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MTC - Camp Minsi
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Camp Minsi
Camp HistoryCamp Minsi at Lake Stillwater

Camp Minsi at Lake Stillwater  

1949-1957  

The Council started preparing the new camp in late summer 1949 and continued throughout  the fall, winter, and next spring. xiv xv They started by renovating the only building on the land  large enough to accommodate the Scouts. Like the building at Lake Tobyhanna, it once house  men who worked for the ice company. The Council called this building the Training Center. It  

served as the kitchen and dining hall, first aid station, camp office, trading post and staff  quarters. It is located on the southern shore of Lake Stillwater near what is today the Ranger’s  house and workshop. In 1980, it was renovated and became the Weygadt Conference Center.  However, it was always known as the “Big House”. xvi It was used until the mid-2000s as a conference center, cabin, and camp master’s quarters. Today, sadly, it is a dilapidated,  condemned building waiting to be torn down. 

The first summer camping season opened on July 9, 1950. xvii Mrs. Rubel, along with over 300  scouts, leaders and parents attended the dedication on July 30. A plaque honoring Samuel  Rubel was presented to the boys on that day. xviii That plaque hangs in the administration  

building, the “Ad Pad”, to this day.

From 1950 until 1958, the camp was located near the Big House. The tent area occupied a piece  of land on which once stood a large icehouse known as Plant No. 1.xix The surrounding area,  which had few trees in those days, was used for program areas. There were some smaller buildings on the site that were used for storage and as an indoor rifle range. 

This location was never intended to be permanent. There were big plans in the works, but they  took some time to realize. While some improvements were made at the camp, like a new bridge  over the stream in 1951, no major changes occurred. That is, until 1957. On May 2, 1957, the  Council launched a capital campaign to raise money for a new, bigger and better Camp Minsi.  The campaign ran through May 28 and raised a whopping $ 252,968. That’s nearly $3,000,000  in 2023 dollars. In one month! xx The main road was changed to eliminate sharp angles and  crews started clearing the Service and Outer Circle roads in December. By March 1958, the new Kitchen and Dining Hall were under roof and construction on the trading post, admin building,  health lodge and camp director’s cabin were under way. xxi 

1958-Present

The 1958 summer camping season started on June 29, 1958. However, due to bad weather and  contract issues, the first week of camp was at the old site by the Big House. But the second  week opened on the new site. One would think the construction was completed before the  Scouts occupied the new camp but that would be wrong. Construction continued throughout 

the summer. The Health Lodge wasn’t completed until the end of July while, at the same time, only one of the two cook’s cabins was finished. The water tower was not erected until August. xxii What an interesting summer that must have been. One Scouter, who was a camper at the time, recalls the parade field being a big pool of mud. The camp was officially dedicated one  year later, on July 18, 1959.xxiii 

Over the past 65 years the number of campsites has increased from the original six sites to  twelve, and each site has also grown in capacity and design. Several program areas and facilities  have been moved and added throughout the years. A "state of the art" central shower house  was constructed in 1998. In 2007 Camp Minsi expanded its dining hall by an additional 80 feet.  In August 2010, construction began on a renovation of the Stillwater Lake Dam (including a new  spillway, gate, and a 400-foot roller-compacted concrete dam). The nearly $2-million project  was completed by the spring of 2011, allowing Stillwater Lake and Camp Minsi to continue to  serve Scouts for decades to come.


xiv The Morning Call, July 19, 1949, Page 36, Planning for New Site at SIllwater to Begin

xv The Morning Call,  August 20, 1949, Page 32, Improvements at New SIllwater Site Being Made

xvi The Morning Call, July 29,  1980, Page 13, Scout Council Dedicates Renamed Weygadt Center

xvii The Morning Call, May 13, 1950, Page  5, Renovation of New Camp Minsi Site, Building Is Near Completion

xviii The Morning Call, July 30, 1951, Page  8, 300 at Scout Ceremonies to Dedicate Camp Minsi; Donor of Site Honored 

xix 1926 Mountain Ice Company property map

xx The Morning Call, March 9, 1958, Page 13, The “New” Bethlehem

xxi The Morning Call, 2nd Edition, March 11, 1958, Page 19, Camp Minsi Expansion Progressing, Area Boy Scout  Executives Informed

xxii The Morning Call, 2nd Edition, July 31, 1958, Page 36, Construction Advances on Camp Minsi  Buildings.

xxiii The Morning Call, 2nd Edition, May 12, 1959, Page 30, Scout Board Will Hire 3rd Staffer 

 

 

 

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PROFESSIONAL OFFICE HOURS OF OPERATIONS:
(610) 264-8551
10 AM – 5 PM (Monday  – Friday)
Closed Saturday & Sunday

 

SCOUT SHOP HOURS OF OPERATIONS:
(610) 264-8551
10 AM - 5 PM  (Monday-Friday)
10 AM - 2 PM (Saturday)
Closed Sunday

FOR SERVICE CENTER CLOSURES - REVIEW COUNCIL CALENDAR 
 

ADDRESS
991 Postal Road, Allentown, PA 18109