Masked scouts collect 5,403 pounds — 2.5 tons — of food

Scouts from Troop 30 and Pack 30 combined forces Saturday to collect two-and-half tons of food for the Watertown Food Pantry. 

In normal times, the Troop (BSA scouts age 10-17) and the Pack (Cub Scouts age 5-10) would solicit donations from customers at Stop & Shop as part of an initiative called Scouting for Food. This year, to keep contact at a minimum and taking Coronavirus precautions, Cub Scouts held a contest to see who could collect the greatest number of donations from neighbors. Cubs flyered their neighborhoods asking for help, and Watertown responded: Cubs collected carloads of groceries totaling 4,941 pounds. 

The Cub Scout with the heaviest donation, Nathaniel Dourianof Bear Den 8, collected 670 pounds of peanut butter, pasta, canned beans and other groceries, but he wasn’t alone. Other Cub Scouts gathered 200 or 300 pounds of groceries delivered Saturday to the food pantry. 

Other neighbors came and dropped off donations of their own. Dozens of bags of canned chickpeas, coffee, tea and tomato sauce were followed by carloads of jarred soups, jams and jellies, treats like Fluff and Jello, and of course that difficult-to-find commodity of 2020, toilet paper. 

Troop 30 scouts, armed with food pantry bins and hand sanitizer, sorted the items on the lawn of 80 Mt. Auburn Street, the Watertown-Belmont UMC building that hosts both the scouts and the Watertown Food Pantry. Donations are distributed Tuesdays at 80 Mt. Auburn Street.

The need remains for families in Watertown as many are out of work due to the current Coronavirus pandemic. For services and information on how to support our community, find the Watertown Food Pantry on the town website. 

Scouting for Food needs your help

Pack 30 and Troop 30 are supporting the Watertown Food Pantry again this year, but as with everything in 2020, Scouting for Food will be different.

Scouting for Food is a nationwide service challenge taken on by Boy Scouts of America, targeting food insecurity. In Watertown, the two BSA organizations have come together every November to get grocery lists in the hands of shoppers so they can help fill the shelves of the town-run food pantry.

This year, with COVID-19 precautions in place, Scouting for Food will look a little different. Scouts will be flyering their neighborhoods, seeking donations they can pick up on doorsteps Nov. 21. They’ll then bring it to the Food Pantry location, 80 Mt. Auburn Street, and the Cub Scout who collects the heaviest donations wins a prize.

This year, more families than ever are relying on support from the food pantry for basic needs during the pandemic, with businesses shut down and some families losing income as kids attend school from home.

You can help. Cub Scouts can collect contact-free donations from your doorstep on Nov. 21, or you can deliver shelf-stable food items to scouts Nov. 21, noon-3 p.m., at 80 Mt. Auburn Street — the oval driveway at Watertown-Belmont UMC. Masked scouts will happily accept and sort any donation you can give to support Watertown families.

The most in-demand items are those used every day in households:
✔ Cereal (This has been a great need with kids home from school)
✔ National brands of canned soup, corn, beans, chickpeas
✔ Pasta and Rice
✔ Old Fashioned Oatmeal
✔ Cooking Oil
✔ Tuna Fish
✔ Tomato Sauce, Canned Tomatoes, Tomato Paste
✔ Macaroni & Cheese
✔ Grape Jelly and Strawberry Preserves
✔ Peanut Butter

For more information, contact

Troop 30 meeting outside and masked

Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts meet outside in Watertown.

With the Coronavirus crisis still forcing school changes and mask mandates in Massachusetts, Troop 30 is meeting outdoors every week.

Outdoor meetings on Thursdays in October and November? Absolutely — Be Prepared is our motto, after all. Scouts wear masks, always, and when the weather is cool, they have jackets. Now that everyone is trained in setting up a lantern, we’re able to work on advancement, we’ve had an election of new leaders and we’ve even met with Cub Scouts who will move up to Troop 30 in early 2021.

Boys and girls age 10-17 can join Troop 30

So far this year, Troop 30 has had a campout — also with Webelos, the oldest of the Cub Scouts — where we’ve mastered orienteering, outdoor cooking and and the eating of chocolate cake made in a Dutch oven on the fire.

This year has been a very unusual year in the history of scouting in Watertown, no doubt, but we are continuing to serve the community. Since the pandemic hit, one scout took his family to clean up a section of the Charles River, filling an entire car with trash to haul away. One planted a tree at a state campsite on behalf of the family of a longtime camper who died of Covid earlier this year.

And, we have our Eagles. Michael McNamara received his Eagle rank this summer after building secure storage for the Watertown Food Pantry. Another Eagle project is currently under way.

Scouts take care of each other and our

Troop 30 has always had a strong outdoor program, but now that the safest place to be is outside, we’re doubling-down on those efforts. Any youth who has completed fifth grade is welcome to join us.

Scouts learn citizenship and leadership, but there’s so much more they do. Scouts learn to camp, to cook and how to build a campfire. They also have plenty of opportunity to make friends as they sit around a campfire — just in masks, this year.

Troop 30 is for boys and girls in Watertown, Allston and Brighton. Contact us at to learn more.

Michael’s Eagle Scout Service Project

Michael, left, is a Life Scout enclosing a secure cabinet space for the Watertown Food Pantry. Fellow scouts Patricio and Deion, and Michael’s mom, are preparing the space by first cleaning and painting the cabinets.

In coming days Michael will lead a team of scouts who’s job it is to transform the space so Food Pantry volunteers can quickly and safely work in the space.

Troop 30 not slowing down this summer

Just because the troop doesn’t meet every week in the summer, don’t think there aren’t scouting things going on. Just a few activities in July:

  • Summer camp at T.L Storer has seen lots of swimming, zip lines, shooting and lots and lots of work on badges.
  • Cleanup at our sponsoring organization, the Watertown-Belmont United Methodist Church.
  • Beach cleanups as scouts get in some service hours while on vacation.
  • Lots more work on badges. Citizenship in the Nation and Communication are two Eagle-required badges with a lot of book work scouts are finishing up over the summer.

Looking for more up-to-date info? We update our facebook page regularly, and we’ll be having our first meeting of the academic year Sept. 5, 2019 at 80 Mt. Auburn Street. If you’ve completed 5th grade, you’re not yet 18, and you are looking for adventure in Watertown, Allston or Brighton, we’d love to hear from you.

Who teaches scouts?

As we’re preparing for a Klondike Derby, where scouts show off their winter skills and compete in races where they’re the sled dogs pulling a sled, we’re bringing in Webelos who are old enough to join the race.

Who teaches the younger scouts the skills they’ll need for the competition? Here Michael, our senior patrol leader, shows Webelos Scout Tage how to tie together two branches.

The Boy Scouts lead the activity, working with adults who guide, not lead.

Making creche figurines for Watertown-Belmont UMC

Our sponsoring organization, Watertown-Belmont United Methodist Church, asked if scouts could help celebrate the Christmas advent season by putting some skills to work.

Troop 30 scouts helped cut out creche figures for the church’s lawn, preparing a holy family, wise men, and barnyard animals to be painted by the church’s Sunday school classes.

Do you have a service project needing some scout help? Contact us at

Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts collect 200 bags of groceries for Watertown Food Pantry

What does the generosity of Watertown residents look like when combined with the hard work from scouts?

It looks like 200 bags of groceries for families in need in Watertown.

“We are so grateful for the contribution from the scouts,” Kathleen Cunningham, Food Pantry Director, said. “The hard work and commitment they supply to the pantry of food and service is overwhelming.  We are so grateful for the continued support of the Boy Scouts. The amount of food and personal products they have collected in just one day surpasses any amount we can imagine. Their donation will allow us to help our clients for many months to come, and allow us to use our financial donations to continue to provide fresh fruit and vegetables to our clients.”

This was truly a group effort. Boy Scouts from Troop 30 teamed up with Cub Scouts from Pack 30 to participate in Scouting for Food, a nationwide program of the BSA. Working with Stop & Shop at 171 Watertown Street, scouts asked store customers to donate items needed most by clients of the food pantry —  peanut butter, rice, beans, jams and cleaning supplies – to fill the pantry’s shelves.

Customers were given a shopping list created by Boy Scout Michael McNamara to use in the store. The result was amazing – families dropped off full shopping carts, couples dropped off full bags of groceries, and others gave cash so it could be used to get what was needed most. Boy Scoutmaster Chris DeRocher used cash to get cleaning supplies that are always needed but hard to find at food banks — $368.50 worth.

A few customers even wanted to support the scouts in what they were doing, buying them cupcakes to keep them going.

Troop 30 organizes a Scouting for Food drive every year with the help of Stop & Shop. Last year, scouts collected 126 bags of groceries to serve those in need in Watertown. Hoping to meet that same target, scouts organized the six-hour drive at the store. By 1 p.m., the target was surpassed and the Troop 30 trailer — usually packed full of camping gear for outdoor adventures – was nearly full of shelf-stable items.

Scouting for Food is just one of the community service projects scouts take on. Cub Scouts, age 5-10, clean trails, write letters to veterans and serve as an honor guard for local events. Boy Scouts, age 10-18, take on larger projects to earn merit badges – including two from Troop 30 who are regular volunteers at the Watertown Food Pantry.

BSA trains boys and girls in responsible citizenship, character development, and self-reliance through participation in a wide range of outdoor activities, educational programs, and, at older age levels, career-oriented programs in partnership with community organizations. For more information, see and

Scouts teach other scouts outdoor skills

Baconators Patrol Leader Patricio, left, coached two younger scouts who were making breakfast for their patrol.

When scouts pick up new skills, like learning to set up a tent, they’re most likely to be found acquiring those skills from the scouts who learned them the same way — from other scouts.

Troop 30 camped out at Camp Sayre this past weekend, joining in the regular Saturday program of archery, swimming, axe yard skills and other sports.