CONWAY — Troop 150 will hold an open house/recruitment night for the Scout Troop on Tuesday, Oct. 22, from 6:30-8 p.m. at John H. Fuller School in North Conway.
“What’s new this year is that girls can now join Boy Scouts, so we want to highlight that aspect,” Scoutmaster Chris Kennedy, who has guided Troop 150 since 2010, said Thursday. “We have several girls already interested, but we need a few more to form a girl troop.”
As of Feb. 1, the Boy Scouts transitioned to “Scouts BSA” — a change designed to welcome both boys and girls between the ages of 11 and 17.
It also means young women can realize their dreams of becoming Eagle Scouts, the organization’s coveted highest rank, which can offer lifelong academic and professional benefits. The first class of female Eagle Scouts will be recognized in 2020, according to Boy Scouts of America.
The program for younger kids, Cub Scouts, has been welcoming girls since last year, and more than 77,000 girls have joined.
Kennedy said one girl, Olivia Hodgedon, has joined the troop, and a few more are interested.
“I know there are people who say this is going to change scouting but the kids do stuff together already all day long,” he said. “I don’t think we’ll have any issues. If it’s good for boys, it’s good for girls, it’s all good for scouting.”
Kennedy said Scouts BSA has boys and girls troops, which he hopes will take hold in Troop 150.
“We’ll all work together, work on the same night with the same leaders,” Kennedy said. “What we need is a female scoutmaster and female scout leaders.”
There are currently seven boys in Troop 150.
“It’s a small group but a very committed group,” Kennedy said. “I’m hoping we can get six to seven girls. If we can do that, and then have two groups we’ll be in really good shape.”
Kennedy said on Tuesday, the current scouts will be setting up a wide range of games and doing some outdoor cooking.
“If there are families with younger children who want to learn more about scouting, they’re invited to come, too,” he said.
Troop 150, which is based in North Conway, is celebrating its 81st year of Scouts in the Mount Washington Valley this summer. There have been 47 Eagle Scouts in the troop from 1961-2017.
The list includes Kenneth Patterson, 1961; Edward Dinsmore, Phil Ostroski, Dennis Parshley and Doug Smith, 1964; Walter Pachucki and Peter Woodman, 1965; Bruce Shaw, 1966; Robert Monroe, 1967; Joseph Costello and Richard Mori, 1969; Thomas E. Smith, 1970; John Zacker and Karl Zacker, 1973; Vernon Trussell, 1978; Erik Limmer, 1981; Miles Waltz, 1986; Doug Hagman and Paul Hennigan Jr., 1990; Jacob Risch, Jason Smith and Thomas Croteau, 1995; Thomas V. Smith, 1997; Eric J. Smith and Jared Brooks, 1998; Tim Benham, Matt Risch and Eric Whitted, 1999; Mark Verrochi and Benjamin Waters, 2000; Kyle Koch and Sam Dyer, 2001; Anthoy Verrochi, 2002; Thaddeus Pirtkewicz and Timothy D. Smith, 2004; Colin R. Smith and Grant Eastman, 2005; Brant Sanborn, 2006; Tom Caughey, 2007; Dmitry Steesy, Torin LaLiberte, Ethan Hill and Zack Mannik, 2012; Ben Zimmer, Cameron Kennedy and Silas Hill, 2015; James Zimmer, 2017; and Griffin Hill, 2019.
Eagle Scout is the highest rank attainable in the Boy Scouts of America. To achieve the rank of Eagle Scout, a Scout must earn 21 merit badges. To receive a Palm, the Scout must earn five additional badges. He must hold a leadership position in the troop and complete an Eagle Service Project — planning, organizing and supervising a project that benefits his community.
Anyone seeking more information about scouting can contact Kennedy at (603) 986-2935.