Fellow Ajapeu 33 Members,
It has been an honor to serve as the lodge chief for Ajapeu 33 since August 2010. As lodge chief, I coordinate the lodge’s youth leadership team and represent the interests of youth scouting for all of Bucks County. It has been a pleasure to lead and represent such a devoted and motivated group of young people.
Our lodge’s foremost purpose is simple: to help both the Boy Scout council and the Bucks County community in any way we can. This year, we have certainly fulfilled that purpose. We’ve held three Ordeal Weekends (April, May, and August), and the combined efforts of the volunteers at those weekends performed thousands upon thousands of community service hours. At the end of each year, the council gives us a dollar value for the amount of service the lodge has put forth. At the end of 2010, I was amazed: the lodge’s service was appraised at almost $20,000. This year, I’m sure we’ve performed the same, if not more, service to our camp and council. I’d like to thank all the volunteers from this past year, and encourage all brothers of Ajapeu 33 to take their example and volunteer in 2012!
Although we love service, brothers of Ajapeu 33 also have a lot of fun. Ajapeu’s Fall Fellowship weekend is considered a fun-filled, no-work celebration of our year-long efforts, and this year, the Fall Fellowship weekend was one of our lodge’s greatest successes since I became a member 4 years ago. Brothers enjoyed outdoor sports, video games, board games, and of course, a “corn fight.” I’ll admit that the corn fight wasn’t our best idea, but in this case, a bad decision became a great memory. The best part of the Fall Fellowship weekend was its attendance: we had over 50 brothers at the event, and we even had to start a waitlist. That’s right; the 2011 Fall Fellowship Weekend was the first ever sold-out Ajapeu event. We only get that kind of attendance when people advertise the events well, and so I’d like to thank the chapter officers for getting the word out effectively.
This upcoming year we have many challenges to face, but judging by this past year’s success, I’m confident that we will again succeed. After the lodge family banquet on March 10th, we have an extremely important and demanding work weekend on March 30th-31st. Ockanickon Scout Reservation, our council’s camp, will be hosting one of the few Camp School’s throughout the country. Camp School is a training conference for Boy Scout camp leaders. In order to prepare for this event, Ockanickon’s management needs us to set up all the tents and campsites, and we’ll need the help from as many brothers as possible to achieve that goal. If you’re available, please make your best effort to attend this important weekend. In addition, on June 2nd-3rd, the Bucks County Council will be holding an event for Cub Scouts called Cub-O-Ree. The lodge has been asked to provide volunteers to lead the weekend, and so we will need another group of committed volunteers. Of course, we also have the three ordeal weekends, so we’ll need Elangomats, ceremonies team members, and other volunteers to make those events as much of a success as they were last year. I know this will be a busy year for all of us, but I’m sure the members of Ajapeu 33 will be willing to help out even in this demanding time.
I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the members of the AJapeu executive board. All of the lodge’s decisions, from our budget to the way in which we run the weekends, are made by the lodge executive board members, all of which are under the age of 21. These scouts have put forth a tremendous effort to lead our lodge, and it would be impossible to do my job without their committed service. I’m excited to work with each and every one of them in this upcoming year. I’d also like to congratulate our new Elangomat Chief Ben Lasner, our new ceremonies chief James Macomber, and our new Lodge Secretary Joe Cericola. I’m excited to see all that they can do in their new leadership roles.
Thank you for an excellent 2010 season, and I wish everyone an excellent holiday with their families. We have a lot of work to do this year, and I encourage each and every Ajapeu member – new, old, active, inactive – to volunteer some of their time this year. I’m confident that, with teamwork, we can achieve all of our goals in 2012.