In late July my family made a trip to one of my favorite cities, Washington, D.C. We timed our visit to coincide with our son's participation in the Boy Scout National Jamboree in Virginia, the cyclical gathering of thousands of Boy Scouts from across the nation and world in a camp out of monumental proportion. The day of our visit the temperature was near 100 degrees with cloying humidity that enveloped like a soggy towel. My next visit to a Boy Scouting event will be under much more pleasant autumn conditions.
Boy Scouts of America is celebrating its 100th year. Palatine Boy Scout troops will commemorate this anniversary at ScoutTrek 2010 on Sept. 25 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Busse Woods. More than 5,000 scouts, their families and the general public are expected. The event will depict the continuity of Boy Scouts in America within four separate areas. Each area will depict a 25-year period of American scouting history. Within each area, Boy Scouts will display a variety of skill exhibits and hands-on activities.
I asked Mike Gutschick, Program Chair for the Signal Hill District of the Northwest Suburban Council of Boy Scouts, what role Palatine's Boy Scout troops will play at ScoutTrek.
He said Troop 188 will construct a bridge of ropes supported between two trees which participants can traverse. Troop 69 will show how to bait a hook, cast a line, and reel in a catch. Troop 335 will do log cutting with a two-person saw. One troop will build water rockets of liter pop bottles and launch them.
The sight I am most looking forward to is Troop 209's launch of watermelons and pumpkins from a medieval style trebuchet built of logs. Among other activities are leather working, woodcarving, knot tying, cooking, climbing walls, first aid, amateur radio, geocaching, archery, soccer games and robotics.
Gutschick explained, "This is a celebration of 100 years of Boy Scouting in the United States. The first troop in Illinois was Park Ridge Troop 1. We want the community to come out and discover what scouting is all about, and to increase the exposure of scouting to the general public. This event is not just for scouts, but for the whole community to discover more about the organization and its history."
Of course, any good party needs food, and there will be plenty available for purchase. BBQ, burgers, hot dogs, ice cream, beverages and more will be served up.
The location of ScoutTrek 2010 is Busse Woods South, Picnic Groves 5 through 16, in Elk Grove Village. Parking at the site is limited. A free shuttle bus will run from Woodfield Mall's remote parking lot southeast of the Sears Auto Center to the event. Tickets are available in advance from local Cub Scout Packs and Boy Scout Troops, by pickup from the Northwest Suburban Council Office at (847) 824-6884, or at the gate. For more information, go to www.NWSC.org.
As for me, I just want to see how far that pumpkin will fly.