Juneau Cub Scout packs and Boy Scout troops will hold a Scout-O-Rama starting at 10 a.m. Saturday, with a opening flag ceremony, at the Nugget Mall. The closing ceremony will be at 4:30 p.m.
A family event, Scout-O-Rama will include the citywide pinewood derby races, from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., in which Cub Scouts race handmade wooden cars of various shapes and colors down a 32-foot plywood track. The track's start line is approximately five feet high, and the track slopes down to the floor and levels off for the final 16 feet.
"Pinewood Derby is one of the highlights of the Cub Scout year," said Keith Pahlke, Scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 11. "The competition is fun and the race is exciting, but more important is the opportunity for the boys to work with their dads or other adults on a project from start to finish."
At the Scout-O-Rama, Boy Scouts will participate in a variety of events, including Dutch oven cooking and tower building. There will be a number of booths and exhibits with photos and details of scouting activities and opportunities. As a bonus, the National Guard will land a Jayhawk helicopter in the Nugget Mall parking lot for people to look at.
Cub Scout packs are open to boys in first through fifth grade, and Boy Scouts is for boys ages 11-17. According to Pahlke, boys may join Boy Scouts of America as a continuation of their Boy Scout trail from Cub Scouts, but age 11 is an optimal time for a new boy to begin scouting. The Boy Scout program is a big change from cub scouting, in that it is led by boys rather than adults.
"Scout-O-Rama is the third big scouting event this spring," Pahlke said. "Over spring break, nearly 100 Boy Scouts from Southeast Alaska and Whitehorse spent three days digging snow caves and igloos on the pass between Skagway and the Yukon. The 'Frostbite Challenge' is an annual event that boys never forget. And last weekend, local Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts collected more than 4,000 pounds of food for the food bank in the annual Scouting for Food event."
In June, Scouts can spend a week at Eagle River Scout Camp. The expanded and improved program includes two weeks for Boy Scouts and a three-day session for Cub Scouts.
Scouting is a volunteer-run organization and is always looking for adult volunteers, both men and women, to help with the program. No matter what your skills or experience, there are positions where you would be greatly appreciated. Be it at the district commissioner level, scoutmaster, den leader or merit badge counselor, there are many resources and training available to help volunteers with this fun and fulfilling work.
More information on these activities will be available at the Scout-O-Rama or by contacting Cal Hiebsch, district executive, at 723-1241 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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