Hilding Holroyd (hilding@CATFISH.OCPT.CCUR.COM)
Tue, 18 May 1993 09:48:22 -0500
A few weeks ago, we had our District (Whispering Pine, Jersey Shore Council)
Spring Camporee where the leaders in charge (SM/ASM of Troop 51, Lakewood, NJ)
came up with some novel (pun very much intended) ideas. They used some
"strandard" competition stations (compass, knots & lashings, burning a
string over a fire, nature identification, etc.) with some interesting twists.
Each troop was designated as a group of characters from Tolkien's Lord of
the Rings. We had Hobbits, Elves, Dwarves, Ents, Men, and Orcs. Each
station was judged by a specific character from the books. We had the Lord
of Mordor running competitive games, Treebeard doing nature stuff, Sauron
doing the firebuilding, Aragorn (me) doing knots and lashings. Gandalf was
the leader of the whole campout. At the campfire on Saturday night, he
summarized the entire story of the Ring in less than 15 minutes. Now that
was a feat. Each troop, along with a participation ribbon, received a
gold ring tied to a string. Also the 1/2/3 place awards were rings.
The real interesting wrinkle to all of this was the way the troops had to
communicate. Each group had its own "language". The elves had to speak in rhyme.
The men spoke normal English, but could not pronounce L's or N's. The Ents
could only talk by writting backwards, top to bottom. The Orcs (my troop)
had to lie and could not ask questions with who, when, where or why. The
dwarves had to use pantomime or other non-verbal communication. Each
group had to talk to the leader at each station in their own language,
unless the leader was of their group (ie. Treebeard was an Ent, Aragorn was
a man). Also, as a new group came into an area, they had the option of
challenging the group already there to a competition, either volleyball,
live checkers (each scout was a checker piece) or to an "Indian stick fight".
They also had to talk to other troops in their own languages. Of course
points were awarded for all stations and events.
The weekend, though a little complicated for some of the Scouts, was a great
success. Most of the troops had entire teams made up of Webelos Scouts who
just crossed over. They loved the 4-way soccer match late Saturday
afternoon (4 teams each defending their own goal - 1 soccer ball).
All in all, it was a very enjoyable and creative, weekend.
SM/Troop 82, Jackson, NJ
Jersey Shore Council
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