Boy Scouts and Scoutmasters from Troop 73 of Hamburg spent a rewarding week of work, recreation and education June 25 through July 1, 2017, at Camp Cedars near Fremont, Neb.
Reinstalling 50-pound blocks, the six scouts and three scoutmasters worked on straightening three rows of stone seating in the outdoor Bates Amphitheater. They worked an hour-and-a-half a day for three days on the project.
The scouts also took advantage of Camp Cedars’ rock-climbing tower, classes in first aid and CPR, and the rifle, shotgun and archery ranges.
Many used the opportunity to work toward earning more merit badges in those areas.
Troop 73 was among 35 troops at the camp that week coming from far and wide: Kansas, Wyoming, and Texas as well as Nebraska and Iowa. There were about 500 or 600 people, according to Harris.
The Iowa troop from Hamburg was especially thrilled to win one of only five “Spirit of Scouting” sticks awarded each week to troops that best exemplify the essence of the Boy Scout philosophy.
Joseph Thompson from Troop 73 and another boy, Ben Labrum, were accepted into the Nani-ba-zhu society of the Order of the Arrow, a unique service organization within the Boy Scouts. New members are elected by a secret ballot of their fellow scouts, based on their leadership abilities. They are inducted into the Order of the Arrow at a special camp-wide ceremony.
Scoutmaster Brian Harris said, “The week’s weather was couldn’t ask for much better.”
Except for the storms, that is: “We had to go to shelters twice.” Storm shelters at the camp are equipped to withstand an F-5 tornado, and none is farther than 500 yards from any campsite, said Harris.
Members of Troop 73 are not only Hamburg residents, but come from all over Fremont County—Sidney, Tabor, Randolph, Farragut, etc.
 “The boys learned a lot, and grew up a lot,” said Harris. “We are fortunate to have Camp Cedars close by. It’s one of the best in the country.”