First Lutheran Church - DeKalb, Illinois



- Sledding Campout -
- Snow Base Adventure -
- Service-O-Ree -
- Bicycle Campout -
- Cuboree -

- Dulcimer Festival -
- Kayak Adventure -
- Summer Camp -
- Fishing Campout -
- Corn Maze Campout -

- Living History Campout -
- Wisconsin Backpack Adventure -
- Master Chef Campout -
- Kentucky High Adventure -
- Holiday Campout -

Sannauk Forest Preserve
Sommonauk, Illinois
January 19-20, 2014

This weekend event included a cabin overnight with patrols cooking up some excellent meals, plus some great sledding in perfect snow. A wonderful place with plenty of snow and moderate temperatures. We also worked on training for firebuilding skills. It was a great way to enjoy the winter season.

Tomahawk Scout Reservation
Birchwood, Wisconsin
February 14-16, 2014

We had the ruggedness of winter adventure on President's weekend. Twenty two Scouts and leaders traveled 350 miles into northern Wisconsin to test their skills and toughness. We divided into two groups, the Huskies and the Spearheads.

Huskies set up a base camp with a parachute shelter used for meal preparation. Activities included x-country skiing, snowshoeing, broom ball, spud, team building. and orienteering.

Spearheads set up camp on a frozen lake with three quinzees (snow shelters) and a parachute shelter. The campsite provided a cooking and sleeping location. Overnight the subzero -5 degrees earned them Polar Bear and Zero Hero awards. Activities included x-country skiing, snow shelters, team building, and ice fishing.

Prior training included: snow shelters, warm clothing, sleep systems, nutrition and hydration, special equipment, buddy system, safety hazards, first aid, and emergency response.

Tornado Relief Projects
Washington, Illinois
March 28-30, 2014

Kishwaukee District created an event to help in a national disaster. Over 150 Scouts and leaders from DeKalb County traveled to help clean up the city of Washington, Illinois.

Washington was hit months November earlier by a tornado powerful enough to level entire neighborhoods. Throughout Washington over 1,000 homes were damaged or destroyed.

Enter DeKalb County Scouts whose work teams spread throughout the city to clear debris from damaged areas. Dressed in safety vests and goggles, we worked with rakes, shovels, buckets, and wheelbarrows removing debris from entire neighborhoods. Determined to make a difference, energy levels remained high throughout the day. Safety vested Scouts could be seen everywhere.

We cleared debris from people’s yards, along roadways, parkways, and in empty lots where buildings had once been. In December 2013 our troop along with Troops 13 and 18 worked outdoors in the winter cold. We returned on day trips in October and November.

Our Senior Patrol Leader Keegan D. was interviewed for an article that was published in the November 2014 issue of Boys Life magazine.

MacQueen Forest Preserve
Kirkland, Illinois
April 12-13, 2014

A weekend high of 80 degrees with a strong wind at our backs made biking a rare treat, although strong crosswinds sometimes made it a challenge. Our bicycle route from DeKalb traveled north. We enjoyed a lunch stop in the lovely little town of Clare, Illinois. We arrived at camp in the afternoon. Scouts used aluminum foil restricted menus featuring barb-b-que chicken and sirloin steak.

Morning temperatures were in the 60s, overcast and calm. The return ride went smoothly until five miles north of DeKalb when we encountered light sprinkles. Luck brought us to DeKalb barely before a heavy downpour of rain. It was the perfect weekend for an exciting overnight bike trip.

Camp Big Timber
Elgin, Illinois
May 2-4, 2014

Kishwaukee District has a very popular Cuboree event. Various Scout troops serve as staff doing jobs or running events. Troop 33's job was to feed 300 Cub Scouts, parents, and staff members during the weekend. Two hot breakfasts included pancakes, sausage, eggs, oatmeal, apple sauce and fresh fruit.

Saturday dinner menu included roast pig and roasted hams along with sweet and sour meatballs, bratwurst, hot dogs, potato salad, macaroni salad, cole slaw, tossed salad, potato chips, baked beans, brownies, and cheesecake with choice of cherry, strawberry, or blueberry topping.

Weather was perfect, food was great, things went well. The evening campfire program featured an Order of the Arrow callout ceremony. Congratulations to our ten troop members called out, which included nine Scouts and one adult.

Goold Park
Morris, Illinois
June 6-8, 2014

Gebhard Woods Dulcimer Festival draws thousands of people to Morris, Illinois. The festival features folk music and dulcimers. Troop 33 provides the food concession for the festival.

Goold Park is a city park where we had special permission to tent camp and operate the food concession. Our Scouts earned money for their Scout Accounts while working at our food booth.

Our menu was extensive featuring: chicken wraps, veggie wraps, pulled pork, cheeseburgers, hamburgers, smoked polish sausage, hot dogs, funnel cakes, ice cream, root beer floats, lemon shake-ups, soda, and bottled water. Morning breakfasts included pancakes, sausage, scrambled eggs, and hash brown potatoes.

This is one of our FREE campouts. No cost to our Scouts in fact they earned money, while working hard, and still having fun.

Caesar Creek State Park
Waynesville, Ohio
June 27-29, 2014

It was fun to kayak through playful riffles and dodge rocks and logs as we paddled through rapids on the Little Miami River of southern Ohio.

Designated as one of America’s wild and scenic rivers, it's forested banks with giant trees provided a green arched canopy as we floated past turtles sunning on logs, birds darting through trees, and even a water snake coming out to greet us.

Nature was beautiful, all around us, and generous with rain. Not once, but four times. Sometimes in light sprinkles barely noticeable and once bursting down with hard driving vengeance. Stopping along a sandy bank of trees we sought shelter and enjoyed lunch. The rain didn’t really matter much. Everyone loved kayaking, even with all the rain.

Camping at the state park included enjoying a swim at their lake beach.

The final part of our adventure took us to the National Museum of the United States Air Force located in Dayton. One of the world’s largest aviation museums, various exhibits and historic planes ranged from the early days to the giant aircraft of recent times. At every turn there was something new and extraordinary to experience and learn from.

Camp Lowden
Oregon, Illinois
July 20-26, 2014

Scouts completed a total of 87 merit badges, including badges such as cinematography, chess, geocaching, golf, oceanography and robotics. Other activities included swimming, rifle shooting, archery, wilderness survival, climbing, rappelling, bouldering, kayaking and riding all-terrain vehicles.

In the middle of the week, parents and siblings came out for Family Night, which featured a picnic dinner followed by a variety of fun camp-wide games and contests. Later that evening, a special campfire program recognized eight Scouts and one adult Scout leader for their election into the Order of the Arrow.

Some younger Scouts took part in the First Class Express program, which included basic outdoor skills fulfilling selected requirements for Tenderfoot, Second Class and First Class ranks.

The week ended with a celebration of Christmas in July. On July 25, we enjoyed Christmas cookies, a large decorated tree, a day filled with skits, holiday songs, and even a warm weather visit from Santa.

Chief Shabbona Forest Preserve
Shabbona, Illinois
August 16-17, 2014

A nice summer overnight adventure took place at Chief Shabbona Forest Preserve and Lake Shabbona State Park.

It was an easy fun weekend with beautiful weather, which included camping at Chief Shabbona forest preserve, some cooking skills, evening campfire, plus some great fishing at Lake Shabbona, where the boys caught a few Blue Gill.

Jonamac Orchard
Malta, Illinois
September 6-7, 2014

This is one of our FREE campouts. At the Scouting Weekend held at the Jonamac Orchard in Malta we camp in a grass area along a cornfield overnight, a truly traditional DeKalb County landscape.

During the time spent there Scouts are given a wristband which provides them opportunity to enjoy a giant 10-acre Corn Maze, Animal Petting Zoo, 30x60 foot Jumping Pillow, Duck Races, Grain Bin, Haystack Pile, Apple Train, Apple Launcher and Cannons.

Boys also enjoy cooking up some dinner and hosting visits from Webelos dens camping there from local Cub Packs. In the morning Troop 33 woke up early to cook up a hot breakfast of sausage and pancakes for about 100 other people camping at the event.

Township Center
Ashippun, Wisconsin
October 4-5, 2014

Troop 33 “traveled” more than 200 years back in time to spend a weekend at a living history event in Ashippun, Wisconsin.

Scattered over acres of land were historic camps under canvas tents and tarps filled with authentic furnishings and tools. Seeing and meeting re-enactors in period dress and manner brought everything to life. They told great stories, explained how things worked, and were happy to answer every question.

Historic camps included fur trappers, French voyageurs, long riflemen, mountain men, Native Americans, traders, musicians, highlanders, Civil War cavalry, infantry, artillery, plus French and British settlers. A large circle of teepees replicated those used by the Cheyenne Plains Indians during the early 1800s.

Next to the teepees, people gathered at dusk around a sacred fire, known to Native Americans as a drum circle. We were given small drums to beat during certain times. Stories told explained the meaning of each part of the ceremony.

An infantry soldier demonstrated various rifles and pistols used during the era. Cavalry soldiers rode horses across a field in drill formation.

Battery A, 4th U.S. Light Artillery, Cushing’s Battery, instructed Scouts in a mock firing of their Civil War cannon. The boys were assigned firing positions and instructed in each step. The training taught us the importance of precision teamwork.

Camping included rain and wind on Saturday, then frost and freezing temperatures on Sunday morning. Nothing could dampen the boys’ spirit of discovery. They were eager to explore all the areas, excited to learn new things about old times. So many different things to see and do, we couldn’t find time for everything

Black River State Forest
Black River, Wisconsin
October 11-13, 2014

We enjoyed a backpacking trip at the Black River State Forest in Wisconsin. Each boy carried food, water, sleeping bag, tents, clothing, plus cooking utensils and stoves on their backs.

When backpacking in remote areas, we have to prepare for potential dangers and difficulties like adverse weather, treacherous terrain, health risk or injuries or dangerous animals. Everyone felt trained and ready.

A few climbs brought us to high points with amazing views where you could look for miles in all directions. It gave everyone a sense of achievement and an appreciation for the beauty the wilderness provides. We spent time each day working on cooking skills and sharing those talents. At night we talked, laughed and shared stories around the campfire.

We practiced “leave no trace,” a low-impact outdoor ethic that promotes conservation in the outdoors. Boys learned to better appreciate the outdoors while they had fun, strengthened bonds, and shared positive experiences.

Russell Woods forest preserve
Genoa, Illinois
November 8-9, 2014

This weekend was designed for culinary adventure. Patrols applied their finest cooking skills to create a gourmet version of a buffet dinner on Saturday. After a fine night's rest, they did it again for a fantastic Sunday breakfast.

Saturday's dinner buffet included: Beef chili, white chicken chili, steak fajitas, sweet & sour chicken, brown rice, potato-onion-carrot soup, cornbread, peach cobbler, and apple pie.

Breakfast in the morning included smoked sausage, bacon, breakfast casserole, scrambled eggs, breakfast burritos, raisin cinnamon French toast, fruit salad, and fruit compote. It was a fantastic way to start the day.

Along with some great cooking and festive eating there was a great time around the campfire plus some excellent Capture the Flag games.

Daniel Boone National Forest
Stanton, Kentucky
November 25-30, 2014

We traveled to Kentucky to experience a four-part series of adventures all packed into an amazing 6-day Thanksgiving high adventure holiday.

At Daniel Boone National Forest we backpacked through rugged mountains, along steep wooded ridges, narrow ravines, rock formations, and sandstone cliffs. At one area the ridge narrowed to barely wider than the trail. It was straight down on both sides. Another exciting place was atop Double Arch rock, which provided an amazing view of the surrounding wilderness.

A chilly morning surprised us with snow on our tents and a light covering on the ground. Hiking out of a wintery wilderness made the backpack trip complete.

Later that day we did what millions of Americans were doing. A Thanksgiving meal, which we cooked, was complete with ham, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, green beans, and dinner rolls.

Rock climbing in the Red River Gorge included safety instruction and the excitement of climbing and rappelling. Training included first aid and emergencies, special knots, climbing equipment, technical skills, verbal signals and safety procedures.

Then everything they learned became an action through several exciting climbs. We went straight up the rugged rock face of high cliffs then the excitement of rappelling back down. Boys earned their Climbing merit badge and the opportunity to experience rock climbing at a world class location.

Next was “via ferrata”, which is Italian meaning “iron road”. It’s a climbing route built across a treacherous rock face using iron rungs, pegs, carved steps, ladders and narrow swinging bridges. Harnessed and clipped to a safety cable, we undertook the extreme challenge of traversing the via ferrata routes.

High above the ground, everyone moved slow and careful. We used those iron components attached into the rock. Making our way along a narrow ledge, up a vertical ladder, across a swinging bridge, and scrambling across bare rock, we were tested to the max. Each decision was crucial. The courses constantly presented new situations to negotiate.

It was a team effort. Moral support was crucial. It took courage and agility. That experience brought a mix of emotions; terrifying but breathtaking, awesome and challenging. It was not easy to accomplish. each person proved themselves with nerves of iron.

Some quick history - via ferrata was used in Europe during World War I by the Italians to move troops through the Dolomite Mountains that were otherwise impassible.

Next and last was a visit to one of the nation’s largest zip line centers. A zip line consists of a pulley mounted to a cable that slides down from a high point to a lower point. High points were at the top of a tower. Each person used a safety harness to ride down a cable at each of seven zip lines.

Hiking from tower to tower, each was a new zip line adventure. These zip lines provided extremes, with some of the fastest, highest, and longest in the nation. Speeding 55 mph, 300 feet high, zipping across a canyon, 4,000 feet in length, it seemed like never ending excitement. That adventure could best be described as "fast and furious".

The four-part adventure series included backpacking, rock climbing, via ferrata, and zip lining. It was an ultimate challenge experience compressed into a short time frame.

Truly a Thanksgiving high adventure holiday to be remembered.

Camp Lakota
Woodstock, Illinois
December 13-14, 2014

Our holiday campout took place in a heated lodge at Camp Lakota.

There were plenty of places to hike, hide, and play outdoors. Several games of "Infection" were played, which is similar to a game of tag, except the person who is initially "it", is actually a zombie who tries to infect other people and make them zombies by tagging them. The object of the game is to remain free and avoid becoming a zombie. It was a weekend filled with zombies wandering the trails of Camp Lakota. Infection.

During late night hours, rather than play electronic games, boys enjoyed playing board games, primarily Risk. There was also great food cooked and enjoyed.

Risk and zombies seem like logical things that go together. What could be more festive during the holidays?

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