Boy Scouts Wrap Up Summer Camp - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

06/30/05

Boy Scouts Wrap Up Summer Camp

More than 900 Boy Scouts made the trek to Camp Tiak this summer. The end of June marks the final week of summer camp.

It's a time for learning teamwork and building character.

Scaling the tower is an exercise in trust and teamwork.

"Keep going, you can do it Timmy," shouted the group of scouts, as Tim Gibbs made his way up the wall.

Gibbs was intent on completing the climb. His muscles weren't so sure.

"You have to use strength. If you use your arms you'll cramp up, in your arms and shoulders and stuff. So you have to use your legs," Gibbs explained.

Daniel Gibson anchors the ground crew. His safety rope keeps climbers secure.

"Making sure he doesn't fall. I control his life, basically," said the Long Beach Boy Scout.

Scaling the tower requires physical endurance and trust in the team below.

"Ready on the right, ready on the left. Shooters, the line is ready. You may load and commence fire," shouted Kirsten Walters, who instructs the rifle shooting class.

Like a typical boy, Thomas Dufrene says shooting the gun is the best part of the rifle course. Hitting the target isn't always so easy.

"Like trying to shoot into a quarter or a nickel. You've got to get three quarters in one time in order to get the requirement," said Dufrene.

There are similar lessons here at the archery range. It's all about fundamentals, concentration and self confidence.

The scouts easily out shoot the reporter. To be fair, they had a week's worth of training.

"Put your arm out. Pull," said James Young, as he taught a young scout the fundamentals.

Progress in the physical challenges carries over into character building. By the end of a week at Tiak, campers have sharpened their skills, made new friends and gained self confidence.

Camp Tiak marks its 50th anniversary this year. The Pine Burr Area Council , which runs the camp, includes scouts from 17 counties in South Mississippi.

By Steve Phillips

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