About Us


Troop History

On June 1, 1921, just eleven years after the founding of the Boy Scouts of America, a charter was issued to Troop 76, Simsbury, Connecticut. The First Church of Christ was the Chartering Organization.

From a modest beginning of nine boys, Scoutmaster Thomas Desmond began the lllustrious history of one of the first Troops in Simsbury and in Connecticut. Mr. Desmond, the father of five boys and a landscape architect by trade, consolidated several existing Troops in town to form the original Troop 76. Over the next 90 years, 26 Scoutmasters have guided over 1,000 young men through the Scouting experience. Of these, 154 have achieved the rank of Eagle (and counting). Eric Hellwig deserves special mention for his service as Scoutmaster for eleven years, giving him the distinction of being the longest tenured leader. He was also the first Scout in the Troop to later become its Scoutmaster.

In the early days, the Troop met in the Ensign Bickford Gymnasium and later the old Town Hall, which we now know as Scout Hall. It was not until 1961 that the Troop received permission from the Church to move from Scout Hall into Fellowship (now Palmer) Hall. In requesting permission to use the newly dedicated Fellowship Hall, the Troop Committee advised the Trustees that "holding a meeting,at Scout Hall is like being inside a large wooden box because of the wooden ceiling and floors. Patrol comers sound like a veritable din because of the reverberation of sound." Those of us that have used Scout Hall for the one meeting a year when Palmer Hall is otherwise occupied, can appreciate those words.

During the 1920's and 1930's, we generally had about twenty Scouts and in addition to the usual hiking and camping activities, performed a lot of community service. In those days, service projects consisted of "helping needy families with food and clothing at Christmas, forest fire patrol, color guard in High School and ushers at American Legion meetings and special occasions."

Troop 76 has always been an active participant in national and council affairs. They have been represented at most national Jamborees (including 7 scouts in 2010) and have sent Scouts to all National High Adventure bases, including Philmont and Florida Sea Base. We are also active in Matianuck District affairs and have won Best Troop in the District numerous times over the years. Due to the generosity of the many families involved in the Troop, we are consistently among the leaders in the annual Friends of Scouting campaign.

The Troop historically has relied upon their annual wreath sale to raise funds for equipment and other expenses. There is evidence that wreaths were first sold in the late 1950's. In 1959, for instance, 300 wreaths were sold at $2.25 each, grossing $675. In 2010, the Troop sold over 2,000 wreaths at $13 each (still the best deal in town), and raised almost $19,000 to support the troop programs.

Troop 76 has always prided ourselves in being an active camping Troop. Most years, we send more Scouts to Camp Mattatuck than any other troop In Connecticut. We camp throughout the Scout year, including winter months.

While the Troop has seen numerous changes over the past 90 years, one thing has been constant. Namely, sponsorship by the First Church of Christ. Troop 76 gratefully acknowledges the role of its Chartering Organization and looks forward to continuing this excellent relationship in the years to come.

Troop 76 is equally indebted to its Scoutmasters. Serving as role models, teachers, coaches and friends to our Scouts, this group of individuals' have played an influential role in the development of young men in Simsbury for the last seven decades. From Tom Desmond in 1921 to Dan Carr in 2010, our Scoutmasters have established a legacy that has done us proud.

Troop Leadership

Scouts will fulfill many leadership roles during their time in Troop 76. Each role and associated responsibilty is critical to the proper operation of our troop. If you are chosen to serve in a leadership role, take it seriously and remember the troop and your fellow scouts are counting on you to do your best in fulfilling your position. If you have already served in a role that another scout is taking over, take some time to help the new scout understand his responsibilities and mentor him as he gets started. 
 
There are several adult leaders that are involved with the day to day activities of our troop.  These key individuals can assist you in any question you have about our troop.

Troop 76 Leaders


    Troop Membership

    Troop 76 is always looking for others who enjoy the scouting tradition. In order to join Boy Scouts, you should be 11 years old and must pass initial requirements to become a scout. If you're interesting in learning more about Troop 76 contact Dan Carr (our scoutmaster)  for more information. Also browse our site to learn more about the activities we sponsor.

    Scouting builds strong character and leadship skills. Our programs alone can't do it without the parent's guidence and commitment. If you're interested, please think about how you can help our troop achieve these goals.

    Troop Mission and Guidelines

    It is the goal of Troop 76 to train Boy Scouts and allow them to take to the outdoors with the skills and ability to work and lead independently with minimal guidance and adult supervision.

    Leadership Positions

    Scouts will fulfill many leadership roles during their time in Troop 76. Each role and associated responsibilty is critical to the proper operation of our troop. If you are chosen to serve in a leadership role, take it seriously and remember the troop and your fellow scouts are counting on you to do your best in fulfilling your position. If you have already served in a role that another scout is taking over, take some time to help the new scout understand his responsibilities and mentor him as he gets started.

    To better understand all the various leadership roles available within Troop 76, review the leadership sheet that details each roles.

    Campout Guidelines for Parents

    • Adults will form a patrol on each campout, with specific task assignments.
    • Separate camps sites for parents away from Scouts, within a safe distance .
    • Adults should have a separate fire pit away from Scouts
    • Adults may not stay in Scouts camping area.
    • Camp Master will assign adult leadership to visit, inspect or assist in the scout area as the need arises
    • Scouts are not allowed in adult camping area except for emergency, by Camp Master invitation or to attend organized meetings of the Patrol Leaders and SPL. Adults should refer Scout questions to camp the Camp Master who will then go to Patrol Leader and/ or SPL. If an adult is aware of an inappropriate or dangerous situation he or she should intercede. Notify Camp Master as soon as possible.
    • The Troop Scout Master will be responsible for any disciplinary actions with Scouts.
    • No Alcoholic Beverages allowed!

    Camp Master

    • Organize camp out-work with SPL and Patrol Leader for a successful event.
    • Non-denominational service should be held for each campout Senior Patrol Organization meeting at arrival, mid day and evening.
    • Plan for campfire and skits.
    • Assign adult patrol responsibilities including cooking, fire warden and quartermaster.
    • Adult meetings are to be held with frequency. Involve new parents for succession planning.

    Senior Patrol Leader

    • Prepare weekend Agenda to be reviewed by Scout Master, Outdoor coordinator, and Camp Master.
    • Have a meeting before each camp out. Use email before the meeting.
    • Establish your Scout Leaders for each event and assign responsibilities to them.
    • Request and review Patrol menus two weeks before campout. Healthy meals are a must!
    • Equipment from Patrols coordinated for the campout. Final Equipment check Saturday.
    • Plan on an information review for Camp Master meeting.
    • Review Patrol preparation for a camp fire and evening activities.
    • Make sure of Chaplin Aide, assigned, prepares for presentation at camp fire.

    Venture and Senior Scouts

    • Work with Camp Master, Adults, and SPL throughout event to participate and assist in Troop activities. 
    • Offer constructive help to younger Scouts without criticizing, condemning or complaining - the three most deadly C's of Leader.

    Troop 76 Code

    • Respect others at all times.
    • Treat others as you would like to be treated.
    • Take care of troop equipment as if your own.
    • Give your full effort in everything you do. Always do your best.
    • Give back to others.
    • Contribute your services back to God, Community and Country.
    • Work as a team on all tasks. Working together leads to a successful community.
    • The possession of alcoholic beverages, tobacco or illegal substances is strictly forbidden. If found or detected parents (and/or police if necessary) will be notified immediately and disciplinary actions pursued.
    • Scouting provides a fun, stress free environment for learning how to be a leader and good citizen. No teasing, hazing, verbal or physical abuse will be tolerated under any circumstances. No outside games, toys, sporting or electronic equipment are allowed at meetings or on camping events without the approval of the Scoutmaster.
    • The use of matches and lighters is restricted to Patrol Leaders Positions and above and to be used only when appropriate and safe.
    • Use of knives, saws and axes only when appropriate and safe and only if Scout has a Totin Chip card.
    • Use the buddy system on all troop activities.
    • Reporting a concern or problem:
      • Level 1 - Patrol Leader/Assistant Patrol Leader
      • Level 2 - Senior Patrol Leader/Assistant Senior Patrol Leader
      • Level 3 - Assistant Scoutmaster/Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
      • Level 4 - Scoutmaster
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