06-06-2023 JLDA at Camp Millhouser in So. Missouri.

20 attended the  Junior Leaders Development Academe (JLDA) or (JLTC) this year.  12 young men total and 3 of those were Junior Academe (JA)  So. Mo. Saber Recipients and 9 completing  Junior Training Camp (JTC).

Last year we only had enough boys attending to hold one AJTC class so this year was catch up to get the requirements ready for the boys and young men to be prepared for JA.  Praise the Lord we have one of the National RR Staff John Hicks as our District Director (Commander).  Quickly John noticed that the camp needed some tweaking as it was very heavy with Power Points Sessions and this year we put hands on outside activities and camping back into the program.  

I have been helping out with the Action Camps for the past 20 years and have really enjoyed the yearly Canoeing, Survival and Backpacking 3 day events that we rotate every year.  We also have Shooting Sports Action Camp on the calendar but I have found as a Commander bringing boys to these events we can often over whelm the boys, parents and leaders with so much ACTION going on. A mixed blessing for sure. 

This year JLDA had a offer of come help and I jumped at the opportunity to come and teach and help out.  My previous 30 years in RR always had me using all my vacation time up before I could add Advancement Academy and JLDA to my want list of things I wanted to help with.  Retirement YES, I get to go!

The rest of the story is at the end of the pictures. 

Click on a picture for a larger view.  Special thanks to John Hicks and Mark Jones for sharing the pictures with us. 

Zip file of all these pictures.

Thursday morning we left Ozark at 6:45 a.m.  I thanked the Mom's for the extra early departure time and we headed out with 4 young men and myself.  Soon we were singing silly songs with Larry or something crazy as we always do the boys are always full of wisdom of all kinds and very happy to share that grand knowledge with the rest of the group.   I enjoy these young men.  They are still boys at heart and wisdom but are learning they are able to do the work of a man if we keep them focused.  JLDA or JLTC here we come.  

9:45 am we arrived and unloaded and soon the camp was underway.  The boys were all given a 3 ring notebook with 30 plus pages of info in it.  They were asked to keep these with them as much of the info and classes had handouts and schedules and they would need this info many times each day.  Hats and T-shirts and a overview of the JLDA or JLTA was given. 

The boys were divided into patrols of 4 to 5 boys each and a Patrol Advisor (my job with one of the patrols) was assigned.  Larry Butacy was the other Patrol Advisor.  On staff was Bob Triphan JLDA or JLTA Coordinator, Richard Michael JA Coordinator, John Hicks as Camp Commander, Ray Reece as Patrols Sr. Guide,  Don Arndt and Larry Verrier were our camp cooks and patrol food management.   John, Bob, Mark, Larry and Ray rotated the teaching classes and power points.  Most of the class segments were 20 minutes each with some games thrown in to give them a break. 

at about 10:30 the boys and staff went to the model campsite and explained the setup that the Green Camping Merit covered as each part of the this merit was taught during this camp.  For the younger boys of JTC age this would have been a plus for them however this year we were piloting some tweaks and using older boys that needed the JTC to complete the requirement.  8 of the 9 already had earned the Green Camping Merit.  (Plug please make these merits numerical like bible merits, Camping1 , Camping 2, Camping 3)   This way it still counts and rarely does anyone retain much from hearing something one time. 

The boys and leaders had excellent schedules and instruction sheets and reference materials.  So it didn't take long to teach the boys to find the info in their work books and achieve the objectives of the camp. 

The JA young men helped on many of the hands on activities as well as games.  Also did a power point class or two.  They also presented the first nights council fire and setup the services following the 7 - S' of a service. 

Friday nights service was really special with a human drama and skits and yells and the fire in the cans along the trail with signs of the Ranger Code set the spirit. 

Our patrols worked hard and achieved Bronze, Silver and Gold medals of excellence.  Sometimes it was like pulling teeth to get them to see the value of improving on their standards and patrol songs and yells.   Boys will often do things that are plum silly.  Like dig a hole 3 feet deep and put their patrol flag in it.  Or a new one unlock a truck door and try and open it at 70 mph down the highway.   As leaders we always have to be looking out for inspired young men that have not learned the power of doing really really really neat stuff.  Sometimes it takes a Dad like figure to speak to these young men and remind them of good ideas and bad ideas. 

JLDA or JLTA was a lot of fun and accomplishment.  The mixture of hands on and power points was good.  A few tweaks here and there.  I am thankful for the parents, grand parents that make it a point to get these boys to these events.  Mom's are the greatest thing God has ever made!  Thanks so much Staff and Men for giving!

Boys dropped off at church and headed home 1:45 pm on Saturday!  Glory!

Mark Jones, Saved by Grace and a Romp in Stomp in Child of King Jesus!  AKA a work in progress!