A new Boy Scout summer camp recognition was initiated this summer at Camp Merz in honor of George Dawson, past president of the council.
The Dawson family worked with the council and camp's leadership to develop this program to recognize a scout with the most scouting spirit each week of camp. A scout can be nominated by his peers, by staff and by leaders.
At the end of the camp week, the camp director and program director select a scout based on the nominations. He receives a custom-embroidered golf shirt, a certificate of recognition and a $25 gift card. His name is also inscribed on a plaque in the dining hall of camp for all to see for many years to come.
Alex Miller, left, from Troop 137 in Bemus Point, sponsored by the Methodist Church, receives one of the George Dawson Spirit of Merz Awards from John Prentice, Camp Merz program director, during his week at camp this summer.
"This has created a high level of observation of the campers actions by everyone," said Joe DeBiso, Camp Merz director. "It has brought to the forefront a lot of good deeds that have in the past gone unnoticed, because that's what scouts do, all the time. Now we have cause to pay extra attention, and it's really been a lot of fun, and heart-warming."
"Our scouts do a lot to help each other, and teach each other new things while at summer camp. We are a big family that believes in teamwork and leadership by example. This weekly award has added a wonderful new dimension to camp. It's pretty neat that now year after year troops can see their members listed on the plaque when they visit camp," said John Wojciechowicz, council executive.
Camp Merz just concluded its 81st consecutive summer season with over 800 campers this summer. It is located on Chautauqua Lake just as you enter Mayville. For more information about boy scouts in your neighborhood, call the Scout Service Center at 665-2697(BOYS) and visit their webpage at www.alleghenyhighlands.org .