Written by Mike Swofford Monday, 02 May 2011 21:32
We're sure you have some questions about the future of Camp Michaels. While there is still much to be decided and many plans to be made, some information is available. Here we address some of the most common questions about the development plans. You'll notice that there are still many questioned still unanswered, however, as the development plans progress, this list will be updated with what we know.
Yes! Based on focus group and survey feedback, it is evident that Camp Michaels has a definite place in the Dan Beard Council camping opportunities. While it's impossible to tell what may come in the distant years ahead, for the immediate future, the camp will continue to be owned and operated by the Dan Beard Council.
This is still to be determined. Before any work can begin, any development must be planned and designed. The Camp Michaels Visioning Committee has presented a first concept of development to the Board of Directors, and now a field testing phase is underway. A development plan will dictate the need, size, and scope of a capital campaign. If a campaign is necessary, fundraising planning will take place, and then the actual fundraising will begin. It is not likely that any dirt will move before fundraising is well underway. Most likely, no real development will begin before 2013 or 2014.
This is still to be determined. Feedback from the visioning process showed an interest in keeping the camp rustic and primitive in nature, but there was also definite interest in improvement of the camp's infrastucture, creation of outdoor program elements, and training and meeting facilities. Click here to see the first concept of a camp vision created by the Camp Michaels Visioning Committee.
More than likely. Acording to survey results, this is an essential part of developing the camp at any level and was also the most frequent request from participants in the visioning process. This infrastructure improvement is one of many suggested in the Camp Michaels Vision Proposal.
Maybe. Responses from the Camp Michaels survey showed that nearly 50% of participants felt a bridge connecting the two sides of the camp was "Not important" or "Somewhat important." In addition, a permanent bridge over the very wild Gunpowder Creek is likely to be one of the largest expenses of any development plans. This infrastructure improvement is one of many suggested in the Camp Michaels Vision Proposal.
This is still to be determined. Both sides of the creek offer different possibilities. The Camp Michaels Vision Committee has suggested some development on both sides of the creek.
The idea of giving full attention to the camp in the form of a major development plan has been discussed for several years. In 2010, the visioning process was begun to determine the need and type of development. Without knowing the future of the camp or the strategy for development, the prudent approach of delaying major upgrades has been taken. Now, with an idea of how the camp will be used, planning for those projects will begin.
Not likely. Camp Friedlander has it's position in the council's camping program lineup, and Camp Michaels has a different position. One of the most common responses in the visioning sessions was that there is no need to duplicate the program offerings of Camp Friedlander. One of the two set principles of the Camp Michaels Visioning Committee was not to duplicate programs the council already has available and only envision unique programs.
That depends. Everyone has a different idea of what "rustic" means. The primitive nature of the camp has been identified as an important part of its draw and offers unique opportunities not available at the other camps. Just how rustic the camp will be remains to be seen, but with 600 acres of back country available, it is unlikely that the majority of the property will be significantly developed. One of the two principles of the Camp Michaels Visioning Committee was to maintain the rustic nature of the property while envisioning modern amenities for future generations of Scouts.
No plan has been developed yet. With that said, a BB range, an archery range, and a rifle range were some of the highest scoring program choices in the online survey. A Shooting Sports Center is included in the first concept outlined in the Camp Michaels Vision Proposal.
The Dan Beard Scout Reservation offers BB, archery, rifle shooting, and shotgun shooting facilities. While it was the goal of the Camp Michaels Visioning Committee not to duplicate program offerings, it was also apparent that shooting sports are a fundamental and critical program offering for any Scout camp, much like campsites and shelters. Shooting sports were also the number one program request on the feedback survey.
Survey responses showed that about 50% of participants felt that the name "Camp Michaels" was between "Not important" or "Somewhat important." Conversely, 50% felt that the name was in the "Very Important" range. Additionally, some write-in responses suggested the old name of the camp, "Camp Powderhorn" was missed. It is possible the name "Camp Michaels" will be kept in some capacity.
A first concept of a development vision was completed by the Camp Michaels Visioning Committee and presented to the Board of Directors in January, 2012. The vision is now in the field testing phase. If all goes well, a final vision will be presented to the board in May, 2012 and the design and planning phase will begin this summer.
The visioning committee includes 11 members representing many of the cross-sections of the council membership. These cross-sections included Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, and Venturing; unit level, district level, and council level volunteers; Scout parents and Veteran volunteers; Ohio and Northern Kentucky Scouters; Dan Beard Council board members, volunteers from the current council camping and properties committee, and business leaders. All in all, a wide variety of perspectives.