Arrayed across the backcountry at the Philmont Scout Ranch are horse corrals, living-history camps, Anasazi petroglyphs—and 83 solar collectors that generate a total of 120 kilowatts of power daily. A continent away, the Florida Sea Base in 2011 outfitted all of its boats with new motors that put fewer pollutants into the water and use 40 percent less fuel. At the Charles L. Sommers Wilderness Canoe Base in Minnesota, arriving and departing crews now eat in a new 14,000-square-foot dining hall that complies with green-level LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) sustainability standards and doubles as a corporate conference center. Finally, at the Summit Bechtel Family National Scout Reserv, our planned high-adventure base in West Virginia, staff members are deploying social-media technology with all the aplomb of a Silicon Valley startup.
In short, the four bases are becoming as adept at innovation as they are at adventure. And they aren’t keeping the innovation to themselves.
Even as they enjoyed record-setting attendance this year, the three existing bases increased their collaboration with each other, setting an example that local councils can follow.
The Summit, meanwhile, launched Patrol Z, a corps of Scout and Venturer reporters from across the country who are sharing the excitement of the Summit in particular and Scouting in general. Through photos, videos, blog posts, and more, Patrol Z members are inviting other young people into a world of adventure they can only find in Scouting.
The World Is Coming to West Virginia
In January 2011, the World Scout Conference announced that the Summit will host the 2019 World Scout Jamboree, the first world jamboree held in North America since 1983. Although it will be the 24th such event since 1920, it will be the first hosted by three national Scout associations. Scouts Canada, the Asociación de Scouts de México, and the Boy Scouts of America are working together to plan the event, whose theme will be “Unlock a New World.”