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Scouting on the grow here

Scouting is on the upswing in a big way in the Lower Yakima Valley and elsewhere in the Chief Kamiakin District. That's according to Ed Radder with the Boy Scouts of America, who Wednesday morning provided an update to the Sunnyside Kiwanis Club. Radder, a retired Sunnyside police chief, noted the district's scouting membership is up 44 percent from a year ago. The Chief Kamiakin District in recent years has expanded to include new Cub Scout groups in Sunnyside and Grandview. Radder said Sunnyside Cub Scouts presented the colors during last month's Kids Day Parade and will also do so during Sunnyside's July 4 Parade tomorrow. In addition, the Cub Scouts have formed in Toppenish and this year the group has already participated in parades. Other communities served by the Chief Kamiakin District include Prosser, Granger and Zillah and Radder notes plans are underway to form a Cub Scout pack in Wapato. The growth has come primarily with Cub Scouting, which saw 124 served this year compared to 78 a year earlier. Radder notes it has been more difficult to increase numbers for Boy Scouts. He says that sometimes boys who start in Cub Scouts end up leaving the program at some point during middle school instead of getting involved with Webelos. The Chief Kamiakin District's Boy Scout numbers show 40 participating this year, the same number as last year. Radder said that can actually be perceived as a positive because some groups have seen Boy Scout numbers diminish. With summer here scouts and their families are experiencing camp life. Radder noted the example of one father who after a successful fishing adventure at a camp said it was the first time he had ever been fishing...and the first positive activity with this son. "Things are happening and we appreciate your support," he told Kiwanians.

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