Members of Antioch Boy Scout Troop 151, formerly Troop 1, are seeking former Boy Scouts and leaders to celebrate the group’s centennial on Feb. 27.
Over the past 100 years, Troop 151 has enrolled more than a thousand Boy Scouts, and has helped 80 boys reach the rank of Eagle Scout, the highest rank in scouting.
Antioch resident Dan Soares is a previous Scoutmaster for the troop and the current Antioch Legion Post 161 charter representative and liaison for the troop. Soares’ own son Brandon was part of the troop and became an Eagle Scout in 2012.
“This troop has made an impact on the community over the past 100 years by providing a program that helps young men understand leadership, good citizenship and community values,” said Soares. “Boy Scouting isn’t just about tying knots and camping, its about respecting others, being a good citizen and being the best person you can be.”
His favorite memory includes going to the Pinnacles National Park near Hollister and hiking up steep rock cliffs.
“It was a hot and sunny day and a tough hike up the steep rock cliffs,” said Soares. “When we got to the top, the view was just magnificent and it started raining. It was an amazing moment.”
Troop 151 is hoping to collect more stories like Soares’s, as well as photos, to share during their centennial celebration.
“These stories are so important to preserve,” said Kathleen Kirk, committee member of the centennial celebration.
The troop is proud of its history. When they started in 1916, the City of Antioch was only 44 years old and they were the very first Boy Scout troop in Contra Costa County. In 2012, the Boy Scout committee members interviewed Antioch resident William Fredrickson, who was part of the troop in the 1920s. Fredrickson has since passed away.
“William told us how the troop would go to Boy Scout camp at Camp Wolfeboro in the high Sierra Nevada Mountains,” said Soares. “He said there weren’t many cars back then so all of the boys would ride for five or six hours in the back of an open paneled truck, sitting on benches.”
Boy Scout Troop 151 remains a vibrant organization committed to guiding boys into adulthood and teaching them to be prepared, do a good turn daily and to become good citizens.
Currently, the troop is led by Scoutmaster Dave Despain and has a total of 14 members who attend weekly meetings, go on campouts, attend camps and provide community service.
Anyone involved with the troop or anyone who knows someone who was involved is encouraged to contact the committee at firstname.lastname@example.org. The committee is hoping to receive photos and stories about the troop’s history, previous members and leaders, as well as past events.
Anyone interested in joining a Boy Scout troop, including Antioch Boy Scout Troop 151, can visit http://www.bsa-mdsc.org.