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Skunkworks Project List

We were holding Winter Camp before any of the Star Wars movies sucked

Winter Camp / Skunkworks / Skunkworks Project List

Skunkworks Project List

... A skunkworks project is a project developed by a relatively small and loosely structured group of people who research and develop a project primarily for the sake of radical innovation.

Current Projects

Building the Torch
The goal of this project is to collect and publish the resources needed to plan and lead Winter Camp. This includes both creating new resources and collecting existing resources to make them easily accessible to the Winter Camp planning team.
Creation of a new page to allow tracking of projects created independently by Winter Campers with the goal of improving the experience for everyone.

On-going Projects

Some projects, once started, take on a life of their own and continue for years becoming part of Winter Camp tradition.

Geo Location Boxes
These unusual items debuted at Winter Camp ??. They are gps-enabled.
Winter Camp Network
The Winter Camp Network had modest beginning in Aprll of 1997 when Steve Donohue discovered the internet and his ability to create a website using his AOL account. On July 14, 1997, he registered the domain name An actual site occupied that domain beginning on October 8, 1997.
The first major interactive part of the site was added shortly afterwards on November 27, 1997 by Steve Donohue and Mark Bollman. The Wall was very popular for many years but has gradually become less busy as the planning pages for each Winter Camp have replaced much of what used to happen there.
The network has expanded over the years. There have also been other TLDs which were accessible for a time, but many of those have been allowed to expire over time.
Sometimes domains are registered for awhile before the sites go live. There have also been a few hiccups when we changed hosts. There have been three major hosts over the years: Concentric/XO, DetroitNet, and now IONOS.
Winter Camp Souvenirs
Staring in 2015, Winter Camp has had a number of imprinted souvenirs. These souvenirs have been distributed for free mostly at Winter Camp and El Mediodia but they have also appeared at chapter meetings.
The golf pencils have appeared in many places as there were 20 gross of them and they seemed to multiply.

Completed Projects

Over the years, Winter Camp has benefitted from a large number of projects which could be identified as being a skunkwork. Developed by a smalll team often with no official authority other then that which they have opted to tell and take. A few examples might include:

Candy Machine
At Winter Camp XIII the antique candy machine appeared. It had not been restored and didn't work. The lock was drilled and the machine was open and found to be mostly intact.
Since then it has been a fixture at Winter Camp operating first on nickels painted red and later on buffalo nickels
Cellphone Activated Hydrogen Balloons
At Winter Camp XLII, plans were made to explode some hydrogen balloons but no one remembered fuxe or a detonator. Alan "The World's Most Dangerous Wilson" Wilson made a cellphone based detonator using materials he had at camp.
CHR Memorial Site
In its heyday, the Charles Howell Scout Reservation near Brighton was widely regarded as one of the finest Scout camps in America. However, the property was sold by the Detroit Area Council in 1986 for development into the Pine Creek Ridge subdivision of luxury home sites. Several Winter Campers have made visits to CHR since its sale, and a number of artifacts, including 5 campsite markers (Jim Bridger, Davy Crockett, OA Cabin, Plainsman, and Ranger), have made their way to Winter Camp for enshrinement at the CHR Memorial Site, which was constructed at Winter Camp XI in 1987. The collection of artifacts was enhanced at Winter Camp XVI, when soil from CHR was scattered over the site and a tree was transplanted from the former CHR Ordeal site to the Beaver Creek woods.

The memorial is a fenced-in area housing the campsite markers, with a gateway built from two trees and the Lime Lake Field Sports sign. It is located somewhat downhill from the Last Ceremony site in such a location as to make it unlikely that it will be discovered without a deliberate search. Winter Camp's annual, 5-year, and 10-year time capsules are buried there each year. Jeff Rand has written a brief ceremony performed at the site during each year's time capsule placement in commemoration of two former DAC camps in metro Detroit: CHR and Waterford Township's Camp Brady. At Winter Camp XXVI, the ceremony was updated by Gordon Draper to include recognition of Winter Campers who had camped at CHR and the singing of the Charles Howell Reservation song:

The Reservation Song

[Background singers chant "Um Pa, Um Pa, Um Pa..."]

Killy, Killy, Killy, Killy, Watch, Watch, Watch, Watch,
Kay You Killy Come Cah Wah.
Killy, Killy, Killy, Killy, Watch, Watch, Watch, Watch,
Kay You Killy Come Cah Wah.
Hail Reservation, Reservation, Polly Wah
Hail Reservation, Reservation, Polly Wah

[Those singing the words return to chanting "Um Pa", and everyone then fades out.]

Other notable events at the site include a campout by Steve Donohue, John Howey, Tim Hunt, and Dave Milon on a December 1997 weekend as part of a weekend-long event where the Venture Scouts from Troop1373 were supposed to conduct a manhunt to find them. The 1997 Fall Fellowship saw a crew from Mahican Chapter converge on the site and build a new wing, increasing the size by 50%, and add a basement. Unfortunately, the basement had collapsed by Winter Camp XXI, and there are no plans to rebuild it.

During 2005, a falling tree near the site broke the Lime Lake Field Sports sign into several pieces. Paul Kupser took on the challenge of restoring the sign during 2006, and in retrieving the campsite signs to preserve them better, he expanded the site again.

Cone Foiler
It seemed like a fun and simple idea: to serve macaroni and cheese at Winter Camp XXXVIII in freshly-baked bread cones. The engineering required to get bread dough to hold a conical shape resulted in cardstock covered with aluminum foil as a mold and the coining of the name "cone foiler" as the description of the crucial job in their assembly. This spawned a new entry in "You Might Be A Winter Camper If...".
Cookie Cutters
Arrowmen attending the Winter Camp XL, XLI, and XLII planning meetings enjoyed home-made sugar cookies in the shape of the Winter Camp logo. These were cut using cookie cutters that had been 3-D printed by Alan Wilson. The cookies were baked by Doug Wilson.
Creepy Clown Cookie Jar
The Winter Camp XXXVIII pre-planning meeting was held at D-A and coincided with Dave Morosky's garage sale as he prepared to retire and move to Vancouver, Washington. Several campers stopped into the sale after the meeting, and a white ceramic clown-head cookie jar was judged by all present to be a Winter Camp must-have.

All present, that is, except Kristie Donohue, who dubbed it the "Creepy Clown". When the jar arrived at camp, Lauren Wilson had enhanced the jar with paint in several bright colors. This did nothing to lessen its creepiness, according to Kristie.

Many Winter Camp games have used dice of various number of sides. In 2018, Mark Bollman arranged for the manufacture of blue, red, and green 6-sided dice bearing the inscription "Winter Camp XLII" on the 1 face. These were distributed to campers on Day Five of Winter Camp XLII.
El Mediodia
June 29 is the day when the next Winter Camp is first closer in time than the previous Winter Camp. Steve Donohue suggested in early 1999 that the date be commemorated with some sort of event, and Occasional Visitor's second official contribution to camp was the name. While no formal event was held, El Mediodia was and continues to be marked by special graphics on the Winter Camp Web page.

In 2009, several Winter Campers and friends of Winter Camp gathered on El Mediodia at the Beaver Creek building and shared pizza from Greg's Pizza as a salute to the holiday. Present for this celebration were Mark Bollman , Kristie Donohue, Paul Kupser, and Shaun Range , all of whom were serving on the Trail to Eagle staff and thus in camp already.

After several attempts to plan a formal El Mediodia event, Doug and Joy Wilson hosted a picnic at their Ann Arbor-area home on 8 July 2017. There were good friends, good food, and good times shared by all. 4 out of 6 of the Arrowmen who attended Winter Camp I were there, and total attendance was close to 30 including families. A badminton court hosted several games over the course of the afternoon, including a 3-on-3 game. The second party was held at the Wilsons' on 8 July 2018, and included chauffeured rides in a 1928 Model T driven by Alan Wilson. This car had been modified to include an aftermarket digital speedometer. 13 July 2019 was the date of the third party.

The computer game Empire originally ran on the TRS-80, but was later ported over to IBM-compatible machines by John Howey. Arrowmen went nuts over this game from Winter Camps VI through X, playing at all hours and almost coming to blows over who got to play next. The object of Empire was to run a medieval kingdom. Players made decisions on how to feed their people and how much money to spend on commerce, industry, agriculture, and the military to increase earnings. Simultaneously, each player could attack the other players and gain land. When a player's acreage ran low, his resources would be destroyed and his serfs beaten and murdered. Finally, when a player lost all his land, he would be overrun, an event often accompanied by Winter Campers chanting "Over Run! Over Run!" Winter Camp modified Empire in a couple of ways, reprogramming the game to introduce a random turn order and introduce a note of randomness into the computer players' finances. (SD, JH)
First Run Movie
At Winter X in 1986, campers were able to watch Top Gun which was still showing in theaters at the time.
Grey Area Goons/Goon World Order
The Grey Area Goons was a name originally applied to Arrowmen between the ages of 18 and 21. "Grey area" refers to the fact that such individuals are considered youth in the eyes of the Order of the Arrow, but adults as far as the rest of Scouting is concerned. The term has evolved over the years and is currently defined in The Goon Guide as "An Arrowman over the age of 18 who fails to make contributions to Winter Camp commensurate with his perceived abilities". Wilson's Rules of Order provide a mechanism for goons to move on to adult status, but few members of this class seem interested in such a transition.

"Goon World Order" emerged as an alternate moniker at Winter Camp XXI, when members of the alliance decked themselves out in official gray GWO T-shirts. The Goons moved from their traditional home at Clearwater cabin to High Point for Winter Camp XXIV, but their influence began to wane after Winter Camp XXV.

Grit Kit
Steve Donohue took the idea of Jackpot Grits and turned it into a gift item distributed to several campers at Winter Camp XLI. A Grit Kit contains a variety of grits toppings and food coloring and a pair of dice for suitable randomization. So it is that the spirit of Winter Camp makes its way throughout the rest of the year.
Gumball Machine
Purchased by Kristie Donohue and restored by the Wilson family, the giant gumball machine made its first appearance at Winter Camp XLII. It wasn't officially used as part of the program but it was filled with capsules containing ingredients appropriate for inclusion in grits. (SD)
Hit Singles
At Winter Camp XXXIV, the soundtrack for meals consisted of the #1 songs for each year in the 25-year period corresponding to each day. The tunes were a cooperative venture between Keith King and Doug Wilson, and included one song originally recorded on an Edison cylinder.
Jell-O Molds
Among the many curiosities dotting the walls of the Winter Camp kitchen are a pair of Jell-O molds which are traditionally hung each year. The copper lobster and cornucopia were filled with gelatin at Winter Camp II and occasionally thereafter, but their primary function is decorative. At Winter Camp XXXVIII, an inventory of accumulated Winter Camp gear revealed 12 linear feet of Jell-O molds. While records are not carefully kept on this matter, this may hold the record for most Jell-O molds at a single camp.
Kitchen Logo
The Winter Camp kitchen logo was designed by Steve Donohue specifically to be placed on aprons when (home of the online Winter Camp Universe store) announced that they would be available for the summer of 2002. Bearing the legend "Winter Camp Kitchens-Eat it now or eat it later", the logo also features a crossed canoe paddle (a/k/a Rand Stew Stirrer) and a kitchamajig. (SD)
Latrine Contest
This contest was held annually from Winter Camps IX through XIV. For its first four years, the registration of time spent and a log of toilet paper usage were maintained on a honor system. At Winter Camps XIII and XIV, Jeff Rand put together a computer program which monitored these activities and warned of latrine invasions by unauthorized users. Competition of sorts was contested in several categories, including longest and shortest visit, total time during the weekette, and toilet paper conservation.
Logo Cakes
Kristie Donohue arrived near the end of the Winter Camp XXX planning meeting with a rhombus cake with the lettering of the Winter Camp logo. She chose, wisely, to replace the artwork in the interior with a simple "XXX". A similarly simplified logo comprised the third layer of the cake Kristie made for the Winter Camp XXX anniversary party. The sides of this latter cake's three levels were adorned with the Roman numerals from I to XXX.
Logo Light
The Winter Camp logo has been used on a light-up sign made by Paul Kupser and hung outside Beaver Creek since Winter Camp XXVI. The four inner quadrants of the logo light up, alternately, in blue, orange, red, and green.
Low Sun In Sky All Day Camp Book That Tells What Words Mean
This book is an ongoing work which draws from the Winter Camp Adventure at Winter Camp X and its main character, Big Bro. The book is Big Bro's official dictionary of the acceptable English language-since the Adventure allowed Arrowmen to speak only in one-syllable words, that's all that will be found here.

Some of the definitions lose nothing in this restriction ("fife: a small flute with six to eight holes"), while others become convoluted almost beyond recognition ("box: a thing that is part square and holds things, most times it is made of soft changed wood"). Units of measurement are particularly tough to untangle ("dyne: a force that will cause a change in speed of a tenth of a tenth of the length scale used in most lands per one three point sixth of a tenth of a tenth of an hour per one three point sixth of a tenth of a tenth of an hour on a mass of one gram").

Jeff Rand adds one letter per year to this lexicon, and he displayed the "Z" chapter on schedule, during the Winter Camp XL planning meeting. At the Winter Camp XXXIV planning meeting, it was clear that Jeff was hard at work on the S's, as his interest in the word "sluice" was unusually strong, almost to the point of being disturbing. It should be noted that the version of Big Bro lurking in the Winter Camp electronic universe, while attempting to live by the standards of the game, does not seem to consult the book for his definitions. His very use of the phrase "Cold Time Camp" contradicts Jeff's favored phrasing.

Low Sun... was completed on time, for Winter Camp XL in 2016.

M*A*S*H Sign
Winter Camp XXXII had a military them and it prompted M*A*S*H fan Keith King to produce a version of the iconic sign from the center of the camp.
He set it up at camp on set-up day. It has become a fixture of camp and is set up every year.
The first year it pointed to the missing Paul Kupser in Tampa, FL and a few other places. New signboards have been added through the years and most of the original signs only appeared that first year. Keith has taken suggestins over the years.. The sign is stored in the attic between camps.
Newton's Cradle/Swinging Wonder
At Winter Camp XL, the dining room was dominated on Day One by a giant Newton's Cradle made of five bowling balls suspended by ropes from the rafters. Doug Wilson led a team from the setup crew in constructing this larger-than-life version of the popular desktop toy. Such a large device was destined to interfere with full use of the room, and so it was dismantled early in the weekette.
Nixie Tube Clock
At Winter Camp XLI, Alan Wilson displayed a clock he had built that marked Winter Camp Standard Time in military time. The clock used nixie tubes: light-up tubes in the shape of each of the ten digits.
This book, compiled by Steve Donohue and Jeff Rand for Winter Camp XIV, was the first recreational Winter Camp book as well as the first serious effort to record intricate details of Winter Camp traditions. Additionally, it was the first Winter Camp book offered for sale, at 50 cents.
Parody Logo
The parody logo was designed by Steve Donohue as a joke. It takes the standard Winter Camp logo and replaced the items in each pane with an item more closely associated with the Goons. Little Ozzie is replaced with a yellow Pontiac Aztek, similar to the one driven by John Howey. The outhouse is replaced with a Hooters chick; the thermometer, golf ball, and soccer ball are replaced with a cup of piping hot coffee, and the single TRS-80 computer is replaced by the networked computers of the GoonNet. Goon Camp is described further as "Usually Unimpressive". (SD)
While the idea had been kicked around off and on for many years, it was only at Winter Camp XXIV that a Winter Camp patch was available. Jeff Rand arranged for their manufacture in two versions: the Winter Camp rhomboidal logo with a gold border, awarded to youths completing the requirements for the new Winter Camp Participation Award; and the logo with a blue border, available for purchase at $3. Tim Hunt was the first to buy a patch. Steve Donohue posted one for auction on eBay during camp, which sold for $8. Two other patches offered on eBay were sold to campers before the sale price dipped below $3. Most of the first batch of blue-bordered patches had been sold by the end of Winter Camp XXV.

Winter Camp University provided motivation for several other border colors, beginning at Winter Camp XXVI. Four new colors were ordered, and the College of Winter Camping planned to award a white-bordered patch to its graduates. At Winter Camp XXVII, WCU's College of Historical Studies announced plans to award red-bordered patches-the first of these were awarded in 2005. Black-bordered patches are awarded by the College of Engineering, and the green-bordered patches await assignment.

Paul's Home Brew
Paul Kupser's assigned hobby for Winter Camp XXIII was silversmithing. He did not appear to report at camp, but returned at Winter Camp XXIV with the first fruits of his new self-selected hobby: soda brewing. His 12-gallon keg of home-brewed root beer enlivened that year's Casino Night events. Paul's brewing interest continued during 2001-a bottle of root beer was presented to each Arrowman in attendance at the November pre-planning meeting, and an array of beverages including grape soda, cream soda, and ginger ale was served during Winter Camp XXV. Additionally, Paul provided 48 bottles of root beer in souvenir bottles for the 162-Dish Banquet. Arrowmen were cautioned to open the bottles outside in case unusual pressure was released-several did, but the cork launches were generally unimpressive. At Winter Camp XXVI, Paul stocked the Winter Camp trading post with seven flavors of home-brewed pop: root beer, grape, lemonade, strawberry-kiwi, raspberry, ginger ale, and fruit punch. At Winter Camp XXVII, Paul provided all of the pop for camp, in a variety of flavors including Mountain Dew, cola, and root beer.
Paul Kupser built a piñata in the shape of the Winter Camp logo for Winter Camp XXV. The piñata graced the fireplace in the Wyckoff Dining Hall during the 162-Dish Banquet and was smashed at the Beaver Creek building the next night.
Pinball Machine
Ron Donohue is a pinball machine collector, and he and Doug Wilson combined their efforts to bring a working machine to camp at Winter Camps XXVIII, XXIX, XXXI, and XXXII. The Bally Freedom model was housed in the northeast corner of the Beaver Creek building on its first two appearances before moving to Clearwater in 2007, and has been a popular entertainment option throughout the four weekettes. It returned to Beaver Creek in 2008, but was left behind during the bugout when Winter Camp relocated to Trout Lake cabin in search of electricity. At Winter Camp XXVIII, 170 games were played on Day One, 223 on Day Two, 108 on Day Three, and 163 on Day Four. At 25¢ per game, these 664 games represented a total of $166 in foregone income. Plans are underway to commission a new Winter Camp-themed back glass for the machine.
Three meals at Winter Camp XXIII-the Hot Potato Lunch, Green Eggs and Ham Breakfast, and On Beyond Zebra Lunch-were adorned with commemorative placemats designed and provided by Steve Donohue. The placemats contained games and interesting facts about the menu items. Crayons were provided at the Hot Potato Lunch to aid campers in completing the maze on the mat.
Poker Chips
Mark Bollman has sorted the chips at the conclusion of every Winter Camp Casino Night, beginning at Winter Camp II-and is projected also to do so at Winter Camp L. In 2006, he arranged for the manufacture of professional-weight casino chips bearing the Winter Camp logo, in red, blue, black, and green. Though Casino Night was not on the schedule at Winter Camp XXX, the chips saw their first use that year in Arrowman Bingo. In 2007, Mark added white and gold bordered chips, replicating the border colors of the Winter Camp patches. The new color in 2008 was gray, which corresponds to no patch. Additionally, red, blue, green, and black chips with 12 edge stripes rather than six were introduced, for a total of eleven chip designs. In response to a comment about the lack of a new color in 2009, pink chips were added in 2010, light blue chips in 2011, and purple chips in 2012.
Polaris Access Road
Winter Camp XLI saw a new improvement at Winter Camp as there was a path made to allow a Polaris all-terrain vehicle to reach the site of the CHR Memorial. The path came in handy for retrieving the time capsule and was again pressed into service on Day Four when it was used to transport the ailing Jeff Rand to see the ceremony and preserve his perfect record of attending the burial of the time capsule.
Postmark Project
This project was inspired by Jeff Rand's list of cities bearing the names of Winter Campers and was engineered by Steve Donohue in 2001. It was revealed online in 2002. Over 50 postcards from these cities and others like Beaver Creek, MN of interest to Winter Camp have been collected.
Presidential Suite
While the Beaver Creek cabin is not designed as a two-story building, Winter Camp XL showed Winter Camp's ingenuity extended along the z-axis. Roger Horn is known for his unconventional Winter Camp attendance-we never know when exactly he'll arrive at or leave camp. His arrival on Day Two of Winter Camp XL saw the Beaver Creek attic set up as a deluxe bunkroom for his solo use, which was dubbed the Presidential Suite of the Winter Camp Hotel & Casino, as Casino Night was in progress when Roger arrived. The room was set up with many hotel amenities: Steve Donohue prepared a notebook with an emergency escape route and a list of area attractions, Keith King set up a check-in desk outside the cabin, and a copy of the Winter Camp News was delivered to the room. Roger spent all of his nights at camp in the decked-out room.

At Winter Camp XLII, the emergency escape directions, including a caution to the traveler to be careful on the first step out the door, remained on the attic wall.

Ranger Alarm
This gadget was talked about for years, but only fully implemented at Winter Camp XII. In an effort to warn inhabitants of the Winter Camp universe about invaders from beyond, sensors were placed on Ranch Road at the boundaries of Beaver Creek subcamp. When these sensors were disturbed, an audible alert sounded in the BC building. Useful for detecting the invasion of Winter Camp by outsiders, the alarm system was also handy for tracking the movement of Winter Campers entering or leaving camp.
Responsible Adult Companion
At Winter Camp XLI, Steve Donohue and Jeff Rand arrived at camp feeling the aftereffects of life-threatening cardiac and neurological events from earlier in the year. As Kristie Donohue was unable to do more than visit camp, she deputized two adults as responsible adult companions to look after Steve and Jeff throughout the weekette and monitor their medical status. Doug Wilson was Steve's RAC and Keith King looked out for Jeff. Kristie prepared daily checklists which were hung on clipboards from the "patients"' bunks as a record of their adherence to necessary medical standards.

On 30 November 2018, on the Winter Camp XLII planning Web page, adviser Keith King elevated himself to the role of "GRAC", or Global Responsible Adult Companion, when he declared that camp would include no hydrogen-filled balloon animals.

Jeff Rand constructed a wooden hexahedron with sides in the Winter Camp rhombus shape for the 162-Dish Banquet at Winter Camp XXV. Though this was Winter Camp's silver anniversary, the solid is painted gold. Since that year, the rhombohexahedron hangs in the dining room during camp.

The mathematically correct term for this shape is "trigonal trapezohedron", which is the name of a family of solids including the standard cube as a special case.

Slide Shows
Gordon Draper and Jeff Rand are avid travelers, and beginning at Winter Camp XXVI, they have occasionally entertained Winter Campers with slide shows of their journeys. Both have trav-eled to every county in the USA, and their trip throughout Alaska, as well as their final county arrivals, have been shown at camp. Additionally, Jeff's quest to visit every National Park Service unit and his climb of Mount Kilimanjaro, and Gordon's trips to Presidential birthplaces and state capitals have been shown.

At Winter Camp XXXI, Gordon put together a digital slide show of the weekette and showed it on Day Four. Keith King presented his own "Weekette In Review" slide show toward the end of Winter Camp XXXV.

Speed Trap
Winter Camp XV saw a long-outdated TRS-80 computer return to provide a new recreational event. Sensors were placed along Beaver Trail outside Beaver Creek cabin, and a passerby who triggered these devices could see his speed displayed on a monitor located on the front porch. Both passing cars and sprinting humans were caught by this gadget.
Tabletop Soccer
Steve Donohue's indoor adaptation of a Winter Camp favorite saw good use during the rainy weather of Winter Camp XVI. Two teams rolled dice to simulate a soccer game, complete with imitative cheap shots designed to mimic the physical dimension so important to Winter Camp soccer. Although many complained about the rules being unfair and arbitrary, the event proved a reasonable simulation, since it resulted in a 3-1 game and a post-game argument in which the losers accused the winners of cheating. Someday, Steve promises to produce the Winter Camp Athletic System (WCAS), a game designed to model all Winter Camp activities.
Temporal Paradox
Most of Winter Camp XXXIV took place under the umbrella of a time displacement which was triggered after the Behind Enemy Lines wide game and sent the camp back to December 27, 1910. Each successive day ticked off 25 years until the paradox was resolved on Day Four. In a brief encounter just prior to the Time Capsule Hike, Jeff Rand was prevented from placing pictures, allegedly from Winter Camp I, in the Winter Camp XXXIV 5-year time capsule. Josh Cicotte confronted the rogue Rand just as the capsule was being sealed, and a spirited sprint through the cabin led to a fire on the BC porch which consumed the pictures. This successfully resolved the temporal paradox and returned Winter Camp back to December 30, 2010.
The Attic
Winter Camp began storing some equipment in the attic very early in the history of camp. At that time, attic access was difficult and we didn't store very much there.
At Winter Camp XXII, the campers arrived to find the cabin had been seriously remodeled and the attic was more accessible from a high door in the dining area; we used a bunk bed to reach it.
At Winter Camp XXXVI, Paul Kupser and Shaun Range arrived at camp with the seemingly singular goal of installing flooring in the attic to make storage more convenient and accessing the attic safer.
During the summer of 2013, several campers observed that some of our gear had been removed from the attic and deployed for the enjoyment of the summer staff. Dave Morosky reminded them that the gear wasn't theirs and most of it was returned to the attic but little effort was made to clean the site.
In the fall of 2013, Winter Campers came up to survey damage. They reorganized things, threw some things out, and installed a hasp and lock on the attic door with permission from Dave Morosky, head ranger.
In 2015, Doug Wilson constructed a ladder which is stored in the attic and has replaced the dangerous practice of standing on bunks and stretching. As Winter Camp came to store more of its equipment for the year in the attic of the Beaver Creek building, and to lock up the attic against equipment disappearing, it became desirable to access the attic by a means other than climbing on bunk beds. A fine Doug Wilson-made ladder was added to the equipment stores for Winter Camp XXXIX.
The Goon Guide
Steve Donohue crafted this work at Winter Camp XVIII, where it became instantly noteworthy as the first Winter Camp book written entirely during camp. In it, he traced the history of the Grey Area Goons, noted their contributions to Winter Camp, and provided a handy guide to identifying goons. Originally an informal term applied to Arrowmen between 18 and 21, the classification was formalized, rewritten as "a Winter Camper over the age of 18 who fails to make contributions to Winter Camp commensurate with his perceived capabilities", and tightly bound to Winter Camp in Steve's work.
The Pipe
Winter Camp XVII saw the addition of a new feature to the Winter Camp landscape (or actually, it didn't). Winter Campers had long run wires from BC to Clearwater to set up intercoms, ranger alarms, and other Osvathian wiring mazes. These wires had traditionally been laid across the road making them an eyesore and a risk. During the summer of 1993, Steve Donohue, Joe McEachren and Doug Wilson took decisive action to fix this. At 3:00 A.M. one Saturday evening, after a day spent building the Trout Lake firebowl, they began digging under cover of darkness. Several hours later, they were able to bury a pipe approximately 18" below the surface of Ranch Road. Doug hosed down the area and attempts were made to cover their tracks. Curiously, the pipe was used only at Winter Camp XVII and has not been used since. (SD)
The Suite
When Kristie Donohue became the first woman to notch a Winter Camp night, in 2011, there came a need for married couple housing. The south bunkroom, which was traditionally used for the Winter Camp museum and computer center, was returned to its original purpose at Winter Camp XXXV and those facilities were housed in the main bunkroom. Steve Donohue referred to the room as "The Suite", and the name became a new entry in the Winter Camp dictionary.
The Wall
Easily the most popular page on the Winter Camp web site, The Wall is a repository for conversational graffiti about Winter Camp and other matters, and the online lair of the unseen Big Bro and Casual Observer. Steve Donohue and Mark Bolllman--> added The Wall to the web site in a frenzy of HTML programming on Thanksgiving night, 1997.
The Worst-Case Scenario Handbook: Winter Camp
Mark Bolllman-->, Steve Donohue, and Kristie Donohue collaborated during 2004 on this parody work, which appeared at Winter Camp XXVIII. The Handbook contains advice for Winter Campers and those left behind on handling common situations that arise during camp, and includes as an appendix a helpful guide to the Winter Camp alumni who appear for each camp but are not often seen at other chapter events.
Trash Can Engineering
Winter Camp's engineering history continued to Winter Camp XLI. The latest challenge to be conquered was none other than the mighty trash can. The issue: The camp's trash cans were too large to hold up the small trash bags that were purchased during the grocery shopping expedition. In a quest to solve this unintentional mismatch, the mental wheels of the WC Corps of Engineers led by Ethan Rein started turning, smoke was reported from several ears, and at the end of it all, we had multiple cardboard trash cans suitable for holding the bags.
Viking Explorers
Steve Donohue continued a successful tradition of gamecrafting with his third, a thematic contribution to Winter Camp XIX. Three teams locked horns in an exploration and conquest game, and the Grogs, Black Warriors, and Sea Ducks played to a three-way draw.
Volkswagen Races
Volkswagens were raced in this TRS-80 computer game programmed by Jeff Rand and used as part of Casino Night beginning at Winter Camp II. Thirteen simulated VW's traced paths around a course, and the Winter Camp sports book accepted bets from campers. A quirk of the game was that if someone didn't bet on car #13 and it won, they owed $1.
Wilson's Rules of Order
These rules for parliamentary procedure at the annual planning meeting were first collected just before Winter Camp XIX. Certainly there had long been unwritten understandings about these regulations, but it was not until 1995 that they were formalized in print. Mark Bolllman--> compiled the list under the auspices of the Winter Camp Bureau of Standards, and noted in the original introduction that Doug Wilson's name was selected for the rules because he was largely innocent of their tangled creation. The current version of the Rules may be found in the Yottapedia.
Winter Camp Adventure
This role-playing game backgrounded other events one evening at Winter Camp X. The TRS-80 computer assigned Arrowmen to one of two different camps, one dedicated to destroying the unseen overseer known simply as "Big Bro", the other committed to his defense. As a twist, neither side knew that Doug Wilson was secretly Big Bro. Participants in the Adventure were allowed to speak only in one-syllable words, and Big Bro conformed to that rule when he issued his manifesto "Trout Lake beach all is in sun. No shade. Too hot."
Winter Camp Almanac and Book of Facts
The first production of the Winter Camp Bureau of Standards, the Almanac was proposed during the grocery shopping expedition for Winter Camp XVII. Mark Bolllman--> compiled three editions of this publication, which debuted at Winter Camp XVIII and was put out under the auspices of the Winter Camp Bureau of Standards.
Winter Camp Book of Lists
Released along with Origins as the first two Winter Camp books at Winter Camp XIV, The Winter Camp Book Of Lists, by Jeff Rand and Doug Wilson, was a little bit tougher to find. Only one copy was produced, but the diligent searcher who uncovered it in the Winter Camp library was rewarded with a wide array of opinions and facts from Winter Campers about life both inside and outside the Winter Camp universe.
Winter Camp Book of Poetry
Winter Camp XVIII was graced with a fine collection of poetry, produced by several Arrowmen. Steve Donohue was the most active poet, crafting a collection of short works on topics ranging from the general spirit of Winter Camp to some of its more hallowed traditions. He was joined by Jeff Rand and Mark Bolllman--> for the Winter Camp Epic Limerick Cycle, a collection of limericks commemorating highlights of each previous Winter Camp. Jeff chipped in further with a pair of more general Order of the Arrow verses. The Epic Limerick Cycle inspired a similar set of works created at camp, when Steve was joined by Joe Hall and John Howey in writing a limerick caricature of each 1994 Winter Camper. Joe's three-stanza ode to Steve's snoring in Clearwater was the first work to be written, but soon all campers found their names and personalities commemorated in print.
Winter Camp Bureau of Standards
Mark Bolllman--> founded the WCBS in 1994 as a cover for his work compiling the Winter Camp Almanac and Book of Facts and appointed himself the Bureau's first director. He has continued unchallenged in this role as the WCBS has taken on a wide range of statistical responsibilities. The Almanac was published for three years by the WCBS; also maintained there are Wilson's Rules of Order, the Index to Winter Camp Newspapers, the Cavalcade of Winter Camp Food, and the Winter Camp Activity Log. All of these documents are official records of Winter Camp's past, and the last two have found a role in the Bureau's compilation of the Winter Camp Universal Evaluation System. The WCBS has also been the source of work to expand the Universal Measurement System and is the home of the print version of Encyclopedia WinterCampica.
Winter Camp Casino Guide
This elementary guide to casino gaming, with emphasis on the games and chip values in use at Winter Camp XXXVIII, was written by Mark Bollman for campers' reference during the Ocean's 38 Casino Night. Much of the material was drawn from Mark 's book Basic Gambling Mathematics: The Numbers Behind The Neon, which had been published by CRC Press in 2014.
Winter Camp Live!
Following several years of idle speculation, Winter Camp's first live webcam debuted at Winter Camp XXXIII thanks to the efforts of Keith King. While no live video was transmitted from camp, the fixed-location camera took a picture in the Beaver Creek dining room every 30 seconds, and approximately 5400 collected photos were displayed online at

after camp.

Winter Camp Logo
After considerable discussion, the official Winter Camp logo debuted at Winter Camp XIV in 1990. The logo is striking in its rhombus shape, and bears icons commemorating the main features of Winter Camp. A latrine building (hand-drawn by Jeff Rand) represents camping, Little Ozzie represents the Winter Camp kitchen, a TRS-80 Model I computer notes the centrality of home computers in the Winter Camp program, and winter sports are depicted by an icy thermometer, a soccer ball, and a teed-up golf ball. The logo's first appearance was on the cover of Origins and the new three-ring binder for the Winter Camp Manual; it has since appeared on a wide variety of items (see "Logo Sightings" in the Yottapedia for a full list). Many of the newest logo items are available in the online Winter Camp store.
Winter Camp Manual
The Winter Camp Manual has served as each camper's reference to Winter Camp since its debut at Winter Camp IV. Within its 15-30 pages, one can find a complete history of Winter Camp, schedules for the weekette's activities, and assorted other material germane to Winter Camp. The Manual has evolved in fits and starts, lying nearly dormant for years at a stretch until a new extensive revision takes place. Its history is more fully detailed in the Yottapedia.
Winter Camp Museum
Jeff Rand is curator of this exhibit, which debuted at Winter Camp VII and has been maintained through to the present. In this display, one may view artifacts of Winter Camps past as well as a collection of photos and objects related to Scouting in general. The Museum also houses the official Winter Camp library. Details on the Museum's permanent collection may be found in the Yottapedia.
Winter Camp Savings Time
As Winter Camp is held in North America in late December, daylight is in short supply. Rather than moving the event from its traditional home or messing with the Earth's rotation in order to produce more daylight, it was decided at Winter Camp XV to redistribute the daylight which is present. Accordingly, clocks in the Winter Camp universe are set ahead 77 minutes, in commemoration of the year of Winter Camp I. Winter Camp thus functions 17 minutes ahead of Atlantic Standard Time, or 13 minutes behind Newfoundland. As an added bonus, December 31 becomes the longest day of the year; as campers re-enter the other universe, they gain back that lost time.
Winter Camp Shorts
This collection of short stories was released by Jeff Rand at Winter Camp XVIII. Three stories were printed for the entertainment of the members, and the book closed with the first lines of over a dozen new stories. Jeff added one story for Winter Camp XIX, and Mark Bolllman--> also added a short story to his Winter Camp bibliography that year. Steve Donohue contributed a story at Winter Camp XXI.
Winter Camp Society for the Existence of Aliens
The WC2 was headed by Paul Kupser at Winter Camp XXI as part of the Area 51 role-playing game. Paul took a pro-invasion stance in the ongoing alien visitation debate, and published The Truth Is Out There in an effort to convert others to his side.
Winter Camp Trivia Challenge
At Winter Camp VII, several Arrowmen undertook to write a Winter Camp Trivia Test computer program. Steve Donohue was responsible for the programming on the TRS-80, and a host of questions was contributed by Steve, Mark Bolllman-->, Steve Pejuan, and Doug Wilson. Later modifications to the TRS-80 version included incorporation of the Alpha Technologies voice synthesizer for Arrowmen with less than adequate reading skills. Its sometimes hilarious attempts to read questions included the famous "three-zero a.m. baking" line. The program faded to obscurity until Winter Camp XIV, when Mark--> updated it for the 1990's with a new version for IBM-compatible computers called the Winter Camp Trivia Challenge. Over 1700 multiple-choice and true-false questions are now included in its database. The program provides a variety of quiz options, including a special novice challenge, a "Greatest Hits" test, subject-specific tests, and tests based on Channel 120, Paradox Metaphor, After The Apocalypse, and Another Ten Seconds.
Winter Camp's first board game was constructed by Steve Donohue, with printing assistance from Tim Hunt, and debuted at Winter Camp XXII. A direct takeoff on Monopoly with Winter Camp landmarks replacing Atlantic City sites, the game occupied many free time hours that year.
The Yottapedia was added to Encyclopedia Wintercampica in 2001. Its purpose is twofold: to include some longer essays about various aspects of the Winter Camp experience and to create a new home for some of the material from the three editions of the Winter Camp Almanac and Book of Facts which preceded the first edition of EWC.
Zero Node
Jeff Rand's second Winter Camp novel, a parallel story to Another Ten Seconds, debuted online in 2006. Included in each chapter of the online version was a set of explanations of hidden messages from the corresponding chapter of the previous work. After a decade-plus gap, the story resumed in 2019.