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Cub Scouts go wild in the Wild West


By Christie Slocum

“Sure Knot” John Merrell teaches his knot tying skills to Noah Givens

“Sure Knot” John Merrell teaches his knot tying skills to Noah Givens


Camp Director Sheila Morris could not have known how well the weather would match the theme “Scouts Go West” for Pack 686 cub scouts twilight camp this past week.  Forty-one cub scouts reported to the Walterboro Elks Lodge every night to experience the Wild West.  The open field served as the perfect place for the camp and there was ample room for the Wild West Décor reminding the campers of the theme.  There were buildings and cactus made of cardboard and directional signs made of reused wooden pallets.  Morris pointed out that reusing materials helps the cubs to remember one of their core values which is being resourceful.

All of the activities at camp this year have a Wild West related theme. There was a BB gun range and archery station where the  cubs took target practice.  Scouts could also take time to learn how to tie various028 knots.  The boys were able to make crafts which went along with the camp theme at the arts and crafts table.  Since temperatures soared into the upper nineties this past week most campers were most excited about being able to swim in the pool, although I am not sure that you would have found one of those in the Wild West.  “This year we are fortunate enough to have a BSA-certified Aquatic Director which allows us to use the pool,” said Morris.

038This year was a special year in the knot-tying tent.  The cubs enjoyed spending time with a special guest.  John Merrell, also known as Sure Knot Merrell, has been involved as an adult in scouting since 1986 in Spartanburg, South Carolina.  Merrell who suffered a stroke in 2005 and because of this he has not been able to be as involved in scouting as he once was.  Merrell and his wife recently moved to Ritter to be closer to his daughter and son in law.  He is currently still registered in Spartanburg but is waiting on his paperwork to be sent so he can register here and be a member of our scouts.  He spent this week teaching the boys how to tie seven different types of knots.  Another special guest was Dr. Eran Kilpatrick, a biology professor at USC Salkehatchie.  Dr. Kilpatrick brought along a corn snake and a salamander for the boys to meet.  He also spent time telling the scouts about the Indians and how they would have hunted.

This camp is for cub scouts who range from grades first through fifth.  Each grade level represents a “Den”.  A first-grader starts cub scouts as a Tiger, and they are part of the Tiger Den. First graders must have an adult present and during the year their activities are geared towards family activities.  Second graders are known as “Wolves”.  Third graders are “Bears”.  Fourth and Fifth graders are known as Webelo 1 and Webelo 2.  When a cub scout reaches the Webelo levels they are beginning to train to become a boy scout.

“I think the boy scouts is one of the best organizations in America and we as Elks members are proud to support them”, said John Nettles, Elks  representative.

Landon Garvin,9, shows off his BB gun targets

Landon Garvin,9, shows off his BB gun targets

Collin Hiers and Chirshaun Fryar have a snack in the covered wagon. Photos by  Christie Slocum

Collin Hiers and Chirshaun Fryar have a snack in the covered wagon. Photos by Christie Slocum

Christie Slocum (545 Posts)