May’s outing was an exciting, crowded, loud, and boisterous Centennial Jamboree weekend for all troops in the San Gabriel Valley and Verdugo Hills Councils – that’s 220 troops and several thousand boys. Troop 147 scouts had a great time doing absolutely everything, including many competitive events, merit badges, fun events like archery, a great evening show, a Scouts’ Own service on Sunday morning, and many other activities on offer. Besides the usual fire trucks for viewing, the President’s limo was even on display, complete with its Secret Service driver! Our adults and ASPL generously donated their time all day on Saturday to make the first aid competition an outstanding skills event for all boys. This camp was definitely a change of pace from our usual troop-only outings in the backcountry. For example, we usually don’t deal with car horns short-circuiting at 3 am – jarring the adults, yet most scouts slept right through it! Our scouts had a blast, with our two patrols earning 3rd and 1st place ribbons in the competitive skills events, and they even earned a merit badge or two. Our troop looks forward eagerly to participating at the next Jamboree for the BSA bicentennial in 2110.
With lots of new scouts to bring up to speed, Troop 147 held its annual skills day during a campout at Barton Flats in the San Bernardino National Forest. The weather at night was sub-zero (Celsius at least) but the snow-covered mountain scenery of early May was beautiful. Our newest scouts learned the care and safe use of the knife, axe, and saw, thereby earning their “Tot’in Chip” card giving them the right (and responsibility) to use these tools on scout outings. They also learned to safely light and use campfires and campstoves, earning the “Fireman Chit” card. First aid and knots & lashings was also on the training agenda, all led by the Troop’s senior scouts. In spite of the full weekend of learning, boys had plenty of time for fishing, football, and a wide-open game of capture-the-flag, plus the usual fun around the campfires.