Alex Rider returned Saturday from his annual Boy Scout Summer Camp located at Camp Fleischmann, Chester CA. He had set his goal for the week to complete the Mile Swim program that the Boy Scouts offered – and he succeeded! He has spent the last 2 months on the Sparks Piranhas Swim Team, working out 3-4 days/week, to prepare for this event. He told me on Thursday when he called me to tell me he passed that he was tired but “probably could have done another half-mile.” He was one of only 6 people, out of nearly 600 at camp last week, to achieve this award, and was by far, the youngest! He said several of the boys were around 16 years old and there were a couple of young adults, around 19-20 years old. (The Mile Swim is open to all Boy Scouts, Venture Scouts, and registered adults in Scouting. Venture Scouts is the co-ed program for kids 14-21 years old.) He completed the mile in 58 minutes, 20 seconds. Not bad for a just-turned-13-year-old!
He was awarded his Mile Swim badge at the closing ceremonies on Saturday morning. While this badge is not a Merit Badge and cannot be worn as such, it can be worn on the back of the merit badge sash where they are allowed to put any other Boy Scout-related badges/patches that they would like, so he wants to put it there at the top. He is also now allowed to wear it on all of his swim trunks, blankets, backpacks, and any other non-Boy Scout Uniform attire he chooses. I sewed one patch on his swim trunks last night so he can wear it today at the Wild Island Waterpark. We will probably not be putting it on his Lycra-based swim jammers that he wears for swim team practice because I don’t think the Lycra will hold up well with stitching on it. We’ll see.
In addition to earning the Mile Swim award, which required some work each of 3 afternoons to “prepare” for it and one afternoon to do the swim, he also earned 3 merit badges and almost completed a 4th one. He earned Mammal Study, Geology, and Woodcarving. He is almost done with Basketry, which he is finding much easier than when he tried it last year and hopes to finish at home this summer.
He wants to finish up his 1st Class Rank this summer, which should be doable since he only has 2 things left to do for it. Then he will be working on his Star Scout rank this fall/winter. He also plans to continue with the Sparks Piranhas Swim Team, as he really enjoys the swimming and the competition.
1st Class Scout