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LP-A gets renewed Boy Scout program

After a roughly 10-year hiatus, the Boy Scouts are back in Lake Park-Audubon.

Although she's not certain how many years Lake Park-Audubon has been without a Boys Scouts program, Cubmaster Tammy Donovan said a year ago when she became cubmaster, it was her goal to help charter a new Boy Scout troop for the area.

With Cub Scout Pack 645 in place for years, once boys finished the Cub Scouts, they would either have to go to Detroit Lakes or Hawley to continue on into the Boy Scout program. Now, they can stay local with the Boy Scout Troop 645.

Donovan started helping out with the Cub Scouts program five years ago. When she got pregnant, she stepped back and let two of the dads take over, and "I just saw how close our group was. We had a good core group of six kids, and they've been together ever since, and to split them up would be a shame."

Seven boys crossed over to the Boys Scouts during a ceremony held Saturday, and six of them have signed up for Boy Scouts already. There are also some older boys in sixth and seventh grade that will come back into the troop now that one has formed.

Once fifth grade is completed, a boy can join Boy Scouts even if he hasn't gone through Cub Scouts.

In the next couple years, there will be more and more boys crossing over from Cub Scout to Boy Scout.

"A lot of those parents are very excited we actually have our own Boy Scout troop. It gives them (the boys) something to look forward to," Donovan said.

To get the chartering process going, Donovan started asking around about local interest. Once she found that there was interest, a group of adults met to find adult leaders. There needed to be five adult leaders for the troop, and enough volunteers came forward that night.

Then they had to find a sponsor for the chartering process.

"Since the Cormorant Sportsman's Club has been so generous in supporting our Cub Scouts, when the Fargo Boy Scout office asked them about chartering the Boy Scouts, they were more than willing, and they were very happy that we were actually getting a troop going in our area.

"Without them, this wouldn't really be possible, for either the pack or the new troop. It's just a wonderful group to work with," she said of the Cormorant Sportsman's Club.

The troop is already planning a camping event for next month at the Sportsman's Club.

"They're excited because it is more camping and more outdoors," she said of Boy Scouts.

They are also excited for the leadership opportunities. In the Cub Scouts, it's the adults leading, whereas in the Boy Scouts, once established, it'll be more about the kids leading and adult scoutmasters helping.

"The boys are very excited about that," she said.

Donovan added that Boys Scouts also gives the boys opportunities to explore different careers as they work for different badges. And all, of course, lead to the ultimate title, Eagle Scout.

"They already know the goal they want to reach, and they want to reach the highest goal in Scouting. I just think that's great," she said of some of the boys who have already expressed interest in working toward the top.

Starting in June, the Boy Scouts will be meeting weekly on Sunday evenings.

"I'm very proud of the boys that we have that did cross over because they worked very hard to achieve their Arrow of Light. They've just been a great group of kids to work with.

"It's a wonderful organization."

Anyone interested in joining the Boys Scouts can contact Scoutmaster Patrick Donovan at 439-3855.