A Venturing Weekend

What a weekend! Venturing was the name of the game as the weekend flew by in a blur.  Things started off Saturday night at the Heartland  District Volunteer Recognition dinner.

The whole evening was just wonderful. Heartland District had a very busy 2012.  Packs, Troops and Crews were recognized for their Journey  to Excellence achievements and for service to the community.  Adult volunteers received recognition for their efforts, commitment to youth and dedication to the district and council.

We were extremely humbled to be the recipient of a new council award this year, The Golden Shovel Award.  The award was created to recognize one unit from each Pack, Troop and Crew for their community service.  Our crew logged  682 hours of service in 2012.  All in all a very productive year for a crew of 18 members!  We were quite pleased and needless to say, slightly shocked to be informed of our accomplishments.

2012 Golden Shovel Award of Service

2012 Golden Shovel Award of Service

For the second year, Crew 91 achieved the highest ranking in the Journey to Excellence program.  We received the 2012 JTE Gold Award.  Now two gold ribbons grace the top of crew flag!

2012 JTE Gold Award

2012 JTE Gold Award

Sunday brought an early morning – Scout Sunday.  We joined Pack 91 and Troop 91 at the Chillicothe First United Methodist Church to celebrate the role the  Men’s Club has played in scouting.  For 70 years the Methodist Men’s Cub has sponsored Troop 91.  We were able to thank the Men’s Club for their years of service.  It is amazing to see all the former scouts and scouters stand during the church service.  There are so many who have been impacted by the scouting program.

Scout Sunday

Scout Sunday

Directly after Scout Sunday a handful of us made our way to the Peoria Civic Center.  We spent the morning and early afternoon prepping nachos, serving BBQ sandwiches and robustly singing age old rock songs.  The Civic Center hosted a fund raiser for a former employee.  Twelve bands played for 12 hours to raise money to help pay for medical bills and support his family.  It was a fantastic way to spend the morning.

Christ Fields Memorial Concert

Christ Fields Memorial Concert

If three Venturing activities was not enough Ashley had to squeeze in one last meeting.  There was a National Jamboree Meeting held at the council office Sunday night.  The day is quickly approaching when two charter buses loaded with Scouts, Venturers and Scouters will make their way to The Summit for the 2013 National Scouting Jamboree.

There is really no better way to spend a weekend than immersed in Venturing regalia, rocking out to fantastic music and doing so all in the company of amazing friends.

A Delicious Gathering of Wood Badgers

You can always tell when Wood Badgers gather…there is non-stop singing. So on Sunday night the Beavers kicked off the Gilwell Song and I’d like to say we sounded wonderful but that would be a lie. 🙂 We sang our little hearts out and by the end of the first round we were pretty amazing, just saying.

The annual Wood Badge dinner is a wonderful way for old Wood Badgers and new Wood Badgers to reminisce and to share new stories. It is an even more amazing opportunity for leaders to recognize the importance of training and the impact it has on their home units. So many wonderful resources are gained from Wood Badge. Those resources come in the forms of material and human.

When you leave Gilwell Field you do not leave your learning experience behind. So many tools are provided to participants it can be overwhelming. The friendships bring so many ideas and knowledge. You have so many thoughts and ideas after Wood Badge and you know you can lean on your fellow Wood Badgers for guidance and support. The Gilwell Song is not the only thing that will stay with you for the duration of your scouting career. The friendships fostered, the knowledge gained, the thirst for additional training, the desire to improve your leadership and your unit stays with you forever. If ever an opportunity arises where you can participate in a Wood Badge course do so, it will be a decision you will not regret.
I used to be a Beaver, and a good old Beaver too. But now I’ve finished Beavering, I don’t know what to do. I’m growing old and feeble, and I can Beaver no more. So I’m going to work my ticket if I can. Back to Gillwell, happy land, I’m going to work my ticket, if I can.

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Lee receiving his Beads!!