From the desk of


March 2016
Dear Scouters,
Hope you're enjoying this mild Chicago winter and looking forward to spring in a few short weeks.
After finalizing our strategic plan last year, we're accomplishing our goals  as related to fiscal and talent management and departmental goals. Please feel free to view the 2016 Strategic Plan at 2016 Strategic Plan.
Three Fires Council kicked off our Friends of Scouting campaign. In the first quarter of 2016, we've raised nearly $402,148, or more than 50% of our goal to date. We're ahead of our 2015 Friends of Scouting progress by more than 8%. If your unit ever needs additional Friends of Scouting materials, please do not hesitate to reach out to our development director, Eric McFee at .
Merit Badge University occurred in late February and, as always, had some of the highest attendance numbers nationwide, with many traveling from out-of-state to participate.
In the same timeframe, we celebrated  402 members of the  2016 Three Fires Council Class of Eagles at a formal banquet.
As the weather warms, our activity level ramps up in the spring. One of our most popular events last spring, the Adult Easter Egg Hunt (, will occur again March 18 and 19 at Cantigny Visitors Center in Wheaton. For a $10 registration fee, participants have a chance to win a flat-screen TV as well as smaller prizes donated from Lou Malnati's, Smashburger, Two Brothers Brewing Company, The Filling Station in St. Charles, and more local establishments.
We're  turning our focus to summer and camp adventures. Camp Freeland Leslie is in high demand this year with 200+ more youth signed up than last year.  Our new ATV program is piloting and the new pistol program and archery ranges are open. We will be installing a jumping pillow for the summer season to help our Boy Scouts keep active.
Our capital campaign for Camp Big Timber and Camp Freeland Leslie is well underway and more than 40 volunteers are shaping how to improve the camping experience.
Dan Zedan, president of Nature's Finest Foods and Council Commissioner, has been recruited as campaign chair. Under his leadership, our initial campaign cabinet has eight businesses and community leaders, with more being recruited daily. Just these "early adopters" have raised $278,000 and are working toward a goal of $3,500,000.
Furthermore, Three Fires Council has four working sub-committees, including a Design Build Committee, responsible for leading the development of our master plans for Camp Big Timber and Camp Freeland Leslie. I'd like to thank the following individuals for their leadership on these respective committees:
Design Build Committee:
  • Jay Herzog, co-chair
  • Dan Zedan, co-chair
Strategic Program Committee
  • Tim Tyler, chair
Camp Big Timber Master Plan Committee
  • Bob Werderich, chair
Camp Freeland Leslie Master Plan Committee:
  • Joe Cassin, chair
The committee leadership selected the architectural services of The Kubala Washatko Architects, based out of Cedarburg, WI, out of the four competing proposals. On Feb. 24, the team invited members of the four committees to Camp Big Timber for the Master Planning Kickoff. The following day, a comprehensive site walk/assessment was conducted with the architects and master plan sub-committee. On March 16, the CFL master planning committee will conduct the site walk/assessment at Camp Freeland Leslie. Enjoy some pictures of our current progress at the archery range.

Three Fires Council has a steadfast commitment to developing our camps to their fullest potential, illustrated by the 2014 construction of the rifle range, 2015 construction of the Bitton Family Skeet and Trap Range and the 2016 construction of the new and expanded archery range (generously paid for by the Lowaneu Allanque Lodge Order of the Arrow).The Bitton Family Skeet and Trap Range at Camp Freeland Leslie will be fully operational to National Rifle Association and National Skeet Shooting Association standards this year, allowing five  shooters to participate simultaneously.

Just as a reminder, Three Fires Council is transitioning Adventure Camp operations to the Pathways to Adventure Council. We will no longer be handling registration for camp or summer programs beginning April 1. For current information on the camp's 2016 programming and registration, please visit
If you'd like additional information on Three Fires Council's transition plan for camp, please visit
Please feel free to contact us with any questions or comments about our programming. Looking forward to your feedback and another great year in Scouting!
Thank you,
Joseph E. Wiltrout  Scout Executive/CEO

Twitter Feed