2016 is rapidly coming to an end and we are looking forward to 2017. It has been an exciting year and I think we can look forward to more adventures next year! Let’s look back at 2016.
The year began with our usual event, the Christmas Tree Pickup. This year we had a larger area than usual and in turn, that helped fund our troop as well as providing a highly visible service to our community!
February began with the Fingerprinting Merit Badge which was a blast, and we were able to learn what the “Foot File” was. We also attended the Merit Badge College which was a great opportunity to learn and meet other scouts.
We also enjoyed Scout Sunday at two churches.
A small group went Downhill Skiing and another group did Winter Survival up on Mt. Rainier. Those on Winter Survival had the joyful occasion to witness the Scoutmaster throwing out his back and then have to snowshoe out the next day in total pain. In short, fun for all!
March brought us to Thunderbird and Troop Leadership Training. We had a fun time with lectures, games, muddy scouts, and chants of “Russia, Russia, Russia.” Ask a scout who attended to get the full story.
We ended the moth with the Spring Court of Honor where many merit badges were awarded due to the many activities we had done.
April is the time when a young scout’s mind turns to one thing: E-Camp! We held E-Camp and many adults who were involved were quoted as saying, “Never Again!” while the boys said, “What do you mean ‘time to leave.’”
We then had the First Aid Camping Weekend, where cries of “Peanut Butter” mixed with the sound of trains coming every 18 minutes all night long, both nights. We left fully able to treat burns and cuts, but unable to see straight due to sleep deprivation.
We then had a very enjoyable Trail to First Class in Millersylvania. It was a lot of fun and featured a 5-mile hike during which we became ever so slightly lost.
June brought summer camp at Camp Parsons. The reviews were unanimous, the camp had some of the finest dust to be found at any BSA camp in the USA. Also, the programs were great. Everyone got to spend some quality time learning valuable skills.
July saw the crew return from Camp Parsons and the troop posted the flags to celebrate the 4th of July!
In August, one event dominated the calendar. WashJam was hosted again at Fort Lewis. Zombie Night Hikes, Merit Badges, and, of course, dust in the food dominated the fun event. Also, the patches were great!
Webelos Fun Day is one of our annual events that we always enjoy. It is an opportunity to have Troop 101 work directly with future Boy Scouts. This year was a blast, OK, a wet, rainy blast. It included a game of glowing football with another troop after dark the first night.
October was Apple Packing with the Lions. Troop 101 packed a total of almost ¾ of a ton of apples to help the Lions, our charter organization.
Later in the month we held the Electricity Merit Badge, and those in attendance .got to see scouts behaving like electrons by flowing the proper way around both a DC and an AC circuit. Shocking!
November saw the first two hikes of the Troop 101 Hiking Merit Badge. We did a 5-mile urban hike in Olympia and saw the Capitol, the Temple of Justice, and Starbucks. Then, the 10-mile night hike at Thunderbird was the second event.
Once again, there was an E-Camp, and once again some adults were heard to say “Quoth the parent, Nevermore.”
December began with the Mini-Troop Leadership Training which featured scouts standing on benches to demonstrate teamwork and leadership, as well as presentation by Mike K, Kevin A. and Miles L.
At the troop meeting tonight, we will hold elections for next year and conduct our annual gift exchange, this time featuring an original poem by the outgoing Scoutmaster. Scoutmaster Kevin will also conduct the time honored ceremony of “The Passing of the Buck” by stating that every question for the scoutmaster asked probably should be directed to Mike as the incoming Scoutmaster.
Finally, Toys for Tots this weekend will be another opportunity for the Troop to contribute to the community.
Overall this year, our scouts earned 11 rank advancements and at least 59 merit badges.
As always, the troop maintains its calendar at the troop website. The direct link to the calendar is at http://www.troop101-wa.org/calendar/. The troop is scheduled to do many events in the coming months, and more events will be added to the calendar. Summer Camp is coming up again, along with many of our usual event between now and the end of the school year. The in August, we will reconvene for another planning meeting to plan the coming school year.
I look forward to seeing all of you as we go forward.
Thanks to Troop 101 for a really fun year.
Scoutmaster Kevin Ammons