Troop Dinner and Honoring John Hartinger’s 20 Years of Service

St. James Church

Getting to know our fellow Scout Families better, Fun Times, a Great Meal,  and the Privilege of Honoring one of our own was had by one and all this past Sunday, January 8th, 2017 at our Annual Pot Luck Scout Dinner.

Thanks to everyone on the Committee who helped to organize this (I’m not going to embarrass myself by omitting anyone, you all know who you are!). It takes a Village to get everything lined up months ahead of time, then phone calls and emails weeks ahead of the dinner (and a lot of scrambling the day of). We’d like to thank Reverend Melissa and St. James Church again for their generosity for providing us with this wonderful venue, and the use of their kitchen facilities.

At this year’s dinner, we honored 20 years of service to the Scouts by our Troop Chairperson John Hartinger who attended with his wife Carol, daughter Kate and younger son Joey. Older son Dan could not attend but wrote a wonderful tribute (read by Scoutmaster Carl), relating how his Dad’s dogged determination and love of nature, and the Scouts directly influenced his own career choices. Dan is currently the National Monuments Campaign Manager of the Wilderness Society In Washington DC.

John was the Cub Master for Pack 5 in Montclair operating out of Hillside Middle School and moved over to Troop 12 when Dan and then Joey became Boy Scouts there. He became the third leg of the Troop’s Triumvirate, (with Scoutmaster Jeff Gaskin and Greg Spinelli), that replaced “Doc” Norman Leard when he retired after decades as Troop 12’s 2nd  Scout Leader. While Jeff and Greg handled the tactical operations of the Troop, John became the Chairperson managing the charter, hosting committee meetings, and making sure the Troop ran a good program amongst other things.

Along the way, John just happened to save Camp Glen Gray from getting bulldozed and turned into mini-mansions, when it was going to be sold by the newly formed Northern NJ Council of the Boy Scouts to developers. (You can read an interesting history of Glen Gray and of the story to save it in this great New York Times Article: “Breaking Camp” from April 2001).

While Dan and Joey both officially left the Boy Scouts years ago, John remained Committee Chair and filled in when either Greg or Jeff couldn’t.

Thanks John! and here’s to many more years of service and friendship! Congratulations!



Thanksgiving 2016 Food Drive

Human Needs Logo
The Human Needs Food Pantry of Montclair

Thanks to Scouts Justin L. and Peter B. for organizing the Thanksgiving  Food Drive for the Human Needs Pantry. Here’s a picture of the haul in our screen room before delivery:

Photo of the bags of food
Thanksgiving haul from Troop 12 families.

Here’s all the individual items. There was a total of 173 items

  • 112 Cans of food
  • 45  Boxes of Pasta and other Dry goods
  • 4    Boxes of Stuffing
  • 12   Misc items

ASM Sean Leong and Scout Justin L. made the food delivery before Thanksgiving:

Volunteers taking shopping bags of food from car park.
ASM Leong and Justin L. make the Thanksgiving Delivery to The Human Needs Food Pantry of Montclair


While most people make donations to the Food Pantry during the holidays, Human Needs actually has high need for food year round, hunger doesn’t discriminate. So the Troop made a second donation post-Christmas:

A $50 gift coupon from Scoutmaster Carl to Stop N’ Shop, netted the following:

  • 8 boxes of pasta
  • 3 jars of peanut butter
  • 1 jar of jam
  • 1 packet of rice
  • 2 jars of pasta sauce
  • 10 cans of tuna
  • 5 cans of assorted beans
  • 2 boxes of cereal

Special thanks to my wife, Sophia Leong for making all those runs to the local supermarkets for getting all of the post-Christmas food donations, including the following additional items:

    • 2 cans of instant coffee
    • 3 jars of peanut butter
    • 1 bottle of cooking oil
    • 10 boxes of pasta

Thanks again to all of the families that helped out on this food drive, The Troop strives to help give back to the community we call “home” as much as we can.


Jack Brandon, Eagle #355!

Eagle Rank Badge And Medal
The Highest Honor Rank for a Scout is the coveted Eagle Rank that boys have to complete before their 18th birthday.

On November 28th, Jack Brandon passed his Eagle Board of Review at Eagle Advisor, Marguerite Giustina’s house. His Board consisted of John Picinich from Lenape Trail District, John Hartinger as Troop Committee Chair, as well as ASM Mike Brown, and former Scout/Eagle parent, Linda Bowers.

Jack is Troop 12’s Eagle #355!

His Project was to clear out overgrowth and beautify the Bellevue Avenue Entrance of Essex County’s very own  Brookdale Park, co-sponsored by the Brookdale Park Conservancy.

Brookdale Park Bellevue Avenue entrance
This is what the Bellevue Avenue Entrance of Brookdale Park looked like AFTER Jack Brandon’s Eagle Project.

Onward and Upward!

Congratulations Jack!

Jake Skorzewski’s Eagle Project (part 1)

On Sunday, October 3oth, 2016, Jake Skorzewski and other several Scouts from Troop 12 met at his house to paint and assemble “hanging planters” for his Eagle Project. This is Part 1 of his project, and more on this will be posted on the site as we know more.

Project Participants:

  1. Jake Skorzewski (Eagle Candidate)
  2. Jack Brandon
  3. Sam Joslyn
  4. Justin L.
  5. Arjun N.
  6. Armaan N.
  7. Andrew F.
Scouts doing Eagle Project.
Justin L. and Jake Skorzewski set up boards that need to be painted for Jake’s Eagle Project.

Boy Scouts working on Eagle Project.
Discussing a plan of action.

Scouts painting an Eagle Project
From Left to Right: Andrew F., Arjun N., Justin L., and Armaan N., helping paint parts for Jake Skorzewski’s Eagle Project.

Scouts painting Eagle Project.
Justin L. and Jake Skorzewski painting one of the boards that will become a hanging garden planter for Jake’s Eagle Project.

Scout Sanding Eagle Project.
Eagle Candidate, Jake Skorzewski using a power sander to clean up the edges of a piece for his Eagle Project.

Scouts fool around with paint during Eagle Scout Project
Left to Right: Justin L. testing paint color, Scoutmaster Joslyn looking on approvingly, Armaan N., willing guinea pig, Arjun N., tester #1

Scout painting project for Eagle Project
Scout Andrew F. painting parts for the planters.

Boy Scouts after working on Eagle Project
Left to Right, Front Row: Sam J., Jack B. Left to Right, Back Row: Armaan N., Arjun N., Justin L., Eagle Candidate, Jake Skorzewski, Andrew F. Posing for the camera after a hard day’s work.

Congratulations Jake on a great start to your Eagle Project! And thank you and all your volunteers and Adult Advisors for helping your community. (Now onto the paperwork!)

~Sean Leong
ASM, Troop 12

Eagle Rank Badge And Medal
The Highest Honor Rank for a Scout is the coveted Eagle Rank that boys have to complete before their 18th birthday.


Sam Joslyn, Eagle #354!

Eagle Rank Badge And Medal
The Highest Honor Rank for a Scout is the coveted Eagle Rank that boys have to complete before their 18th birthday.

On November 3rd, Sam Joslyn passed his Eagle Board of Review at Eagle Advisor, Marguerite Guistina’s house. His Board consisted of ASM Mike Brown, ASM Sean Leong, Chairman John Hartinger, and our favorite BSA District Representative, John Picinich.

Sam is Troop 12’s Eagle #354!

Onward and Upward!

Congratulations Sam!

Upcoming Fall Events

Jake Skorzewski’s Eagle Project This Sunday

Jake will have his Eagle project this Sunday, October  30th, from 10AM to 2 PM at his house at 89 Bellevue Avenue in Montclair. For his project, we will be painting and assembling vertical gardens, so wear clothes you don’t care about. For more information, email Jake here.

Cub Scout Uniforms Needed

We have had a request from another Pack for any spare Cub Scout uniforms your sons may have outgrown. Please drop them off with Mr. Joslyn at a weekly meeting.

Upcoming Events

Food Drive — Our Holiday Food Drive is almost here and more information will be given at the next Friday meeting by Justin Leong.

Committee Meeting — The next Troop Committee Meeting will be held at St. James next Tuesday at 7:30PM in the Library.

Training Conference 2 will be held at Glen Grey on November 12th to 13th (Saturday to Sunday). Patrols will be camping and cooking outside, so warm sleeping bags and other outdoor gear will be required. At this Training Conference we will be investing our new Scouts into Troop 12. More information will follow in the next few weeks.

Yours in Scouting,
Troop 12 Staff

FALL HIKE-ORY 2016: Coppermines Trail to Kittatinny Ridge

This year’s fall hike was postponed to this coming Saturday, due to the inclement weather we had last week.  Info about  the hike can be found at the following link:

Don’t forget to be at the asphalt covered car park closest to the “pin”  on the following  google maps location of the parking lot:,-75.0376916,351m/data=!3m1!1e3


The consent form can be found here:

197th Court of Honor

Troop 12 Montclair’s 197th Court of Honor

Camp Glen Gray September 25, 2016


Opening Ceremony – Jack Brandon, Senior Patrol Leader

Welcome – John Hartinger, Troop Committee Chair 

             Troop 12 Participation Recognition

July 4th Parade Float

  • Adults: Mike Brown, Greg Spinelli
  • Scouts: Peter B, Sam J

July 4th Parade Marchers

  • Adults: Greg DeSmith, Carl Joslyn, Greg Spinelli
  • Scouts: Curtis D, Eron E, Sam J, Jackson K, Charles M, Carson

1st Annual Troop 12 Atlantic Fishing Extravaganza Scouts

  • Adults: Julius DeSantis, Greg DeSmith, Pete Devilbiss, Andrew Frazier, Victor Parada
  • Scouts: Patrick C, Michael D, Thomas D, Curtis D Jack D, Andrew F, Jackson K, Charles M, Alex P, Marcos P

Glen Gray Work Day

  • Adults: Mike Brandon, Carl Joslyn, John Hartinger,
  • Scouts: Jack B, Eron E, Arjun N, Armaan N, Jake S

Troop Participation Bronze Award

  • Jackson Kim

Summer Camp

  • Adults: Mike Brandon, Greg DeSmith, Andrew Frazier, John Hartinger, Carl Joslyn, Sean Leong, Rich McCann, Victor Parada, Andrew Russell
  • Scouts: Michael D, Thomas D, Curtis D, Jack D, Eron E, Andrew F, Ben G, Jackson K, Justin L, Charles M, Arjun N, Armaan N, Alex P, Marcos P

Polar Bear Swim

  • Adults: Sean Leong
  • Scouts: Justin L,  Arjun N

NYLT at Camp Turrell

  • Scouts: Jack Brandon, Andrew F, Sam J

Merit Badges

Michael D.
  • Environmental Science
  • Archery
  • Sports
  • Personal Management
  • Citizenship in the Community
  • World Conservation Award
Thomas D.
  • Lifesaving
  • Sports
  • Personal Management
Curtis D.
  • Lifesaving
  • Forestry
  • Rifle Shooting
  • Pulp & Paper
Jack D.
  • Environmental Science
  • Camping, Forestry
  • Rifle Shooting
  • Pulp & Paper
Eron E.
  • Pulp & Paper
  • Camping,
  • Wilderness Survival
  • Rifle Shooting,
  • Insect Study
Andrew F.
  • Kayaking
  • Astronomy
  • Wilderness Survival
  • Rifle Shooting,
  • Personal Management
Ben G.
  • Kayaking, Camping
  • Emergency Preparedness
  • Forestry, First Aid
  • Sports
Jackson K.
  • Swimming
  • Leatherwork
  • Sports
  • Environmental Science
  • Nature
  • Geocaching
Justin L.
  • Motor Boating
  • Rifle Shooting
Charles M.
  • Leatherwork
  • Sports
  • Environmental Science
  • Nature
  • Geocaching
Arjun N.
  • Archery
  • Motor Boating
  • Rifle Shooting
Armaan N.
  • Basketry
  • Camping
  • Wilderness Survival
  • Rifle Shooting
  • Personal Management
Alex P.
  • Kayaking
  • Camping
  • Personal Fitness
  • Sports
  • Orienteering
  • Environmental Science
Marcos P.
  • Personal Management
  • BSA Lifeguard

Rank Advancement

Armaan Nischol
  • Life

Upcoming Events

         Popcorn Sale (Replaced by Bulb Sale) – October/November

         Fall Backpack Camping – 10/22-10/26

         Training Conference II/Pioneering Weekend – 11/12-11/13

         Leaf Raking/Fall Service Project – TBD        

         Family Dinner – 1/8/17

         Arctic Challenge/Klondike Derby – 1/14/17