Eagle Scout!!

The path to Eagle Scout comes in many shapes and sizes.  No two scouts share the same path.  The basics are the same, the requirements are the same but the actual journey is the decision of the individual scout.

We could not be more proud to announce Trevor Nigus as the newest Eagle Scout of Crew 91.  We are incredibly proud of you, Trevor, and all you have accomplished.  Congratulations!

Eagle Scout - Crew 91

 

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Cheerful Service

One of our favorite aspects to Venturing are the opportunities created to give back to our community.  The last week in September afforded us two opportunities of service.  Both service projects benefited important organizations positively impacting the Chillicothe area.

Chillicothe Weekend Snackpac

Friday evening brought us to the 2nd Annual Chillicothe Weekend Snackpac Fundraiser.  Chillicothe Weekend Snackpac provides sack lunches to the students of Illinois Valley Central School District who otherwise would go hungry during the weekend.  We played a handful of roles at the fundraiser.  A few of us bused tables and refilled patrons’ drinks while others of us took turns serving the meal and informing the kitchen of what needed refilled.

Chillicothe Weekend Snackpac

It’s always nice being the kitchen help, you get fed well!  To have the opportunity to serve the Weekend Snackpac program is really more of a blessing to the members of the crew than it is to the program.  There is such a large need not only in Chillicothe but throughout the country.  Children go hungry on the weekends but with the assistance of the Chillicothe Weekend Snackpac program fewer children are feeling the pangs of hunger.

Illinois River Sweep

The morning started a little dreary but soon the Saturday sun made an appearance at the Chillicothe River Sweep. We met other Chillicotheans at Cutright Park to patrol the beaches for trash and unwanted debris.  Crew 91 partnered up for the morning with members of Troop 91.  We combed the beaches and parks and were rewarded with bags and bags of trash. The highlight of of patroling would probably be the baby snapping turtle we found or the discarded headless cement swan.

Illinois River Sweep

There are endless opportunities to volunteer and serve in your local community.  For ideas contact your local food pantry, chamber of commerce, school district or pet shelter.  There’s no need to be bored when there are countless ways to lend a hand, a shovel or a smile.  Happy serving!

Illinois River Sweep

Windy Weather

The last couple of days Chillicothe has been pummeled with wind, rain, hail and crazy weather.  The straight line winds which coursed through our little town left quite a wake, espeically in the north end of town.

Though we as a crew have been unable to help as a group with clean up there have been scouts all over town lending a hand.  Between the power lines snapped in two and the dozens of trees ripped from the earth there’s quite a little mess.  Monday early morning knocked power out of half the city and closed the entire school district.  The roads were flooded and delayed getting to and from work.

Courtesy of Trevor J. Nigus

Courtesy of Trevor J. Nigus

The really wonderful thing about living in a small town: your volunteer fire department, your police department and the community as a whole.  Everyone working together to remove debris and picking up the pieces to start another day.

 

Kudos to the members of Crew 91 who were out and about lending a hand.  And a huge thank you to the men and women of our volunteer fire department and the police department for their relentless services.

Hike On {Part 2}

Hiking with a 40-45lb pack can be exhausting.  After the ill fated game of Uno in the boy’s tent naps were had by almost everyone.  Jared and Ashley started dinner and then another bout of rain had us scurrying under the dinning fly.  While in transit the first of three hail storms came upon us.  This hail wasn’t tiny!  But what’s a good camping story without a little hail!  After clopping through the mud to hang up bear bags it was off to bed.

Venture Crew 91

We gave ourselves a little break and broke camp around 7am to head to Baldy Skyline for our conservation project.  The views on the way to Baldy Skyline were pretty fabulous.  We caught a glimpse or two Mt. Baldy, the highest peak at Philmont.  Tanner busted out his sketch book and took down a few notes for future sketches.  Trevor wished he had his sketch book but whipped out his iPod to snap a few breathtaking pics instead.

 

View of Mt. Baldy

View of Mt. Baldy

By now we’re used to the afternoon rain but hoping it holds off for us to complete our conservation project.  The fellas at Baldy Skyline put on quite the informational show.  Tanner volunteered to be their accident prone scouter and demonstrated how to wear all the PPE required for the project.  We threw rocks and logs and trees and branches for three hours to help in the completion of the Baldy Skyline trail to Ewells Park.  It was a cacophony of voices bellowing “Rock, Tree, Twig, Log” every time something was lofted into the air.  Beware, don’t stand downrange of a rocks, trees, twigs and logs being thrown in your general direction.  Thank goodness for hardhats and sturdy trees!

 

After a short 10 minute walk from Baldy Skyline to Ewells Park we made camp.  Everyone was super excited to be setting up camp in the same spot for two whole nights!  Everything was wet from the night before, including Megan’s sleeping bag.  We thought we’d catch the sun while we could, set up camp and hunker in for the afternoon.  Ross and Tanner made their way to the Red Roof Inn while the rest of us started setting up camp.  It wasn’t too much later when we hear these perturbed cries from the woods.  Tanner and Ross somehow managed to toss the toilet paper out of reach and needed to be rescued.  Jared could have let them suffer but they were disturbing the wildlife.  We just held it over their heads when we needed a good laugh.

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Pomp and Circumstance

May always seems to be a flurry of activity.  Between weddings, and graduations and the occasional Venturing activity the month quickly fades into June.   We don’t know about you but is it hard to sit through graduations ceremonies without thinking of Scouting songs?  It is for us!  One particular song automatically starts rolling through the brain…My Turtle Swims Sideways.

Inevitably as soon as Pomp and Circumstance makes its way into the audience this little ditty comes to mind:

My turtle swims sideways

Your turtle swims upside down

My turtle swims sideways

Your turtle is dead!

Tank the Turtle

 In our little crew we have had quite the graduation season.  We have one crew member graduating from every level of education.  We cannot be more proud of all everyone has accomplished and cannot wait to see what their futures have in store.

 

Graduating from Chillicothe Elementary Center is our dear Megan.  Megan has been hanging out with the crew for the past 7-8 months as an unofficial member of the crew.  In order to be a full-fledged youth in any Venture Crew you must be either 14 years old or 13 and completed 8th grade.  Well, congratulations, Megan!  You’ve successfully conquered junior high and are heading off to high school!

Crew 91 Graduates

Leaving Illinois Valley Central High School as a well-rounded senior is our enthusiastic Tanner.  Tanner has quite the scouting career starting as far back as a Cub Scout, moving into Boy Scouts, attaining the rank of Eagle Scout and joining Crew 91.    Kudos to you, Tanner and best of luck as you attend Illinois Central College this fall!

Crew 91 Graduates

Not to be excluded from the excitement, Arielle graduated from Moody Bible Institute with a Bachelor of Arts in Pre-Counseling.   Though too old to be a youth of Crew 91, Arielle made the transition to Associate Crew Advisor as soon as she was eligible.  Congratulations on a job well done for successfully navigating through the challenges of college life!  Best wishes as you hit the pavement!

Crew 91 Graduates

So the next time you’re sitting through graduation and cannot wait for Pomp and Circumstance to quit repeating itself, just sing a Crew 91 favorite: My Turtle Swims Sidesways.

My turtle

Venturing is Pretty Niffty

There are a whole lot of things that make Venturing an incredible program: high adventure, scuba diving, marshmallow wars, leadership training and team building activities.  But the most amazing things about Venturing are the friendships forged.

Venture Crew91

January has brought a lot of cold and a bunch of snow.  We thought skiing would be a great way to take advantage of the weather.  We planned a little Venturing ski trip but things did not pan out as expected.  Our skiing trip was cancelled.

Venture Crew 91

It was the Saturday before MLK Day and a small group of friends, who just happened to be Venture Scouts, decided even though the Crew was not going to ski they were going to go skiing.  Monday morning a group of eight friends and two family members made their way to Dubuque, IA.

Venture Crew 91

Despite the Crew  skiing activity being cancelled this group of friends decided to make a day for themselves.  Venturing is not just about getting together a few times a month, hanging out, having a good time and then going back to life as it was.  Venturing is about the friendships that span beyond the meeting and into every day life and follow you throughout the rest of your life.  Skiing at Sundown Mountain on January 20 is proof our Crew is made of friends who have become family.

Venture Crew 91

Season of Thankfulness

Thanksgiving may have passed yet Crew 91 continues to be thankful.  This time of year is truly one of the crew’s most favorite.  There are so many ways we are able to serve our community and give back for all they have done for us and for others.

Christmas Shopping

We like to start off the holiday season by purchasing Christmas gifts.  Every year we volunteer at a local resale shop, Helping Hands, to raise money for us to purchase gifts for the less fortunate in our community.  This year we were able to shop for two families with five children in each family.

Christmas Shopping

There’s nothing quite like watching a group of teenage boys picking out and choosing the best gifts for 3-10 year old girls.  Needless to say they were much quicker in choosing presents for all the little boys who needed Christmas presents.  But in the end even the little princesses of the group will be opening splendid gifts Christmas morning.

Christmas Wrapping

There was quite the wrapping party after purchasing toys for 10 children!  So much ribbon and paper and tape made for a perfect start to the Christmas season.  Of course we could not have been in the Christmas spirit without singing along to Christmas classics.

Christmas Wrapping

In the coming weeks we will be out and about Chillicothe continuing to serve our community with cheerful service.  This Saturday we will be volunteering at the local Christmas on 6th Street held at the First United Methodist Church in Chillicothe.  We’ll be setting up tables for the perfect Christmas lunch of ham with all the trimmings, serving dinner and busing tables.  Come out and join us.

Christmas Wrapping

Then on December 21 we’ll be bright eyed and bushy tailed at the annual packaging of non-perishable food baskets for the Chillicothe Community Needs Agency.  Starting at 7am we’ll be at IVC High School unloading, sorting and packaging canned food items for the Community Christmas Baskets.  When it’s all said and done almost 125 families will be receiving baskets just in time for Christmas dinner.

Christmas Wrapping

With so much to be thankful, providing a few hours of cheerful service is just one way to share our thankfulness.  Because in the end, giving is so much more rewarding than receiving.  We hope to see you alongside us as we help others enjoy this Christmas season.