Tag Archive | "Minnesota"

Minnesota Scouts Call Space Station Astronauts

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Minnesota Scouts Call Space Station Astronauts

Posted on 05 August 2011 by Press Release

Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts and other students in St. Paul, Minn., will make a special call to the International Space Station on Tuesday, Aug. 9 at 12:55 p.m. EDT. This is the first-ever Boy Scout Council/NASA live in-flight education downlink and only the second within Minnesota. It takes place at Base Camp, Northern Star Council’s new facility, located at Fort Snelling. The live, local connection with the International Space Station will feature a 20-minute question-and-answer session with Expedition 28 astronauts Ron Garan Jr., Mike Fossum, and Satoshi Furukawa.

The downlink astronauts will be shown live on Base Camp’s 19’ screen and throughout the 35,000 square foot facility, allowing for hundreds of young people to participate. Many science and space-related activities will also happen that day. Participants will Build mini hover crafts, experience Base Camp’s NASA space shuttle simulator (the Midwest’s only simulator and one of eight in the nation), view the stars in a portable planetarium and more.

The NASA space shuttle simulator was provided by National Aeronautics and Space Administration, C. Jackson Foundation and Total Learning Research Institute, Incorporated. The activities will be provided by The Works, the Minnesota Planetarium and the Boy Scouts.

In preparation for the event, Scouts have been working toward several merit badges related to space exploration (computers, astronomy, weather, etc.) and engaging in aerospace learning experiences, simulations, and research that exposes them to the challenging endeavor of human space exploration. These Scouts attended several events with local partners: the Minnesota Astronomy Department, Twin Cities National Weather Service and Minnesota Amateur Space Modeler Association, among others.

The in-flight education downlink is part of a series with educational organizations in the U.S. and abroad to improve teaching and learning in science, technology, engineering and mathematics subjects. It is an integral component of Teaching From Space, an agency education program that promotes learning opportunities and builds partnerships with the education community using the unique environment of space and NASA’s human spaceflight program.

For NASA TV information and schedules, visit:

For information about NASA’s education programs, visit:

For more information about the International Space Station, visit:

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Gone Home Trail Sign

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Gone Home: Scout Collapses While Hiking at Philmont Scout Ranch

Posted on 27 July 2009 by Dan

Gone Home Trail SignThe Northern Star Council and Philmont Scout Ranch Scouting Communities are morning the death of a member of our Scouting family. Timothy Nunn, a fourteen-year-old Scout from Troop 123 in Northern Star Council collapsed while hiking at Philmont Scout Ranch on Friday, July 24, 2009.

According to a statement by the Boy Scouts, the health and safety of participants is a top priority. His group immediately performed CPR until emergency medical personnel from Philmont Scout Ranch and Cimarron, New Mexico, arrived. Unfortunately, despite these efforts, they were unable to resuscitate him.

After being notified of their son’s death, Timmy’s parents flew to New Mexico; they later released the following statement:

Timmy loved Boy Scouts. All preliminary indications are that there is nothing anyone could have done, whether he would have been at home or out on a hike, to save him. God blessed us as parents to have given us Timmy, and God blessed Timmy to have given him Boy Scouts and the opportunity to go to Philmont. He loved Boy Scouts, baseball and his family and he died doing something he loved.

The family encouraged the Scouts in Timmy’s Troop to continue their trek at Philmont, and is postponing their son’s funeral until early August, after the group returns from New Mexico.

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Good Samaritan Scout AKA Sleep out Prince

Posted on 20 January 2009 by Dan

Imagine sleeping outside in a cardboard box during the frigid winter nights in Minnesota to call attention to the plight of the homeless. That is exactly what a Boy Scout from Plymouth, Minnesota Boy Scout has done since he was five years old!


Video Transcript

It’s a typical winter evening in Minnesota…roaring fire, hot cocoa, and freezing temperatures.

Peter Larson: “Good night dad.”

And despite the fact that it’s six below…

Peter’s dad: “You all set Pete? Goodnight.”

… Peter Larson is sleeping outside… in a cardboard box, just as he’s done every winter for the past eight years.

Peter Larson: “If it’s really cold I think about what other people are going through that year.”

Peter spends 45 nights just like this, in a sleeping bag his grandmother made. His humble efforts have raised $85,000 for those without homes. A Cub Scout lecture in first grade inspired the effort.

Peter Larson: “The money I raise goes to a community organization called Interfaith Outreach in Community Partners.”

Jill Kohler, IOCP Development Director: “That’s what Interfaith’s about, trying to maintain stability for families so they can move ahead and advance into a better life. Peter this year has become sort of our poster child of what one person can do.”

“Hi, I’m Peter Larson,…”

Several area restaurants sponsor Peter, and on nights that he works the crowds, they donate half their profits.

Joni Larson, Peter’s Mother: “They call him the sleepout prince. I think that’s kind of funny.”

It’s his church family at Messiah United Methodist that is his biggest supporter.

(Church member) “Who do we make the check out to?”

The Rev. Dick Ellis, Messiah United Methodist Church: “He’s one who will inspire other kids so the talk around here is well, we need to be part of this effort.”

“This should be somewhere over a thousand dollars.”

The money helps people like this single mother from Ethiopia.

Makida Medulahi: “Hi Peter, I’m Makida, nice to meet you… thank you, you did wonderful job.”

Peter hopes his time out in the cold will help others be warmer to their neighbors.

Makida Medulahi: “I want to volunteer myself whenever they need me because it’s changed my life. I want to change somebody’s life too.”

It is obvious from Peter’s dedication, over eight years of giving up the comforts of a warm bed, he is not looking for recognition. However, Peter did receive the national “Good Samaritan” Scouting award for 2008 from United Methodist Men, which recognizes a young person between the age of 12 and 21 who is involved in outreach, humanitarian assistance, or advocacy.

Thanks to UMTV, an initiative of United Methodist Communications for producing this inspirational story.

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Peace Light- From Bethlehem to Minnesota

Posted on 10 December 2008 by Dan

Boy Scout Troop 113, from Bayport Minnesota, is planning a rather amazing project this holiday season. Scouts are taking part in an International Scouting program to distribute what is called the Peace Light that originates from the grotto manger where Jesus was born in Bethlehem to the rest of the world.

The Peace Light is something the Transatlantic Council in Europe started several years ago. They transport the flame from Bethlehem to Vienna, Austria where it is distributed throughout Europe. A few years ago, the Catholic Committee on Scouting of the Diocese of Brooklyn & Queens, & International Committee, Greater New York Councils (GNYC) BSA & Units of the Transatlantic Council BSA, found a way to bring the Peace Light flame from Vienna to New York City.

This last summer some of Troop 113 Scouts attended the International Scout Jamboree in Iceland where they met a few people from Europe who are involved in the Peace Light program. Since then, they have been planning to be a part of the flame distribution between New York City and Saint Paul, Minnesota. The Peace Light flame is scheduled to arrive at JFK in New York City on December 10, 2008. Two Scout Leaders from Troop 113, Roger Knuteson and Joe Reding, are driving to New York City to meet the flame. On the way back they are planning to stop at the Boy Scout Councils in State College, Pennsylvania; Toledo, Ohio; Chicago, Illinois; Madison, Wisconsin; and finally Saint Paul, Minnesota, so they too can distribute the Peace Light flame to other Scouting Units.

On Friday, December 12th, 2008 from 1:00 – 2:00pm, the Peace Light flame will be present at Glacier’s Edge Council’s Madison Service Center, 5846 Manufacturers Drive, Madison, WI 53704.

On December 14, 2008 the Peace Light flame will be available for distribution from 12:00pm to 4:00pm at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 490 4th Street, Bayport, Minnesota 55003. Everyone is welcome to come to Bethlehem Lutheran Church where the flame will be shared and distributed. If you wish to take the Peace Light flame away with you, a vessel is needed to transport the flame. Small candle lanterns will be available at Bethlehem Lutheran Church for purchase. Special arrangements for Peace Light distribution may also be accommodated.

The Peace Light from Bethlehem campaign was originally organized by the Austrian Broadcasting Company – ORF (Linx) – and was part of a large charitable relief mission – Light into Darkness, for children in need in Austria and abroad. Since 1990, there has been a great deal of co-operation between Scouts and Guides in many countries, which has allowed the light to travel throughout Europe. Each year, a child from Upper Austria fetches the light from the grotto in Bethlehem where Jesus was born. The light is then flown to Austria from where it is distributed at a Service of Dedication to delegations from across Europe and who take it back, with a message of Peace, to their own countries for use at ecumenical services throughout the continent.

Scouts and Guides can then take the light on to houses of worship, hospitals, homeless shelters, old people homes, prisons, and places of public, cultural, and political importance – to anybody who appreciates the significance of the “gift”.

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Unit Celebrates High Number of African American Eagle Scouts

Posted on 30 September 2008 by Dan

Boy Scout Troop 96, sponsored by St. Peter Claver Church in St. Paul, presented Eagle Awards to three Scouts on August 29, bringing their total to seven young men awarded Scouting’s highest rank in 2008.

This is record number of African American Eagle Scouts within a single troop for the Northern Star Council, which serves the greater Twin Cities area. Having this many Eagles in itself is a rare accomplishment, with only four percent of Scouts attaining this goal.

Bill Butchee, the Scoutmaster who mentored all of the troop’s African American Eagle Scouts, presided at the Court of Honor; five of the troop’s recent Eagle Scouts also took part. Northern Star Council Scout Executive John Andrews was also on hand to congratulate the new Eagles and lead them in the “Eagle Charge.”

Andrews says of this accomplishment, “Scouting has been for all children for nearly 100 years. There is no better realization of that aspiration than to see young men of all ethnicities, belief systems, incomes and communities strive for and achieve the rank of Eagle Scout.”

The troop’s three newest Eagles are:
• Nathan Knight, Apple Valley: graduate of Apple Valley High School, currently attends Normandale Community College, plans to study civil engineering at the U of M.
• Jacob Schwartz, Oakdale: 12th grader at Mounds Park Academy; plays varsity football; active in concert band, men’s chorale, concert choir, Peer Leaders group and Mosaic, a group that encourages diversity.
• Albert Williams Jr., Minneapolis: graduate of Minneapolis Inter-District Downtown High School; currently attends Hamline University, where he hopes to study marine biology, education, and multilingual education.
Four other Scouts from Troop 96 received their Eagle awards in April. They were:
• Paris Michuta, Minneapolis: graduate of Minneapolis Inter-District Downtown High School, attends Hennepin Community College.
• Paul Ndayizeye, St Paul: graduate of St. Paul Central High School, attends Hennepin Community College.
• Jonathan West, St. Paul: graduate of DeLaSalle High School, attends Hennepin Community College.
• Jonathan Williams, Minneapolis: graduate of DeLaSalle High School, attends University of Minnesota, Mankato.
Another three members of Troop 96 received Eagle awards from 2003 to 2005:
• William J. Butchee III, Eagan: graduate of Eagan High School, attends University of Wisconsin-Stout.
• Derrick D. Butchee, Eagan: graduate of Eagan High School, attends University of Wisconsin-Stout.
• Christopher Jackson, Bloomington: graduate of Breck School, attends Occidental University.

This article was provided by Northern Star Council-Boy Scouts of America.

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