Hey, I hope a bunch of you can come to Nature Camp for the September 13-16, 2012 Service Weekend. We will start reshingling the Staffhouse during this gathering. We need to remove the old layers of shingles from the Staffhouse on Thursday, to get an idea of the amount of rotten wood that needs to be replaced. Nell has volunteered to feed dinner to a crew of folks on that Thursday evening. If you can make it on Thursday and would like to share dinner with us, please let me or Nell know so she can get an idea of how much food to prepare.
Charlie will have a dump truck in place for hauling away the shingles, and we will start removing the shingles about 1:00 pm Thursday afternoon. Please come and help even if it is only for a few hours. If you can’t make it Thursday afternoon, but can make it for a few hours Thursday morning, please do. You will need sturdy shoes, gloves that can withstand the roughness of the shingles, and although we have a few shingle removal shovels, please bring one if you have one. Any tarps that you can bring will help to make cleanup easier on the outside of the building. Also bring a hammer, a flat bar, nail pullers, vise-grips, a chalk line, a utility knife, an 8-foot ladder, and anything else you think will be useful.
In addition to the Staffhouse roof, we will also install 42 new floor joists under the second half of the Boy’s Bunkhouse. If you would like to get involved under the BBH, please equip yourself with some sort of knee protection – either kneepads or some kind of sponge rubber, styrofoam, or old towels that you can tape to your pant legs. Those tiny rocks under the building are really tough on knees. There is also a lot of rotten wood and old nails, so gloves, long pants and good shoes are a really good idea. That is not the place for open-toed shoes and shorts. Hammers, flatbars, ear protection, nail pullers, vise-grips, trouble lights, box fans to help move the air around, drop cords, 6-way cords, a floor jack, and anything else you can think of will be helpful. It is quite rocky, dusty, dirty, and hot under there. If you would feel more comfortable with a dust mask and Tyvek coveralls, please bring those. A headlamp will help but is not absolutely necessary. A layer of plastic has been used to cover the ground to make the job somewhat more comfortable, but it is still quite dirty under there.
Doesn’t that all sound like fun? We were all exhausted this past May after we did the first half of the BBH, but it was quite fun. I hope you like it, because we will need to do the same thing under all the buildings with suspended floors. Many of the old white pine floor joists under the bunkhouses are so rotten they can be pulled apart by hand. Since the buildings are all about 60 years old, it won’t be long before the floors in the other buildings will start to sag as well.
We will also shovel gravel, clear brush, rake leaves, sweep roofs and porches, clear paths and trails, repair screens, and generally get Camp ready for the winter months.
These tools are always helpful: ear protection, eye protection, hammers, battery drills, electrical cords, 6-way plugs, dust masks or respirators if you have a problem with dust or pollen. Sturdy shoes or boots, leather gloves, a rake, and a tarp are always useful. We may be doing some plumbing and some electrical work, so tools for those projects will be helpful. Please bring what you can, but don’t worry if you don’t have any of these items. We share. If you bring any tools, it is a good idea to put your name on them. Eventually they will make their way back to you.
If you aren’t an experienced woodworker, electrician, or plumber, we still need you for the unskilled projects. We always have brush to cleanup and NCF has adopted 608 above and below Nature Camp Trail. We’ll have a crew on litter patrol along that section of highway, so brightly colored clothing that is easily spotted by motorists would be a good idea. We always have a blast, no matter what the grunt work.
There will be folks at Camp from about noon on Thursday the 13th until about 3:00 pm on Sunday the 16th. We will stay in the Bunkhouses and use the T-houses, LS, and kitchen. NCF will feed you dinner on Thursday, 3 meals on Friday, 3 meals on Saturday, and breakfast and lunch on Sunday. In the evenings we will play music in the LS. Sound like fun? It is great fun. Please attend any or all that you can. If you can’t make it during the day, I hope you will at least come Saturday evening for dinner, music, and to visit.