Acoustic Music Camp is just the latest fun offering at Philmont Training Center

The only thing better than sitting around a campfire with a group of Scouts is sitting around a campfire with a group of Scouts with a guitar.

This summer, the Philmont Training Center is offering its Acoustic Music Camp from July 3-7. The program is open to all interested youth and adults — not just registered BSA members.

The camp will be taught by prominent music teacher Gerald Jones and a group of his talented instructors. Jones, who has been playing music for almost 50 years, has hosted similar camps around the country for more than three decades.

“I teach various styles of acoustic and electric music,” he says. “I’ve been in country bands, R&B, funk, Irish, bluegrass, swing and more. I’ve been very lucky to be able to perform and record with some great unknown and well-known players.”

Although playing alongside some great musicians was incredibly fulfilling, Jones ventured out on his own 17 years ago and started hosting annual camps like the one offered at PTC.

 “It makes me feel good to help people learn,” he says.

Photo courtesy of Gerald Jones

Acoustic instruments only

The camp at PTC will focus on instruments like the banjo, flatpicking and fingerpicking guitar, the fiddle and bass. Using those instruments, Jones will teach different styles of music, including old-time, folk, country and bluegrass.

Teaching at Philmont in July isn’t Jones’ only connection to the Scouting world. He’s also a fellow Scout.

“I started as a Cub Scout,” he says. “My mother was the den mother, so I didn’t have a choice. But I loved it.”

The music teacher recalls camping on the Red River as his most memorable moment as a Scout.

“It was a lot of fun,” he says.

Good advice

Overall, Jones enjoyed his time as a Scout and had many takeaways. However, the most inspiring aspect to him is remembering the Scout Oath and Law. He advises Scouts today to do the same.

“The world would be a better place if more people would take it to heart,” Jones says.

Jones is currently gearing up to host an awesome and tuneful camp.

“We are going to have some fun and learn something at Philmont Acoustic Music Camp in July,” he says. “I don’t care how you get here — just get here!”

Anyone interested in attending the camp at PTC can find more information about the event and sign up by visiting the Philmont Training Camp website.

Visual Storytelling. BSA file photo

PTC is the place to be this summer

Acoustic Music Camp is one of many conferences offered at PTC this summer. It, along with courses like Visual Storytelling, which covers the capturing and sharing of photo moments, are designed to provide skills that can enhance the Scouting experience.

There are courses on outdoor ethics, leadership skills and the brilliantly named C.O.F.F.F.E.E. and T.E.A. — Challenging Outdoor Fun-Filled Family-Engaged Experiences and Team Enhancing Activities — which teaches how group learning can help you have fun with Scouts and Scout families.

The Amateur Radio and Scouting course will tell you everything you need to know about running an active radio Scout program in your council, district or unit. Scouting Relationships 101 will present the fundamentals of relationships and explore the many components of connections throughout Scouting.

PTC also provides some programming for spouses and families of attendees. Learn more about what life is like at PTC in the orientation guide.