Cub Scout Pack 120 celebrates scouting anniversary with Blue and Gold Banquet

For over one hundred years, the worldwide brotherhood of Scouting has remained unique. It is based on the principles of loving and serving God, of human dignity and the rights of individuals, and of recognizing the obligation of members to develop and use their potential. It is a movement dedicated to bringing out the best in people. Cub Scouting doesn't emphasize winning as an end result, but rather the far more demanding task of doing one's best. While Cub Scout Pack 120 loves to share proud moments with our community, it is also beneficial to recall how and why it all started.

Scouting began in Great Britain when British Army Officer, Lord Robert S. S. Baden-Powell found that his men did not know basic first aid or the simple means of survival in the outdoors. They couldn’t follow a trail or tell directions, recognize danger signs, or find food and water. Baden-Powell, who had earned the reputation as a courageous soldier and able army scout, felt a need to teach his men resourcefulness, adaptability, and the qualities of leadership demanded by frontier conditions, so he wrote a small handbook called Aids to Scouting.

After distinguishing himself with service to his country and returning to London, Baden-Powell was amazed to find that his little handbook had caught the interest of English boys. They were using it to play the game of scouting. Baden-Powell embraced his new calling by gathering 20 boys from all walks of life and taking them on a 1907 scouting trip where they learned many of the skills that are still taught today. As more and more boys signed up to join this group, Scouting took off in earnest.

Two years later, American publisher, William Boyce, got lost in the fog while visiting London. A young Scout helped him find his way, and when Boyce offered a tip for his help, the boy explained it was his duty as a Scout to help, and declined the money. Boyce was impressed by the gesture and was soon working with Baden-Powell to bring Scouting to the U.S. After The Boy Scouts of America was established, younger boys were soon clamoring for their chance to join in the fun. By 1914, Wolf Cubbing for younger boys had begun in Great Britain with a “Cubbing” program formally included in America in 1930.

While various activities and youth groups teach basic skills and promote teamwork, Scouting expands to encourage youth to achieve a deeper appreciation for service to others in their community. Members of Cub Scout Pack 120 are always glad to serve at the Annual Chili Supper Fundraiser but are also happy to help with Scouting For Food to benefit our local Food Pantry and the Relay For Life which raises funds for cancer research. In addition to serving others, Cub Scouts have a lot of fun at regular meetings and activities such as a swim party, holiday parties, the Pinewood Derby, and summer camp. While the boys are concentrating on having fun, leaders are ever mindful of guiding these young men to develop the 12 Cove Values of Cub Scouting: citizenship, compassion, cooperation, courage, faith, health and fitness, honesty, perseverance, positive attitude, resourcefulness, and responsibility.

As the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) celebrate their 104th anniversary this February, Cub Scouts are more than happy to join in that celebration as important partners in Scouting! The groups may often seem like separate entities but they actually support each other in countless ways as was evidenced this past Saturday during the annual Blue & Gold Banquet. The Banquet originally began as an annual birthday party for Scouting, commemorating the formal establishment of Boy Scouts of America Feb. 8, 1910. In recent years, a Crossover Ceremony was added as the formal graduation from Cub Scouts to Boy Scouts for boys who have completed the required achievements.

Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014, Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, and family members joined together at the United Church of Christ for the Cub Scout Pack 120 Blue and Gold Banquet. The evening began with a delicious meal catered by Tradewinds Smokehouse that was much enjoyed by the 75 in attendance. As the meal drew to a close, local ventriloquist Michelle Matthews took the stage and delighted the crowd with her many talents. Former Cubmaster Chris Pickering, Webelos 2 Cub Scout Kyle Freiner, and Wolf Scout Henry Hirschvogel were good sports after being chosen to help Michelle during her performance. After the many laughs, the group then prepared for a more solemn part of the program.

Five Webelos 2 Cub Scouts were asked to come forward with their parents as Pack 120 Cubmaster Cameron Freiner and Assistant Cubmaster Brad Friedmeyer spoke about the dedication of the boys, as well as their parents, to make it to this moment. Special recognition was given to Webelos 2 Den Leaders Barbara Riggs and Rose Blair for their selfless service to the Pack and to this group of boys in particular. Both Barbara and Rose took time to speak about the particular skills and gifts that each boy brought to the group. As younger Cub Scouts looked on in wonder, members of Boy Scout Troop 120 then led the five Webelos 2 Cub Scouts, along with their parents, through an attention-grabbing Crossover Ceremony. After completion of the traditional procedure, Eric Schroeter, Scoutmaster of Troop 120 then welcomed the newest members of Boy Scout Troop 120: Ernest A. Blair Jr., Kyle R. Freiner, Daniel F. Johnson, Matthew R. Kilmer and William L. Pickering. After closing remarks, the Banquet concluded with many congratulations and pictures.

Upcoming events include grade-level Den meetings, the Pack-wide meeting on March 3, and the Pinewood Derby on March 15. Pinewood Derby work days, where the cars are built and customized, are scheduled for Feb. 22, March 1 and March 9. For more information call Cameron at 796-2979 or Brad at 573-338-2491.

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