought you still
might find the information of interest, so I am sending it out to the
group as a message below:
Our current "cover art" is of the 1980 Robert W. Woodruff (Camp J. K.
Orr) Charter Year summer camp patch (sewn onto a charter year staff
neckerchief) in honor of this month when each troop should attend
summer camp. The patch shows the mountains and the lake. Actually,
the lake was still filling in 1980. We had a M.A.S.H. unit at the
lakefront; a Mobile Aquatic Scout Headquarters. This was a portable
lakefront that could be moved up the hill as the lake filled with
water. The swimming area was full of mud and grass, but the lake had
no infamous Woodruff "Killer Brim" to nibble on you.
At the beginning of the summer camp, the opening for the dam's pipe
was about 40 feet in the air. Prior to the beginning of Staff Setup
Week, the lake had been raised to the edge of the road that used to
run between the church and the camp parking lot. Once Staff Week
began, we closed the road, put up barricades, and began covering the
road with the lake. In the next few weeks, a few cars crashed
through the barricades and some went around them and got stuck in the
muddy covered road. The replacement road that goes below the dam was
not constructed until sometime after that summer.
The construction of the camp was being finished as summer camp was
going on. Some sites had no water. They had to carry water to their
campsite in big jugs. Some sites had no pavilion. Because of this
nearly every (or it seemed like it) tarp the council owned (in good
condition or rotten) was brought to Woodruff leaving Bert Adams with
a shortage of tarps. (The word was new tarps had been purchased from
the BSA National Supply, but they were recalled due to either a flaw
in the waterproofing or the fireproofing.)
The Program Center was not finished. The "Health Lodge" was two
Philmont tents. The "Headquarters" was some desks on the big
pavilion surrounded by the dishwasher, clothes washer, and clothes
dryer boxes. The staff was fed at the pavilion from an Army field
kitchen. The Staff Area was behind the future Program Center and had
no electricity. The Staff had to hike to the (one and only) shower
house in camp. The Nature Area was two tarps in the woods below the
shower house. The Scoutcraft (Outdoor Skills) Area was near the
Nature Area, but it was a little bigger and had more tarps.
The camp was filled with little stumps to trip over where small trees
had been cutoff about two inches from the ground. On the other hand,
there was plenty of firewood around which troops could use to cook
their meals with (in sheepherder stoves). The dining hall (for the
non-staff) wasn't built until many years later.
Part of the money used to construct the Robert W. Woodruff Scout
Reservation came from the sale of the original Camp J. K. Orr and
Camp Dobbs. (Camp Dobbs may have a longer name.) Camp J. K. Orr was
used at one time for summer camp, but by the 1970's it was primarily
used for short term camping, JLT, Woodbadge, and some OA Ordeals.
Camp Dobbs was not as developed and was primarily used for short term
camping. The first camp at the Robert W. Woodruff Scout Reservation
was the new Camp J. K. Orr. The plans in 1980 were if a second camp
was built at the Robert W. Woodruff Scout Reservation it would be
called Camp Dobbs. In the meantime it appears the plan is to make
Camp J. K. Orr bigger and bigger rather than open a second camp.
Since 1980, many capital improvements have been made to the Robert W.
Woodruff Scout Reservation. Now that these improvements have been
made at Woodruff and the Volunteer Service Center has been built, as
the economy improves, plans are for capital improvements to increase
at the Bert Adams Scout Reservation.
We change the art periodically to show a variety of traditional
While you are here, check out our "Links" (Bookmarks) section (click
at left). You'll see links to several useful Scouting web sites,
including our own Soapstone Troops 134 and 175. Let us know if there
are other sites you think we should add.