Summer Camping Update May 13,2020

Dear Scouting family,

It goes without saying that we are living through an unprecedented and concerning time.

As always, your safety and the safety of all our members, volunteers, and employees is the Boy Scouts of America’s top priority. As such, we have taken a careful and informed approach in evaluating whether to run summer programs this year. Since the spread of this pandemic, we have been continually monitoring the situation, and consulting with health experts, government officials and other camp professionals. We have guidance from our national office, draft guidance from the CDC and we have created a local panel of experts to help guide us as we safely re-open Scouting.

We know there are questions and concerns about how the COVID-19 pandemic will affect day camps and summer camp programs. The following is an update:

Cub Scout Day Camps:

We have simply run out of time to prepare our Day Camps for whatever guidance the State and local health departments will eventually suggest.  As of this writing, we still do not know if Day Camps will be allowed, or what precautions they will expect.  With the start date just several weeks off, we are compelled to cancel our upcoming Cub Scout Day Camps.  We strongly encourage all Cub Scout Packs to attend Cub Scout Resident Camp, July 23-26. By then we will have received the necessary guidance from the State and have enough information to prepare a safe, exciting outdoor adventure.

Scouts BSA Summer Camp:

After a thorough evaluation, we are still preparing for a successful 2020 summer camp at the Muskingum Valley Scout Reservation.  Any day now, the Governor will provide the guidance we need to open camp safely.  We had hoped to have this guidance already.  However, the delay in getting this information from the state compels us to delay the start of Scouts BSA summer camp until June 28th(Pending approval of local health officials)

We are very serious about making this the safest summer camp ever!  By delaying the start of camp, we gain more time to embrace the state’s guidance, prepare camp, and train staff. 

All Troops scheduled for Week 1, beginning Sunday, June 14, and Week 2 beginning Sunday, June 21st will be given slots in the remaining three weeks of camp beginning June 28, July 5, and July 12.    We will be reaching out to these units over the next week, but we also encourage unit leaders to call the office (740-453-0571) and speak with Jeff Pickett to expedite this change. 

Scouts BSA leaders will also be receiving an invite to a leader ‘ZOOM’ meeting scheduled for Tuesday, May 19, at 6:30 PM where we will be able to provide additional information.

Cub Scout Resident Camp:

Plans for Cub Scout Resident Camp have not changed.  We are adding additional safety and hygiene protocols, and are prepared to adopt any additional guidance received from the state.  We will be emailing a survey to Cub Scout Leaders in the coming week to gather your input as well.

We understand these decisions will have a significant impact on individuals and families, and we are striving to communicate changes as we learn them.

While camp may look different in some ways, we know the experience of camp will be one your Scouts will not forget.

We are committed to keeping you safe as you experience camp and have already adopted the following changes we would like to share with you:

Prior to camp, units will receive a pre-camp screening guide.  You will be asked to screen all participants prior to your departure for camp. 

Arrival at camp will be scheduled and staggered throughout the day, this will prevent a large gathering of scouts as they wait to check-in.  Upon arrival each person will be screened by our summer camp staff. 

Troops will be asked to bring a tent for each person.  We expect single occupancy tenting will be part of the guidance from the CDC to help with social distancing.  Camp tents are available on request for those units who may not have enough of their own. 

We plan to have handwashing stations located throughout camp.

Campers will be expected to have a face covering with them at all times.  Whenever entering a building, or gathering in close proximity, face coverings will be used.

We plan to send out any additional health and safety information on June 12th to prepare you for your camp experience.

We look forward to providing the full range of Scouting programs as soon as the situation allows. We hope all our Scouting families stay healthy and positive in our current environment and join us in preparing for great 2020 summer camping experiences.

This is an evolving situation and this information is subject to change. We are working closely with our local health department officials, our Council Health Supervisor and our council’s Enterprise Risk Management committee to make informed decisions as efficiently as possible that prioritize the health and safety of our staff, participants, and communities.

It’s going to be different- this whole year has been uniquely challenging.  We will, however, have an awesome summer camp experience for you and your Scouts!  We all know they want to get out of the house – let’s do our best to get them out to Summer Camp!

Yours in Scouting,

Amy Pinson                Linda Udischas                       Ed Mulholland

Council President       Council Commissioner           Scout Executive

Re-Opening – May 12

Muskingum Valley Council, Scouting Resource Center, 734 Moorehead Avenue, Zanesville, Ohio.

We are excited to announce the re-opening of our Scouting Resource Center including the Scout Store. We will be resuming our regular hours beginning Tuesday, May 12th at 9 AM.

The staff has thoroughly cleaned and sanitized the building and will be following safety protocols to ensure a safe visit for Scouts and families. Our Store clerk will be wearing a mask and customers are encouraged to wear a mask according to their preference. All touchpoints will be sanitized after each customer visit.

For those who would prefer curbside delivery, you may call the Scout Store (740-453-0571) and we will prepare your order in advance. Then just call from your car and we will bring it out to you.

Appointments with staff should be scheduled in advance if possible.

We look forward to serving our Scouting families and leaders again!

Home Scouting-Weekly Challenges

Each week, we will release a list of rank specific Cub Scouting Challenges. Find your Rank, complete the challenges Taking pictures along the way. Post those pictures and you can win! Read the contest rules for all the details.

WEEK 1 CHALLENGES – Winner: Brandi Wolfe, Pack 215

WEEK 2 CHALLENGES – Winner: Betsy Akeman, Pack 207

WEEK 3 CHALLENGES – Winner: Savannah Perry, Pack 231

WEEK 4 CHALLENGES – Savannah Perry, Pack 231 (wow! 2 weeks in a row – Great job!)


Office and Store Closed

Following the Governors edict, the Muskingum Valley Council Staff will be working from home for the foreseeable future. No one will be at the Scout Store or in the offices. The best way to get answers or assistance will be to contact one of our staff directly:

Ed Mulholland, Scout Executive/Executive Director:

Jeff Pickett, Assistant Scout Executive, Zane Trace District:

Amanda Wisniewski, Senior District Executive, River Trails District:

Stay home, stay safe and prepare for the coming summer camping season! See you all soon,

Ed Mulholland, Scout Executive

Leaders and Parents;

Today the President of the United States recommended against gatherings of more than 10 people.  This effectively shuts down most Scouting activities.  The Muskingum Valley Council recommends that, beginning today, units stop meeting until further notice.  These restrictions are designed to slow the spread of the covid-19 virus and by adhering to the CDC’s recommendations, we will be protecting our own health as well as others.

The Spring Camporee that was scheduled for April 17-19 is canceled.  We are reaching out to the many organizations involved in hopes of moving the event to our Fall Camporee dates; October 23-25.  This event promises to be exciting, fun and educational – you won’t want to miss it!

For those units participating in the Spring Nut Sale:

The sale dates remain the same, however, we ask that you do not gather your Scouts to collect the money.  We suggest having each family individually drop their orders and payments with your Nut Sale chairperson.  (We cannot delay the collection of orders, or the distribution of the nuts because we have chocolate covered nuts that could melt in warmer weather.)

This situation is unusual and disconcerting, but it will pass, and we will return to normalcy.  I look forward to meeting you on the Scouting trail soon!

Cancelled:Session 3 Merit Badge College

Scouts, Scout leaders, and Parents,

  The decision has been made to not conduct Session 3 of Merit Badge College in person.  With the current situation and the ever changing guidelines being issued we felt this was our only option.  With the Governor’s directive of “no gatherings of 100 people of more” our event would be in violation of that directive.

  We will be giving the scouts an opportunity to submit their final assignments to their counselors. The following outlines the three options they have:

1.  Submit the final paperwork to your counselors by email.  No later than March 23.

2.  Submit the final paperwork to the Council office by mail.  Received at the office no later than March 25.  Address there is 734 Moorhead Avenue, Zanesville, OH  43701

3.  Submit the final paperwork to Charlotte at the council office from 10am till noon on March 21.

These dates are important because the counselors have to review them all and get the requirements completed and updated no later than March 31.  This will allow us time to complete the process and get the details released to your Scoutmasters.  

We did not arrive at this decision quickly or without reservations.  We try to live by the scout law just as we ask Scouts to.  Several points of the law applied in the process of this decision.  

OBEDIENT. Follow the rules of your family, school, and pack. Obey the laws of your community and country.   

 BRAVE. Face difficult situations even when you feel afraid. Do what you think is right despite what others might be doing or saying.     

LOYAL. Show that you care about your family, friends, Scout leaders, school, and country.  

I have personally pondered this decision for some time and consulted with many scout leaders to help make this recommendation.  I am not one to not finish something I started but in the current atmosphere we find ourselves in I see no other option.  I want everyone to stay safe and healthy so to that end this is the only action we can take.

Any questions or concerns please let me know.  As I receive information from the individual instructors I will be reaching out to you.  

Thank you for participating in Merit Badge College 2020.  We will be back again next year!

Charlotte Ashcraft, MBC 2020 Coordinator  

University of Scouting event POSTPONED

Unfortunately, we have made the decision to cancel University of Scouting for March 28, 2020. We reached this decision as a result of Muskingum University temporarily closing as well as surrounding universities and events. We are working on plans to reschedule University of Scouting for the fall. We believe this will give us the needed time to ensure a successful and healthy event. If you or anyone in your unit is in need of training, please contact Ed Wolfel at

Yours in Scouting,

Ed Wolfel
Muskingum Valley Council
Training Chairman

Update on scheduled Scouting activities:

With the rapidly escalating health concerns relating to the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), we want to provide some information regarding upcoming events.  Our number one focus is the safety of our youth and volunteers.  We have carefully considered the significance of scouting in the lives of our youth while also understanding the importance of keeping our members healthy. 

Based on the state health authorities’ recommendation to limit large gatherings and practice social distancing, we have decided to postpone University of Scouting.  We will continue to monitor the situation on a daily basis and evaluate the schedule for other council sponsored events based on guidance received from authorities.  Specifically, we are waiting for additional guidance regarding our final weekend of merit badge college.  A final decision will be made by Wednesday of next week.

We recommend your unit consider what is best for your youth when determining if regular weekly meetings and other events should continue on a normal schedule.  We encourage all units to follow the recommendations of the local, state and national governing bodies and health authorities.

Please remember to follow the precautions and preventive measures as recommended by the Ohio Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control:

  • wash your hands often with soap and water,
  • avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands,
  • avoid close contact with people who are sick,
  • and please stay home when you are sick.

-Muskingum Valley Council