Piedmont Council Boy Scouts of America
Spring 2008 Newsletter

In this issue:

Above: Piedmont Scouts (front left) Mark Bublitz, Jake Pacheco, Ryan Lofstrom, Zachary Curliano, (back) Tim Campbell and Chase McVeigh-Walker helped to sort the collected food in barrels.

Scouting for Food Holiday Food Drive

It was that time of year again! Scouts were out in Piedmont Neighborhoods collecting food for Alameda County’s low-income families. Food collection bags were distributed by Cub Scouts on Saturday, November 11 and a week later Boy Scouts came by to pick up the bags full of generous donations. Close to 5,000 lbs of food was collected for the Alameda County Food Bank and distribution to families in need.

The Food Bank was founded in 1985 to serve as a clearinghouse for donated food to a network of 300 organizations, including food pantries and soup kitchens. It provides monthly assistance to 120,000 people in need.

Here are some recent statistics from the Alameda County Food Bank regarding the people they serve:
  • 40,000 people go to local soup kitchens and food pantries each week.
  • 35% of emergency food recipients are children under the age of 18.
  • 18% of all emergency food recipients are seniors age 50 or older.
  • 38% of clients households have at least one employed family member.
  • 61% of client households have incomes below the federal poverty line.
  • The median monthly income for food bank client households is $800; the median monthly income for all Alameda County households is $5,144.
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Calling all Piedmont Students!

Members of Piedmont’s Youth Bagpipe Band, from left, Alex Guidici, Neal Farmer and Rachel Collins. Photo by Cathy Farmer.

Now’s the time to sign up for the Boy Scouts! If you enjoy epic adventures such as river rafting, hiking, beach camping, rock climbing and spelunking then you’ll love the Scouts!

For those in 1st through 5th grade, Cub Scouts is for you! This program is a wonderful introduction to the great outdoors and features field trips, hiking and other fun activities!

For boys in 6th through 12th grade, the Boy Scouts is calling! Get ready for serious fun and adventure that will leave you breathless for more! The Boy Scout program emphasizes leadership and teamwork and prepares you for a lifetime of outdoor enjoyment. Earn Merit Badges for a variety of accomplishments and become an Eagle Scout!

And for boys AND girls in high school, check out all the programs that Venturing has to offer! In this co-ed program students can explore a variety of passions, including river-rafting and kayaking in the High Adventure Crew, rowing for the national-championship Oakland Strokes, performing in the Bagpipe Band, exploring computer science in the Web Design and Computer Crew and more!

Whatever your passion may be, the Boy Scouts can help you further it. Join today by contacting Jason at the Council Office via phone, 547-4493, or e-mail: jasonz@piedmont.bsa.org!

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President’s Perspective

In 1933, my father attended the World Scout Jamboree in Austria. While there the pride of Nazidom was on display. My father observed Scout-aged, brown shirted youths militaristically marching with guns, and actually shook hands with Hitler and Goerring. He also made friends with a young Hungarian Jewish Scout. Afterwards, they corresponded. At one point my father’s friend confided that his parents wanted him to find a business sponsor which would allow him to immigrate to the USA. He asked my father to help. So he and my grandfather worked diligently towards this goal. After a long struggle, they were finally successful. Happily, they cabled the boy with the good news. Shortly thereafter they received back this reply. It said, “Thank you for your work, but you are too late by a day.” My father never heard from his friend again. Needless to say, having a sense of urgency is an attribute of high value in our family.

Today the Piedmont Boy Scout Council hopefully marches with the same sense of urgency about getting things done. There are times, however, when privately we worry that we will have a perfectly working, wonderful Scout program, but no boys with which to work. We need all of your help to get the word out to young families in Piedmont. There is a place for children in Piedmont which cares about values, character, leadership qualities and personal growth. Experience shows that most boys not involved in Scouting simply have never been asked. And just for good measure, call us and get involved with boys and girls at their unit levels. Today, in addition to traditional Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts and Explorers, we are deeply involved with the Bagpipe Band, the Fencing Club, a Computer Club, the Pinewood Derby, the Bike Rodeo, Career Day at PHS, High Adventures, hikes, summer camps, Oakland Strokes and the Piedmont Language School. There is no better way to invest your time.

- J. Robert Coleman, Jr., Council President

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Eagle’s Nest

Since the Fall 2005 issue, ten additional Scouts join the elite membership in the Piedmont Council’s Eagles’ Nest. The Council now boasts 1014 Eagle Ranks earned since 1921, making Piedmont one of the leading Councils in the country for percentage of youth earning this highest honor attainable by an active Scout or Venture member.

Name: Andrew Preston (9/1/05)

Troop: 15

Years in Scouting: 13 years

High School/Year of Graduation: Piedmont High School/2006

Recognitions: Assistant Patrol Leader, Patrol Leader, Troop Historian, Assistant Senior Patrol Leader, Senior Patrol Leader, Best Scout 2003; Scholar Athlete, Team Captain Varsity Football and Baseball, Student Senate and Senior Class President.

Project Information and Hours: Designed and constructed two twenty-five foot fences to deter hikers from taking shortcuts that cause erosion in popular, well-traveled, Diamond Canyon. (93 hours)

Comments about Scouting Experiences: “Scouting was no small part of my transformation into the person I am today. I got strong morals and ideals from scouting and its many trails. Scouting boosted my self esteem and made me proud of myself.”

Scoutmaster’s Comments: “Not only did (Drew) serve in his normal capacity, but put in an extra year as Senior Patrol Leader.”

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© 2008 Piedmont Council BSA • 10 Highland Way • Piedmont CA 94611
510-547-4493 • Fax: 510-547-4400