Tag Archives: berowra

Venturer’s Report, AGM, 24th May 2011

Greetings from the mighty MCMK Venturers!  There have been some major changes with Venturers this year, and our Unit has been evolving rapidly over the last few months!  Our numbers are in continual flux, but that’s part of the territory with the Venturer age group.  However, there has been a major change of events with Chris “Spesh” Whitfield and Gary “Gator” Binskin coming on board to steer the Venturer Unit into a new era.  Just like a punt up uncharted waters!

Belinda Binskin and Matthew Urmenyhazi have been at the helm for some time now, but Gary Binksin’s enthusiasm and skills is a tremendous benefit to all in our Unit.  Just a few days ago, we made delicious pizza out of an oven made from a beer keg – whilst Belinda kept a watchful and helpful eye over the chocolate fondue!

Of course the big news for us is that we have our own hall now! We’ve officially cut the umbilical cord from the Berowra Unit and we are on our own!  The Berowra Unit has been a great support over the years, and without them and the use of their hall, we wouldn’t have our Unit. However, we are on our own feet now, and are all enjoying a type of newfound freedom – and no more possum poo in the hall!

Another of the big changes has been changing our meeting nights, from Wednesday and Fridays, to now Monday nights.  This change has been FANTASTIC!! (Thanks Gator!) as all Venturers can now participate throughout the year!!

Our numbers have declined a bit in recent months due to age, friendships with other Units etc.  However, we have had a very full program since the last AGM.  You can see most of our activities on the mcmkscoutgroup.org.au website, which we keep updated regularly, or on our Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/mcmkvents.  Here, though, are just a few of the activities that we’ve participated in since our last AGM.  We have been VERY busy over the last 5 months or so…

•    Ventout (3 days of camping with Scouts)
•    Snorkelling
•    Deep Pass Christmas Camp
•    Tie Dye Night
•    Roventure (3 days of camping with Rovers)
•    Visit to a Thai Buddhist Monastery
•    Debating night
•    Outdoor cooking
•    Bush tucker weekend

We also recently had a very successful soap swap night.  Check out the website and read about how we turned a bar of soap into a giant flat screen TV – in fifteen minutes!

Other news… on a personal note, I’ve decided to hand over the steering of the Unit to Gary.  Time for me to focus on other projects!  Although I won’t be gone completely, I’ll be hanging around on most nights like a bad smell!  Once a scout leader, always a scout leader!

MCMK Venturers is back on course!  Belinda, Gary, Spesh and to a lesser part myself are now full-swing into a new term and term plan!  Our Venturers are very motivated and enthusiastic, and it looks like we’ll have some Scouts coming up soon!  It also looks like we may have some Queen Scout candidates too!

Cheers,
Mazi (Matthew Urmenyhazi)

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Scouts Report, AGM, May 24th 2011

Well it’s the end of another Scouting year for all of us; however there is a big difference this year.  We have our own hall/home.  We no longer have to operate as nomads.  A big thank you goes out to those other scouting groups who have allowed us to utilize their halls/gear and storage facilities.  They are Berowra Scouts for their hall facilities and gear, and Asquith Scouts for allowing us to store what gear we have under their hall.  Without there support we would have been in dire straits so thanks again.

Ok back to us, we currently have 20 Scouts invested with 3 warranted leaders.  This year we have been in the hall a lot as we have a young troop who are coming along well and are itching to get outside and camp but we are not quite there.  Add to this injury to two of our leaders which took 5 months over summer/autumn off the outdoors fun, but we have managed activities where possible.

The boys have just got back from the Easter Benowie District, 4 day Scout Camp held at Crosslands Reserve and we are proud to say they came 2nd in the overall camping competition.  This is a fantastic result given half of them have only just come up from Cubs and have never been to Easter camp before. Well done boys.  A special mention goes to one of our newest Scouts, Max Mcdermott, who not only attended Easter Camp but played the Last Post on his trumpet in front of the entire district.  Well done Max!

The 3 new double dome tents worked well for the camp, it makes a change for us, as we have been borrowing Berowra’s bell tents.  The tents came back wet but a lot easier to handle as they are nylon, not heavy canvas.

We have 6 of the older Scouts going to Scout Hike this year to see if they can win the event.  They are going “Hard Core” – which translates to roughing it with minimal gear and supplies.  Well that’s the meaning for hard core.  Our patrol is going harder than most but not quite full-on hard core, more like “Medium Rare Firm Core”.  I know I will pay for that label.  Well the boys are back and finished between 13th – 28th places which will get them a Silver medal.  We are awaiting the score results to see if we are the highest ranked patrol in our District.  Well done boys, we know it was -2◦C overnight.

I would like to thank our Scouts for the people they are.  They are a good lot of boys that will go far in this world.  They are developing into fine young men, by that I mean that they are in fact maturing not only physically but mentally. They do actually openly care for others, this is being proven all the time for example: “I was at Easter camp last year 2010 with a major kidney stone – yes I was in pain and Bluey had the flu, well we had 2 patrols of mothers with us, giving aid and protection from others.  Also I had neck surgery at Christmas.  Since then every time I go to do something in the hall or around the place I hear, “I’ll get that.  Don’t you do that Koala” or “Sit down and rest your leg Cougar, we’ll do it”.  This coming from a Scout or older Scout (Venturer) does show they do care.  Also a thank you to all of our parents who care as well, it is appreciated by us, your Scout Leaders.

In closing we must thank our Group Leader WOMBAT (aka Greg McKinnon) for his tenacious effort in getting our new hall for us.  It’s been 7 years and 2 of our Scout Leaders have not had a hall to call home until now.  Also a thank you to our Committee for never giving up on our group.

At the time of writing this report, one of our Rover Scouts is recovering from a stay in hospital with severe injuries to his back due to a fall over Easter.  We are all thinking of you Josef and you have our full support to aid your recovery.

Scouting is fun and can be dangerous which is why your Leaders are here to reduce the risks, however some things do happen and that we cannot stop.  Scouting is about doing things in the outdoors and there are risks, but compare them to sitting inside on a computer on a beautiful sunny day, I know where we’d rather be, not inside that’s for sure.

Yours in Scouting,
Koala: Geoff Shields
Cougar: Peter Cooch
Bluey: Jeremy Hugman

Cub Scout’s Report, AGM, 24th May 2011

Our year has been a very busy one: We have been running our term plans and they always have been full of fun and adventure for our Cubs.  We have tried to introduce more achievement badge activities into the regular Tuesday nights.  This was at the Cubs request via pack council.

We have run some of our programmes with our Venturer pack (Rock Climbing).  We have attended district activities, ten pin bowling, BMX days, Scout out and Region Fun Day.

You would be aware that Cuboree was held in January this year with 13 Cubs attending.  For this event we grouped with Berowra Cub Pack.  It was great success with kids and leaders having a good time.  Our Campsite was called Pluto (Space theme).  During the Cuboree there was a talent night to which camp Pluto won.  We were then given the privilege of performing at the closing ceremony.

The merging of our pack and Berowra was great as everyone got along very well (leaders included) so much so that the Cubs would like to do a joint camp with Berowra in the warmer months. (We have arranged with Berowra to have a camp at Narrabeen Scout Hall later in the year.)

Our boomerang work this year has been a real success with more Cubs receiving their badges than any other year, many thanks to Karen for all her good work.

Also we have two more new Leaders this year that started their training and have already made things easier in our Pack.  They are Fletcher ROCK and Rowan KLEIN.  I wish them all the best in their Scouting career and I am sure everyone will make them welcome.

Our Pack is very strong, at the moment we have 18 Cubs and 6 Leaders which makes us the envy of other Packs.  The pack consists mainly of 8-9 year olds.  We have 3 Cubs turning 11 this year and by all accounts they will be heading to Scouts.

Each term we have a weekend bushwalk along one of the local trails.  Last month we walked the Hornsby to Crosslands trail and had 18 kids and parents come along, a great turnout for Sunday morning.

We have been going on small walks around the new hall on Tuesday nights, last week we walked to McDonalds brought an ice cream and walked back.  The Cubs said that was the best night and could they do it again.

The Pack went to Brooklyn to assist in their Anzac Day Service.  It was raining and cold but those who came along helped set up the chairs and hand out programs.

This year the Cubs had Jamboree of the Airways at Asquith Scout Hall.  This was a unique experience with Cubs talking to other Cubs from around the world.

I would like to thank Wombat and the committee for all their hard work throughout the year.

In closing the pack in my opinion is in a strong position for the coming year, we have a young pack with a core of about 16 Cubs that attend week in, week out.  The Cubs enjoy each other’s company and are only too keen to play games and seek out new adventures.

Yours in Cubing
Akela 
Jeff Argent

More Bush Tucker – Lilli Pilli Jam


At this time of year, if you keep your eye open, you can find tall trees in the Sydney North Region with clusters of vibrantly coloured berries. These are native plants called lilli pillis. What many people don’t know is that these fruit are very edible and make an excellent jam. When you pick them off the tree and eat them straight away that have a slight tart taste, a bit like a sour apple, but when you boil them and make them into a jam or jelly, they have a unique and delicious taste.

Ari and I had a quick drive around our streets looking for lilli pillis. Within 10 minutes I found a house in Berowra with massive trees with large clusters of lilli pillis. I knocked on the door, and asked the owner if I could take them. She had no use for them, and within 10 minutes we had 2 buckets full of delicious berries!

After picking, I washed them and picked out the leaves and small sticks. I was about to “deseed” them but realised that this would take me days. So, I boiled them instead and strained the syrup through a muslin cloth. The recipe that I found on the net didn’t use the berries after this process, and discarded them but it seemed to be a shame to throw them out after taking the juice out. So, I took the seeds out from each one.  This didn’t take long as the lilli pillis were cooked – about half an hour.

The recipe for lilli pilli jam is very simple: Mix 250gms of lilli pillis and their juice, to 250gms of sugar, and the juice of one lemon. Mix the lot and boil. I bought a sachet of pectin to throw in, to aid setting.

I had my first batch of lilli pilli jam made not long after. After boiling it for about 10 minutes it turns into a vibrant purple. The jars are now in the fridge cooling down. I’m really looking forward to having some for breakfast tomorrow!

Romeventure – A weekend of excellent awesomeness!!

 

Some lucky contestants get to eat "Iron Gut" food!

Ok, here’s a late post about the weekend that was Romeventure!

Well, we arrived at Cataract Scout Camp on the Friday night, after a brief stop over at Campbelltown Maccas (the staple diet of many venturers!). We pulled into the camp and set up the giant tarp that became our kitchen and lounge area for the Romeventure weekend.

I awoke at 6am the next morning with a burning sensation on my nipple (I hate writing the word “nipple”). A small black thing ran across my chest! I cornered it and realised it was a red back spider. I caught it, and spent the next 48 hours holding my “knipple”, a lot of my time was spent curled up like a cocoon in a hammock. It was just a burning sensation, and made me feel tired all weekend. So I was pretty useless all weekend as far as participating in all the action going down.

Everyone else though had a great time though!!! The Rovers from Berowra and MCMK did a great job with the food all weekend!

Here’s just some of the things that the guys and girls (about 150 or so)  got up to:
– Round robin activities. Sounds naff, and some of it was, but there were some great and challenging things to do.
– Swimming in a dam. Kinda like swimming in pea soup really! For some strange reason.
– Trivia night. those wacky Rovers know how to put a party on!
– Disco. Party hard, party hard, party hard!!
– Waterslide – I didn’t see this but heard it was excellent!
– Iron Gut. This is a challenge where contestants have to eat multiple courses of disgusting food without “singing a rainbow”. Some the courses included, slices of bread soaked (and I mean soaked!) in olive oil, and a caesar salad. The ceasar salad sounds ok, but not when it’s been blended into a juice – complete with anchovies!

All up, it was an awesome weekend and our guys from Mount Colah Mount Kuring Gai and Berowra had a great time!!! A big thank you again, must go out to the Rovers for catering for us!

Cheers, Mazza

Tie Dye Night Goes Off!

Tom from Berowra Venturers had a great idea. Why not have a tie dye night? Berowra Venturers and Mount Colah Venturers would travel back in time where peace, love and incense where all that mattered.

Sounds exciting – and to a leader, sounds scary! The thought of our Venturers going home with blue or green faces that stay with them for rest of their life had me concerned – this could be as bad as looking like an Avatar warrior for the rest of your life!!

However, the night was really successful, and no one ended up with permanent die stains on them  – where they shouldn’t be.  Apart from blue hands, which you can live with, everything went smoothly.

For some strange reason, the Venturers that didn’t come prepared, had the most success! Tie dyeing is a “random” process, and something that’s fairly unpredictable. Tom seems to have mastered it though, and he knew how to make spirals and diagonal freaky patterns!

It was a great night for all the Venturers from MCMK and Berowra! I reckon we should do it again one night!