How does it feel to reunite with old friends after four and a-half decades? Pretty incredible, according to a group of Boy Scout alumni from the former Piedmont Area Council.
For the first time in 45 years, these former Scouts gathered from across Virginia to the site of their childhood summer adventures, Camp Monocan.
This central Virginia Scout camp served as a summertime getaway to troops from the surrounding area. Even though their merit-badge earning days are behind them, the Scouting spirit was alive and well as campers reconnected and recollected Scouting memories.
“It’s really a great opportunity to relive old times,” Charlie Shaeff, a former staff member shared with NBC 29.
In addition to catching up with fellow Scouts, the group also received a visit from a Camp Monocan staple: Errett “Mountain Man” Callahan, who taught wilderness survival to campers in the 1960s.
Reunion organizer and former camper, Bill Callahan explained the significance of the locally known legend. “If they would qualify to go spend a night on the mountain with Mountain Man, then they would learn different Scouting skills.”
The lessons taught at Camp Monocan stayed with patrons like Harold Tate. Scouting’s values resonated with Tate, guiding him through a career with the Boy Scouts of America for nearly 40 years.
On the day of the reunion, the Scout-turned-Scouter told NBC 29 the camp still feels like home. “Camp Monocan holds deep, deep recollections and memories,” Tate said.
As the former Scouts of Camp Monocan know, one of the many benefits of Scouting is lifelong friendship. You can learn more about this reunion in the full story by NBC 29.