There are lots of reasons to be excited about the 2023 National Jamboree, happening July 19-28, 2023, at the Summit Bechtel Reserve. Today, in the first of what will be a series of stories, we look at one of them: the Cultural Showcase.
Most experts believe the earliest Americans came from Asia, crossing a land bridge that no longer exists. In the 16,000-plus years since then, humans from all over the world have come to America, bringing some elements of their home culture — food, language, customs and traditions — with them.
The National Jamboree will celebrate the different cultures of the United States in an area called the Cultural Showcase.
“We want to celebrate humanity and all of its richness,” says Andrew Miller, a longtime Scouting volunteer at the local, council and national level who’s helping to lead this section of the Jamboree. “One element of humanity’s richness is cultural richness – especially in America, where so many different cultures come together in our nation.”
The Cultural Showcase, which is part of the Jamboree’s larger Celebrating Humanity program, will have designated spaces for different cultures. Each space will feature activities and displays such as games, attire and more.
The Jamboree Service Team
Like most areas of the Jamboree, the Cultural Showcase will rely on volunteer staffers to help present the program — in this case, a combination of Jamboree Service Team members and anyone from a council contingent who can come by when it doesn’t interfere with their other obligations. Haven’t yet decided if you’re attending the Jamboree? Consider attending as a member of the Jamboree Service Team! Have you already signed up to attend with a council contingent? Stop by the Cultural Showcase in your free time and share a story or two with participants about your own cultural background.
As a member of the Jamboree staff, you will deliver the Jamboree experience to the youth participants.
Speaking from my own personal experience, working at the Jamboree is a blast. No matter your skillset, there’s a place for you on the team.
Miller says his team in particular is looking for volunteers who would be excited to share their own culture, whatever that might be, with Jamboree participants. The team has representation from Jamaica, Greece, the Philippines, Ireland and India, and is looking for anyone else who is willing to share their culture.
“We are looking for Scouts and Scouters who would like to showcase their culture in an effort to highlight our core Scouting ideals of kindness and friendliness to all,” says Antonio del Rosario, diversity chair of the Greater New York Councils and a volunteer on the Cultural Showcase team. “Think of it as an international potluck under the tent of Celebrating Humanity — we want a taste of your culture.”
Click here to learn more and reserve your spot on the Jamboree Service Team. If you’d like to work for the Cultural Showcase, be sure and choose the option for Celebrating Humanity. If you’d like to learn more about the Culture Showcase, click here to shoot them an email.
What’s a Jamboree?
The National Scout Jamboree is a gathering of thousands of the BSA’s adult and youth members, usually held every four years. The 2021 event, however, was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 2023 Jamboree has adapted the theme of Forward, representing the Scouting journey. When Scouts encounter a challenge, they don’t stand still – they evaluate, plan and move forward. Scouting as a movement is always moving forward, reaching new generations of young people and equipping them to be leaders in their communities, nation and world.
Over the course of 10 days, participants will experience stadium shows, hikes, adventure sports, merit badges and more.
What aspect of the Jamboree are you looking forward to the most? What should we cover next in our series leading up to the big event? Shoot us an email or let us know in the comments.