Girl Scouts Sew it up for Charity

Five members of Junior Girl Scout Troop 8163 in Scripps Ranch recently participated in the Girl Scout San Diego-Imperial Council’s “Sisterhood Project” benefiting abused women’s homes and other charities. Anna Simms, Ariel McCarty, Nicole Frost, Katherine Gratas, and Alexandria Weaver took part in a day-long workshop staffed by Girl Scout volunteers to learn to make a quilt. The five fourth graders sewed a quilt shown in the adjacent photo. Sized for a baby’s bed, it will be among many donated this spring to a variety of shelters for women and children.

Thinking Day in SR

In February, the Scripps Ranch Girl Scouts had a “Thinking Day” celebration at Dingeman Elementary School. “Thinking Day” is an annual event that encourages Girl Scouts from all over to learn about different countries from across the world. Over 300 girls and their leaders converged on the auditorium and lunch arbor to learn about 30 different countries. Using their passports that each troop created, the girls made their way to each country getting it stamped to say they visited that country.

The girls learned about different customs, games, what people eat in that particular country, and much more. The girls also collected mementos from each country such as an Irish flag made of beads, a fortune cookie from China, and origami from Japan. When the girls visited Scotland, the home of golf, they got to enjoy miniature golf while they were there. And they did the limbo in the Bahamas!

There was an embassy that each girl could visit and find out more information about Girl Scouts around the world and many of the troops earned their Juliet Low friendship patch. The requirements for the patch require participation in a Thinking Day activity along with others as well as donating monies to the Juliette Low Friendship Fund. The fund is used for helping to spread Girl Scouting and Girl Guides throughout the countries of the world and to help make possible international friendship projects, service programs, and exchange visits of the Girl Scouts and Girl Guides.

Thank you to all the troops who helped create booths and to Kathy Mayer and her troop for setting up and organizing Thinking Day. Hopefully, with each little fact the girls learn about another country, it will help to foster a better understanding of what diversity and tolerance is all about!

Always Up for a Challenge

In February, 21 Scripps Ranch Girl Scout leaders braved the “Challenge Course.” What is a challenge course? It is a set of structured games and initiatives that challenge individuals or groups to successfully master the situation. The course may be set up to challenge the social, mental, emotional, or physical characteristics of the person. In order to use a challenge course there must be an adult that has passed the challenge course herself.

The leaders learned spotting techniques to help a fellow teammate or girl when they are less than 6 feet from the ground. The spotter gives verbal reassurances and encouragement as well physical but not hand holding the entire time. The spotting position is hands extended up close in proximity to the person, in case they fall unexpectedly and can be on the ground before the spotter knows it. This requires a lot of trust between team members or leaders and girls.

Before they begin the course there are trust activities that must be completed, circle trust, blindfold nature walk, Yurt circle, and Sherpa walk. On the blindfold nature walk only the blindfolded person may talk and the job of the partner is to guide them safely through the walk. The next aspect is teambuilding skills. An example of team building is the “playroom floor” in which the team is tied together and blindfolded and they accumulate as many objects as they can together.

The next part of the course is physical. Different parts of this are the monkey bridge where the leaders are attached by harnesses and they have to make it from one end of the bridge to the other. On the “Log of Life” you must walk from one end of the log to the other without falling off. Holding hands with other teammates adds difficulty. “All aboard” is a square box-like platform that the entire group must balanced upon within a short period. The group must not have any part of their bodies touching the ground for 5 seconds singing “Row, row, row your boat….” The physical level 3 activities require the use of helmets. An example is the “peanut Butter Pit” in which by using a hanging rope, the group must ford a simulated expanse.

All the leaders, while exploring some personal goals for themselves and troops, had fun. That’s not to say there weren’t bumps and bruises, but what are a few bruises between Girl Scouts? So remember the next time you see a Girl Scout and you think of cookies remember we are also out challenging ourselves and becoming better woman and stronger girls!

Arrow of Light Ceremony

Cub Scout Pack 1216 sure has been busy having lots of fun. Some of our fun times included celebrating the birthday of scouting with our Blue and Gold Banquet. We were well entertained during the evening by some exceptional den skits. Additionally, each den made a centerpiece to round out the festivities. All the centerpieces were wonderful, and exemplified what it is to be a Cub Scout!

The following scouts were awarded rank badges: Garrett Keohane, Michael Rogers, and Hunter Holden all received Bobcat badges; and Greg Frederickson, Brian Hinck, and Ian Lewis all received their Webelo badge. Good job boys! Kudos to all the parents who helped out with making this banquet a success.

Den 1, our Wolf den, has certainly been on the go! Visiting and touring the Miramar Landfill, they saw how a landfill operates and where all the garbage goes. The boys and their moms shared a lively evening building toolboxes. The moms had a great time sawing all that wood (watch out Tim the Tool Man!). They finished the month by donating all the canned goods the pack collected to the St. Vincent de Paul Center. Father Joe Carroll treated all the cubs to a special tour of the facility, which even included a glimpse of the room at the center dedicated to scouting. Thanks Den 1.

The Webelos 1 den has been completing requirements for activity badges. They’ve been learning about rocks, minerals, fossils, and volcanoes for the Geologist badge. Additionally, they’ve been jumping, crunching, and running to earn the Athlete badge. In between they seem to have large quantities of fun and good times!

The Scorpions, our Webelos 2 den, have been busy visiting Boy Scout troops in the area, and even joined Troop 616 on a hike up Iron Mountain. They also have been busily preparing for the Arrow of Light ceremony. Way to go guys!

In March, we held the Arrow of Light ceremony, which signifies the crossing over from Cub Scouts into Boy Scouts, and is also the highest rank in Cub Scouting. Various Boy Scout troops from the area welcomed our boys into their membership. The ceremony included Native American folklore and was quite special.

The following boys were recognized for receiving their Arrow of Light: Chris Barnsley, Alex Davis, Jordan Davis, Kyle Glass, Mick Henderson, Haydn Hoffman, Joshua Ouellette, Douglas Turnbull, Matthew Weiner, Dayne Wilson, and Chris Wimmer. Congratulations to these boys and their families! Den leaders Charlie Glass and Jim Davis have done a wonderful job and should be proud of their accomplishments.

Pack 1216 would like to bid farewell to not only this group of boys, but also to their parents, whose contributions have helped to provide an enriching Cub Scout program. We also say thank you for your time, effort, dedication, friendship, sense of humor, and support you’ve given over the years.

Can’t Wait for Summer!

Although we haven’t had any campouts recently, our exceptionally exciting troop meetings have kept us in practice. Although it’s a long ways away, everyone is looking forward to our summer backpacking trip. Recent troop meetings have included lessons on food, clothing, and gear that we could use while backpacking.

During these meetings, Webelos have been visiting from their packs, and we look forward to having at least two new patrols before very long.

Three of our scouts have earned the Religious Emblem of Faith award. John Henry Ainsworth, Deuce Williams, and Bobby James have all worked hard to obtain the God and Church award.

Scouts and parents are all welcome to attend the annual scout fair at the Del Mar Fairgrounds on Saturday, April 28. Our troop will be selling scout fair tickets for $5 at the Vons on Scripps Poway Parkway on Saturday, April 14. We also will be selling hot dogs and drinks. Hope to see you there!

Riding in an Ambulance

March was a busy month for many of us in Pack 613. First we would like to acknowledge the following scouts for their completion of the God and Family Faith Emblem. A lot of hard work and time was spent completing all the necessary requirements. Congratulations to Matthew MacFarlane, Bobby Gowin, Max Nash, Kenny Cox, and Jesse Ignell.

Webelos Dens 8 and 9 deserve recognition for completing the requirements to earn their Webelos badge which was awarded at our pack meeting in March. Congratulations to the following scouts: Bobby Gowin, Jesse Ignell, Michael Kesaris, Alexander Pollard-Lipkis, Colin Masters, Adam Steinberg, Kenny Cox, Kyle Kubis, Brett Kerrigan, Daniel Makela, Max Nash, and Geoffrey Odelson. They are now busy planning for their summer camping trip and working on the requirements to earn their highest award, the Arrow of Light.

Geoff Odelson, from Den 9, emailed us at [[email protected]] with specific details of what Dens 8 and 9 have been up to. The following is an excerpt from his email. “I want to tell you what we did for our March Webelos den meeting. Dens 8 and 9 went to Miramar Base Emergency Room to earn our Readyman pin. Dr. Makela taught us First Aid and what to do in an emergency. We had to pretend to treat an accident victim. The victim was covered with fake blood. She had rubber guts hanging out of her stomach. Then we got to ride inside an ambulance with the siren on. It was exciting riding around the Base.”

Bear Den 10 also was busy in March. The scouts learned how to tie knots and how to stay physically fit. They also visited the Los Penasquitos Canyon Reserve where they toured the oldest home in San Diego, the Ranch House. The highlight of the tour was exploring the natural spring that runs through the reserve and finding crawfish and other creepy crawlers under the rocks. A week later, Den 10 met up with Dens 8 and 9 at Home Depot to try their hand at wood-working. Everyone looked very professional wearing their orange work aprons. The scouts used their newly learned skills to make footstools. They turned out great and no injuries were reported.

April plans to be even busier for Pack 613. We are preparing all of our Wolves and Bears to receive their badges of rank at our April Pack meeting. Some families will be loading up their gear and embarking on the Fun with Son campout. We hope you are all able to stay warm and dry! In addition, Pack 613 is off to the Scout Fair in Del Mar at the end of the month where we will host our annual Cub Scout Bingo booth and watch our Pinewood Derby winner, Hunter Heck, race his car in the Pinewood Derby Indy. Best of luck to Hunter!

In closing, please keep an eye out for Pack 613 at the Community Fair on Sunday, May 6. We will have our Scripps Ranch “Country Living” license plate frames for sale. If you do not have one yet and were wondering where to get one, please stop by, say “hello.” Then make your purchase and support the local scouts!

Snowboarding and Skiing

In February, scouts and adults from our troop went to Snow Valley to enjoy a day of skiing and snowboarding. Departure was at 5:15 in the morning. Arriving at Snow Valley, skis and snowboards were rented and everyone headed for the slopes. Some of the scouts had to learn how to snowboard/ski and take the merit badge. Others, who already had their merit badges, went just for the fun of it. The scouts and their families had a great time and everyone came home safely. Hats off and thanks to the parents and adult leaders, Kevin Leavy and Russ Edwards, who put in a lot of time and effort to make sure that this outing was safe and fun.

At a recent troop meeting, guest speaker, Mr. Randy Ray, talked to us about his job as a submarine engineer at the Arctic stations. Mr. Ray presented a fantastic slide show and talked about the submarines and the equipment used on them. Scouts also learned a lot about cold weather operations, appropriate clothing, and about how submarines work. It was a beneficial experience as well as a fun time for the scouts. Thank you for organizing this for us Mr. Hawkins.

The troop held a Court of Honor in February to recognize the achievements of our scouts. Many scouts earned higher ranks and merit badges, along with awards for nights of camping. The scouts who advanced in rank are:

  • Scout: Joshua Fernandez;
  • Tenderfoot: Brian Gurriell, Matt Handfelt, Steven McCormack and Sam Moreau;
  • Second class: Mark Beyersdorf, David Cary, Jeff Edwards, and Greg Golko;
  • First Class: Alex Glavis-Bloom, Andrew Frederickson, Arthur Moreau, and Matt Thompson; and
  • Life: Willie Doucet and Alex Higgins.
Congratulation scouts; way to go!