Boy Scouts is supposed to be a youth organization that provides various programs and diverse camping facilities for their entire area of responsibility.

When Penns Woods and Pittsburgh councils combined in 2011, some board members were heard saying that they would close all facilities east of Ligonier.

Since then they have closed three of four sites on the east side and just recently closed Camp Seph Mack (CSM) for summer camp, which is in the center of the council area.

In June 2020, Camp Twin Echo near Ligonier also will close. Now, this council has one location for summer camp

in Heritage, which is not in the council area.

This distance from Heritage to those east and north is too far for families to come for family night.

CSM has provided a profit every year since 2015 as follows: 2018: not available; 2017: profit of 36%; 2016: profit of 42%; and 2015: profit of 29%.

Any organization would be thrilled to have profit margins of 20-40%. What company closes a profitable location?

The council’s report of each camp’s performance was completed and the independent evaluation “observed better quality program at CSM. Again, the disparity in rankings between two camps offering the same program within one council is notable.”

I encourage each of you to read it, available online and decide for yourselves.

Also read reviews and comments about the impact this camp has had on Scouts’ lives on the Camp Seph Mack facebook page at

Richard Kiehart


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