By Personnel Specialist 3rd Class Moses Mckelvey, Navy Region Southeast Public Affairs
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (NNS) -- The Naval Air Station (NAS) Jacksonville Environmental Department hosted 51 Cub Scouts and eight Boy Scouts at the Black Point Interpretive Center, July 25–29.
The five-day camp gave Scouts the opportunity to earn merit badges, improve leadership skills, and to learn more about nature. This year's focus was on Native-American customs and traditions.
"This is a nature camp that gives Boy Scouts the opportunity to get nature merit badges in a short period of time. They utilize the resources we have here to achieve within a five-day period what would take longer otherwise," said Angela Glass, NAS Jacksonville's assistant natural resource manager. "This is a great opportunity for the Scouts to see how the Navy plays a part in recycling and reusing natural resources. A lot of kids thought that naval bases consisted of just aircraft, concrete, and ships."
This was the fifth year Boy Scouts from the Northeastern region of Florida have come to NAS Jacksonville. While earning merit badges, the Boy Scouts improved their leadership skills by mentoring the younger Cub Scouts.
"This week gave me a chance to come out and have fun with my friends and also mentor the younger kids coming up through scouting," said Donnavan Krenert, a 1st class scout and den chief. "It will also help me out when I get ready to go to college."
Each merit badge earned by a Scout assists him in reaching the level of Eagle Scout. Upon reaching the rank of Eagle Scout, a Scout may submit a college scholarship application to the National Eagle Scout Association.
The camp featured various events throughout the week, including a visit from NAS Jacksonville's Fire Department, Smokey the Bear from the United Sates Forest Service, different types of sporting events, arts and crafts projects, and a nature walk.
"I am a third-generation Scout, and I've been in and around scouting for 51 years," said Cub Master Glynn Wood of Pack 360. "Scouting teaches these kids how to be patient, courageous and how do to the right things in life. The rest of the counselors and I just want to keep learning fun for the boys."