Monday, April 19, 2010

Boy Scouts Try Their Hand at Scuba Diving at the 100th Anniversary Jamboree

We've been tracking the Boys Scouts' scuba proclivities here since the BSOA partnered with PADI, officially signed with PADI, and the first scouts earned the scuba diving merit badge.

On display at the BSOA's Northern California 100th Anniversary Jamboree was the "Be a Diver" pool.

The event took two years to plan with 11 councils from various areas of Northern California helping to put together the event.

"We wanted to be part of something that will never happen again in our lifetime," said Mike Garrett, an assistant scout master for Troop 342 from the Santa Clara Council. "We will never be able to celebrate like this again."

The first activity that Hamwi and two of his fellow troop members, Jonathan Wong and Timothy Fisher, tackled was one of the more unique activities and one of the newest way for Scouts to earn a merit badge — by scuba diving.

"It was a new world," said Hamwi, a first-time scuba diver. "You can feel the tank shift on your back, but you feel so light. like a feather."

Scouts, 14 and older, can spend between 10-15 minutes in a four-foot deep, 20-by-30 foot pool scuba diving.

The "Be a Diver" pool, which moves around the country for demonstrations, had divers from Bay Area dive shops there to demonstrate on Friday, including those from Pleasanton's Dive N Trips.

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We've said it before and we'll say it again: a partnership of this nature is a terrific way to promote scuba diving to a responsible segment of America's youth.

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