Twenty-nine scouts, leaders and family members of Boy Scout Troop 3 and Venture Crew 33 departed July 19 for their action-packed summer excursion. The group safely landed in England early Monday morning. According to Troop 3 Scoutmaster Randy Ritter, the scouts and their families will be staying with host scout families of Derby, England’s 107 Derby Scouts and Trent Explorers.
Troop 3 families hosted the Derby, England, scouts when those scouts and their families visited Connecticut in 2013.
Ritter said the scouts’ adventure will include participation in the Peak International Encampment, which brings together more than 7,000 scouts from throughout Europe. The event, Ritter said, is located on the estate of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire.
Prior to jetting off, the scouts met with Mayor Anita Dugatto, who provided items, including “I Love Derby” pins, mugs with the Derby city seal, books about Derby and a letter for the group to present to her English counterpart.
Ritter said Troop 3 Derby has been in contact with scouts in their sister city since the 1940s. He said the Connecticut troop would send care packages to their fellow scouts struggling from the effects of World War II. Ritter said in the 1970s the scout exchange program was initiated and resumed upon the 2013 Derby, England, group’s visit here.
Scouts here worked hard to raise funds to help pay for their trip, with proceeds from their 91st annual Scout Gang Show, held in May, enabling them to participate in the adventure.
“We live in a global society and having young people understand others culture and how their society works only benefits everyone,” McLiverty said. “These young people are our future and this world has lost relationships and how to deal with others. Facebook emails and electronic communications — while they provide easy access to those far away — are cold and insincere. Having our scouts visiting our sister city over the pond will only create a lifetime bond that serves them, our city and nation well.”