Ethical Navigators Weekly Update – June 21


  • Updated: More details for June 26-28 camping at Onondaga Cave State Park, including flood contingencies.
  • Updated: Details are now in place for our July 17-19 campout. Please RSVP.
  • Updated: We had a fun General Meeting today learning about caves.
  • Due to the Independence Day holiday, there will be no Council Meeting in July.

June 26-28: Camping/Caves/River
We will camp at Onondaga Cave State Park the weekend of June 26-28. This park will provide opportunities for spelunking, hiking, and playing in the Meramec River. Lance Finney is planning this weekend, and here are the details:
We have five campsite located close together on the inside of a loop and close to the Meramec River. With our campsites, we are limited to 30 people and 10 cars (though a parking lot is very close, so only the people limitation is strict).

The price is $25 for 7 and up/$20 for 6 and under, but this does not cover the cave tour (this is a change from the original plan). The cave tour is $6 for ages 13 and up, $4 for ages 6-12, and free for kids under 6.

Please RSVP with how many people will be in your family group and which nights you will attend (we are limited to 30 people each night and 35 for the cave tour). Please give us a phone number that we can use for texting during the weekend. Make checks out to Ethical Society – Navigators and submit to Tom Draney.
So far, we have received RSVPs from the following families. We assume all are staying both nights and are going on the cave tour. There is still plenty of room, so let us know if you are considering joining us.

  • Finney: 4
  • Ford: 3
  • Heck: 1
  • M. Johnson: 2
  • Pepper: 2 or 3
  • Preston: 3 (Saturday only)
  • Wilson: 2

Please see the attached flyer for more details.

Update 1: Due to recent heavy rains that caused flooding on the Meramec River, the campground is current closed. We think that the floods did not reach the campsites, and we think that the site will be fine for our use next weekend, but we’re not sure. We will call the State Park on Monday or Tuesday to find out the status. In case the campout must be canceled, Bob Heck has generously offered his house for a pool party. Please watch for emails with more information during the week.
Update 2: One of our activities during the campout (if it happens) will be geocaching. In order to prepare for this, please visit to familiarize yourself with the concepts and to download an app to your Android, iOS, or GPS device. The free app will work for some caches if you have cell coverage, but only the paid apps give the ability to save cache information in advance in case we do not have cell coverage. Another option is to print of the information about the caches in Onondaga Cave State Park from

July 17-19: Camping/Float Trip
This event is scheduled at Meramec State Park for Friday July 17 through Sunday July 19.

We have 5 camp sites reserved, 105, 107, 108, 110, and 111.  They are all adjoining.  6 person maximum per site and 2 car maximum per site, or a total of 30 campers.  If we have greater interest we can look at adding sites.  Site 111 has ADA accommodations.

Park information:
Map of campgrounds: 

Friday.  Set up camp as early as 3 p.m. Dinner on own.
Saturday.  Communal breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Sunday.  Communal breakfast, pack lunch for floating.  Check out is 2 p.m. but flexible.

Floating is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Sunday.

Here is a link to Floating Information:
From our experience the 5 mile float takes 2.5 hours for canoes and 4.5 hours for rafts.

Camping costs will be $25 for ages 7 and up and $20 for ages 6 and under.
Floating costs will be dependent upon preferences for floating mode but will average around $22.

Please complete the RSVP survey by June 30!  This will be a tremendous help to us for planning accommodations, meals, and floating, so we can confirm accurate pricing for this event..  A follow up communication will be sent out shortly after the responses are reviewed.

Note: because watercraft requires a non-refundable reservation, we will require payment from those who RSVP, even if they cannot come (barring major extenuating circumstances).

General Meetings

June 21
We had a lot of fun and learned a lot about caves at our General Meeting this morning. Junior Navigators Leader Haley Pepper led us in two activities to learn about caves, in preparation for our visit to Onondaga Cave State Park next weekend.

In our first activity, we made dioramas of caves, complete with stalactites, stalagmites, columns, soda straws, and underground rivers. In our second activity, the older Junior Navigators prepared an oversaturated solution of Epsom Salt to make a stalactite. The Navigators each got to take home a jar with Epsom Salt to finish the experiment at home.

Some photos are available on Facebook.


July Council Meeting

Due to the Independence Day holiday, we will not have a separate Council Meeting in July. We will attempt to resolve necessary business at the Onondaga Cave campout.

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