What is Scouting all about? 

That was the question posed by Morris Plains Boy Scout Troop 39 master of ceremonies Kevin Soutar at the semi-annual Court of Honor picnic held Monday, June 12 at Morris County Central Park in Morris Plains. 

Kevin Soutar, a 14-year-old Scout, led the end-of-year event that honors the troop’s youth and adult leaders, acknowledges committee members, volunteers, and noteworthy scouts, and recognizes Scouts’ accomplishments over the past year, including badges and ranks earned.

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“What is Scouting all about?” Those of us who are not Scouts wondered what the answer might be. 

With over 30 Scouts and their families in attendance, the evening opened with a ceremonial display of the time-honored, traditional Presentation of Colors, and moved on to audience participation in the Pledge of Allegiance, the Scout Oath, and the Scout Law. 

Scout Soutar reminded all of two important tenets of the Scout Law: Trustworthiness and Loyalty.

“. . . what does that mean to all of us in this room? What does it really mean?” He paused and went on to say, “In life we only have one thing of value, our good name. That is true for all of us. Without a good name we have nothing . . .Scouts prepare people for all occupations, because in scouts, you learn to protect the one thing you have of value, your good name.” Before the award honorees were announced, Kevin added, “In later life, tonight's award recipients will reflect on how their awards have helped them to serve others and themselves well, because trustworthiness and loyalty have helped them in life.”

Under the leadership of Scoutmaster Ron Swanson, Advancement Chair Alan English, and numerous other extremely talented and dedicated adult leaders and volunteers, Boy Scout Troop 39 has celebrated five Eagle Scout Court of Honors alone since January 2016. The troop has been serving the community for over 85 years, and has produced graduates that have gone on to accomplish all sorts of career endeavors: lawyers, teachers, engineers, mechanics, members of the Armed Forces, stockbrokers, fathers, and YES, Scout leaders. 

Boy Scout Troop 39 is all inclusive and welcomes boys ages 11–17 from the surrounding towns. Troop meetings are held every Monday at 7:15 p.m. at the Presbyterian Church in Morris Plains. For more information, we invite you to visit the troop’s website at: www.troop39bsa.org.