Rockaway, New Jersey - For seven years, the Patriots’ Path Council of the Boy Scouts of America has been running Camp Noble Cause; a weekend of fun and outdoor adventure for active duty, Guard and Reserve military personnel in New Jersey. Held at the Winnebago Scout Reservation in Rockaway, the weekend is chopped full of activities including rocket building, wall climbing, rifle, shotgun, swimming and archery. More than 100 volunteers give up their weekend to make the camp possible. And they do it for a simple reason.
“It’s a way to say thank you to our military personnel,” explained NRA Training Counselor Paul Dunberg. “It’s the least we can do.”
This year’s camp saw almost 600 participants arrive with tents, equipment, and family in tow. That brings the grand total of attendees to 2,500 over the last seven years. All made possible through the coordination of donations and volunteers.
“This year we partnered with both Patriots’ Path Council BSA and the American Legion Tri County Memorial Post 423,” said Camp Coordinator Bob Newbery. “The New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubsdonates ammunition and targets and we usually have about a dozen NRA Certified Instructors operating the two ranges.”
The weekend begins when participants arrive Saturday morning. Greeted by volunteers and members of the local scout troop, they’re walked through the registration process while the scouts transport their equipment and gear to the camp site. That will be their base of operation throughout the weekend.
That’s when they kick it into gear.
“Camp Staff then switches into their program functions … operating the waterfront, boating, field sports, the Carnival Field with all of the inflatables, and the archery range. They also handle support functions such as clearing tables in the dining hall and serving as EMTs and Rangers,” said Newbery.
With kids hitting the batting cages, playing volleyball, or fishing off the Searing Cabin pier, mom and dad can either sit back and watch or find an activity of their own. The primary goal is fun. Allowing the families and service member to sit back and relax.
After all … they’ve earned it.
“The many sacrifices made by the spouses and children of our military generally go unrecognized; we just want them to know we appreciate that sacrifice. The message from our staff, and the weekend, is thank you.”