Tuesday, November 29, 2005

NYC Hike, Merit Badges

At last night's meeting, it looks like the date for the NYC hike that works for the most Scouts is Sunday, December 11. I will be away that weekend but, if enough adult Scouters are willing to go, it should work. At this time the adults who have tentatively indicated they will go are:

Dan Dabbs
Joni Dabbs
David Wertz (knees permitting)
Pat Mickey
Steve Schloss

We should have at least 3 adults, so if people can confirm by return email, we can make final plans at the meeting on Monday, December 5.

Also, I plan on visiting the CNJC office tomorrow to sign up to be a merit badge counselor for 3 Eagle required badges that are not usually offered at summer camp or the Rutgers Scout weekend due to the length of time required; Family Life (requires a minimum of 90 days), Personal Management (requires 13 weeks), and Personal Fitness (requires 12 weeks). At next Monday's meeting the Scouts can decide which one we will start.


Kent Allenby

home: 609-921-7472
cell: 609-240-9389
work: 609-580-7327

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Mike Carman Completes Eagle Board of Review

On November 16, 2005, Mike Carmen, Senior Patrol Leader of Troop 88, had his Eagle Scout board of review. Mike completed his Eagle project last month and came through the review with a very strong showing. All in attendance were impressed with his leadership skills, accomplishments and his commitment to stay and help build the Troop throughout next year.

Michael is the son of George and Maureen Carman. A junior at West Windsor-Plainsboro High School South, Michael is active on the swim team and in the Red Cross Club, and excels academically. He is interested in serving in the U.S. Coast Guard. Michael's Eagle project was updating the library at Princeton House Behavioral Health Center, a division of Princeton HealthCare System which provides inpatient and outpatient services to patients living with mental health and substance abuse issues. In completing the project, Michael coordinated the donation and reception of 1,717 books through community book drives. Another aspect of the project was the purchase of a mobile book cart to serve patients unable to visit the library. In addition, close to 1,000 magazines were donated for use by patients. Donations for the project came from the West Windsor Lions Club, McCaffrey's Supermarket, Dutch Neck Presbyterian Church, and Michael's friends and family members.

Please join us in congratulating Mike on a job well done.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Dante Ingato Crowned King for WWP South Homecoming

Scout Dante Ingato, shown here defending the goal for his West Windsor Plainsboro HS - South Lacrosse team, had the honor of being chosen by his fellow classmates as King for the West Windsor Plainsboro High School South homecomming this year. Dante, who is working toward the rank of Eagle scout is a prime example of the multi-talented scouts that make Troop 88 so unique.

Way to go Dante.

Matt Kalinowski Returns to Troop 88

It may be a little early to tell for certain, but rumor has it that former Troop 88 scout Matt Kalinowski is returning to Troop 88. Matt showed up to a warm welcome at our last weekly troop meeting at the urging of scout David Delcol after a three year hiatus. Well done David!

We will all work hard to make Matt welcome and give him good reason to stay. He will make an excellent addition to our troop. Welcome back Matt.

Area Webelo Scouts Join Troop 88 at the Princeton vs Yale Football Game

An open invitation to Webelo scouts in several neighboring scout packs went out inviting scouts and their families to be our guests at the 128th meeting between the Yale and Princeton football teams on Saturday November 12 at 1:00pm in Princeton with the scouts of Troop 88.

The scouts and their families were also invited to meet with members of Troop 88 before the game at 10:30am in the woods behind the Sarnoff Institute on Route 1 where Troop 88 maintains an overnight camp site. This gave the Webelo scouts a chance to meet with the scouts of Troop 88 and take part in some scouting activities. I am happy to report that we got a good response from Webelow dens from Pack 43 in Princeton and Pack 40 in West Windsor and had seven scout and their families join us to a day of fun. Most of the scouts joined us at the Troop 88 campsite before heading over to the Princeton vs Yale football game at Princeton Stadium at 12:00.

At the game Princeton took a convincing 14 point lead over Yale by the end of the first half and left all of us believing that a win was assured. But seven turnovers and several untimely penalties doomed the Princeton football team, which watched a 14-0 lead evaporate and its championships dreams get left on life support in a stunning turn of events in the game's final minutes. A late 1-yard touchdown run by Jeff Mroz and Yale's fifth interception of the game sealed Yale's 21-14 victory over the Tigers in the final game at Princeton Stadium this season.

After the game Troop 88 and a group of Webelo scouts and their parents travelled back to the campsite for some refreshments and scouting activities. Later that evening our scouts cooked up some cornbread and homemade chilli and roasted marshmallows over the campfire before turning in.

The following morning the scouts met their obligation to our generous benefactor, Forrestal Center, by policing the grounds of the office park before heading home. All in all, it was an outstanding weekend of fun for our scouts and our Webelo guests.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Annual Report to Our Sponsor Organization - Princeton United Methodist Church

Troop 88 continues to provide boys from Princeton, West Windsor, and Plainsboro the opportunity to participate in the Scouting Adventure. Unfortunately, during the past year the Troop again declined in enrollment, having now only 11 registered Scouts while maintaining strong adult interaction through 5 committed Scoutmasters and a busy Troop Committee. Recruitment remains the biggest issue facing Troop 88, and the Troop Committee has been working to get the word out on the Troop and its activities.

Despite our small size, the Troop remains active. For the second year in a row the Troop attended Summer Camp, spending a week this past July at the Kittatinny Mountain Scout Reservation (KMSR) near the Delaware Water Gap. Several Merit Badges, many required for Eagle Scout, were achieved by the individual Scouts, and we hope to take a fresh crop of new Scouts to KMSR next summer. This fall, the Troop also supported an all-day Cub Scout event, Scouts to the Rescue, at the Mercer fire training center. As always, the Troop plans to continue monthly events for the Scouts, usually overnight campouts.

Eagle Advancement is very strong in Troop 88. During the past year, Shane Schoepfer completed his requirements for Eagle and celebrated his achievement in a joint Eagle Ceremony (June 2005) with his fellow Eagle, Maurio Ingato. Nirmalya (Rinku) Bandyopadhyay and Michael Carmen, Senior Patrol Leader, both finished their Eagle projects within the past few months. Their respective Boards of Review will be held in November. Ross Merkin, Assistant Senior Patrol Leader, had an extremely good turnout for his Eagle project in October. Coming up, Dante Ingato and Brian Allenby are formulating their own plans for Eagle projects to benefit the community and expect to be working seriously on their respective projects by Spring 2006.

There were several changes in the adult leadership of the Troop in September, with Kent Allenby becoming the new Scoutmaster and Dan Dabbs stepping down to Assistant Scoutmaster. Dan continues his association with the Troop, having served as Scoutmaster for four years and, before that, Assistant Scoutmaster for two. Kent has been Assistant Scoutmaster since 1999 and is now stepping up to the main leadership role. Kent’s first order of business is to build up the Troop’s membership, a task that is facilitated by the Committee’s very active program for attracting new Scouts. In the Committee, Ellen Souter and Jim Walker, after several years of shepherding the Scoutmasters, have stepped down as Committee Chairs and the Troop Treasurer, Pat Mickey, has agreed to take over.

Invitations have been sent to the area Cub Scout Packs to join Troop 88 in activities that will introduce them to the Troop. Plans are to have a Parents’ Night for members of the PUMC and the neighboring community.

It is important to note that previous Scouting experience is not required to join Troop 88. Any boy between the ages of 11 and 17 is eligible to become a Boy Scout. We welcome visitors to our Monday night meetings, parents and boys.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Sarnoff Campout

Just a reminder that this Monday we will be finalizing plans for our Sarnoff campout on Saturday and Sunday, November 12 and 13 which will include the Princeton football game Saturday afternoon and, hopefully, successful recruitment of new Scouts.

See you Monday evening.

Kent Allenby

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Ocean Fishing Trip off Point Pleasant, NJ


On Sunday, October 23 Troop 88 embarked on an afternoon fishing excursion in the Atlantic ocean off Point Pleasant, NJ aboard the Norma K. The weather could not have been better for the trip with sunny skies and a relatively calm sea.

Congratulations go out to Scoutmaster Kent Allenby and Scout Ross Merkin who caught a combined total of seven fish between them. Members of Troop 88 also managed to catch three sharks, one of which was proudly displayed (in a frozen state) at the troop meeting on Monday. It was enormous!

I think all would agree that the $35 cost for an unforgettable afternoon of ocean fishing was well worth the expense. A great time was had by all.