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Wood Badge Wednesdays: Puerto Rico edition

Sandra says Wood Badge was the "most exciting and incredible experience of my life."

Sandra says Wood Badge was the “most exciting and incredible experience” ever.

Wood Badge builds lifelong memories, regardless of the setting.

So whether you’re at Philmont Scout Ranch (where I’ll be staffing a course this summer), a council camp in the midwest, or even an island in the Caribbean, you’re getting the same great course.

But from the looks of things, you could do much worse than taking Wood Badge in beautiful Puerto Rico. That’s where Sandra Vallejo Dávila recently finished her course at Guajataka Camp, in the city of San Sebastián. It’s the main spot for Boy Scout training on the island.

Sandra, a “very proud Bobwhite,” sent me this email earlier this month:

Hi Bryan, I emailed you in November to tell you how much I enjoyed your Wood Badge Wednesdays blogs and that I myself was taking my course this year. Well, I did and it has been the most exciting and incredible experience of my life! Here are some pictures for you.

Sandra

Get an inside look at Sandra’s Wood Badge course, with pictures and captions, after the jump.

"My patrol brothers and our new council executive who is also a proud Bobwhite!"

“My patrol brothers and our new council executive who is also a proud Bobwhite!”

"My new patrol brothers."

“My new patrol brothers.”

"Just having fun on our Iron Chef Challenge."

“Just having fun on our Iron Chef Challenge.”

"My first woggle. What do you think?"

“My first woggle. What do you think?”

wb-pr-7 wb-pr-8

"Just me with a staff member."

“Just me with a staff member.”

"Staff members preparing for  ceremony where we would receive our 'working nekerchiefs' I don't know what it's called in English) and woggles."

“Staff members preparing for ceremony where we would receive our ‘working nekerchiefs’ I don’t know what it’s called in English) and woggles.”

"Two members of the Buffalo Patrol with their flag."

“Two members of the Buffalo Patrol with their flag.”

"Collectible patches designed by our Scoutmaster."

“Collectible patches designed by our Scoutmaster.”

"Closing ceremony. It was sad to say goodbye."

“Closing ceremony. It was sad to say goodbye.”

"The Eagle Patrol asking permission to enter Gilwell Field for the first time."

“The Eagle Patrol asking permission to enter Gilwell Field for the first time.”

"Staff members ready to receive the patrols at Gilwell Field."

“Staff members ready to receive the patrols at Gilwell Field.”

"Buffalo Patrol - winners of the rocket challenge. Great teamwork!"

“Buffalo Patrol – winners of the rocket challenge. Great teamwork!”

"Happy Bobwhite patrol with our flag."

“Happy Bobwhite patrol with our flag.”

"Receiving instructions for a team challenge."

“Receiving instructions for a team challenge.”

"Team work!"

“Team work!”

"More teamwork!"

“More teamwork!”

"Even more teamwork!"

“Even more teamwork!”

"Iron Chef challenge! So much fun."

“Iron Chef challenge! So much fun.”

"Our Scoutmaster, Mr. Luis Alayon, having a part in a morning skit."

“Our Scoutmaster, Mr. Luis Alayon, having a part in a morning skit.”

"Staff members ready to reveal their critters."

“Staff members ready to reveal their critters.”

"All the Troop Guides. Great leaders."

“All the Troop Guides. Great leaders.”

"Eagle Patrol"

“Eagle Patrol”

"The Beaver visiting camp!"

“The Beaver visiting camp!”

wb-pr-28

"Ready for our Rocket Challenge. The eight rockets of each patrol are on the table."

“Ready for our Rocket Challenge. The eight rockets of each patrol are on the table.”

29 Comments on Wood Badge Wednesdays: Puerto Rico edition

  1. Charles Featherer // March 27, 2013 at 11:36 am // Reply

    Wow. PR really knows how to put on a course. Pictures look great – thanks for sharing. Bryan, what are the rules for using a picture found here? I’d love to use the picture of the Bufalo patrol flag on a Facebook group page, but I don’t want to step on toes.

    • Sandra shared them with me, so please feel free to share them with any other Scouter.

    • Arlene Valentin // March 28, 2013 at 3:34 pm // Reply

      Charles, you will not be steping on any toes, please feel free as a fellow scouter to use the picture of our patrol flag.Where flattered that you liked it.

      • Charles Featherer // March 30, 2013 at 1:16 pm // Reply

        Arlene, it’s posted in the ‘Wood Badge Buffalo Patrol – International’ page on Facebook. All of your fellow Buffalo Patrol members are invited to join.

  2. Charles Featherer // March 27, 2013 at 11:38 am // Reply

    (I just went back through the photos – anyone else notice something interesting? Look at their shoes.)

    • Oh, good catch! I hadn’t seen that either. Great touch!

      • Charles Featherer // March 27, 2013 at 12:05 pm // Reply

        It is neat. I wonder what the back story is behind that. Even the smallest action when team building can reap big rewards.

        • chinapete65 // March 27, 2013 at 1:48 pm //

          Our staff for Cit in the world and Cit in the Community at the 2010 Jamboree Merit Badge Midway did something similar with shoelaces. Jumping on “real men wear pink” we all wore neon pink shoelaces, and wherever we went people knew what we staffed.

        • Michael Báez // March 27, 2013 at 2:36 pm //

          Hi all. I participated in this WB and every Patrol had a different color. This way we had another way of differentiating each other as well as an additional sense of belonging to a specific group. It worked! It was a great experience!

  3. Michael C. McFalls // March 27, 2013 at 11:47 am // Reply

    Go Bobwhites!!!!! Great job. Looks like fun in PR! I was beaded in November! Wood badge was by far the most fun I have ever had. I had an amazing Troop Guide here in Salt Lake City. I will never forget her or the experience! Enjoy working on your tickets Sandra! W2-590-12-7

  4. That plastic lacing woggle looks great, and it was probably easier to get tight than the parachute cord we had. I’m also a Bobwhite!!

    • I thought that was a neat idea as well. As you said, it’s much easier to “mess up” one out of parachute cord.

  5. Each patrol had a particular color of shoe laces. I am a Buffalo, and we used the fluorescent green neon shoe laces. I also had the experience of participating in the same Wood badge with Sandra (different patrol, of course), and have the blessing of sharing leadership with her (an extraordinary human being) in our Unit 791, Humacao, Puerto Rico. My personal wood badge experience was life changing. Can’t wait to complete our goals along with my bothers and sisters buffaloes, to show, once again, that the best patrol is the Buffaloes!!!!!

    • Thank you Jose for such touching words. I felt so blessed to also be able to live this experience with you. I’m excited to see all the great things that will come for our unit. But you know what the real truth is: BOBWHITES ARE MORE BEAUTIFUL THAN BUFFALOES!!!! Un abrazo hermanito!! :)

    • Thank you Jose for such touching words. It was a pleasure and adventure to be able to live this experience with you. I’m excited to see what great things will come to our Unit. But I’m sure that you know what the real truth is: BOBWHITES ARE MORE BEAUTIFUL THAN BUFFULOES!!! LOL Un abrazo hermanito! :)

    • Charles Featherer // March 27, 2013 at 7:29 pm // Reply

      Jose, don’t know if you do it there, but up here in our neck of the woods – we know Buffalo are the best. Why? Because, buffalo are majestic creatures!

  6. Michael Linehan // March 27, 2013 at 1:42 pm // Reply

    Great photos and interesting to see how other Councils conduct Wood Badge. In the notion of sharing, here is our a video our Council recently produced to promote Wood Badge, complete with comments from Baden Powel himself! Enjoy! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KpBMNyX_ytQ

  7. The course in PR looked like a lot of fun! Good job on your course and enjoy working your ticket. I used to be a Bear……….

  8. Elsa Troop 29 // March 27, 2013 at 4:17 pm // Reply

    On top of being a personal life changing experience, the Wood Badge Leadership Training in Puerto Rico is consistently a great success with waiting lists which can last over a year. Go Eagles! ;-)

  9. Raul Perez // March 27, 2013 at 4:52 pm // Reply

    Wood Badge in Puerto Rico is always full of Fun. I was Pioneer in the first 21st Century Training WB. We Break the Ice with new Format and was Fun and Awesome. . Puerto Rico Council always add some “Picante” to this Training. I am sure of it.
    I am a Fox.

    • Raul
      I am a fox too in Gulf Ridge Council in Tampa Florida, I was staff in GUAJATAKA in the 80′s member of the Guias de Expedicion.
      Gracias por seguir en el movimiento. My email es
      macacoel88@gmail.com

  10. Ileana Espada // March 27, 2013 at 5:38 pm // Reply

    There are no words to describe the experience I had. The Wood Badge N5-661-13 was just magical and gives you a new, profound and fresh perspective of your personal, family and professional life. Tons of fun, great courses and talks but, above all, knowing and sharing with marvelous people: we are all blessed with friendship !!!! Beavers rock !!!!!!!

  11. Ismael E. Carlo // March 28, 2013 at 3:04 pm // Reply

    Hi Scouters,
    I was part of the Staff in that WB Course in the Facilities Team and honestly was a great course. I took my WB on the year 2000, it was the old format, a whole week in Guajataka Camp were everything was about scouting and scout craft. This new format provide a wide view about all the programs, cubbing, scoutiong and venturing and how to become a better leader with a vision, mision and a legacy in mind. Congratulations to all the leaders who made the commitment to be better and to provide to their units the best of their self.
    My regards to all of you.

  12. I participated in this woodbadge N5-661-13,words cannot discribe this most amazing experience.Hats off to our scoutmaster Luis Alayon and his amazing staff for job well done.To those who are still debating about participating in this course go for it, you won’t regret it.Memories that will last a lifetime.I was a member of the Bufalo patrol.

  13. Arlene Valentin // March 28, 2013 at 3:47 pm // Reply

    I participated in this woodbadge N5-661-13.Words cannot describe the amazing experience we all had where new friendships evolved.Hats off to our scout master, Luis Alayon and his amazing staff for a job well, you all made sure this was a most memorable experience.To those who may still be debating on whether or not to take this course go for it!!! You won’t regret it. I was a member of the best patrol ever buffalos.

  14. Pedro Hermina // July 21, 2013 at 10:24 am // Reply

    Great times at Gilwell Park in Puerto Rico Council.. proud serving as Quartermaster staff.

  15. joselepervanche // March 12, 2014 at 2:47 pm // Reply

    Reblogged this on Scouting Adventures.

  16. joselepervanche // March 12, 2014 at 2:54 pm // Reply

    Muchas gracias a los integrantes del Curso Insignia de Madera del Concilio de Puerto Rico por compartir sus experiencias. Como Scouters bilingües que somos, esto va en los dos idiomas, :-)

    Thank you to all Wood Badgers of Puerto Rico for sharing your experiences. As bilingual Scouters, this comment is posted in both languages. :-)

    @ScoutmasterJose (English)
    @ScouterJose (Español)

  17. As an Eagle Scout and former member of Guajataka Camp in the 80′s Is a great honor to see that the movement is still well and alive in my beloved Puerto Rico. I am currently very involved in Scouting here in Florida and just finished serving as a troop guide for course S4-86-14-1 for Gulf Ridge Council in Tampa, FL. As a Fox member of course S4-86-12 and current Assist Scoutmaster of Troop 606 in Riverview Fl. the memories of my beloved Summer Camp GUAJATAKA are some that I will never forget.
    Best of luck to Sandra and the rest of the participants working their tickets as I know the Scout units and the movement will benefit from their task at hand,
    Bryan Thanks for sharing this great article.
    YIS
    Rick Figueroa
    Fox Patrol S4-86-12
    Troop Guide to Buffalo Patrol S4-86-14-1

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