Re: Off to the Canadian Jamboree
settummanque, or blackeagle (blkeagle@DYNASTY.NET)
Mon, 14 Jul 1997 13:55:52 -0500
Rodger Morris asked:
>In re transportation, whatever happened to the medevac flights that
>the USAF had between NS Rota and Rhein-Main AFB? The flight would come
>in empty on Tuesday and leave full of patients who had referrals to
>specialists in Germany, then returm full and leave empty on Friday.
>These medevac planes were C-9 Nightengales (a specialized DC-9) and had
>more than enough space for a troop of Boy Scouts. It was a simple matter
>to go "space available" (aka "Space-A") from Rota to Rhein-Main on Friday
>and return on a Tuesday.
>Alternatively, one could take the weekly "Cat B" flight from Rota on
>Tuesday night to Naples, catch the trains to Germany, stay for the night
>in Youth Hostels, then return on the Cat B on a Wednesday from Naples to
>NS Rota. The Cat B was a DC-10 civilian charter flight that originated in
>Philadelphia and came over crammed to the gills with military and
>dependents, the majority of whom debarked at NS Rota. Thus, there was
>never any problem hopping Space-A to NAS Sigonella (Sicily) or to Naples.
>Is this no longer the case?
BSA members can't do it anymore, and various military regs have changed the
policy on who and how in regards to flying "space-available" (Space-A). That,
and the regular hazards incurred in diverting flights to possible "trouble
in central and eastern Europe, has basically placed a *permanent stop* to
Scouts using military aircraft to get to/from Scouting events and activities.
And Pam Jensen stated:
>>Just wanted to second Jay's comment (are you listening National?) about
>>moving the US National Jamboree around to various areas. If for no other
>>reason than easing the transportation costs for those units on the opposite
>>side of the country.
The BSA went to a "permanent Jamboree site" after a lot of thoughtful
soul-searching (and a lot of looking at the "bottom line", the budget for
the Jamboree). There's a lot of "pluses" in having a rotating National
Jamboree, similar to other national Scouting events. However, the "minues"
outweigh the "pluses" and the BSA opted to find a site, build and improve
upon it, and use it time after time until the facility outgrows the event
(what they hoped would happen) or that the cost of using that facility has
forced them to consider other sites (which has happened).
The "minuses" include the massive amount of "infrastructure" needed to run
the Jamboree operations. In the past Jamborees, the Army and the U.S. Corps
of Engineers (I know, I know...they're related....) have given thousands of
dollars of "assistance" in making the various Jamboree sites "livable" and safe.
This also included telephone services, fax and data services; medical and
health services; pond/lake dredging and filling, mapping services and other
needed to "create the structure for the temporary city". Those "assistance
dollars" dried up with the 1981 Jamboree, and since then, the BSA has been
looking to private companies to "take up the slack".
They, for the most part, have not; the BSA has been pleading and got the
Army back to help out again this "go-around".
Things have changed significantly since the earlier Jamborees, whereby there
wasn't a large need for lighting, road word, and semi-permanent structures.
Hurricane Bob also taught the BSA that the site that they selected...or any
site for that matter, would have to also have some kind of contingency plan
for drying, bedding and providing for thousands of Scouts and Scouters and
those visitors. In addition to the "structural problems", would be the
organizational problems.....every two years, a new "regional team" would
have to be formed so that they can start work on the next National Jamboree.
This placed a huge strain on the regions when we had six or twelve. Now, we
only have four.
Finally, the biggest "minus" would be the loss of income (and that's what
we're talking about!) because instead of attending that Jamboree, many
Scouts and Scouters would wait "until the next one, closer to my home"; and
the increase in "one-upmanship" in which regions would literally "pull out
the stops" to make each Jamboree "the biggest, the best, the star-studded"
at a huge cost to the individual Scout and Scouter. Imagine a Jamboree
hosted by the Western Region, for example, complete with Lucasworks screen
shows, appearances by
everyone from hulagirls to members of the LA ball teams, and even Mickey
Mouse and the whole gang?? Or a Jamboree hosted by the Central Region in
which Michael Jordan would appear along with the rest of the Chicago Bulls?
Or a "Donald Trump" Jamboree in the Northeast? Or a "Good Ol' Southern"
Jamboree complete with appearances from the group Alabama, Dolly Pardon,
and a signing session with Jimmy and Roselyn Carter?
How would you "plan" the NEXT one after something like *that*??
Yeah, those of us living in the Western, Central, and parts of the Northeast
Regions, as well as those living overseas have to do a LOT of travelling and
finance coordination to get there. I know firsthand about that, having
served as the TAC's Jamboree leader in 1985. We had Scouts attending from
five countries, some of which met us at the BWI gates two days before the
Jamboree because their families could leave them with relatives or friends
while traveling Space-A on leave.
But no matter where it is, it is WORTH GOING TO, and worth the added expense
of getting there.
(c) 1997 Mike Walton ("no such thing as strong coffee,...") (502) 827-9201
(settummanque, the blackeagle) http://dynasty.net/users/blkeagle
241 Fairview Dr., Henderson, KY 42420-4339 firstname.lastname@example.org
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