Dear Presbyterian Faithful,
Hello from your Troop 200! I am Thomas Kleinjan, current Scout Master of First Presbyterian Church’s Boy Scout Troop 200 since 1936. I’d like to give you a few updates what the sponsorship of the church has done for our young men and future leaders these past few months.
Late April we went on a hike to Doniphan to do a service project. There are scouts working on the hiking merit badge (which happens to be one of the hardest ones to earn) so we organized a trip taking the shoelace express into and back from the small town for those dedicated boys determined to make it through the last requirement of a 20 mile hike. This old Scout Master hung in there for the first 5 miles! Some boys completed 1 of 5 required 10 mile hikes, and 3 of our veteran scouts made all 20 miles back to the church with some intrepid and in-shape Assistant Scout Masters.
On Memorial Day weekend, we had the privilege to be taught map reading and compass work from a retired Master Sergeant of the US Army. He was generous and provided a camp ground for the troop to complete the Wilderness Survival merit badge. He took us on a hiking tour of historical Brickton and showed us some ruts created by pioneers traveling across the Oregon Trail.
In early June, we help set-up and tear down the memorial luminaries placed around the Hastings Senior High School track in service to the Relay for Life organization. We worked for almost 10 hours into the night and the boys learned the value in helping a noble cause.
We have recently returned from South Dakota’s Boy Scout camp, Medicine Mountain! 12 boys and 5 adults attended the 5th week of camp among 21 troops from all over the country. They survived trekking up and down the rocky terrain, cooking our own meals, swimming in 50 degree lake water, earning merit badges and roughing the weather at 7,000 feet above sea level. The boys thrived at creating camp gadgets, fire building, constructing an entry way with a fence, performing a skit at camp fire and working together in the patrol method. On our off day, we toured Mt. Rushmore, picnicked at a national park, toured a gold mine and panned for nuggets! Our SPL (Senior Patrol Leader) DeAnthony Moretti lead the troop to taking 5th place in the mountain man relay and 3rd best overall troop in the white buffalo contest! We brought home a trophy to put on display for future scouts to see years to come.
Speaking of which, I have a scout uniform worn by one of troop 200’s alumni that have passed away and I am looking to preserve them on a mannequin. If anyone could help or donate anything, it would be greatly appreciated. We would like to honor and display his patronage to the troop and the church that chartered him.
Troop 200 is looking to kick-off the new season of scouting with a Calamus River canoeing and fishing trip! We will be camping at Calamus SRA and journeying down the river in canoes. I currently have 3 vessels lined up and I am looking for 2 -3 more. If anyone has a canoe, and would be gracious enough to let us float it down a river, please contact me at: 402 705 0553 or e-mail to: [email protected] While we are there, we will site see Ft. Hartsuff and tour the Happy Jack Chalk Mines on the way back.
We do have need of charitable donations and are willing to put in service to earn them. I can round up a few boys and tools to do odd jobs if anyone would like to help a scout go to camp, earn merit badges or advance it his troop. Some boys rely on fundraising and hard work in order to pay their way through scouting but some still struggle to afford basic opportunities. The troop has never turned away a boy due to financial constraints and never will as long as we can keep our account in the black. Your support would be deeply appreciated.
As always, we are looking for new boys to join us in our adventures and welcome any boy 10 – 11 and up that wants to check out or scouting program to come see us.
Scout Master, Troop 200