Do you ever wonder how our growing boys make the transition from Arrow of Light (formerly Webelos II) to becoming a Boy Scout? After all, the decision to pursue Boy Scouts following the cross-over ceremony is completely up to our fully-vetted Cub Scouts to make. This decision, I believe in large part, is solidified by seeing the Boy Scouts themselves in action.
Traditionally, every year in November the Boy Scouts of Troop 9 will host our Pack 9 Arrow of Light Cub Scouts on a weekend camping trip at Camp Squanto at Myles Standish State Forest in Plymouth, MA – which my son and I had the honor to attend last weekend.
From the moment we arrived at the parking lot of Camp Squanto early Saturday morning, the Boy Scouts of Troop 9 immediately sprung into action – providing a warm welcome by introducing themselves, helping to carry our gear bags to camp, setting up our tent, and getting us settled in the place we’ll call home for the next 24 hours.
This was just the beginning of the impressive overnight that the Boy Scouts of Troop 9 had in-store for our soon-to-be Boy Scouts. I should point out, (although adult leaders are present) the Boy Scouts themselves plan and prepare for this trip entirely themselves, setting the agenda and timing for all activities to keep the Cub Scouts fully engaged until it is time to pack-up and go home the next morning.
From the moment our Cub Scouts arrived, the day was filled with great activities – including introductions by the camp fire, team building games, a football game against another local pack, and taking a hike/tour around the expansive and beautiful grounds of Camp Squanto. To help everyone recharge, the camp turned into a culinary festival as each of the Boy Scout patrols fired-up their cooking stoves and provided food for all such as grilled cheese sandwiches, hot dogs, bacon burgers, and even tacos! To say this was an impressive display of self-sufficiency, teamwork, and passage-to-manhood is an understatement – I was completely blown away by these Boy Scouts from Troop 9.
As the night progressed, the Boy Scouts continued to capture the attention and interest of our Cub Scouts with more games and fireside skits down at the outdoor amphitheater – which was unquestionably the biggest display I’ve seen of the comradery, love and support for one another, and the true strength of the Boy Scout family. It was clear to see the incredible value of becoming a Boy Scout in Troop 9, which is supported by these fine upstanding young men who are kind, dedicated, selfless, talented, hard working, immensely loyal to one another, and the future leaders of our next generation.
To wrap up the evening, the Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, parents, and adult leaders alike sat around the blazing campfire to participate in the solemn and very special flag retirement ceremony – for which only U.S. military personnel and Boy Scouts are allowed to take part. Afterwards, while sitting around the fire, everyone recapped their brief but fulfilling experience at Camp Squanto – and even with lights-out time being mere minutes away I could still see the energy and enthusiasm burning in the eyes of our Cub Scouts for this fine event hosted by the Boy Scouts of Troop 9. It was at this moment, I realized that our Arrow of Light Cub Scouts have made their decision to become a Boy Scout.
Although the air was brisk and damp, everyone in attendance at Camp Squanto fell asleep like babies in our tents that night after a very fulfilling and satisfying day hosted by the Boy Scouts of Troop 9. A very big thank you to all the scouts, leaders, and volunteers of Troop 9 for hosting this incredible event!