Girl Scouts Canoe and Kayak Weekend

The first weekend in December was beach camping time for Senior Troops 8250 and 8428 and Cadette Troop 8144 at the Youth Aquatic Center (TAC) on Fiesta Island. It was a success…if you believe that bad weather, changing plans, broken motorboats, working together, and being flexible are signs of a great Girl Scout adventure!

Friday night the rain just wouldn’t stop, so we delayed heading to camp until the morning. The 14 girls camped out at the leader’s house–all over the leader’s house–enjoying pizza, games, and s’mores in the fireplace.

Saturday morning we headed to Fiesta Island for camping and boating around Mission Bay. The motorboats wouldn’t start, so we switched to canoeing. It was a good chance for the girls to learn about canoes and proper technique.

Also, we had plenty of free time to set up camp, hang out with friends, and play games. At night we roasted hot dogs around the campfire, then had s’mores with our new favorite giant marshmallows. We enjoyed seeing all the lights around Mission Bay, La Jolla, Point Loma, and the SeaWorld "tree."

On Sunday morning we had hot cocoa and packed up our breakfast for a kayak trek around the bay. Girls with prior canoe or kayak experience took out the solo kayaks. New paddlers buddied up on the tandem kayaks. We went from the YAC, past the Mission Bay Hilton, around Fiesta Island, and across Mission Bay to the "Secret Island." We beached in the hidden cove there and had a breakfast buffet on the beach.

Then with lots of cold kayakers, we paddled over to the Crown Point playground. After warming up, we paddled back to camp. All in all, we paddled about eight miles. Quite a good trek!

Carol Stachwick


Girl Scout Leaders are Special Gems

On Dec. 3, several Scripps Ranch Girl Scout leaders participated in the annual Investiture Ceremony (pictured below). This year recognitions chair, Lynn Bautista, had a little twist. Instead of lighting candles, the newly invested leaders–from Daisy to Cadette–were part of an inaugural Pearl Ceremony.

Each leader stood and held a pearl, representing how each person is unique and beautiful. The leaders then deposited their individual pearl into a bowl. At the end Lynn pulled out a whole strand, representing how all the individual leaders–or pearls–are strung together, as in the necklace, to make a beautiful piece of jewelry, our fantastic service unit.

Leaders can only participate in the Investiture Ceremony once in their life. Existing leaders also renewed their Girl Scout promises with the newly invested leaders. We are so proud of our service unit and its committed leaders! Congratulations, ladies, and thank you for all you do for Scripps Ranch Girls Scouts!

Cynthia Collins and Jacqueline Yang, Scripps Ranch Service Unit Co-Managers

Scouts Help Restore Park’s Ecosystem

On an afternoon in December cub scouts from Pack 614 traveled to Mission Trails Regional Park. They assisted park staff make much-needed repairs to trails and spread mulch to care for the park’s ecosystem. Our scouts learned about the importance of mulch in keeping weeds at bay, retaining water, and balancing soil temperature.

More than 30 scouts and family members from our pack took part this activity. Participating boys also met a requirement in their conservation project.

After winter break our pack will start preparations for the Pinewood Derby. More information about our organization is available at [].

Pack 615 Stays Busy and Has Fun!

Our boys have been busy the past couple of months performing a variety of duties and having fun. In October the boys headed to William Heise Regional Park for a weekend of camping. Beautiful weather and starry skies provided the backdrop for everyone to enjoy the games, skits, and wompons. Our growing group of Tigers also received Bobcat patches during the campout.

October also brought a night of "Minute to Win It" games in the E. B. Scripps Elementary School multipurpose room during the scouts’ monthly pack show. With lots of laughter and running around, the scouts played their games under a minute. Every year they get faster. Way to go, boys! What a fun way to kick-off the new school year and welcome the newest scouts to the pack.

At the November pack show the scouts earned their Good Manners belt loop by learning how to use proper etiquette in various situations. Well done, boys, and just in time for Thanksgiving.

In December the boys made sure their uniforms were all in order. It was time for inspection, and they were checked from head to toe. Pinewood Derby cars also were handed out. The boys will need to be ready to design their cars for the exciting derby in March.

If you want to join the fun and games with these scouts and you have a boy in grades 1-5, please contact Jennifer Ballard at [[email protected]] or 848-9511 for more information. We look forward to hearing from you!

Sandra Leeman

Pack 1216 Wolves Learn Fire Safety

The boys of Pack 1216 Den 2 got an eye-opening experience at Scripps Ranch Fire Station 37 in late November. Captain Kerry Grieser taught the Wolves about fire safety, such as the stop, drop, and roll method if their clothes ever catch fire. The boys were shown every aspect of the station, from the dorm rooms to the great room and kitchen to, of course, the large garage area where "Big Red" and other vehicles are stored.

Captain Grieser explained what all of the tools are for and the functionality of the impeccably clean fire engine. The boys also learned about firefighters’ uniforms and the special apparatus needed to breathe in very smoky situations. They were especially intrigued by the beeping noise emitted from the uniform if a firefighter doesn’t move for a period of time. They learned that the noise is a signal to others that the firefighter may be injured.

After taking turns spraying water from the engine’s hose and sitting in the driver’s seat of the big engine, the boys left the station with a better understanding of what firefighters do and their importance in our community.

Troop 301 Blasts into Winter!

Even though the weather is getting cold, Troop 301 is still having a blast with scouting. In December we went camping in the desert to launch rockets. The rocket launching and the desert scenery around Agua Caliente were awesome. Many scouts earned their Space Exploration merit badge too.

We are also not letting the change in season interfere with our hiking. We did the "Tour de Scripps Ranch," a 10-mile hike following the hidden trails of Scripps Ranch. Many scouts carried full backpacks to prepare for our summer treks in the mountains.

We continue to work on merit badges. Several scouts are working on their Family Life merit badge. We also have the option to start the Emergency Preparedness or Auto Maintenance merit badges.

We look forward to visits from Webelos scouts or other 5th grade boys. Each year we offer more than 200 miles of hiking, more than 40 nights of camping, and trips to mountains, the desert, and islands! Our rate of Eagle Scouts is 15 times the national average!

If you are interested in the fun and adventure of Boy Scouts that is Troop 301, join us for our Wednesday Webelos Night on Jan. 16, at 7 pm at Jerabek Elementary School. Please RSVP to our committee chair, Mrs. Susan Klug, at [[email protected]]. We look forward to seeing you at this event.

Tyler Kuperstein, Troop 301 Scribe

Troop 663 Conquers the Summit

In November Troop 663 scouts went to San Jacinto for a backpacking trip. They braved the blistering cold–down to 15 degrees!–and climbed to a mountain peak. The scouts also participated in a Dutch oven cook-off in which they prepared various dishes including casserole, cake, and even pizza. The Dutch oven is a great way to cook an easy meal, especially at camp where simplicity is key.

In December Troop 663 welcomed Webelos scouts from all over San Diego to learn about how we do things. They learned how to do many things, like make s’mores, use a Dutch oven, and even brew dry ice root beer.

We also participated in Wreaths Across America, which pays respect to our nation’s fallen by placing wreaths at their graves. Troop 663 went to the event at Miramar Cemetery. We are always proud to pay respect to our troops.

On Saturday, Jan. 12, Webelos will be able to come to the Scripps Ranch Community Park for the annual Weblos Day. During this event cub scouts can learn what it takes to be a boy scout. The younger scouts will be able to sample camp food, see a trebuchet in action, and learn how to safely make a fire. If you would like more information about Webelos Day, please send an email to [[email protected]]. We hope to see you there.

Keoni Rodriguez, Troop 663 Scribe

How Low Can

Troop 616 Go?

In November our troop camped out at Furnace Creek in Death Valley National Park. Scouts and scouters got to hike through Mosaic Canyon, a slot canyon with marble walls, to Natural Bridge, a rocky bridge formation. We also visited Zabriskie Point for a birds-eye view of Death Valley, and then we went to Badwater, the lowest point in North America and 240 feet below sea level. We finished up by going to Artist’s Palette to see colorful rock formations.

Also, our troop built trails at Mataguay. We chopped roots, cleared leaves, and leveled the trail. Finally, we continued our community service at Ladle Soup Kitchen. We are very thankful for being part of such a wonderful troop and community.

We look forward to amazing adventures in 2013! Troop 616 wishes everyone a happy New Year.

Max Audick, Troop 616 Scribe