Andover Boy Scouts Earn Shooting Badges

Camping out and Wilderness Survival badge, too

By Doug Bent, Assistant Scoutmaster
Deputy Sheriff Bruce Clough supervises Boy Scouts Jared Frost and Matt Bent at the Merrimack Sheriff's Shooting Range.
Deputy Sheriff Bruce Clough supervises Boy Scouts Jared Frost and Matt Bent at the Merrimack Sheriff’s Shooting Range.

As the end of school nears, the Boy Scouts also begin to gear down. However, the Boy Scouts still keep busy. We would like to thank everyone who participated in the Firecracker 5K footrace on the Fourth of July and who bought kettle corn – both are fundraisers for the Boy Scouts.

The past spring saw the boys earning two more merit badges. The Rifle Shooting merit badge was attained with the help of Deputy Sherriff Bruce Clough.

The badge consisted of two parts. First was a classroom session that focused on safety, parts of the rifle, and the emphasis of the responsibility that comes with handling a weapon. The second session brought the boys to the Merrimack County Sheriff Department’s Rifle Range. At the range the boys were able to shoot .22 caliber rifles (one scoped and one open sight). We would like to thank the Merrimack County Sherriff for graciously letting us use the range.

The last campout was held in June, and the Wilderness Survival merit badge was earned. Earning this merit badge consists of general orienteering (direction determination), wilderness first aid, signaling, fire building using three methods other than matches or lighter, and building a shelter and sleeping in it overnight.

We were especially lucky that a retired Air Force Survival Instructor was able to come and give a classroom session and also joined in the last campout. Although not required for the merit badge, the instructor showed the boys how to make snares for wild game. The boys were not able to catch any animals in the snares, but the instructor brought two live rabbits to show the boys how to humanely kill, field dress, skin, and cook small game over an open fire.

We would like to thank Conservation Officer Heidi Murphy of the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department for allowing us to set snares for the day.

The Boy Scouts would like to thank everyone who has volunteered their time, materials, and money during the past year.

The Scouts will begin to have regular meetings starting in September; times and location will be announced later. Any boy eleven years of age or who has finished the fifth grade is welcome to join.