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Onteora Scout Reservation

Located in the heart of the Catskill Mountains, the 1400-acre and 2000-foot altitude, Onteora Scout Reservation (or OSR) is affectionately referred to by those who have experienced the camp as "Land in the Sky."  Upon arrival at OSR, you will be met with a traditional greeting of "Welcome Home." 

Boy Scouts of different rank and age will have a wide variety of programs to choose from.  While OSR is rooted in tradition, its programs are developed with the needs of today's scouts and leaders in mind.  

The Theodore Roosevelt Council's priority is to provide a top notch resident camping experience at OSR supported by a well trained staff committed to exceptional customer service, great food, a variety of program and well maintained facilities.

2020 VIRTUAL SUMMER CAMP

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, OSR was forced to close its facility for the summer of 2020, but fortunately is providing VIRTUAL SUMMER CAMP.  This program will allow Scouts to earn up to 5 merit badges a week as well as participate in other activities in between classes.  

Troop 71 leadership strongly encourages Scouts to participate in OSR virtual summer camp not only to have a fun summer, but to maintain opportunities at Scout advancement, especially with merit badges.  Otherwise, it will be easy to fall behind when the regular program starts up again.

Since Troop 71 was registered to attend OSR July 12-18, 2020, we suggest Scouts register for that same week so they can participate together.  But, Scouts may register for additional weeks as well.

The program agenda, including the list of merit badges, is available here.  
  • Classes will be limited to 40 Scouts max, one hour long and interactive.
  • For some classes, Scouts must get the materials they need and do pre-requisites ahead of time to participate.
  • Scouts must have the age appropriate Cyber Chip already or take the Cyber Chip lesson offered each Monday morning of camp week to participate.
Registration is now open so Scouts should choose their merit badges now so we can sign them up right away to get the merit badge classes they want.  

Scouts who want to attend should email ASM Simone at chris@plandometroop71.com.  He will follow up about registration.



FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:

  • WHAT WILL THE VIRTUAL PROGRAM LOOK LIKE?
    We want our virtual program to look as much like the Onteora experience as possible. It will run for five days each week, from Monday through Friday. We plan on offering around 50 merit badges for Scouts to choose from – many that would be run at OSR, and some that will be unique to many Scouts. Scouts will have the ability to sign up for as many as five merit badge sessions per week. There will also be designated Troop/Patrol time with assistance and support from OSR staff. Camp-wide games, campfire programs, a movie night and informational/training sessions will also be available. And because Scouting is designed for the outdoors, there will designated times each day for Scouts to work on merit badge requirements and other activities outdoors. While there are many aspects of OSR that cannot translate to a virtual format, we wanted to provide the Scouts with as much of the OSR experience as possible.
 
  • IS THIS PROGRAM DESIGNED FOR SCOUTS TO GO WITH A TROOP OR AS “PROVISIONAL” ATTENDEES?
    Either. We encourage all Troops to attend as a Troop on their normally scheduled week at OSR. As mentioned above, we will give Troop time daily for youth and adult leaders to work with the Scouts in their Troop, just as they would at camp. But we will also allow Scouts to attend without their Troop, or “provisionally”. Our registration for Troop attendees will open first, followed soon after by provisional registration. More information to come.

  • CAN A SCOUT ATTEND MORE THAN ONE WEEK?
Yes. Scouts can attend multiple weeks if they choose.

  • WHAT IS THE FEE FOR SCOUTS?
    The fee is $150 per Scout per week. With that, the Scouts get access to up to five merit badge sessions per week, along with camp-wide games, campfire programs, informational and training sessions and more. We will provide between 6 – 8 hours of program daily – and not all of it is meant to take place indoors sitting at a desk. Scouts will also receive a camp patch.
 
  • IS THERE A CHARGE FOR ADULT LEADERS?
    There is no charge for adult leaders. We encourage all Troop leadership to “attend” as much as their schedule will allow, even on weeks where their Troop may not be attending. And we will be offering a Scoutmaster Merit Badge recognition for adults that participate throughout the week. In order to participate, adults must have an up to date, completed Youth Protection Certification.
 
  • WHAT PLATFORM WILL BE USED FOR THE PROGRAM?
    Zoom will be used to facilitate our program this summer. Many Scouts and Scouters have grown familiar with Zoom over the last several weeks and we feel that will make this implementation easier for all. Prior to the week, schedules with appropriate links will be sent out to Leaders, Scouts and Parents so they can connect to their appropriate virtual meeting place.
 
  • WHAT MERIT BADGES WILL BE OFFERED?
    Around 50 merit badges will be offered. We are in the process of finalizing that list now, but it will be available soon through an updated Program Guide, which will be published before registration opens. That will provide Leaders, Scouts and Parents the opportunity to select the badges that best fit the interests and needs of the Scouts. Many merit badges that were typically offered at OSR (and that were originally slated to be offered in our previous Program Guide) do not fit a virtual instruction format – most specifically, Shooting Sports, Aquatics and Climbing, and thus will not be offered through this program. Our goal is the maintain the integrity of the merit badge program. The badges that will be offered this summer are all able to be instructed online. 
 
  • ARE THERE GOING TO BE ADDITIONAL COSTS FOR SOME MERIT BADGES LIKE THERE WERE AT OSR?
    We will not be charging any additional fees for any merit badges. There are certain badges that will require the Scouts to have access to materials necessary to fulfill requirements. In many cases, those materials can be found around the house. Some might require parents to purchase those materials independently before the week. The Program Guide will outline the necessary materials needed (if any) and also provide online resources to make the purchases. That is one of the reasons we will be publishing the Program Guide before registration is open. We encourage all leaders and parents to review the badges and their specific needs before making any selections. 
 
  • WILL THE SCOUTS SPEND ALL THEIR TIME “INSIDE” CONNECTED TO A DEVICE?
    No, our plan is to have every Scout spend time away from their device and (weather permitting) outdoors. There will be some requirements that the Scouts will need to complete away from their computers. Many of our badges will have designated class time that is meant to be spent outdoors. We are also laying out specific time daily that is meant for breaks away from devices to enjoy the outdoors.
 
  • ARE “PRE-REQUISITES” FOR MERIT BADGES GOING TO BE THE SAME AS THEY WERE IN THE PREVIOUS PROGRAM GUIDE?
    The short answer is no. There will be changes. Some merit badge requirements that we were able to complete while at OSR will not be possible to complete in this virtual program. But, some requirements (and even some badges) that were not feasible or appropriate to complete at OSR, will be possible online. Our upcoming Program Guide will lay out the specific requirements that will need to be completed outside of the week-long program, either ahead of time, or afterwards.
 
  • WILL MERIT BADGE CLASSES HAVE A CAPACITY?
Yes, although those capacities will be different than they were at OSR. For most badges, the capacities could be higher than what we have been accustomed to. But we believe that it is important for Scouts to be able to participate in the badges, not just because the requirements call for discussion and feedback, but also because we believe that the Scouts will get more out of the badges if they are engaged within a manageable-sized class.
 
  • WHO WILL BE INSTRUCTING THE MERIT BADGES?
    We will still be using the amazingly talented and dedicated OSR staff to facilitate this program. They will be present instructing merit badges, helping Scouts, supporting Troop leadership and implementing our campfires and camp-wide programs. Other Unit, District and Council volunteers will also be assisting with the program. The virtual format will enable the assistance many people that would have liked to help at OSR but couldn’t because of schedule and geography.
 
  • WILL PARENTS AND LEADERS BE INVOLVED?
    Yes, just as they would in all other aspects of the Scouting program. Parents should take note of the specific requirements pertaining to the merit badges/programs that their Scout signed up for. There will be some that will encourage parent/family participation or supervision. While our staff will remind Scouts to engage their parents/guardians, we want to stress that all parents should review the specific requirements for their Scouts ahead of time. We also encourage all leaders to participate as often as they like, and their schedule allows. Our Scoutmaster Merit Badge will recognize those leaders that assist in the implementation of the program. We also encourage Troops and Patrols to work on some of their specific program during their week and throughout the summer, whether that be small gatherings (when permitted), service projects, Scout Advancement or future planning.
 
  • IS THERE AN OPPORTUNITY TO VOLUNTEER TO HELP FACILITATE THE PROGRAM?
    Yes. We will soon be sending out information on how and when to assist. The more involvement we have from dedicated volunteers, the better the experience will be for our Scouts. Please stay tuned for more information to follow.
 
  • WHEN AND HOW WILL REGISTRATION TAKE PLACE?
    Registration should open the first week in June. It will open for those Troops and Scouts that had made reservations and payments for OSR first and will then open for additional “provisional” or Troop attendees soon after. We will continue to use our OSR website to handle payments and registration. We will outline that process, including any changes to the process in light of the new program, in a later communication.
 
  • WILL THERE BE AN ONLINE TRADING POST?
    We are currently working on the details, but yes, you will have the ability to purchase OSR gear and other items online throughout the summer. More information to follow.
 
  • WILL THERE BE AN OPPORTUNITY FOR SCOUTS TO WORK ON CERTAIN MERIT BADGES THAT ARE NOT AVAILABLE ONLINE WHEN CAMPS RE-OPEN?
    Yes, we believe there will be. Planning will soon begin on how to best provide Scouts with the opportunity to take advantage of all our properties have to offer. More information regarding that will be available shortly after the camps are able to legally and safely re-open.
 
  • WILL THERE BE A “30-DAY” MEETING FOR LEADERS FOR THE VIRTUAL CAMP?
    Yes, we will have a meeting for leaders via Zoom shortly. Currently we are working to put together the Program Guide and infrastructure for this summer in anticipation of the needs of our parents and leaders. We will soon be in touch regarding date and time for our meeting to give you more information and address questions or concerns you may have.