First Lutheran Church - DeKalb, Illinois "Always an Adventure"


Boundary Waters - June 2015 - Amazing!!!

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    E-Mail Troop 33 Scoutmaster  
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    AUGUST 2015

    Aug 01 - Barn Training
    Aug 02 - Ellwood Art Fair
    Aug 03 - Troop Meeting
    Aug 04 - National Night Out
    Aug 06 - Jack's Eagle Project
    Aug 07 - Set-up Barn Tour
    Aug 08 - Barn Tour
    Aug 09 - Church Presentation
    Aug 10 - Troop Meeting
    Aug 11 - Indiana Dunes
    Aug 12 - Afton Bicycle Trip
    Aug 13 - Horsemanship
    Aug 14 - Rock River Canoe
    Aug 15 - AYSO #1
    Aug 15-16 - Maquoketa Caves
    Aug 17 - Troop Meeting
    Aug 22 - AYSO #2
    Aug 22 - Yard Project
    Aug 23 - Equipment Day
    Aug 24 - Court of Honor
    Aug 28-30 - DeKalb Corn Fest
    Aug 29 - AYSO #3
    Aug 31 - Troop Meeting

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    Charter Sponsor

    First Lutheran Church
    324 N Third Street
    DeKalb, Illinois 60115

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    Serving area youth since 1925, our slogan is "Always an Adventure". A busy calendar takes our Scouts to new places and exciting events. Summer camp. High adventure trips. National disaster response. Lifetime memories. An incredible journey in Scouting awaits you.


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    Nick Aase.

    Daily Chronicle - June 27 2015

    Nick Aase becomes Eagle Scout

    Nick Aase, a member of Boy Scout Troop 33 chartered at First Lutheran Church in DeKalb, recently was awarded the Eagle rank, the highest award achievable in the Boy Scouts of America. Aase is the son of Gerry Aase of Sycamore and Julie Larson of Cortland.

    Aase began Scouting with Cub Pack 132 in DeKalb where he earned the Arrow of Light Award. He joined Troop 33 in the spring of 2008 and has enjoyed years of activities including day trips, service projects, weekend overnights, high adventure, disaster relief and fundraisers.

    He attended summer camps at Camp Lowden near Oregon and is a member of the Order of the Arrow, Scouting’s National Honor Society. He earned 30 merit badges.

    Aase participated in several major activities with Troop 33. His favorite wilderness adventure was the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in northern Minnesota. He enjoyed paddling across remote lakes, fishing, rock-jumping and camping in the quiet beauty of a great wilderness.

    Hurricane Ike was Aase’s first disaster relief trip which took him to Galveston, Texas. He helped remove debris, hang drywall, cooked for volunteers and helped clean a city park.

    Another disaster project took him to Kentucky to help restore an abandoned high school into a regional disaster center. Aase’s most recent disaster project was helping with the recent F-4 tornado that hit the Rochelle and Fairdale areas.

    He planned, developed and gave leadership to an Eagle Project at the Midwest Museum of Natural History in Sycamore, which involved salvaging an area in the basement and converting it into a storage and work area.

    Aase is a graduate of Sycamore High School and a student at Kishwaukee College.

    Boy Scout Troop 33 helped clean up tornado debris in a wooded area on Wheeler Road northwest of Kirkland. Downed trees became neat stacks of wood and brush piles. Their hard work made a visible difference.

    Daily Chronicle - May 9 2015
    MidWeek - May 13, 2015

    Boy Scouts involved in tornado relief

    Recovery from the April 9 tornado that ravaged parts of Ogle and DeKalb counties will require a community effort. DeKalb’s Boy Scout Troop 33 has worked on two projects in both Ogle and DeKalb counties.

    Their first relief project took place April 12 within 72 hours of the disaster. The Schabacker farm on Hemstock Road northwest of Rochelle was directly hit by the tornado, leveling all the barns, destroying everything but the farmhouse. It had been farmed by generations of the same family since 1863.

    The power of the tornado scattered debris from damaged homes immediately south of the farm covering its acreage. Fields were covered with rafters, beams, roofing and just about anything else you can imagine. With the owner’s permission, Scouts worked on the property walking fields and removing debris. More than a hundred other volunteer workers also removed debris that day. It was a project immediately crucial before any planting could be done.

    Scouts worked on an area covering 140 acres. As they walked the fields they found and collected all sorts of debris which were placed together in large piles. Some items were extremely large and heavy. Some had to be pried back and forth and pulled out of the ground. Tractors pulled hay wagons to load and carry the debris away to a central location and then to a landfill. The debris collected filled several hay wagons.

    Troop 33’s second project took place northwest of Kirkland on Wheeler Road where a wooded property lost more than 300 trees downed by the tornado. There to help clear downed trees, adults manned chain saws, older Scouts used hand saws, while younger Scouts carried wood. From the downed trees, stacks of cut wood and brush piles were created. D Ryan Tree Service donated a Bobcat and operator to move giant logs. Hard work made a visible difference.

    Recovery from the tornado will involve so much more. There are more fields to walk, more debris to remove and so many more downed trees to clear. There are donated items to be sorted, hundreds of young trees to plant and so much money needs to be raised. Community groups and individual volunteers are needed.

    Long Term Recovery requires a community effort. Those with interest or questions about what they can do should call the Volunteer Hotline at 815-762-8653. Individuals and groups interested in volunteering can fill out volunteer forms at http://villageofkirkland.com/2015/04/tornado-recovery-information-volunteers/.

    Fairdale, Illinois was hit by an EF-4 tornado on
    April 9, 2015, which left the town in ruins.

    Click here to see a video that gives you a good idea of the
    devastation in the area and of the need for more help.

    Click here to visit Boy Life Online for the article.

    Boys Life Online - April 2015

    Illinois Scouts help clean up after
    another tornado

    In the November 2014 issue of Boys’ Life, we told you about several Illinois Boy Scout troops that participated in an event they called Service-O-Ree. The Scouts traveled a short distance across their state to the town of Washington to help clean up after a devastating outbreak of tornadoes.

    Just a few weeks go — one year after the group’s trip to Washington — there was another tornado strike, and this one hit even closer to home.

    And, once again, the Scouts are springing into action. The most recent strike hit the town of Fairdale, Ill., in the same district where the Service-O-Ree Scouts live.

    Contributed Photo
    Scouts and leaders from Troop 33 in DeKalb and Troop 139 in Waterman backpacked in subzero temperatures in northern Wisconsin in February

    Contributed photo
    Some scouts helped feed sled dogs while on a backpacking expedition in northern Wisconsin.

    Daily Chronicle - March 7, 2015

    Area Boy Scouts enjoy subzero backpacking

    Winter backpacking can be fun, even in the most extreme artic conditions.

    Boy Scouts from Troop 33 in DeKalb and Troop 139 in Waterman enjoyed an artic adventure together when they traveled hundreds of miles north to Tomahawk Scout Reservation near Rice Lake, Wisconsin.

    Their expedition started Friday evening. Outfitted with winter gear, they were transported to a backwoods site. In the dark of night, they hiked with backpacks and equipment sleds across a frozen lake to a remote cabin. There they reviewed winter safety protocol and emergency rescue techniques.

    Saturday morning brought -30 degree wind chill. Carefully dressed in multiple layers to provide maximum warmth, they ventured out into a piercing wind.

    Along a snow-covered trail, with backpacks and sleds, they hiked to an area to assist with sled dogs. After harnessing and feeding the dogs, they shared social time with them. It made for a fun and educational stop.

    On a frozen lake, they enjoyed kite flying. Strong winds made controlling a kite nearly an impossible task. Boys took turns. Powerful gusts of wind could bring boys off their feet for sensational face-plants in the snow. Laughter was shared.

    Lunchtime included food dropped at an unknown location. Using a GPS (global positioning system) device, Scouts were skill-tested to find their food. They found lunch in record time.

    A fire tower 100 feet tall presented another challenge. Despite cold winds, they climbed to the top for a panoramic view and the opportunity to see how deep a dropped water bottle would penetrate into the snow.

    More hiking brought them to a campsite on a wooded peninsula, where they began building snow shelters for the night.

    Called a quinzee, a shelter is created by building a large mound of snow, then digging out a sleeping area. Before digging, the snow needs time to sinter. Sintering involves snow crystals bonding to create structural mass. Their waiting time was spent sledding on a nearby hill.

    With shelters complete, a dinner of chicken and wild rice soup with breadsticks made for a filling and delicious meal. Nutritious snacks were frequent throughout the day. Nutrients and calories are important for sustaining warmth in the cold.

    Bright winter stars created a sky so unbelievable that a night hike became a necessity. Besides stargazing, it provided a cardio workout pumping warmth into every part of their bodies.

    Quinzees provided excellent shelter from frigid cold that night. Scouts slept sound and warm. They awoke to -17 degrees the second morning. Considerable time was spent preparing themselves, packing up gear and loading sleds.

    A trek across a lake, followed by a woodland trail, eventually took them to a snow tubing hill and a hot lunch. The expedition was complete.

    Time was filled with fun, fellowship, teamwork, self-reliance and challenge, all in the face of winter’s harshest conditions. They earned Snow Base Expedition, Polar Bear and Zero Hero awards.

    Photo provided
    Boy Scouts from left, Jordan Burke, Jack Petrie, Billy Adams, and Brandon Radtke of Troop 33 in DeKalb hold the northern pike caught while ice fishing

    MidWeek - December 18, 2015

    Scouts enjoy ice fishing

    Boy Scouts from DeKalb’s Troop 33, sponsored by First Lutheran Church, braved the winter cold for an exciting ice fishing adventure. They traveled 400 miles north to Lac Dieux Desert, a giant 4,000-acre lake, which covers a portion of the Wisconsin/Michigan border. There they learned some of the fun and rigors of ice fishing from professional guides.

    Scouts and leaders based themselves for the day in a central location on the lake outfitted with a windbreak tent, cooking grill, snowmobiles and sleds. The ice on the lake was more than 10 inches thick.

    Fishing guides explained and demonstrated the boys needed to know before ice fishing. More than 40 fishing sites had been selected where fishing-holes were drilled with power augers.

    Each fishing-hole was equipped with line, hook and bait and connected to a tip-up device identified by a bright orange flag. If a fish took the bait at a tip-up, the orange flag would pop up signifying there was a fish.

    An adult with boys would quickly respond by snowmobile or run to the tip-up site. Sometimes multiple flags would pop up at the same time sending Scouts responding in different locations.

    Responding to a flag pop up at a fishing-hole could produce different results, such as pulling up a snag of weeds, a fish escaping, or the best hoped result of catching a large fish.

    Luckily, the fish were really biting that day and keeping boys plenty busy. They caught northern pikes, crappie and perch with the total day’s catch numbering 45 fish. The largest fish of the day was a tie between two 28-inch northern pike. Of the fish caught, 34 were released back into the lake and 11 were kept for a fish fry later that night.

    As daylight came to an end, Scouts collected gear and moved off the lake. Even off the lake there was still plenty of work to do. The task of cleaning all those fish required a lot of hard work and delicate skill. Scouts received training and valuable experience under the guidance of experienced adults.

    The return to DeKalb included a stop at Cave of the Mounds near Blue Mounds, Wisconsin. Scouts enjoyed some underground adventure and education as they explored the cave and learned lessons about geology and cave formation.

    Photo provided Scouts stand atop the Double Arch rock formation while backpacking at Daniel Boone National Forest in Kentucky. From left, Keegan Donnelly, Jordan Burke, Ryan McNett, Jack Petrie, Noah Larsen, Seth Wickens-Walther.

    Photo provided Troop 33 Scouts climbed the via ferrata on the vertical rock face of a canyon while on an adventure trip in Kentucky.

    Photo provided Troop 33 Scouts descend at high speed on a zip line while on an adventure trip in Kentucky.
    MidWeek - December 24, 2014 - page 23

    Scouts spend holiday in wilderness challenge

    Boy Scouts from DeKalb’s Troop 33 traveled to Kentucky to experience a four-part series of adventures packed into the Thanksgiving holiday.

    At Daniel Boone National Forest, they backpacked through rugged mountains, along steep wooded ridges, narrow ravines, rock formations, and sandstone cliffs. One of their favorite places was atop Double Arch rock, which provided an amazing view of the surrounding wilderness.

    Later that day, they did what millions of Americans were doing. A Thanksgiving meal, which they cooked themselves, was complete with ham, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, green beans and dinner rolls.

    Rock climbing in the Red River Gorge included safety instruction and the excitement of climbing and rappelling. Training included first aid and emergencies, special knots, climbing equipment, technical skills, verbal signals and safety procedures. Then everything they learned became an action, as Scouts went straight up the rugged rock face of high cliffs and rappelled back down.

    Next was “via ferrata”, Italian for “iron road.” It’s a climbing route built across a treacherous rock face using iron rungs, pegs, carved steps, ladders and narrow swinging bridges. Harnessed and clipped to a safety cable, Scouts undertook the extreme challenge of traversing the via ferrata routes. Via ferrata was used in Europe during World War I by the Italians to move troops through the otherwise impassable Dolomite Mountains.

    Next and last was a visit to one of the nation’s largest zip line centers. A zip line consists of a pulley mounted to a cable that slides down from a high point to a lower point. Scouts used a safety harness to ride down a cable at each of seven zip lines, including some of the fastest, highest and longest in the nation. It was a Thanksgiving holiday they will never forget.

    Members of Boy Scout Troop 33 enjoyed a backpacking adventure in the back country wilderness of Black River State Forest in Wisconsin. Pictured (from left) are Tom Comer, Matthew West, Ryan McNett, Bryce Comer, Aiden Witthoff, Caeden Keith and Chad McNett.
    Daily Chronicle - November 15, 2014

    Scouts explore wilderness on Wis. backpacking trip

    Boy Scouts from Troop 33 in DeKalb enjoyed a backpacking trip at the Black River State Forest in Wisconsin. Scouts carried food, water, bedding, tents, clothing, plus cooking utensils and stoves on their backs.

    When backpacking in remote areas, scouts have to prepare for potential dangers and difficulties like adverse weather, treacherous terrain, health risk or injuries or dangerous animals. The Scouts felt trained and ready.

    A few climbs brought them to high points with amazing views where scouts could look for miles in all directions. It gave them a sense of achievement and an appreciation for the beauty the wilderness provides.

    Scouts spent time each day working on cooking skills and sharing their talents. At night they talked, laughed and shared stories around the campfire.

    They practiced “leave no trace,” a low-impact outdoor ethic that promotes conservation in the outdoors. They learned to better appreciate the outdoors while they had fun, strengthened bonds, and shared positive experiences.

    Layout of Boys Life pages 26-27 November 2014.
    Boys Life - November 2014

    Helping other people at all times
    can be a lot of hard work - and a lot of fun.

    Four months earlier, in November 2013, a tornado outbreak accounted for more than $900 million in damage and casued more than 100 injuries across the region, and the cleanup is nowhere near finished.

    But for the residents of the town, there is hope - in the form of volunteers who have been going door to door and street to street, cleaning up debris and helping out however they can.

    Many of the volunteers are Scouts. They've been coming in from all over the area, starting just weeks after the tornados hit and continuing months later.

    This is what Scouts do - help other people at all times.
    "My mind-set is, if this had happened to me, I would want someone to help me recover," says Keegan Donnelly, a 14-year-old from Troop 33 in DeKalb, Ill., who traveled more than 100 miles with his fellow Scouts to help out in Washington. "So I want to be that person to help them."

    A Different Kind of Fun
    Completing a service project might not be fun like, say, whitewater rafting is fun. The fun in doing service comes from the satisfaction of knowing that your hard work has made someone's life better.

    Just a few weeks before the DeKalb Scouts traveled to help out the tornado victims in Illinois, Cub Scouts in Mesquite, Texas, were going door to door in their neighborhood, collecting canned goods for their Scouting for Food service project.

    Completely differenct kind of service project, similar result.

    "It helps a lot of people," says 9-year-old Ethan Cochran from Pack 1115 in Mesquite. "It's very fun, and it makes the world a better place."

    A Great Reward
    There are hundreds of ways Scouts can help out in their communities and beyond. From planting flags at a veterans' cemetery to collecting books for underprivileged kids, there's always work to be done.

    In Washington, ILL., it's hard for the Scouts not to feel sorry for the residents. Some of them lost the roof on their house; others lost everything. that's why sometimes just picking up debris doesn't seem like enough.

    "It's sad if you think about it... how hard that can be financially and emotionally," Keegan says. "the guys in our troop love helping people and talking to them, too. They are the nicest people to us. For how much they've lost, they're always trying to offer something to us.
    "That's what keeps us going our there."
    Door to door, street to street... all across the country.

    Re-enactors assigned Boy Scouts to a position and instructed them in each step during a mock firing of a civil war cannon.
    Daily Chronicle - October 18, 2014
    Living history camp takes Boy Scouts back in time

    Boy Scout Troop 33 in DeKalb “traveled” more than 200 years back in time when they spent a weekend at a living history event in Ashippun, Wisconsin.

    Scattered over acres of land were historic camps under canvas tents and tarps filled with authentic furnishings and tools. Seeing and meeting re-enactors in period dress and manner brought everything to life. They told great stories, explained how things worked, and were happy to answer every question.

    Historic camps included fur trappers, French voyageurs, long riflemen, mountain men, Native Americans, traders, musicians, highlanders, Civil War cavalry, infantry, artillery, plus French and British settlers. A large circle of teepees replicated those used by the Cheyenne Plains Indians during the early 1800s.

    The weather was a challenge for camping, but neither the rain and wind on Saturday, nor the frost and freezing temperatures on Sunday morning could dampen the boys’ spirit of discovery. They were eager to explore all the areas, excited to learn new things about old times. One location introduced them to the sport of tomahawk throwing. Scouts tried their best to hit a playing card on a wooden target. A re-enactor offered sage advice on how to improve their throwing style. In one tent, a British woman demonstrated a hand-cranked wood lathe. Visitors turned a wheel while she sculpted a piece of spinning wood.

    Battery A, 4th U.S. Light Artillery, Cushing’s Battery, instructed Scouts in a mock firing of their Civil War cannon. The boys were assigned firing positions and instructed in each step. The training taught Scouts the importance of precision teamwork.

    Next to the teepees, people gathered at dusk around a sacred fire, known to Native Americans as a drum circle. Scouts were given a small drum to beat during parts of a ceremony. Stories explained the meaning of each part of the ceremony.

    An infantry soldier demonstrated various rifles and pistols used during the era. Cavalry soldiers rode horses across a field in drill formation. There were so many different things to see and do, the Scouts couldn’t find time for everything

    DeKalb Boy Scout Troop 33 receives a check for $2,674.63 Monday from Corn Fest chairwoman Lisa Angel and DeKalb Corn Fest board members Mark Salsberry (red shirt), Stacie Haugh (black shirt), Shawn Lowe, and Melissa Butts. The auction of Northern Illinois University specialty Corn Fest football jerseys raised more than $8,000
    Daily Chronicle - October 3, 2014
    Corn Fest distributes funds from NIU jersey auction

    DeKALB – Scoutmaster Cliff Golden was surprised by the amount of money presented to his Boy Scout troop, and he knows the funds will be used to help others.

    DeKalb Boy Scout Troop 33, which often travels to help others in need, was one of three recipients of funds from the Corn Fest’s auction of corn-themed Northern Illinois University football jerseys, so it could continue to complete projects. In the past, the troop has traveled to disaster sites including New Jersey after Superstorm Sandy, and Oklahoma and Washington, Illinois, to provide relief.

    “We have some different ideas,” Golden said. “Whatever disasters come our way, we will help. We are very pleased and excited to even be considered for this.”

    The special fundraiser was a one-time opportunity for Corn Fest, said Lisa Angel, Corn Fest chairwoman and marketing development manager at the Daily Chronicle. NIU typically partners with a local nonprofit on a commemorative jersey.

    In November, American-flag-themed jerseys featuring a red camouflage number were auctioned to benefit Active Heroes, which provides military families with financial assistance and programs that combat post-traumatic stress disorder and suicide.

    This year, the first home football game of the season fell the night before Corn Fest started.

    Angel said festival leaders decided to spread the proceeds from the auction to three separate causes, and were pleased with the results. More than $8,000 was raised by the sale of all 99 jerseys, so the Canaday family, Voluntary Action Center and Boy Scout Troop 33 each received a check for $2,674.63 this week.

    “You never know whether people are going to buy them or not,” Angel said. “We had to hold our breaths a little.”

    VAC Executive Director Tom Zucker said the money will help fund the organization’s day-to-day operations, which include transportation services and the Meals on Wheels program.

    Mark Canaday has been overwhelmed by the community support his family has received since Corn Fest.

    Canaday has been battling esophageal cancer, while his son, Christopher, was born with pulmonary atresia and has had 33 surgeries in his 13 years. The family deals with many medical expenses and related costs, so Corn Fest organizers selected the family as one of three beneficiaries of the auction to help with medical bills.

    “It’s amazing how much love the community has given us,” said Amy Canaday, Mark Canaday’s wife. “To be on the receiving end of this is just overwhelming.”

    Keegan Donnelly Eagle Scout
    Daily Chronicle - September 6, 2014
    Donnelly earns Eagle Scout rank

    DeKALB – Keegan Donnelly, a member of Boy Scout Troop 33 chartered by First Lutheran Church in DeKalb, was recently presented the Eagle Scout Award, the highest rank in the Boy Scouts of America. Keegan is the son of Bernie and Deanna Donnelly of DeKalb.

    Donnelly first entered Scouting in 2006 with Cub Scout Pack 173, sponsored by St. Mary School in DeKalb. He earned the Arrow of Light Award, the highest honor in the Cub Scout program. In 2011 he crossed over into Boy Scout Troop 33.

    He attended numerous campouts and activities in every season, highlighted by several summer camps at Camp Lowden in Oregon, Illinois.

    Donnelly has been involved in Troop 33’s high adventure programs, including backpacking at Rocky Mountain National Park, hiking in the Badlands National Monument, Grand Tetons and Yellowstone National Parks, as well as visiting Mount Rushmore. Disaster relief efforts have taken him to New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy, tornado sites in Oklahoma, and more locally, Illinois tornado sites in Harrisburg and Washington.

    He attended the 2013 National Scout Jamboree in West Virginia and recently completed National Youth LeadershipTraining.

    Donnelly has served in various leadership positions, including senior patrol leader. He earned 41 merit badges. He is a Brotherhood member of the Order of the Arrow, Scouting’s national honor society. Keegan was presented the Ad Altare Dei award at the Catholic cathedral in Rockford.

    His Eagle project involved improving the central landscaped area at St. Mary School.

    Improvements included installing lights for the American flag and St. Mary statue, painting the St. Mary statue, replacing shrubs and plants, installing landscape cloth and decorative stone, and installing a granite monument commemorating the 100th anniversary of the school.

    Donnelly is a 2014 graduate of St. Mary School and will be a student at Aurora Central Catholic High School in the fall.

    All smiles, Christopher Canaday, 13, walks off the field with his dad Mark Canaday after the coin toss before NIU's home opener against Presbyterianin Huskie Stadium on Thursday, August 28, 2014. Canady was born with pulmonary atresia and has had 33 surgeries in his 13 years and his father Mark is currently battling esophageal cancer. Corn Fest organizers chose the Canaday family as a beneficiary for the first Northern Illinois University football jersey auction, an effort to raise money by selling the Corn Fest-themed jerseys worn by the Huskies during their opening game.
    Daily Chronicle - August 28, 2014
    DeKalb's Annual Cornfest set to pop




    DeKALB – Mark Canaday has been overwhelmed by the support his family has received from the community, but he had no idea it would amount to recognition during Corn Fest weekend.

    Canaday has been battling esophageal cancer, while his son, Christopher, was born with pulmonary atresia and has had 33 surgeries in his 13 years. The family deals with many medical expenses and related costs, and with two other children, things can be tough for Mark and his wife, Amy.

    "Going to and from medical procedures, it's constant," Mark Canaday said. "It's not uncommon for us to go in and out of Chicago two or three times per month or more for procedures."

    Corn Fest organizers chose the Canaday family as a beneficiary their first Northern Illinois University football jersey auction, an effort to raise money by selling Corn Fest-themed jerseys such as those worn by the Huskies during their opener Thursday night.

    The auction was a way to help the community while showcasing town-gown relations, said chairwoman Lisa Angel, who is also the marketing development manager at the Daily Chronicle. The three-day Corn Fest opens today in downtown DeKalb, with hours of 3 to 11 p.m. today, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.

    The auction, which is open online now through 10 p.m. Sept. 5, also will benefit local Boy Scout Troop 33 and Voluntary Action Center.

    Chad McNett, committee chairman for Boy Scout Troop 33, said the group was surprised when they were selected by festival organizers to receive funds from the auction.

    "It was kind of a mix, we were happy but very surprised," McNett said. "Comparing ourselves to the other beneficiaries, we don't even feel like we're worthy."

    However, the troop uses its funds to help others. In the past, the troop has traveled to help in disaster sites including New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy, and Oklahoma and Washington, Illinois, to provide relief after tornadoes.

    "These kids love doing it," McNett said. "Sometimes it surprises us how much they love to help. The kids bust their butts all year doing fundraisers to fund projects to help others, and this is money they can spend to keep helping others."

    Voluntary Action Center was founded 40 years ago on the principle of helping others, and it will use its portion of the auction proceeds to continue services in the community, such as serving meals and providing rides to those who need them, including rides to and from Corn Fest this weekend for seniors and people with disabilities.

    "We're a grassroots agency that begins with support from the community," said VAC executive director Tom Zucker. "We were thrilled to learn we were picked to be one of the beneficiaries of this. It'll help a lot."

    This will be the second year Corn Fest has been held downtown after its five-year stint at DeKalb Taylor Municipal Airport. Prior to that, the festival was held downtown annually for 30 years.

    Organizers are hoping for better weather this year. Last year, the festival's opening night saw a torrential downpour, Angel said. However, she was pleased many people stuck it out by waiting in nearby bars and restaurants until the rain let up.

    "Nobody went home during the rain," Angel said. "People wanted to be at the festival anyway. That's what it's all about."

    Events this year include a weekend full of music performances, both on the main sound stage at the Second and Locust streets, and the community sound stage on Lincoln Highway.

    The bike rally will be held Sunday at Lions Park, and the vintage car show will be held Saturday at city hall, near Fourth Street and Grove Street. The free corn boil will be held 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, or until corn runs out.

    "Where else can you eat free sweet corn, hear free music and go home without spending a penny?" Angel said.



    • Vintage auto show Autofest, 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, City Hall

    • Historical bus tours by historian Steve Bigolin, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, corner of Grove and Fourth Streets

    • Chuck Siebrasse Corn Boil, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, corner of Fourth Street and Lincoln Highway

    • Cornhole bags tournament, 11 a.m. Saturday, soundstage area

    For more information and a full list of events, call 815-748-CORN or visit www.cornfest.com.

    Carnival hours 3 to 11 p.m. Friday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday

    Beer garden hours 5 to 11:30 p.m. Friday Noon to 11:30 p.m. Saturday Noon to 6 p.m. Sunday

    Salvador Servin, of Elgin, helps set up for the Corn Fest carnival Wednesday. Corn Fest will begin Friday and run until Sunday in downtown DeKalb. The carnival will be held in the city and frontier parking lots between Second and Third streets (photo by Ryan Coasio)
    Northern Star - August 28, 2014
    Corn Fest Guide

    by Rachel Scaman

    The Huskies will sport custom Corn Fest jerseys during this year’s first football home game today.

    Corn Fest is a free annual music festival that runs Friday-Sunday on Lincoln Highway between First and Fourth streets.


    The jerseys will be auctioned off to raise money to benefit three charities Voluntary Action Center of DeKalb, Boy Scout Troop 33 and the Canaday family.

    • The Voluntary Action Center of DeKalb is an organization composed of volunteers throughout DeKalb County. The Voluntary Action Center of DeKalb provides transportation and meals for seniors and people with disabilities. The group’s public transportation facility and community kitchen are located at 1606 Bethany Road.

    • Troop 33 is a program for boys grades six through 12. Their service opportunities include local community service and national disaster relief projects.

    • Christopher Canaday, an eighth grader at Clinton Rosette Middle School, was born with pulmonary atresia, a heart defect that has made his right ventricle nonfunctional. Christopher’s father, Mark Canaday, has been diagnosed with esophageal cancer. Proceeds go toward providing for the family.

    History, changes

    Corn Fest Chairperson Lisa Angel said Corn Fest has been around since 1977 when Del Monte Foods started giving away free corn after the harvest.

    The festival is a good way to bring NIU and DeKalb together, Angel said.

    “This is a perfect example of communiversity,” Angel said. “People who have moved away still come back for Corn Fest.”

    Angel said downtown stores started doing sidewalk sales soon after Del Monte Foods started giving away corn, then musical attractions, vendors and carnivals were added.

    “Corn Fest is one of the last free fests you can go to besides the beer garden, which is $5 per day,” Angel said.

    “One things that is different this year is that there will be shuttles that will pick people up from the Aurora and Elburn train stations and take them” to Corn Fest. “It’s great for people who have family coming.”

    Community members

    Kari Sulaver, owner of Northern Illinois Dance Center, said her dance students have been performing at Corn Fest for five years.

    “It’s a great venue, and the kids really enjoy being a part of it,” Sulaver said.

    Sulaver said she is happy with the change in location of the festival. Last year, the festival location was changed from the DeKalb Taylor Municipal Airport to its current downtown location. Corn Fest used to be held downtown, but then moved to the airport when the four-year renovation on downtown started. The fest was held at the airport 2008-to 2012.

    “You see a lot more people at Corn Fest” now that it’s back downtown, Sulaver said.

    Angel said there are more than 200 people volunteering this year. Blake Benzo, junior finance major and member of Tau Kappa Epsilon, said he is volunteering at the festival with his fraternity brothers.

    “I’m going to Corn Fest because I want to get the Greeks more involved in the community and I feel this is the perfect event for that,” Benzo said.

    Road closures

    The first of a series of road and parking lot closures began Tuesday in preparation for Corn Fest. The city lots of Glidden, Ellwood and Haish, as well as the parking lots of Ronan-Moore-Finch Funeral Home and Frontier Communications will be closed until Sunday.

    Starting Thursday are closures for Lincoln Highway between First and Fourth streets, Locust Street between Second and Fourth streets, Second Street from the railroad tracks north of Oak Street and Third Street from the railroad tracks north of Oak Street. First State Bank drive-through customers will be able to access Locust Street until noon Saturday.

    The City Lots at Fourth and Grove and Second and Grove, and street parking on Locust Street to the East of Fourth Street will be available during the festival.


    Voluntary Action Center

    Troop 33
    Scoutmaster: Cliff Golden

    Canaday Family
    to read an article about the
    family go to bit.ly/YXRfdJ.

    DeKalb Boy Scout Troop 33 went to summer camp at Camp Lowden in July. (photo provided)
    Midweek - August 27, 2014
    Troop 33 spends week at camp

    DeKALB – Boy Scout Troop 33, chartered by First Lutheran Church in DeKalb, traveled to Camp Lowden near Oregon, Illinois, for summer camp July 20-26.

    The 21 Scouts completed a total of 87 merit badges, including badges such as cinematography, chess, geocaching, golf, oceanography and robotics. Other activities included swimming, rifle shooting, archery, wilderness survival, climbing, rappelling, bouldering, kayaking and riding all-terrain vehicles.

    Parents and siblings came out for Family Night, which featured a picnic dinner followed by a variety of fun camp-wide games and contests. Later that evening, a special campfire program recognized eight Scouts and one adult Scout leader for their election into the Order of the Arrow.

    Some younger Scouts took part in the First Class Express program, which included basic outdoor skills fulfilling selected requirements for Tenderfoot, Second Class and First Class ranks.

    The week ended with a celebration of Christmas in July. On July 25, Scouts enjoyed Christmas cookies, a large decorated tree, a day filled with skits, holiday songs, and even a warm weather visit from Santa.

    The NIU Huskies will wear commemorative Corn Fest jerseys in their season opener Aug. 28. After the game, the jerseys will be auctioned to benefit three DeKalb charitable causes.. (Photo provided)
    Midweek - August 13, 2014
    Huskies’ Corn Fest jerseys to be auctioned for charity

    DeKALB – Northern Illinois University’s connection to the local community and DeKalb County run deep, and those ties, as well as NIU President Doug Baker’s continuing emphasis on maintaining and building the “communiversity” connection, are the inspiration behind the 2014 Corn Fest jerseys that the Huskie Football team will wear in the 2014 season opener on Aug. 28 at Huskie Stadium.

    In addition to recognizing the region’s agricultural roots, the special Corn Fest jerseys will be auctioned online to benefit three local causes. Proceeds from the auction will be split among the Voluntary Action Center of DeKalb, Boy Scout Troop 33, and the Canaday Family, a local family whose eighth-grade son, Christopher, was born with pulmonary atresia and has had 34 surgeries during his young life. Christopher’s father, Mark, an NIU employee, is also battling esophageal cancer.

    The Voluntary Action Center serves DeKalb through myriad programs, including Meals on Wheels, which provides hot meals to the elderly, disabled and homebound, while their TransVAC and MedVAC services provide rides for senior citizens, the disabled and the general public. The Center also works with TAILS Humane Society to make sure that seniors’ pets are well fed.

    Boy Scout Troop 33 participates in many fundraising events in the DeKalb area, and uses the money raised to travel around the country to help people in need. In addition to local activities – like their service during Corn Fest, when they stay after the events each night to clean up – they have been to the communities damaged by natural disasters like hurricanes and tornadoes.

    Fans can bid on the jerseys online by clicking the link on the Corn Fest website at www.cornfest.com. The only way to obtain one of the special jerseys is through the online auction site. Bidding will close at 10 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 5.

    NIU Head Coach Rod Carey said he is happy that Huskie Football can be involved with promoting an event like Corn Fest and helping worthy causes in the community.

    “Partnering with the community is always important, so when Lisa Angel and her group at Corn Fest brought us this opportunity, we couldn’t say no,” Carey said. “They introduced us to the Canaday family and just knowing their story, I couldn’t think of a better family and cause. Mark and Christopher will be our honorary captains for this game and we’ll be honored to have them with us.

    “Then you talk about the Voluntary Action Center and the Boy Scouts. Groups like these are what make our community tick. They do so much for other people in this community and for Corn Fest, and we are just trying to do our part to be good partners and good citizens.”

    Excited Scouts from Boy Scout Troop 33 pose with their new equipment trailer. The purchase of the new trailer was made possible through a grant from the DeKalb County Community Foundation. (Photo provided)
    Daily Chronicle - August 9, 2014
    Grant awarded to Boy Scout Troop 33

    DEKALB – Boy Scout Troop 33 of DeKalb received a $2,750 grant from the DeKalb County Community Foundation to assist with the purchase of a new equipment trailer. Purchasing the new equipment trailer was an important goal for the troop.

    “I’m really excited about our new trailer. It can store and move a lot of equipment, which better supports our program. I’m very grateful to the DeKalb County Community Foundation for the grant,” Cliff Golden, Scoutmaster of Troop 33 said in a news release.

    The new trailer might be seen at various locations in DeKalb where the Scouts work to support many community events throughout the year.

    Climbing mountains, paddling lakes, biking across America, are just a few things that Scouts do. Troop 33 has also taken their Scouts long distances to work with disaster relief projects at flood, tornado, and hurricane sites far and wide.

    The Boy Scout program works to instill within boys the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law, with aims that include fitness, character, and citizenship. Those are things found in troop activities throughout the year, from the small weekend campouts to the large scale high adventure trips.

    Boys work hard while having fun. They learn exciting new things as they experience each new adventure. Over the years their boys have traveled through 49 states and 19 foreign countries in search of adventure.

    Boy Scout Troop 33 began serving the DeKalb area in 1925. Sponsored by First Lutheran Church in DeKalb, the troop's slogan is "Always an Adventure".

    Troop 33 can be visited online at: www.troop33dekalb.net.

    NIU Cornfest Jerseys
    CBS SPORTS - August 7, 2014
    Northern Illinois to wear corn-themed jersey for charity

    By Jerry Hinnen | College Football Writer

    Eat your heart out, Iowa-Nebraska. Ya snooze, ya lose, rejected 2011 CyHawk trophy. Some programs aren't afraid to mix a little corn into their football.

    Programs like, apparently, Northern Illinois . The Huskies announced Thursday that in conjunction with DeKalb's annual CornFest -- this year, held the same weekend as NIU's season opener against FCS Presbyterian -- they would wear special corn-themed jerseys to be auctioned off for charity after the game. Behold:

    From the Huskies' announcement:
    In addition to recognizing the region's agricultural roots, the special Corn Fest jerseys worn by the Huskies during the season opener will be auctioned online to benefit three worthy local causes. Proceeds from the auction will be split among the Voluntary Action Center of DeKalb, Boy Scout Troop 33, and the Canaday Family, a local family whose eighth-grade son, Christopher, was born with pulmonary atresia and has had 34 surgeries during his young life. Meanwhile, Christopher's father, Mark, an NIU employee, is battling esophageal cancer.

    So, yeah, anyone complaining about whether these uniforms look good or not is sorta-kinda totally missing the point. Besides, there's no better place to develop the corn theme than on the shoulder pads, and it kinda looks like this is corn protected by bleeping BARBED WIRE, doesn't it?

    In short: thumbs up all the way around, Huskies.

    Eagle Scout Jonathan Snow
    Daily Chronicle - July 19, 2014
    Eagle Scout honors WWII veterans

    Jonathan Snow, a member of Boy Scout Troop 33, chartered at First Lutheran Church in DeKalb, was recently presented the Eagle Scout Award, the highest rank in the Boy Scouts of America.

    Jonathan is the son of Robert and Pamela Snow of DeKalb.

    Jonathan joined Cub Scouts in 2002 with Cub Scout Pack 132, where he earned the Arrow of Light Award, the highest honor in the Cub Scout program. In 2007, he crossed over into Boy Scout Troop 33.

    He attended numerous campouts and activities in every season, highlighted by several summer camps at Camp Lowden in Oregon, Illinois. He experienced winter adventure while dog sledding and ice hiking along Lake Superior, plus a summer adventure canoeing in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in Minnesota.

    Jonathan served in various leadership positions as a Scout. He earned 28 merit badges. He is a Brotherhood member of the Order of the Arrow, Scouting’s national honor society.

    His Eagle Project involved renovating historic nameplates of World War II veterans who were members of First Lutheran Church. Using these restored nameplates, he supervised a crew of workers creating a large oak plaque for public display to commemorate their service.

    Snow is a 2014 graduate of DeKalb High School. He will attend OralRoberts University in Oklahoma in the fall.

    Boy Scout Troop 33 Scout Ryan Kothrade paddles his kayak down the Little Miami River in Ohio with his troop. Adult leader Tom Burke paddles the river behind. (Photo provided)
    Midweek - July 16, 2014
    Scouts Ohio trip includes kayaking, aviation museum

    Boy Scout Troop 33 of DeKalb enjoyed a kayak trip to the Little Miami River of southern Ohio. Forested banks with giant trees provided a green canopy above them as clear waters brought Scouts floating past turtles sunning on logs, birds darting through trees, and even a water snake.

    Besides beauty, nature also brought them a generous amount of rain – not once, but four times. But even a hard downpour wasn't enough to dampen the Scouts' spirits.

    The boys camped at Caesar Creek State Park and visited the National Museum of the United States Air Force, located in Dayton. At one of the world’s largest aviation museums, Scouts saw historic planes from the early days of aviation to the giant aircraft of recent times

    Eagle Scout Alex Cohen
    Midweek - June 02, 2014
    Alex Cohen earns Eagle

    Alex Cohen, a member of Boy Scout Troop 33 chartered at First Lutheran Church in DeKalb, was recently presented the Eagle Scout Award, the highest rank in the Boy Scouts of America. Alex is the son of Jack Cohen and Debbie Hermanson Strejc of Cortland.

    Cohen first entered scouting in 2002 with Cub Scout Pack 173 sponsored by St. Mary School in DeKalb. He earned the Arrow of Light Award, the highest honor in the Cub Scout program. In 2007, he crossed over into Boy Scout Troop 33.

    He attended numerous campouts and activities in every season, highlighted by several summer camps at Camp Lowden in Oregon, Illinois.

    Cohen served in various leadership positions as a Scout. He earned 24 merit badges. He is a Brotherhood member of the Order of the Arrow, Scouting’s national honor society.

    His Eagle project involved replacing an old, weathered pedestrian bridge at the St. Mary School playground with a new and improved bridge. The new wooden bridge is handicapped accessible and provides students with a safe crossing point over a drainage area to the school playground.

    Cohen is a 2014 graduate of Aurora Central Catholic High School. He will be attending Carroll University in Wisconsin

    DeKalb County Cub Scouts pick up debris in front of a house that was almost destroyed by the November tornado that struck Washington, Ill. (Photo provided)

    DeKalb County Scouts spread out along Business U.S. 24 in Washington, Ill., removing tornado debris. (Photo provided)

    DeKalb County Scouts pose with a heap of debris they gathered from the front yard of a home in Washington, Ill., that was nearly destroyed by a November tornado that struck the town. (Photo provided)

    NOTE: Troop 33 participated with a work crew of 19 people. The middle photo shows Troop 33 scouts clearing debris along Business Route 24 in Washington, Illinois. Troop 33 stayed three days April 28-30. We represented Scouting and talked with tornado survivors on Sunday at church services in both Washington and Roanoke, IL.

    MidWeek - April 9, 2014
    Scouts aid tornado-stricken city

    Over the last weekend of spring break, DeKalb County Boy Scouts made history.

    On March 28 and 29, more than 150 local Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts and Scout leaders from 15 Scouting units traveled to Washington, Ill. to help with tornado recovery. It may have been the first time so many different Scouting groups from the local district made a disaster relief trip together, Scout leader Hugh Bisco said.

    On Nov. 17, a tornado with winds estimated at 190 mph traveled through Tazewell, Woodford, LaSalle and Livingston counties. It reached its maximum intensity in Washington, a city of about 15,000 people near Peoria. According to the National Weather Service, the tornado destroyed 633 homes, seven businesses, and seven apartment buildings and inflicted major damage on 280 homes, two businesses and a school in the city.

    With the help of volunteers, the residents of Washington are rebuilding and restarting their lives. “I grew up in central Illinois,” said Bisco, a Scout leader with both Troop 18 and Pack 141 in Sycamore. “I knew people who lost their homes. The day after the tornado happened, the Scouts wanted to go down and help. That’s what Scouts do – they help those in need.”

    In December, three Boy Scout troops from DeKalb County traveled to Washington to help with the tornado relief. When they returned, the stories they told sparked an excitement in other Scouts, and leaders began planning a second trip. Both Sycamore and DeKalb public schools had spring break the same week, leading Scouts throughout the district to plan a trip together.

    Sean Staats, 16, a Life Scout with Troop 13, went on both the December and March trips. “It was sad the first time I went down, but this time, the mood was better,” he said. “People were starting to rebuild and there was a sign of hope.”

    In Washington, some of the Scouts had their first glimpse of the destruction a tornado can cause. They saw a crumpled radio tower, rubble and litter scattered in fields, tarps covering holes in buildings, and sections of roofs missing from houses. In some cases, only a home’s foundation and a closet or bathroom remained.

    “I never saw anything like it before, except on the news,” 10-year-old Max Wray of Troop 18 said. “In real life, it’s worse. On TV, you see just that one picture, that one area. When you’re there, the whole town is like that. Where the tornado was, you could see houses almost torn in half.”

    The Boy Scouts arrived on Friday and spent the weekend in Washington. The Scouts, leaders, and members of their families were hosted by the Roanoke United Methodist Church in the nearby town of Roanoke, which provided them with dinner and a place to sleep. Trinity Lutheran Church of Roanoke gave the Scouts breakfast, and Bethany Community Church in Washington fed them lunch and provided trucks, trailers, and supplies to collect bags of debris and bring them to trash bins and dump piles.

    Scouts picked up small debris, such as screws, bolts, drywall, glass, and insulation scattered on the ground. The younger boys cleaned the fronts of houses and yards, while older boys helped clean sidewalks, streets and a golf course.

    “Usually that golf course is open all year round, but it’s been closed since the tornado,” said Mike Hudspeth, a Scout parent and the activities coordinator for Troop 18. “The farms are too debris-filled and muddy. The farmers cannot farm and will lose a whole year’s worth of income.”

    One tornado victim was emotional as she greeted volunteers, Scouts recalled. The tornado blew out the windows and tore the roof off the single mother’s home, and she and her 3-year-old daughter have only recently moved back in. Drivers honked and waved at the Scouts as they passed, and residents often came out of their houses to thank the volunteers.

    “The people there really needed and wanted our help,” said Gavin Gartman, a 13-year-old Tenderfoot from Troop 13. “An elderly lady with a blind husband hired somebody to clean her yard, but they did a really bad job. Since they didn’t do the best job, we helped her. Afterwards, she was so grateful, she even gave us a small donation.”

    Joseph Ryan. (Photo provided)
    Daily Chronicle - March 15, 2014
    DeKalb's Joseph Ryan earns Eagle Scout Rank

    Joseph Ryan recently received the Eagle Award, the highest award the Boy Scouts of America presents, as a member of Boy Scout Troop 33 in DeKalb.

    A 2013 graduate of DeKalb High School, he is the son of DaRin Ryan.

    His journey in scouting began as a Tiger Cub in Pack 173 sponsored by St. Mary School in DeKalb, where he earned the Arrow of Light, the highest award in Cub Scouts.

    In 2007, he joined Boy Scout Troop 33 sponsored by the First Lutheran Church in DeKalb. He enjoyed years of summer camp at Camp Lowden, where he earned many of his 27 merit badges and participated in swimming, canoeing, rifle shooting, archery, handicrafts, nature study and climbing.

    Ryan’s most exciting Scouting adventure was touring Central America with Troop 33. In Panama he enjoyed visiting Boca del Toro, snorkeling coral reefs, an island jungle and dolphin watching. Activities in Costa Rica included zip lines, jungle hiking, whitewater rafting, volcano rim hike, waterfall hike, night nature hike in a rain forest, local family homestay, Scout Troop 78 in Escazu, and touring museums and sites in San Jose.

    More recently he worked in disaster relief projects following Hurricane Sandy. He worked on multiple trips with his family collecting donations and cooking meals for hundreds of storm victims.

    His Eagle Project took place at Oaken Acres Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, located north of Sycamore, which involved supervising the construction and installation of 19 bluebird houses in 2013. He collected lumber and materials from the community and put Scouts to work in the process. Bluebird houses provide habitat for bluebirds along a nature trail near the Kishwaukee River.

    He has provided leadership in positions, including Junior Assistant Scoutmaster. Ryan is a student at Kishwaukee College.

    Boy Scout Troop 33 is sponsored by First Lutheran Church in DeKalb. Visit their website at www.troop33dekalb.org.

    Twenty-two Scouts and leaders from Boy Scout Troop 33 in DeKalb had a winter adventure in northern Wisconsin. (Photo provided)

    Ryan McNett tries his luck ice fishing on a lake frozen with ice more than two feet thick. (Photo provided)
    MidWeek - February 25, 2014
    Scouts have subzero adventure

    DeKALB – DeKalb Boy Scout Troop 33, chartered by First Lutheran Church, traveled 350 miles to experience an exciting winter adventure in northern Wisconsin.

    To prepare for the adventure, Scouts were trained in subjects that included snow shelters, warm clothing and sleep systems, nutrition and hydration, special winter equipment, buddy system, winter safety hazards, first aid, and emergency response.

    Everything they needed to survive in the back country was carried in backpacks and pulled in gear sleds. They camped on a lake with ice more than 2 feet thick. Overnight temperatures dropped to -5 as Scouts slept warm in a parachute shelter and snow shelters they had built. Meals were cooked using backpack stoves and provided hot, simple, nutritious, and delicious food.

    They enjoyed a variety of fun winter activities including constructing snow shelters, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, ice fishing, broomball, team building, and orienteering. They learned how to stay warm and have plenty of fun while experiencing a rugged subzero winter adventure.

    Twenty-two Scouts and leaders took part in the trip. Winter activities and subzero temperatures helped them earn the Zero Hero and Polar Bear awards.

    Troop 33 has been serving DeKalb area youth since 1925. They maintain a non-stop calendar of outdoor fun and adventure. You can visit them online at www.troop33dekalb.org/.

    Aviation students from Kishwaukee Educational Consortium directed scouts from Troop 33 as they experienced using flight simulators..
    Daily Chronicle - February 8, 2014
    Scouts pursue aviation badge at DeKalb airport

    In pursuit of the aviation merit badge, Boy Scouts from Troop 33 in DeKalb spent a day at DeKalb Taylor Municipal Airport. They were the guests of Kishwaukee Education Consortium, DeKalb Taylor Municipal Airport Authority, and Fly America Flight School.

    Their aviation adventure began with classroom learning covering various aspects of aviation, including uses of aircraft today and how piston, turboprop, and jet engines work; physical forces such as lift, drag and thrust; and how control surfaces of an aircraft are used for maneuvering. They also learned about instrumentation in the cockpit and about recreational and private pilot certificates and instrument ratings.

    Scouts received a special tour of the airport runways, taxiways, and fleet of emergency equipment. They saw a plane preparing for takeoff and learned about how radio communications, flight regulations and light signals make the airport operate safely.

    Boys gave a plane a pre-flight inspection, observing firsthand how different parts of the plane work. While sitting in the cockpit, they maneuvered wing flaps such as aileron, elevator and rudder. They learned about all the safety checks that are made before each flight.

    The most exciting part of the day was using flight simulators, which provided Scouts with a virtual-reality flying experience. The scouts’ instructors were KEC aviation students. Sitting in the cockpit, they operated controls while talking over headphones with a virtual reality control tower. They completed several maneuvers, including takeoffs, turns, climbs, descents and landings. Scouts used the instruments and controls just as a real pilot would in an actual flight. It was the closest thing to a piloting a real plane.

    By the end of the afternoon, they had completed all the requirements for aviation merit badges. Troop 33 is sponsored by First Lutheran Church in DeKalb and are online at http://troop33dekalb.org.

    Scouts and leaders from Troop 33, 13, 18 pose for a group photo in Washington, Illinois during a tornado relief effort during Christmas break.
    Midweek - January 14, 2014
    Scouts help with tornado relief

    Three Boy Scout Troops from DeKalb and Sycamore traveled to Washington, Ill., after Christmas to do tornado relief work. Scouts from Troop 13, sponsored by the DeKalb Moose Lodge 586; Troop 18, sponsored by the Sycamore Sportsman's Club; and Troop 33, sponsored by First Lutheran Church in DeKalb participated in the trip.

    The EF-4 tornado that struck Washington in November damaged or destroyed more than 1.000 homes. Scouts cleared debris on church grounds and along roadways, worked at a donation center sorting clothes, and removed debris at demolished home sites in the city. For the Scouts it was an amazing discovery of what destructive force a tornado can do and how much work it is to clean it up. The Scouts will return to Washington in the spring to do more work.

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