Fall is traditionally the time Cub Scout volunteers start recruiting and planning for the upcoming year.
But using the word traditional with Scouting in the same sentence is a reach in 2013. Scouting is changing with the times, says Micah Melton, Sussex District executive.
Scouts still have the opportunity to learn basic life skills and gain a better appreciation of the outdoors, but they also use modern technology and learn the appropriate use of computer games. Boy Scout merit badges are a true reflection of changing times. Some of those include robotics, science, technology, oceanography and electronics.
And while camping is still one of the top scouting events, at summer camps scouts can learn to mountain bike, jet ski, skateboard and even drive an ATV.
Melton said he is trying to get the message out about the importance of scouting. “It's a safe, fun way for boys to try new things and help build their self confidence,” he said. “They learn to serve others and give to others.”
He said Scouts also tend to spend more time with their families because many activities involve the family. Melton said Scouting has evolved to encompass nontraditional families in its program.
Cub Scouting offers fun and challenging experiences that parents and boys do together, Melton said. “It builds self esteem and it teaches boys about community,” he said.
Cub Scouting is for boys ages 7 to 11 – grades one through five – who follow through the ranks of Tiger, Wolf, Bear and Webelos. Badges are presented to each boy completing a series of indoor and outdoor activities, physical and mental skills and learning more about the world around them.
Packs are made up of dens of six to 12 boys who meet two to three times a month for an hour, while packs meet once a month following the school calendar. Special events – such as pinewood derby, chariot races and camping – take place throughout the year. Sussex Scouts provide tens of thousands of volunteer service each year including activities as varied as food collections to planting beach grass.
Cub Scouts have two options for packs in the Cape Region: Pack 1, sponsored by Bethel United Methodist Church, serves the Lewes-Rehoboth Beach area, while Pack 2540, sponsored by Elks Lodge 2540, serves youth in the Milton area. Pack 1 is the largest in the Sussex District.
For more information about Pack 1, contact Chris McDaniel at 302-593-8322 and for more information about Pack 2540, contact Melton at 302-622-3300, ext. 202.
Pack 5 is being organized in the Long Neck area.
A joining night has already taken place at Rehoboth Elementary School and another is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 1, at HOB Elementary School in Milton.
For more information, go to scouting.org.