SCOUTING SMOKE SIGNALS

The Boy Scouts of America has a birthday this month. I believe it’s their 94th birthday; so HAPPY BIRTHDAY BSA; I’m proud to be a supporter of your organization and I hope to continue for many years to come.

The Boy Scout organization has changed over the years. Once upon a time boys were proud to wear uniforms and be called Boy Scouts. Not any more, half of the Boy Scout units and leaders don’t bother to wear uniforms anymore and I’m not sure that all the boys even own uniforms.

Once upon a time the Boy Scout organization was for boys only and the leaders were men. Not any more. Females are now allowed to join and we even have women scoutmasters. Why? I haven’t the slightest idea. Is it women’s lib or a just a breakdown on the men’s part?

I’m not saying BSA changes are bad; and I’m not saying BSA changes are good. Things have just changed; that’s all. I guess I’m from the old school where fathers taught sons how to be men and mothers taught daughters how to be women. Boys belonged to the Boy Scouts and Girls belonged to the Girl Scouts.

I hope and pray that the Boy Scout law never changes. I think this would be a sad day . . .

When I was a Boy Scout and later a Scoutmaster (two different troops) only boys and male leaders went on our campouts. Mothers were happy to just back up the troops by forming a Mother’s Auxiliary to help support the Troop’s activities and not have to go on campouts. Some mothers even thanked me for not having to go out and ‘rough it’. How times have changed. Women and girls now go on most all Boy Scout campouts. Gone are days of doing a #1 behind the tent in the middle of the night or going skinny dippin’ at the ol’ swimmin’ hole. Good? Bad? Time will tell; only it will be too late to change back!

In the meantime Troop meetings will go on; Roundtable meetings will go on; and we old Geezers, old Codgers as it were, will continue to support, what used to be, the proudest organization in the world – THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA – let’s hope nobody comes up with an idea to change the name of the organization to just,

 

SCOUTS OF AMERICA, OR THE NANCY BOYS OF AMERICA. Happy Birthday! Send your cards and letters of support or your hate mail to: Ray McCune, 2700 Lower Huntington Road, Waynedale, IN 46809.

 

LIFE SCOUTS, ARE YOU IN NEED OF AN EAGLE PROJECT?

Call Carolyn McNagny, Executive Director of ACRES Land Trust, at 260-422-1004 and talk to her; she may have an idea for your Eagle project. ACRES is located at 2000 North Wells Street.

 

INTERESTED IN BACKPACKING PHILMONT SCOUT RANCH IN 2005?

Your expedition begins with lunch on Tuesday, June 23, 2005 and ends with breakfast on Tuesday, July 5, 2005. Participants on the twelve day, twelve night backpacking expedition hike through the Sangre de Cristo mountains of Philmont Scout Ranch, ranging in elevation from 6,600 feet at headquarters to 12,441 feet at the top of Bald Mountain. Fascinating backcountry programs and more than 350 miles of challenging trails await those who seek to discover the wonder of Scouting’s paradise. Since Philmont’s first camping season in 1939, more than 725,000 Scouts, Ventures and their leaders have participated in the rugged challenge of its backpacking program.

Contact Chuck Walker at the AWAC Service Center – 260-432-9593 for an application to attend the 2005 Philmont Contingent. The event date is from June 23, 2005 to July 5, 2005. Boys must be 14 years old by June 23, 2005 – there are 24 spaces available.

Participants hike Philmont’s mountains for ten full days, spending nights at various backcountry camps. At staffed camps, crews can participate in a variety of programs presented by Philmont backcountry staff. Among these programs are horseback riding, burro packing, gold panning, rock climbing, 30.06 rifle shooting, archaeology, mountain biking, and interpretive programs such as homesteading and mountain man rendezvous.

 

BEEN THERE; DONE THAT!

As an Explorer Scout, I hiked Philmont in 1954 and earned the right to wear the Philmont Scout Ranch Dancing Bull patch (tail hanging over the left shoulder of course) on my red wool BSA jacket. I earned the money to go there by delivering newspapers. Walking two miles a day (7 days a week) and carrying a bag full of papers also conditioned my body for hiking with a backpack. It was an adventure I’ll never forget. Their program sounds like the one I participated in.

I understand that the tentative fee is $1,000 – If you started now and saved $2 per day you would have enough to pay for your trip when the time came – save $2.50 per day and you would also have enough spending money to buy your family souvenirs. Their tentative program sounds like the one I participated in.

 

NEED CASH? – A & J GIFTS & THINGS, has just opened up a store at 1645 Wells Street. I talked to Annie, the owner, and she is interested in the idea of designating one corner of her store as a Scout Trading Post. Bring in your no-longer-being-used scouting/sporting equipment and she will sell it for you on consignment (she gets a percentage of whatever the item sells for). Items mentioned included packs, canteens, Dutch ovens, mess kits, uniform parts, fishing gear, tents, sleeping bags, and other scout related equipment. So Scouts/Leaders, turn that unused stuff in your closet and garage into $$.

The Waynedale News Staff

Ray McCune

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