To the Editor,

An information/registration night will be held at the Scout House on School Street on September 3. I would encourage every parent within the broader Manchester community with a boy or girl between the ages of eleven and eighteen to check it out.  This is an amazing, free opportunity sitting in our backyard!

My son will ‘age out’ of the Scouts in October, but it has been an amazing opportunity.  He has traveled to Westpoint for a jamboree, learned how to build a quinzee (snow cave) in Northern Maine (and slept in it), hiked the White Mountains, worked in a food pantry, learned how to scuba dive, taught hiking skills to students at the Perkins School for the Blind, and made some great friends.  His Eagle Project involved Perkins School students and a live musical performance. And, of course, he has sold a lot of Christmas trees.

The adults that carry this organization are an amazing group of volunteers, and I can’t thank them enough for their hard work and commitment.  Many of them have carried on with the Manchester troop decades after their children have finished. I cannot thank them enough for what they have done for my son.  That being said, the Scouts run the program. The experience has been unique.

My observation is that some kids jump in and Scouting becomes a big part of their lives.  Other kids go on some hikes, collect some badges, and have a lot of fun. Early in my experience as a Scout parent, one of the other parents said, “Even a little bit of Scouting is a great thing.”  For those parents that are intimidated by a concern regarding the time commitment for their child, don’t be. Every Scout finds a level that works for him (and now, her).

Best regards,

Gifford West

Beverly Farms, Mass.