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Boy Scouts, LDS will mark 100th year together

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Sunday, Oct. 27, 2013, at 8:23 a.m.

One hundred years.

On Tuesday, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will mark a century-old partnership with the Boy Scouts of America, and its west-side church in Wichita will participate in the nationwide event that includes local activities as well as a live broadcast of the national celebration from the church’s 21,000-seat Conference Center in Salt Lake City.

Melanie Hansel, who is coordinating the local celebration from the Mormon chapel and stake center at 401 N. Westlink, said the event is free and open to the public. It will run from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m.

About 80 Cub and Boy Scouts sponsored by her church are expected to attend, and invitations have been made for other area Cubs and Scouts to attend.

“When we heard the (national) church was having a broadcast on Tuesday, we though it would be great to celebrate the actual scouting program,” said Hansel, who is secretary of the Scout committee for Troop 727.

Hansel also is mother to three boys in scouting, two of whom are Eagle Scouts.

She said the event is not aimed at recruiting, rather informing and celebrating Scouts.

“It teaches so many different values that are great for these boys,” Hansel said.

Activities will include hands-on knot-tying demonstrations, Dutch oven cooking, football toss, tepee display and Raingutter Regatta, which is similar to Pinewood Derby races but using balsa wood sailboats instead of cars.

Hansel said inside there will be slide shows and videos of the camps and outdoor activities the Scouts have participated in, as well as displays of some of the projects Scouts have done to earn their Eagle rank.

The live broadcast, scheduled to last about an hour and a half, is expected to feature hundreds of Scouts, original music and historical re-enactments. The event also will be webcast at scouts100.lds.org.

Reach Jerry Siebenmark at 316-268-6576 or jsiebenmark@wichitaeagle.com. Follow him on Twitter: @jsiebenmark.

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