86 members and guests gathered at Camp Horseshoe on July 11th for the 16th annual Horseshoe Scout Reservation Alumni Association reunion. The theme, 'Celebrating Milestones', recognized the 100th anniversary of the Order of the Arrow and 250th anniversary of the Mason Dixon survey. You could not have asked for better weather as alumni from 9 decades began to arrive at 2pm for a day of reminiscing, good food and fellowship.
A camp tour included a stop at the Science Center located in Schramm Lodge. The Science Center, which opened in 2014, provides Scouts the opportunity to work on STEM-oriented Merit Badge throughout the week, such as Robotics, Nuclear Science, Electronics, Photography, Computers, Electricity, Energy, Moviemaking, Game Design, Engineering, and Space Exploration. Another stop at the OA Lodge showcased the history of our Octorara Lodge #22. The final stop was at the Mason Dixon marker where Price Stevenson provided the group with an overview of Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon's historic survey.
'Class/Decade' pictures were taken late in the afternoon. Every decade beginning with the 1930s up until the 2010s were represented as the 60's proved to have largest turnout.
After the retreat ceremony, everyone gathered back at the Goodman pavilion for dinner. Dick Bensing and company did a fantastic job of preparing steak with all the fixings and you can be sure, nobody went home hungry! As dinner was finishing up, the program was kicked off by the Reunion chairman and master of ceremonies, AJ DiAntonio.
Chester Council Council Scout Executive, Charlie Rogers commended the HSRAA for its continued support of the camp. The attendees were treated by members of the Horseshoe Choir and Ernie Heegard brought back memories of post-meal time at Allen Memorial Dining Hall as led the group in a song.
Camp Director, Mike 'Berk' Berkeihiser and many of the Horseshoe camp staff stopped by as this year's HSRAA staff member of the year, Will Stevens, was recognized with a plaque and gift certificate. Will has worked on camp staff for many years as an aquatics counselor, aquatics director and for the past three years, Program Director.
Price Stevenson shared more of the Mason Dixon history and our OA Lodge Chief, Matt Candy, provided an update of Octoraro Lodge #22. Our lodge received the E. Urner Goodman Camping Award (8th time), the National Service Award (5th time) and the Innovation Award (1st time), only the second lodge in the country to be awarded all 3 in the same year. HSRAA President, John Kemmerer, high-lighted some of the HSRAA accomplishments of the past year including the storm water management, Picnic Grove renovation (when was the last time you remember seeing grass in the Picnic Grove!). John also thanked Dick Bensing and Ernie Heegard for their many contributions to HSR on behalf of the Alumni Association. The final business of the day was the election of the HSRAA board for the upcoming year which includes Dick Bensing, Neil Chippendale, A.J. DiAntonio, Matt Griffin, John Kemmerer, J.B. Rettew, Jake Segal, Damon Sinclair and Dave Woodward.