SCOUTING AROUND: Cub Scouts win Pack of the Year for Nantahala District
Andrews – Scouters in Cub Scout Packs across Cherokee County won a majority of the awards at the Nantahala District Banquet in the Andrews United Methodist Church Family Life Center on Saturday night, but the biggest award of the evening went to a young man from Graham County.
William Gentry Trantham, a Life Scout in Scouts BSA Troop 405 in Robbinsville, was presented with the Heart of Scouting award by special guests state Sen. Jim Davis (R-Franklin) and Rep. Kevin Corbin (R-Franklin). Despite his medical challenges, Trantham continues to serve his community through Scouting.
Davis said Trantham demonstrates the qualities of a great leader.
“I believe you have gone above and beyond,” Davis said.
The men continued to bestow proclamations and honors on Trantham as he stood in awe on the stage.
“That was something,” Trantham said after getting several photos taken with members of his troop, family and the elected officials.
The rest of the awards were presented by Eddie Hollifield, the district chairman, and Phil Keller, the district commissioner.
Pack 400 in Murphy brought home the Big Bear Trophy once again for Pack of the Year. This is the second year in a row that the pack has earned the honor, and the third time in four years. Cubmaster Ken Koch also received Cubmaster of the Year.
“I’m honored,” Koch said. “It’s more the den leaders that won the award, and the boys and the girls.”
Veronica McMahon received Den Leader of the Year trophy, as well as the Scout Spirit Award. McMahon also received a Den Leader Award, along with Tasha Black, also of Pack 400.
First United Methodist Church of Murphy, Pack and Troop 400’s charter organization, was given the Charter Organization of the Year Award. Dave Hotchkiss, the charter organization representative, accepted the award for the church.
Commissioner of the Year was given to Nenia Thompson of Andrews.
Andrews’ Pack 401 Cubmaster, Kathy Bryant, was awarded the Cubmaster Award of Merit. This is her second year as Cubmaster.
“I’m completely honored,” Bryant said. “I just do this for the kids. I’ve never thought of receiving this.”
Jeff Mansker of Pack 401 and Frank Blount of Pack 400 received Life Line Awards for being adult leaders who kept their units running. One of the Trail Blazer Awards, given to a leader who forms a unit or helps one continue to move forward, was given to Jeff Macar and Megan Jordan of Pack 401.
Cubmaster Key Awards were given to Koch and Mary Ruth Keller of Pack 430 in Marble.
The Nantahala District includes Boy Scouts of America program units in Cherokee, Clay and Graham counties, and is one of five districts in the Daniel Boone Council. Assistant Scout Executive Robert Garrett said the Nantahala District saw a growth of over 10 percent, while the council saw a growth of 4.7 percent.
“We’ve had such a wonderful year as a council, and you have been an integral part of that,” Garrett told the room full of volunteers.
Andy Romangnoulo, the council commissioner, said he appreciated the good work of all the parents and volunteers.
“This program doesn’t happen without you,” he said.
Faire needs makers
The Learning Center charter school’s fourth annual School Maker Faire will be March 14, but it needs one thing to be successful – makers from the community.
“Usually we have lots of community makers signed up and then the kids scoot in at the last minute,” said Julie Johnson, who is organizing the event for the school. “This year, I already have over 35 student and teacher makers signed up, and just a few community makers involved.”
She said she thinks the community makers of past School Maker Faires have inspired students so that now they are excited to plan their own projects as the school year begins.
The School Maker Faire is set up like a science fair, with each maker project getting a booth to display a skill, demonstrate a product, or provide a hands-on project. Makers are welcomed to sell their items.
Johnson said anything could be a maker project. In the past, community makers have presented technology projects, crafts, and baked goods. There are no booth fees.
Samantha Sinclair is the Scouting Around columnist for the Cherokee Scout. You can reach her by email, email@example.com; fax, 837-5832; or by leaving a message in the office at 837-5122.