One Saturday last month, a Utah Highway Patrol helicopter
began circling overhead and then descended into a large field. About 300 people
had gathered, but they weren’t onlookers craning their necks to see an
overturned SUV. They were Cub Scouts and leaders eagerly awaiting the start to
911 Emergency Cub Scout Day Camp in Tooele, Utah.
Organizers intended the event to enable boys to interact
with emergency personnel, learn about what they do, and, most important, have
fun. The local fire department, police department, sheriff’s department,
search-and-rescue team, and AirMed helicopter showed up to teach and entertain
the Cub Scouts.
Follow the jump for the rest of the story.
During the day, the boys took part in:
- Bandaging relay with Mountain West
Ambulance. Boys carried a dummy strapped to a backboard.
- Firefighting with the Tooele City Fire
Department. The Cub Scouts controlled a fire hose as teams of three worked
to put out “fires”—actually fire-shaped targets mounted on posts.
- “Getting Arrested” by the Tooele City
Police Department. The juveniles sat in the back and front of a patrol car
(noting that the front was much more comfortable).
- Bucket Brigade with the Grantsville Fire
Department. A team relay featured the boys carrying a teammate on a backboard,
putting on firefighting gear, and toting buckets of water. A lesson that
fighting fires is tougher than it looks.
- A S.T.O.P. with Tooele County Search and
Rescue. Stories of boys who became lost piqued the Cub Scouts’ interest. So
a lesson in what to do when lost (Stay
Calm, Think, Observe, and Plan)
taught them how to avoid becoming a statistic.
- A command-center tour with the Tooele
County Sheriff’s Department. Place a kid in front of electronics, and
you’ve got his attention. That’s why one of the most popular activities was this visit to the center to see its cameras and switches.
The boys had fun. But we bet you’d like to know how the
event came together? Here are a few secrets:
started last January and volunteers put in 100 combined hours of work before
the day of the event.
volunteers planned, recruited, set up, registered, cooked and served lunch, and
put out any small “fires” that popped up.
vendors and anonymous Scouters donated supplies to cover everything from a hot-dog
lunch to the supplies used to mark each station.
A big shout out goes to Rick
Barnes, Great Salt Lake Council scout executive, for sending in this story.
And thanks to T.J. Wallace,
Deseret Peak District Committee member, for compiling much of the information
you see here.
Check out some more photos: