Every summer is a busy time for Scouting in Montana. 2014 was no exception – in fact it was packed from one end to the other. Summer has faded and we are well into the beautiful fall season. Before any more time passes I would like to pay tribute to several remarkable Montana Scouters who stepped up and delivered big-time by leading important council events that made this summer meaningful and exciting for many Scouts and leaders. We start with Wood Badge at Grizzly Base, led by Laura Ercanbrack and her right-hand man Lance (her husband). She recruited a terrific staff and their course was simply outstanding! Next up was our Council Camporee in Townsend , led by Drew Burkenpas and Josey Quinones. These two outstanding Eagle Scouts built a dynamic team of Arrowmen and secured many fine additional staff to conduct a first-class event capped off by an amazing fireworks display. As the Camporee wrapped up our two NYLT – National Youth Leader Training – geared up and ran full, successful courses – one at K-M, led by Tina O’Donnell and Betsy Eubanks, and one at Grizzly Base, led by Tony Higuera, with great support from his wife Elaine, son T.J. and mother-in-law Dr. Carol Ellis. Each course had built a strong, capable staff and delivered outstanding training to our youth leaders from around the state. As we moved into July our summer camp programs provided great Scouting outdoor experiences for Scouts from Montana and beyond. K-M was directed by Tom Mazanec again this summer – Tom recruited and inspired his dedicated staff for Scout and Webelos resident camp. Julie Hall was the director for Melita Island, and she and her talented staff held five spectacular sessions at our unique island camp. MOHAB – Montana High Adventure Camp – was led by Ryan Jordan and Luke Coccoli. This amazing high adventure experience has a home base at the Boone and Crockett Club’s Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Ranch outside of Depuyer and featured spectacular pack rafting/backpacking trips in the Bob Marshall wilderness. Rounding out our summer camp opportunities was Webelos Resident Camp at Grizzly Base. This exciting camp was led by Kevin Brooks and his dynamic team, and they delivered fun and adventure for many Webelos and their partners.
Each of these council events had its own set of challenges and opportunities. Each of our remarkable course or camp directors tackled their challenges and made the most of their opportunities in their own unique way. All gave Montana Scouting their best effort, and all were successful in providing significant experiences for their participating Scouts and Scouters.
I salute each of you – Kevin, Luke, Ryan, Julie, Tom, Tony, Betsy, Tina, Josey, Drew, and Laura – for your leadership and commitment to the Montana Council. You are truly Montana Scouting heroes!