Participants in the 1977 National Jamboree
Buffalo Trail Council
Two troops from Buffalo Trail Council traveled to the 1977 National Jamboree by bus. They departed on Monday, July 25 and returned on August 13, 1977. We do not have the troop number or the list of participants for the second troop We know that 72 Scouts and 8 leaders traveled to the Jamboree in two buses, chartered from Greyhound Bus Lines.
The two troops participated in a "snake down camp" at Floyd Gwin Park to check their equipment and get acquainted prior to going to the Jamboree.
The Scouts spent their first night on the road in Tulsa, Okla. The next day, July 26, the group went to Springfield, where they toured the Abraham Lincoln Museum. Next, they went to Detroit, where they toured a Ford Motor Co. assembly plant. After a stopover in Geneva, N Y., the Scouts visited New York City. During their stay there they took a boat tour around the island of Manhattan. The Scouts were supposed to have left New York July 31, a Sunday, but one of the buses required repairs.
The Scouts were to have attended church services that day in New Brunswick. N. J., home of the national headquarters of the Boy Scouts of America. However, because of the delay the group held their own services in a warehouse owned by the national supply service of the Boy Scouts. Later that day, the Scouts went to Washington, D.C., and saw many of the attractions there.
The contingent also did sightseeing in St. Louis, Chicago, Greenfield Village in the Detroit area, and Niagara Falls enroute to the Jamboree. On the way home they visited the Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.
The 1977 National Jamboree was held at Moraine State Park, Pennsylvania, August 3-9. Of the 28,637 people in attendance at the Jamboree, 24,430 were Scouts and leaders and 3,617 were Jamboree staff. In addition, there were 375 military personnel and 222 exhibitors and others. There were 250 International Scouts and leaders from 28 different countries. That did not include the estimated 70,000 plus visitors.
Activities enjoyed by the Scouts during the Jamboree included a Merit Badge Midway, Arts and Science Fair, Brownsea Camp and Fishing and Boating. There were also six campwide patrol activities that stressed Scout involvement: "Fox" Hunt, Action Archery, Marksmanship Range, Obstacle Course, Orienteering and an Azimuth Trail. And of course, patch trading, Regional Campfires and lots of exhibits
The opening show included a multi-media presentation, a re-creation of the country's history, a parade of Scouting, the Re'Generation group of 13 collegians from all over the United States, Country Current, a country/bluegrass band that was part of the U. S. Navy Band, and finally the National Jamboree Band.
One of the campwide events during the Jamboree as a get acquainted game. Each Scout was given a card with a large letter on one side and space for names and addresses of his "game" associates on the other side. Scouts ranged across their regional camp area, linking up with Scouts bearing the different letters. When a team had formed "THIRD CENTURY USA," the members wrote the names and addresses of fellow team members on their cards so they could contact them in the future. Then the team reported to the regional headquarters, rung a liberty bell, and received a bicentennial souvenir for each member of the team.
There were heavy rainstorms on Saturday and the troops in the Western Region received more water than anyone else. More than 400 Scouts had to be moved to higher ground. One Scout, Cal D. Armstrong, of Troop 792, Western Region Subcamp 5, was struck by lighting that Saturday night while running between camps. He was taken to Jameson Memorial Hospital where he remained for the rest of the Jamboree.
Burl Ives was a hit at the closing show. Also in the show was the Air Force Mach 1 rock band, the National Jamboree Band, and Re'Creation, the University of Pennsylvania choral group. As at every Jamboree, the show was closed with the traditional candlelight ceremony and a 3,000 firework show put on by the Zambelli Fireworks Company.
The Scouts left the Jamboree and they spent the first night in Indianapolis, Ind. From there they went to Ft. Leonard Wood, Mo., and then to Sheppard Air Force Base at Wichita Falls. From Wichita Falls, the group came to Midland, with stops at Big Spring and Snyder along the way.
We are in need of more information on this troop, and the second troop, including group photos.