Rite of passage marks Scouts’ long-term achievement

February 17, 2015

The 15 boys who stood on the stage were mostly solemn, but some of them allowed grins to creep across their faces as they absorbed the magnitude of the moment.

By Neil Pierson Alex Hammingh is adorned with a new scarf and his Arrow of Light award, signifying his transition into Boy Scouts during a Feb. 3 ceremony at Pacific Cascade Middle School.

By Neil Pierson
Alex Hammingh is adorned with a new scarf and his Arrow of Light award, signifying his transition into Boy Scouts during a Feb. 3 ceremony at Pacific Cascade Middle School.

Cub Scout packs across the country hold annual transition ceremonies for 11- and 12-year-olds who have fulfilled the requirements to join Boy Scouts. Cub Scout Pack 682, which draws its members from Issaquah and Sammamish, honored its graduating fifth-graders Feb. 3 at Pacific Cascade Middle School.

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Skyline senior attains Eagle honor with Scout troop

October 28, 2014

Most boys who enter the world of Scouting will make a lot of fond memories and learn many valuable lessons, but fewer than one in 10 will accomplish what Jonathan Chriest is doing this weekend.

Jonathan Chriest

Jonathan Chriest

At a Nov. 2 Court of Honor ceremony at The Plateau Club, the Skyline High School senior will receive his Eagle Scout rank from the Boy Scouts of America.

The National Eagle Scout Association estimates about 2.25 million boys have attained the honor since 1912, which might seem like a lot until learning that number represents only 5 percent of all Scouts.

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Youth advocates take top honors at Community Awards

June 5, 2012

Renee Zimmerman reacts to a standing ovation May 31 after receiving the Citizen of the Year award from Issaquah Chamber of Commerce board chairwoman Dianna Reely, during the 33rd annual Issaquah Community Awards at the Hilton Garden Inn. By Greg Farrar

As Issaquah celebrated its very best at the 33rd annual Chamber of Commerce Community Awards, two residents — celebrated for their lasting contributions to the community — were inducted into Issaquah’s Hall of Fame on May 31.

Barbara de Michele and Master Sgt. Richard “Top” DeMarco received top honors at the May 31 ceremony, which included recognition for Issaquah’s finest in 18 categories, including awards for standout volunteers, businesses leaders, organizations and youth.

Issaquah Mayor Ava Frisinger said the Hall of Fame awards were based on several criteria, including inspiration, leadership, civic mindedness, fundraising efforts for public good and length of service to the community.

None more so affected by the awardees are Issaquah’s youth.

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Adventures abound for boys and girls in scouting groups

July 2, 2011

Dads are on the losing end of a tug-of-war against 16 Cub Scouts at Hans Jensen Park. By Greg Farrar.

Despite decades of history in America, Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts still endure narrow views of their efforts.

The girls are famous for their cookie sales, the boys for their camping trips. That sometimes plays against them.

“A common misconception is that all Girl Scouts do is sell cookies,” said Julie Wendell, with the Girl Scouts of East King County. “The leadership opportunities, travel experiences and wonderful programs offered by Girl Scouts go way beyond selling cookies.”

Similar troubles beset the boys.

“A misconception is that Boy Scouts is for suburban white kids. And we don’t do programs for people of other ethnic backgrounds, and that all we do is tie knots and go camping,” said Sharon Moulds, with the Chief Seattle Council of the Boy Scouts of America, which encompasses all of King County.

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Gold Star

May 3, 2011

Cub Scouts collect food

Members of Cub Scout Pack 680 banded together and collected 708 pounds of food and more than $100 for Scouting for Food, a nationwide scout campaign.

In preparation for its food drive, the pack hung up flyers in the Issaquah Highlands, alerting the community about the community service project. On March 26, about 30 Cub Scouts collected donations at Blakely Hall.

The group invites more boys to join Cub Scout Pack 680. Email Patty Mayes at patty.mayes@gmail.com to learn more.

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Honor veterans in Memorial Day section

April 12, 2011

Dave Waggoner said he is worried that people are forgetting about U.S. veterans.

He recalled a phrase — selective disengagement — that journalist Bob Woodward had used.

“He said people across the United States selectively disengage from war, whether it be Afghanistan or Iraq or Korea or Vietnam or World War II,” said Waggoner, quartermaster with the Issaquah Veterans of Foreign Wars post.

When society selectively disengages from wars, it loses focus on the people who fight them and their experiences.

“The cost of war is people, and the people of Issaquah paid that price for their service,” Waggoner said.

The Issaquah Press is working to reverse that trend. For the second consecutive year, in its Memorial Day issue, The Press will publish profiles of Issaquah men and women who served in the U.S. armed forces.

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Boy Scouts Flag Retirement Ceremony / Oct. 9, 2010

October 12, 2010

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Pack 679 Cub Scouts’ project restocks hospital bookshelves

June 15, 2010

Being a big sister or big brother is great, but it can be hard when a new sibling requires care at the University of Washington Medical Center’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Cub Scouts, with their den mother Jenny Schaffer (left) give several of their nearly 300 books to Brett Ristine, of Olympia (right), on May 26, to give his 4-year-old son Brody, whose new sister Delaney was born prematurely to mother Apryl Delaney. By Greg Farrar

“They need to wear masks, hats and gloves while they are here in the rooms,” said Carri Gest, a nurse in the unit. “When their mom is spending quality time with the new baby, often for more than two hours, it can be hard for the siblings. Especially when they’re young and have short attention spans.”

To help ease the long, quiet hours spent visiting, the neonatal unit has a bookshelf of reading material for every age. But in the past year, the collection had really dwindled.

So, when her son’s Cub Scout Pack, Den 2 of Pack No. 679, needed to do a community service project, Gest suggested the boys help other children by collecting books for the unit.

During their book drive, the boys, first-graders from Cascade Ridge Elementary and St. Joseph’s Catholic schools, managed to collect nearly 300 books to restock the bookshelves. They donated them to families at the unit May 26.

“We collected the books for children, because they didn’t have any books,” said Tiger Cub Zach Schaffer. “So, now they can read.” Read more

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Memorial service planned by VFW

May 25, 2010

The Issaquah Veteran of Foreign Wars Post 3436 hosts a Memorial Day Service at Hillside Cemetery at 10 a.m. May 31, just below the Veterans Section.

The Issaquah High School Junior Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps unit will provide the Color Guard and Honor Guard for a 21-gun salute. The Liberty High School Junior Naval ROTC will provide buglers.

VFW sponsored Boy Scout Troop No. 709 and Cub Scout Pack No. 639 will help set up at 9 a.m. May 29 and take down decorations from the cemetery after the ceremony. There will be someone at the cemetery between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday to hand out forms for people to specify the symbols — such as crosses and flags — they want on their veterans’ graves.

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Volunteer, hobby expo returns bigger than ever

April 20, 2010

Whether you’re brand new to the community or have lived here your whole life, possibilities abound for getting involved with your neighbors and other like-minded individuals or groups. The trick is finding them.

Luckily, the Issaquah Parks & Recreation Department gathers more than 30 organizations at one convenient location each year — the Hobby & Volunteer Expo.

“It’s for all ages,” organizer Cathy Jones said. “It’s especially great for parents to find different groups for their children.”

Now in its 11th year, this year’s show is geared more toward hobby and volunteer opportunities for adults and high school students, Jones said.

“There are some great opportunities for retirees and empty nesters,” she added.

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