Family Night at Camp Geiger

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015

Our day began much as any day at camp does: up early, breakfast at 7:30 AM, then off to merit badge classes and activities. Today, we had pancakes and bacon.

A highlight of Lunch (chicken patty sandwiches and baked beans today) was mail call. Each day, several of our Scouts have received packages but Wednesday was a bumper crop. The lucky boys received packages large and small. All were gleefully accepted. If you were not able to send your camper(s) a package, you might consider doing so next year. They will be delighted. A little contact with home goes a long, long way.

Yesterday, we earned third place in the campsite inspection and again garnered the ‘sharpest unit’ award. Later, it turned out that for the campsite inspection, they had failed to add-in nine of the awarded points into our total. Today, we did not even place. We will, of course, redouble our efforts tomorrow. After all, we do not keep a ship-shape camp because we will win an award; we keep a clean camp because we want a clean camp. The competition is fun, and we like recognition, but we will have a neat, orderly camp no matter what. We do the little extras we do, such as a gateway and personal touches at tent sites because we like doing it. It is part of our Geiger experience

Wednesday is Family Night at Camp Geiger and folks come from all over to visit their campers and see the campfire show. Although we are quite far from home, many Troop 451 families make the long trek through Oklahoma and Kansas to the shores of the Missouri River and Camp Geiger.

Traditionally, the visiting families treat their campers to a meal not available at camp, such as fare from a local restaurant. Brought to camp, this is consumed either in the dining hall or al fresco, as suits the family. For those of us whose families were unable to spare the time for a visit, the dining hall staff served pizza and ice cream.

Of course, every lunch and dinner at Camp Geiger includes the salad bar and tonight’s dinner is no exception. Offerings include lettuce, of course, as well as items such as fresh tomatoes, carrots, peppers, corn, etc. Toppings include bacon bits, sunflower seeds, croutons, grated cheese, and various dressings. In other words, it is much like many a commercial salad bar. Also provided are cottage cheese, potato salad, and Cole slaw.

Gratifyingly, the salad bar is hugely popular with Scouts and Scouters. It made a great accompaniment to an otherwise ordinary pizza meal.

After dinner, comes the highlight of the evening: the campfire. Campers and families were treated to an array of songs, several skits, and a dramatic recital. Troop 451 was well-represented among the entries. Gage Wildman and Ryan Bussey performed the ‘Magic Bandana/Banana’ skit. The confusion between the two items elicited lots of laughs from the audience. Both boys deserve accolades for speaking loudly and clearly (and making hilariously-appropriate facial expressions that were clearly evident from several rows away) while presenting an entertaining diversion.

Our adults too had entries. Paul Williams wrote lyrics and arranged the music for several Scout/Camp Geiger-themed songs and he, along with Chris Samson and another of our adults performed them for an appreciative crowd. A song about the Big COPE Tower was especially enjoyed by the COPE staff.

Our adults also entered a skit. This too generated lots of laughs and received much applause. Those involved were Eric Bussey, Steve Kral, Michael Curtis, Jessica Harris, Kevin Lee, Kevin Hollenshead, and Kevin Bryant. Yes, this was a Kevin-heavy bit of showmanship. Everyone did a great job, even when forced to ad lib a bit but the crowd found Jessica’s performance particularly amusing.

Our Scouts who are braves and warriors in the Tribe of Mic-O-Say joined their peers from other Troops in performing several traditional dances for the crowd, with the council ring lit only by firelight. Among the dancers were Cameron Breding, Alex Brock, Ben Bryant, Austin Curtis, Andrew Gonzalez, Josh Hatter, Brady Jones, Neetin Khadka, Stephen Lampe, Jack Tyson, Jace Westfall, Kaleb DiCiaccio and Wes Williams served in the prestigious capacity of Tom Tom beater. This was another crowd-pleasing performance. As dramatic as the dances were in the firelight, those lucky enough to return tomorrow for the Tapping Ceremony are in for an even greater treat! Tune in tomorrow!!

And so to bed.


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