DARIEN, Conn. -- To mark the 100th anniversary of Scouting in Darien, a new exhibit at Darien Town Hall highlights Darien Boy Scouts Then And Now.
The exhibit is open through the summer.
The Boy Scouts of America was established in 1910 by Chicago publisher William Boyce, based on Robert Baden Powell’s program in England. The first Darien troop was formed in 1915 under the Stamford Council.
Darien troops originally met in churches and schools until 1926, when Former First Selectman and Troop 53 Committee Chair Andrew Shaw donated land on West Avenue to build a Darien Scout Cabin.
The cabin was expanded in the 1930’s to accommodate the burgeoning local Scouting program, and was renamed in Andrew Shaw’s memory after his death in the 1940s. After 70 years of active use, the cabin needed to be replaced. It was torn down in 1998 and a new, larger cabin was designed for free by local architect and Eagle Scout, Neil Hauck.
The Andrew Shaw Memorial Trust and Scout Cabin are overseen by an operating board of 23 volunteer members consisting of Scout parents and alumni under the guidance of three trustees and a board of community advisers to support Boy Scout Troops 35 and 53, and Cub Scout Packs 56,155, & 161.
In Darien, Scouting is about more than camping trips and parades, according to a press release. Scouts learn to work in teams and take leadership roles, and through the merit badge program, they attain and utilize knowledge across a vast array of subjects from science to business to artistic endeavors to technical skills, according to a press release.
They have built everything from benches and docks to bat houses and sandboxes for local organizations, including the YMCA, Darien Nature Center, Darien schools, and neighboring schools, such as Stamford Academy, and St. Catherine’s Academy, according to a press release.
They honor veterans by placing flags and wreaths on veterans’ graves throughout the year, according to a press release. They operate food and toy drives, work with local nonprofits to provide assistance to needy families and help enhance educational experiences for less fortunate children, according to a press release.
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