NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - The scouts of Troop 63 in New Providence had to cancel their April camping trip to Washington’s Crossing in Titusville, NJ because of the stay-at-home order issued by Governor Murphy in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The trip was going to be their first tent camping trip of the year and they had planned to have a 10-mile bike hike along the Delaware River to enjoy the outdoors. Although the scouts were disappointed to cancel the trip, they decided to try a novel way to camp together yet still adhere to social distancing practices - they held a virtual camp out where each scout pitched a tent and slept outdoors in their own backyards. Using a Zoom web conferencing meeting, the scouts were able to socialize via video streaming, share stories, tell jokes, play trivia games (Kahoot has become a Troop favorite), and enjoy each other’s company. After several weeks of social isolation, getting together for a virtual camp out was a welcome escape for the boys who love the outdoors and look forward to the monthly camping trips with Troop 63. The “wilds” of New Providence are not a substitute for the great outdoor adventure they had planned, but for now it will have to do.
Scouts BSA Troop 63 meets every Tuesday at the New Providence Presbyterian Church, although these days they meet online using WebEx and Zoom. They go camping almost every month. The Troop is hoping for a quick resolution to the COVID-19 pandemic as they are sending scouts to the Philmont Scout Reservation in Cimarron, NM as well as to Sabattis Adventure Camp near Long Lake, NY this summer. For more Information about Troop 63, please contact Scoutmaster Bill Dreitlein at firstname.lastname@example.org.