A familiar face returns to serve as scout master for new troop.
Candles flickered on the tables, live music on the stage and the aroma of homemade spaghetti welcomed each guest. The waiters, cooks and musicians all had uniforms, Boy Scout uniforms. The “restaurant” was the fellowship hall at the Flagler Beach United Methodist Church.
The spaghetti dinner was a first for the new Boy Scout Troop 472, which met for the first time on Aug. 17.
Boy Scout Troop 472 is new, their leader, Jim Botelho is not.
“I’ve been in scouting 30 years, and 21 in Flagler County,” Botelho said.
Botelho has marched with many boy scouts in Troop 419, and their siblings, south on State Road A1A during holiday parades. Siblings are just as important to the scout master as the scouts themselves. They are affectionately called the “me toos.”
“The me toos even have their own flag,” he said. “The whole family is part of this troop.”
Botelho said after Troop 419 disbanded due to “lack of boys,” he helped out with a Girl Scout troop. When he had the opportunity to join the new troop in Flagler Beach there was no doubt he would.
“His first experience with our boys was when they were Webelos crossing over,” Harlena McHugh, committee chairwoman said. “He just has a bond with them.”
The new troop that currently has 15 Boy Scouts has already expanded to a Cub Scout troop, and will soon include a Venture Crew, for boys and girls 14 to 21 years old.
“We don’t turn anyone away,” Amber Shampine, a committee member, said.
The “new” number, 472, was actually a Bunnell Troop number many years ago.
“With a new number we are a founder troop,” Shampine said.
As the troop grows so will their involvement in the community. The spaghetti dinner was their first event, and a very successful one with approximately 160 meals served at the church, picked up and delivered.
“We had carry-out and we also offered delivery to those who couldn’t drive,” Shampine said.
Upcoming events include the national Boy Scout food drive. The scouts will leave empty grocery bags on door knobs for residents to donate non-perishable food, on Saturday, Nov. 7, and will collect the bags the following Saturday, Nov. 14. After the annual Flagler Beach Christmas parade the scouts will have “Hot Dogs with Santa.”
Meetings are from 6:30 to 8 p.m. for 11 to 18-year-old Boy Scouts, and 7 to 8 p.m. for the Cub Scouts, first grade to 11-years-old, on Wednesday nights at the Flagler Beach United Methodist Church, 1520 S. Daytona Ave. To join, come to a meeting, email Botelho at [email protected], or call him at 315-5965.