Blue & Gold – Day 90
By Renee Bodkin
And today, I am grateful for the Blue & Gold. And all that it represents in Scouting. Even if my feet are screaming at me tonight.
A “year” of scouting comes to a close and a new chapter awaits at the Blue and Gold dinner. 1st grade boys earn their Tiger badge and move up to Wolf. Wolves earn their Wolf badge and move up to Bears. Bears ( LUCIAN) earn their Bear badge and move up to Webelos. Webelos earn their Webelos badge and move up to Webelos II and the Webelos II boys (BENJAMIN) have worked hard and many earn the Arrow of Light – the highest award in Cub Scouting – before they cross the bridge into Boy Scouts.
Everyone gathered together boys, their families and even some friends to share a meal prepared by the families of Pack 816. The boys started the “evening” with the pledge and Cub Scout Promise, Oath, etc. They did a nice job. They looked great. They were all in uniform. Then Father Ivan led us in prayer of thanksgiving before our meal. Then dinner. We had a boatload of food. It was delicious. We had parents who set up the food and manned the tables to make sure the food was warm and pans were full. In case you didn’t read yesterday’s blog, this continues the teamwork theme.
Then came the “main event”. The awards and badges and SKITS. Each den did a skit. The Tigers – 3 quiet 1st graders came up one at a time – reminding the audience to “Be Prepared”. After the 3rd boy gave his warning a bullhorn blew and startled everyone – culminating in the punchline, “We told you to Be Prepared.” Very cute and perfect for this little group of boys. Same goes for the Wolves, Bears, and Webelos… they all prepared some funny skits to share with the audience. It kept the evening moving and light-hearted. After the Webelos boys were awarded their badges, it was time for the oldest boys of the pack. This was their moment. Mine too since they are/were my den. A group of 8 silly, fun boys who have challenged me to challenge them!! We dimmed the lights and I lit the white candle which represented the “Spirit of Scouting”. As I started Arrow of Light ceremony with the 6 boys and their parents in front of me, I almost got choked up. My Ben was standing before me with Philip at his side. These boys who I’ve grown to love as MY DEN stood before me and I had to give them the inspiration and share with them where this road has taken them and where it was leading. Candles representing parts along the way. Their parents were presented their Arrow of Light badge and told to pin it on their uniform. And that was it. We called up the other 2 boys (new-ish to scouting) and they crossed the bridge into their Boy Scout troops. They were presented their new books and neckerchiefs and slides by their new Scoutmasters.
And then… in true fashion (of this group of boys – and me) they remind me that they had yet to do their skit (which in previous weeks of preparation was a hot mess, a big joke). So, with no further ado they did their skit as Boy Scouts “better than they did as Webelos”. They pulled it off. Made me proud. Despite the sillies getting the best of them in our den meetings (which I understood and allowed since when else can they be “boys” with their friends) they did a nice job. We ended the evening with 2 songs – first a traditional, fun song – Boom, Chicka Boom! Then… with Scout Vespers. I’m surprised I didn’t cry. I think I had so much on my mind I could control my emotions… but all of those boys in front of the room singing, seriously it warmed my heart. And made it all so very worth it.
I am so grateful for all the boys and parents and grandparents who helped make this Blue and Gold an huge success!!