Local Boy Scouts enjoying Jamboree
FORT A.P. HILL, Va. - According to two local Boy Scouts, Fort A.P. Hill is the place to be for the next week.
Troop 250 life rank Scout Adam Richardson, a son of Mark and Darlene Richardson, of Irish Valley, and Troop 250 Assistant Scoutmaster Dave Stefanovige, a son of Glenn and Sandy Stefanovige, of Paxinos, have been enjoying the 100-plus degree weather at Fort A.P. Hill in Virginia, the site of the 2010 National Boy Scouting Jamboree. Since it is the 100th anniversary of Scouting, these two local Scouts are taking advantage of the many activities happening on the military installation, which is temporarily the home of nearly 50,000 Scouts, leaders and staff.
Richardson, 14, has been busy on the merit badge midway, an area where Scouts can choose from nearly 100 different merit badges to earn. He participated in an American Indian village exhibition, in which he earned a limited edition patch, courtesy of the Cherokee Indian Nation. Other activities included the Indian lore merit badge, rock climbing and rapelling.
Additionally, Richardson has been doing a lot of patch trading with Scouts from all around the nation while exploring the 76,000 acres of military base with his fellow troop members. Richardson is also acting as head cook for his campsite, where he is instrumental in making sure the food is picked up from a supplier, cooked and cleaned up.
Stefanovige, 21, explores the Jamboree each morning before heading to his security duty shift each afternoon at one of the three Jamboree "trading post" gift shops. He is responsible for maintaining order and security in high-traffic areas of these retail outlets. On Tuesday morning, he had the opportunity to tour the arena show area and get a sneak preview of the "1812 Overture" being practiced with live military cannons in preparation for a Wednesday morning show. Later on, while visiting the National Eagle Scout Association (NESA) exhibit at the National Jamboree, Stefanovige was enlisted as a lifetime member of the organization, being presented a limited 100th Anniversary National Jamboree themed certificate and lifetime member pin. NESA is an organization of men who have earned the rank of Eagle Scout with a purpose to serve Eagle Scouts and, through them, serve the entire movement of Scouting.
On Wednesday, Richardson and Stefanovige, along with 50,000 other participants, attended the opening arena show. Military jet flyovers, jump teams, wrestling and appearances by Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and Miss America, Caressa Cameron, highlighted the show. President Barack Obama was scheduled to make an appearance, but canceled. Other highlights included music from the Jamboree Band, an F-15 flyover, a parachute jump by the Army's Golden Knights and various videos and music selections as the Scouts entered. The show also featured presentations by Brad Lichota, national chief of the Order of the Arrow, 2010 National Scout Jamboree Chairman Terry Dunn and Chief Scout Executive Bob Mazzuca.
Troop 250 Scoutmaster Mike Shevitski, the troop Scouts and their family members traveled to Virginia Wednesday to join Richardson and Stefanovige. They will be spending a day at Kings Dominion Water park and Arlington National Cemetery, and will end their trip with a day at the Jamboree Saturday.