Boy Scouts Camporee - 2003
By Mark, KD5DLL
The 2003 Indian Nation Councils Boy Scout Camporee has concluded. After many months of meeting and test runs of amateur radio equipment the event was a huge success. There were just under 2000 pre-registered Troops and an unknown number of show-up Troops to the largest event the Indian Nations Council holds, according to Bobby Shultz of the BSA office in Tulsa. The Tulsa Amateur Radio Club handled the net control operations of amateurs as well as for the BSA Staff from the mobile Emergency Communications trailer. Setup began Friday at 9:00 am and the net started at 3:30 pm. The net was a continuous net that ran until 10:30 am on Sunday morning when the Station was secured. The Net handled approximately 300 pieces of traffic, with 135 of those being Friday night. There were two of us in the trailer; one taking information for the ham radio and the other contacting the Commissioners in camp and passing the information to them. We had three medical emergencies with the most serious being an over heated heart patient, then a broken ankle. We were very fortunate to have had three doctors and EMSA in camp over the weekend. The other emergency type traffic was a couple of priority nets for lost scouts after dark on Saturday. There was also a crime wave (hi hi) while the Troops were at the arena show. There were a few very mischievous lads that went thru different camps and captured the flags of 8 Troops. So you can just imagine what the radio traffic was like during the first few hours after arena show concluded. To compound the traffic from the flags caper was also the first missing scout. The mic on the Alinco wasn't set down for hours. BTW the flag were returned by an anonymous scout whom would like to stay anonymous (hi hi).
Speaking of the arena show, there was a live role-play of the old west conducted and a huge firework display that lasted for about 30 minutes.
I think I speak for everyone that went from the club, we had a very good time even though were worked like dogs *wink, wink*. I did get to see some old friends that I haven't seen for year. One thing about Scouting, once you were in you are always in. There weren't any stranger among that group. Rick, KD5DLM, met up with his old troop and found some very old friends he went to Scout with. He found out that they are now running the Troop.
Amateurs attending the Camporee were Jim, N5PMP, Rick, KD5DLM, Artie, KD5OIH, Jerry, W5JM, Dave, W5ATV and myself, Mark, KD5DLL.
Promoting Ham radio... Yes we had a lot of interest in ham radio. We had somewhere in the neighborhood of 150 kids go through during the day on Saturday and Sunday. I gave out cards to Scoutmasters that were interested in having someone from the club be the councilor for the radio merit badge. So if you are interested in helping with this task please let me know. Maybe someone might have noticed the ATV picture a couple of times get kind of weird looking. We were able to key the ATV repeater but were unable to get it to hold a stable picture, so were gave up on the attempt. We were a little busy to be able to play with the gear like we wanted. Maybe next time. The Council was very pleased at the ability the club had to handle the event. We were complimented several times by different people for a job well done. I know we all lead busy lives now days and don't seem to have time to turn around, but let me tell you this was one of the best times I have had in years. I am glad I made time for this event. I will remember this event for a lifetime.