MT. LEMMON – TUCSONWithout much fanfare, a new village, of sorts, was constructed a week ago in the mountains overlooking Tucson to celebrate a 100 year anniversary for a Boy Scout Jamboree. Set up in a day, positioned below Mount Bigelow in the Catalina Mountains, dozens of parents and their boys constructed a pre-built western town, complete with boardwalk, for the purpose of having a little fun as they motivate hundreds of younger Boy Scouts to become tomorrow’s leaders.
Beginning Monday, May 27th, this makeshift village will be christened “Deaconville” by around 400 boys, and a few hundred adult leaders, as they walk from store front façade to hotel, jail to church, barber shop to newspaper office to learn and be tested on their work so they can obtain their merit badges helping them advance to higher ranks in the scouting program.
The boys will enjoy a week of camping fun at the Jamboree, held at Catalina Council’s Camp Lawton in celebration of the 100 year anniversary. It was just three years after the inception of scouting that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints chose the Boy Scouts of America as the vehicle to help teach their future leaders. Now, at the centennial, the Church is the largest sponsor of Boy Scouts, chartering over 19,000 troops and 200,000 Boy Scouts.
Que Hales, Jamboree Chairman, says he understands the value of this program. “Having been a Cub Scout, Boy Scout and Sea Scout as a young man, I have first-hand experience in how the Boy Scouts and its programs benefit and bless the lives of those who are affected by it, both the members and also the community in which they reside and serve.”Having been a Cub Scout, Boy Scout and Sea Scout as a young man, I have first-hand experience in how the Boy Scouts and its programs benefit and bless the lives of those who are affected by it, both the members and also the community in which they reside and serve.
From May 27 to June 1, 2013, boys from seven of the Church stakes in Southern Arizona will attend the Jamboree, from San Manuel and Marana, to Sierra Vista. The event will take place at the combined venue of Camp Lawton and Camp Zion, the adjoining Church operated camp, on Mt. Lemmon’s Organization Ridge. About 400 scouts are expected at this event, which will include devotionals, commemorative events, and a merit badge midway: a 1913-era frontier town complete with boardwalks and old west buildings as merit badge venues.
The Jamboree is under the direction of Cole Thies, president of the Tucson Rincon Stake. He said, “The Boy Scout program not only helps our young men strengthen personal values but also helps them ‘do hard things’ and gain self-confidence. Many of our youth have been able to accomplish goals in their life because of the values and experiences they gained through scouting.”
So, how did they come up with the name, “Deaconville”? At the same time that the Church began its relationship with the Boy Scouts, it was revamping Church leadership, and transitioned from an organization primarily of adults to provide service responsibilities to both young women and young men. It changed from an as-needed leadership process to an age-related advancement structure. Young Men at the age of 12 are ordained as Deacons in the church and given leadership and weekly priesthood responsibilities.
President Thies invited Boy Scouts, not members of the Church to attend as guests with the LDS troops as long as they receive their local ward Bishop’s approval. Camp for the young women of the Church starts in June. ###
News Release: For immediate release until June 1, 2013 — At Camp Lawton, Organization Ridge, Mt. Lemmon
Contact: David Hoefferle 520-321-1777 — Dana Willis 520-722-0123