Bertram Rantin

Rantin: Boy Scouts celebrate 100 years

BOY SCOUT TROOPS are celebrating a century of Scouting across the country this year, and Midlands troops are marking the 100th year with several events.

"This is an exciting time for tens of thousands of people in our area who wear or have worn the Boy Scout uniform and, indeed, for our entire community," said Doug Stone, Scout executive of the Indian Waters Council.

The council serves more than 10,000 youth and adult members in eight Midlands counties. Here's a look at some of the events taking place as part of the 100th anniversary.

- Area Scouts kicked off their annual Scouting for Food drive this past weekend.

On Saturday, troop members dropped off food bags at homes throughout the eight-county area. They will return next Saturday to collect the filled bags and deliver them to food pantries.

The Scouts expect to collect more than 100,000 pounds of food.

- Scouts and supporters from around the state will convene in downtown Columbia Feb. 15 for a six-block parade, which will end at the State Museum. The parade will be followed by a "Report to the State" to legislators and other dignitaries.

- Scouting artifacts are on display at the State Museum through June 20. In conjunction with this display, the State Museum is offering three Scout sleepover nights for Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts.

Other activities this year will include an Eagle Scout Career Day, a Camp Barstow staff reunion, a trip to the National Jamboree in Virginia, a gathering of Eagle Scouts from the past, a black-tie gala for the community and a year-end campout expected to draw several thousand Scouts and their families.

Since the Boys Scouts was founded in 1910, more than 120 million boys have joined nationally.

"Scouting is alive and well in the Midlands of South Carolina, and we will remain a vital force in the lives of young people, their families and communities for another 100 years to come," Stone said.

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