A needed facility has been provided at Camp Raven Knob Boy Scout Reservation, thanks to Mount Airy Elks Lodge members.
It involves the construction of a picnic shelter at the reservation, for which the Mount Airy Elks Past Exalted Ruler Association used proceeds from a fundraiser late last fall. The facility officially was welcomed to the Raven Knob complex during a dedication ceremony held last week in conjunction with an Order of the Arrow program there.
The Elks not only supplied money for the facility, but ample amounts of elbow grease.
“We did all the work ourselves,” said Mark Alderman, past exalted ruler of the Mount Airy Elks and present lodge secretary.
“We basically built it from the ground up,” Alderman added Wednesday.
“There are several campsites at Raven Knob that did not have picnic shelters,” he said of facilities used for dining by scouts while on campouts.
The Elks took on the task of providing a new shelter for the Crazy Horse camping area, which is near a new climbing tower at Camp Raven Knob.
A former shelter at that location had rotted and been torn down.
The work involved pouring cement pads and building the structure, complete with a durable metal roof. This was accomplished with the help of discounts on materials such as lumber from the Lowe’s hardware chain and labor and equipment supplied by Elks representatives.
“One of our members has a backhoe,” Alderman said.
Had the shelter been built by a commercial contractor, it likely would have cost around $6,500, he said.
The construction actually was completed on Dec. 30, in time for scouts to use it during their Klondike Jamboree in January. Alderman explained that the dedication ceremony was held during last week’s Order of the Arrow event when it was known that a number of scouts, leaders and supporters would be in attendance.
Scouting is one of the numerous groups and causes that the Mount Airy Elks Lodge actively supports in the community, which also includes the children’s homes in Surry and Yadkin counties, the Shepherd’s House homeless facility, the Maranatha Homeless Outreach Group, the St. Andrew Lutheran Church Outreach Group, Red Cross, Hospice, the Elks Hoop Shoot Free Throw Contest, youth scholarships and various benefit activities.
All this is in addition to a perennial focus of Elks Lodge members: veterans.
“As long as there are veterans, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks will never forget them,” Alderman assured.
“The Mount Airy Elks Lodge is proud to have continually supported our community for 60 years.”
Tom Joyce may be reached at 336-415-4693 or on Twitter @Me_Reporter.