Yesterday, C117 participated in the Messengers of Peace Day of Service. The troop had to rise at 5:00AM, cook breakfast, and hike to the loading point. We hopped a bus and drove 2++ hours to Welch, WV. We met the mayor of Welch before we moved over to their site.
Our service project was to clean up a family cemetery and sand and paint all of the ironwork. We ended up being about an hour late due to an more scenic route than originally anticipated so we had a lot less time than originally scheduled.
Despite the shortened work period, a large quantity of poison ivy, and a physically demanding project, we managed to complete the task with time to spare. NOTE: we took special precautions to avoid the poison ivy and Mr.Warriner has set up a special clothes washing station to make sure exposure is minimized.
Wednesday we had an early 5am wakeup and a 7am pickup to head out for our day of service. We traveled 90 minutes to Welch, WV to a cemetery to perform some landscaping and painting.
Each Troop at The Jamboree will do a day of service during their stay. That’s over 35,000 scouts heading out to do helpful projects around West Virginia.
The 9 Counties surrounding The Summit have been preparing for the past three years for these service projects to help in much needed areas. It’s a great way for the boys to give back to the community that helped build The Summit for them.
At our project we painted several railings and cleared brush from the grounds of the cemetery. The cemetery had gravesites dating back to the mid-1800s and held the grave of the first pilot shot down in WWI.
Tuesday morning we attended the opening ceremony in the Summit Stadium. They introduced the Bechtel family who donated the land and much of the funding for the Summit.
Afterwards, the boys spread out across The Summit to take in the activities and sites.
The facilities here are first class. One of our Assistant Scoutmasters, Joel Stinnett, is working the rock climbing area and said they are using specially designed equipment that is better and safer than any he has seen before.
The Summit is a beautiful place and the grounds are amazing. Here are some shots from an evening walk around the lake.
The weather today was much hotter than expected – highs in the low nineties with no breeze and lots of humidity. While there are lots of trees, most of the camping areas are wide open fields with little shade.
Our camp site is about 20 minutes from the lake activities and rock climbing, but further from other areas of camp. Overall, we are in a fairly central location.
The boys had a busy day setting up camp and getting unpacked. We had to figure out how to pickup and prepare food, cleanup, shower, and trade patches. They did a fantastic job pulling together and taking care of everything.
Tomorrow morning we have the opening of ceremonies at The Summit Stadium.
We arrived at Chickamauga National Battlefield this morning and watched a film about the battle. Our Park Ranger Chris gave us a very informative and passionate talk about the Civil War and it’s history in the region. Chattanooga was a pivotal battleground because of its significance as a rail and river trade route.