Boys Scouts, IVS, and IAHD-Americas – perfect together!

 

The BSA Cradle of Liberty’s bi-annual Jamboree was held the weekend of May 1-3, in Green Lane, PA. Over 6,000 scouts converged on the Jambo ’09 site, held on the grounds of the Green Lane Reservoir.  The scouts were treated to a great weekend of activities, education and socializing, with everyone from the Army to hot air balloonists to a rock band on site to ensure there was something for everyone to enjoy and plenty of super memories to take home after the event.

IAHD-Americas was on site too, with their new 21 ft. x 41 ft. portable pool system, to bring the chance to try scuba to the disabled and special needs scouts attending the event, as well as the rest of the attendees from area scout troops, explorer posts, and venture crews.  The mission was clear – get the word out about IAHD-Americas and the great opportunity they offer to the special needs community.      

Venture Crew 3000, a co-ed high adventure scouting unit for youths ages 14 to 21, is sponsored by Indian Valley Scuba.  Along with Team IVS, they showed up on Thursday morning to set up and fill the pool for the weekend.  Together they had the pool up in just over an hour, in time for the first of nine fire engines to show up and begin the filling process.  28,000 gallons later, Bob Stitzinger fired up the 350,000 BTU gas-fired heating & filter system, and we were off, working to bring the 60 degree water to a much more enjoyable 85 degrees before the scouts jumped in on Saturday morning.  Bob’s custom designed and built system worked flawlessly, and we soon had near hot tub conditions and crystal clear water, ready to receive the first divers.

Friday night the pre-dive briefings started with the troops gathering with Venture Crew Advisor & PADI Assistant Instructor Doug Ellis, joined by PADI Instructor and IAHD-professional Csaba Lorinczy, for a thorough introduction into the world of scuba diving and what was going to take place in the morning.  This briefing, along with the dozens more conducted during the weekend, brought out a lot of great questions and discussion about scuba, disabled diving, and the undersea world in general.

Saturday was a non-stop blur of scouts, explorers and adventurers walking and rolling up to the registration station to talk to Stephanie Skelton and Sally Stitzinger about what they had to do to get in the water.  Some paperwork completed, wrist bands installed, and they were off to the briefing station for a pre-dive discussion.  From there they visited the mask & fin department, staffed by Matt Loggins & Niki Lorinczy, who made sure each scout was properly fitted with the key pieces of personal gear.

Next stop – the pool!  Our staff of instructors, divemasters and IAHD-pro’s were ready and wasted no time in getting the scouts fitted in scuba gear and underwater!  The team included Butch Loggins, John Glodowski, Bob Stitzinger, Csaba Lorinczy, Ray Graff, Rich Kessler, Mike Gusenko,  Doug Ellis, and Steve Holak.

And of course Bev Loggins, assisted by IVS junior diver Sylvia Lorinczy, made sure the team was well fed and kept busy all day long!  Those ribs and stuffed peppers were delicious, Bob!  

Overall it was a tremendous success, with over 125 scouts experiencing the magic of scuba diving for the first time in a safe, controlled environment.  Look for us to be back at the next Jambo by popular demand!

We want to extend a very special thanks to the following supporters of the IAHD-Americas Discover Scuba Demo Pool at Jambo ’09:

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