That troop had been founded by Joe Chasmer, David's father. Joe Chasmer had been a Boy Scout his whole life but could not find a scouting group for his son to join. So in 1990, Chasmer had founded Troop 31 in Saint Michael's Parish in Union City.
At first, the troop began as a Cub Scout troop, but later, as the scouts got older, it developed into a Boy Scout troop. These days, the troop meets in Sts. Joseph and Michael's Parish on 15th Street in Union City, and both Joe and David are members.
Now, both boys are just one project away from earning the rank of Eagle Scout, the highest rank in scouting, and have become executive board members of the Order of the Arrow, the honor society of scouting.
Founded during the summer of 1915 to develop and maintain the camping traditions in the scouting movement, the Order of the Arrow consists of both scouts and adults who work to set up the campsites for scouters.
"We do as much to the camp to make it as ready as we can," said David, who holds the position of first vice chairman in the order.
David and Dan are members of the Lenapehoking Lodge IX, which consists of scouts in Hudson, Bergen, Essex and Passaic counties.
Hudson County represents five of the six members of the Order of the Arrow executive board, David being first vice chairperson and Dan being treasurer.
Joining the order
Being a member of the Order of the Arrow is not a decision taken lightly in the scouting movement.
Only after a scout has been a life scout for six months can he be considered for the order.
Life scout is the highest rank of Boy Scout before Eagle Scout. Once you are eligible, the scout must be nominated by an adult and then voted on by non-members of the Order of the Arrow.
"The Order of the Arrow keeps people involved in Scouting," said Troop 31 leader and Order of the Arrow member Joe Chasmer. "At age 18, boys generally get out of scouting. In the Order of the Arrow there is no age limit."
There are nine camps in Northern New Jersey for which this Order of the Arrow lodge is responsible.
"In Spring we set up the camps and in the fall they break them down," said Dave Chasmer.
The boys help put up tents, make sure the plumbing is in order for the bathrooms, put up the swimming dock and chop down any trees blocking the campsite.
This is where working with adults in the order comes in handy. Since many of the members of the Order of the Arrow are adults, they bring many skills with them to help. Many are plumbers or carpenters that help out in the camps.
But being a member of the order is not just a whole lot of work.
"Of course there are perks," said Dave, speaking about the rafting and ski trips he goes on with the order.