MARINE CORPS LOGISTIC BASE ALBANY, GA -- Editor's note: A Boy Scout from troop 100 wrote the following article when he attended merit badge training here to earn his journalism merit badge.
It was a day of pure mayhem at MCLB Albany, as 75 Boy Scouts ran around, going to and from their merit badge classes, pausing only to eat lunch and take a rest.
The base hosted the Southwest Georgia Council Merit Badge/Advancement Camp here Saturday and Sunday, with base civilian personnel and Marines serving as instructors in the merit badge classes.
The local Boy Scouts came out to the base for a weekend of fun and education, said Ted Klick, Albany native and scout executive. Klick said he wanted the merit badge weekend to be held at the base so the boys could be introduced to a place they had never been.
Scouts can choose from many badges, such as archery, computer, safety and golf. Thirteen merit badge classes were held, and each Boy Scout was required to attend three training sessions to earn three badges.
Merit badges are earned by being instructed on a specific hobby, technical trade or job. The classes were held at different locations to give the scouts opportunities to see more of the base in the short time they were here, said Klick.
Although earning the badges is a lot of fun, the scouts also benefit in many ways. Boy Scouts have to earn 21 of these merit badges to reach the ultimate rank in scouting Eagle Scout.
Last weekend was the first time the scouts had the merit badge weekend here. The base hosted the District Jamboree several years ago, but stopped several years ago. Now the base is getting involved once again with the scouting program.
The scouts departed from the base after their second training session on Sunday. The scouts also had a short mass at the Base Chapel.
Mark E. Griffin, Ocilla, Ga., native, with troop 832, was one of the many Boy Scouts who attended the event.
"I love being here at the base," said Griffin. "Being at the base gave us [Boy Scouts] a sense of what being a scout is all about love for the country, respect, pride and discipline.
"This is one of the best camps I've been to," said Griffin. "There are interesting and fun classes that are being taught, and the instructors are great."