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Celebrating 100 years of scouting

Created date

September 20th, 2010

[caption id="attachment_14640" align="alignright" width="280" caption="Three generations of Swans Bob Swan; his son, James; and his grandson, James, Jr. They just got back from the National Boy Scouts Jamboree, where there were 45,000 scouts in attendance from all over the country. "][/caption] [caption id="attachment_14632" align="alignright" width="280" caption="Grace Kremer says she s been smitten with the (cross) bow since 1969."][/caption] Ann s Choice in Bucks County is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Boy Scouts in a unique and fun way with the Seniors for Scouting Group Expo on October 7, 2010. The purpose of the event is to demonstrate to both the Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts what badges they can earn while connecting with the residents at Ann s Choice through shared interests. During the expo, residents from many of the clubs at Ann s Choice will hold demonstrations in amateur radio, archery, aviation, bird study, coin collecting, computers, cooking, dog/pet care, gardening, genealogy, photography, railroading, sewing, stamp collecting, modeling (as in building structures), yarn and fabric, and yoga. The demonstrations are little teasers, if you will, says Grace Kremer, resident contact for the Girl Scouts and also head of the archery demonstration. If the kids want to work on their badges, they ll learn how to shoot a crossbow, stitch details on pillows, make puppets, cook, do yoga, and so much more! Her neighbor, Lynn Swan, is planning to make non-cook granola bars, an easy-toprepare recipe that can be made in the microwave in a matter of minutes. Since Ann s Choice is one block away from Philadelphia County, the Seniors for Scouting Group is inviting scouts from both the Cradle of Liberty and Bucks County Councils. They re expecting a couple of hundred youth and have encouraged them to dress in uniform. The residents are also invited to the expo, and the purpose is one of intergenerational outreach, to encourage the youth to earn their badges through the extensive knowledge, expertise, and wisdom of those living at Ann s Choice. We want to show the scouts that we are open to working with the youth, says Bob Swan, resident contact for the Boy Scouts. All of the residents involved in the expo have a history with scouting, either as scouts or leaders, and the experiences are ones that have not only stuck with them for a lifetime but also have helped shape who they are.

Scouting passed down

Scouting has always been a way of life for Bob Swan, one he has passed on to his children and grandchildren. His two sons became Eagle Scouts, and his daughter is a Girl Scout leader in Massachusetts. His two grandsons are currently on their way to becoming Eagle Scouts. When he and his wife, Lynn, met, she was a den mother for the Girl Scouts. Scouting is a lifestyle, Swan says. There are 12 points we live by, and we live by them just like we do the ten commandments. Swan started out as a Cub Scout when he was a little boy and never got out of it. He s been every kind of scout there is Boy, Cub, Explorer, Eagle and that evolved to Scout Master and District Chairman. Now he s on the Relations Committee for the God and Country Award regardless of a scout s religious background, he or she can earn the badge. It s not talked about much in scouting, but there s a lot of religious, moral training involved in being a scout, he says. Swan wants to show the scouts that, though it was an honor to be a scout back when he was young and now is seen by some as a nerdy thing to do, being a scout lasts a lifetime.

How archery translates to scouting

Grace Kremer was never involved with the Girl Scouts when she was younger. Being one of 12 children, her mother said there was never time for something like that. But one day in 1947, her sisterin- law asked her to be a scout leader, and she s been involved ever since. She even took leadership courses to prepare her for the role. As she moved to different places around Philadelphia, she d always start a troop. Today she s found a way to combine her interests in archery and the scouts. Kremer has been shooting crossbow since she saw the 1969 National Archery Competition and was smitten with the bow. She still shoots in a winter league with her son in a local fish and game club. She s never understood why the crossbow has never quite caught on as a popular sport. In the longbow competition, there will be 400-500 competitors, she says. In the crossbow, there are just 24-27 competitors. The crossbow division is part of the National Archery Association, but they shoot on their own lines since there aren t a lot of competitors. Kremer s passion for the crossbow is sure to catch on with the expo attendees. We have experience in many fields here and we want to share that with the youth, Kremer says. We want to inspire these kids and show them they can use their talents throughout their lives, just like we re doing.