We arrived about an hour ahead of our scheduled time on the low course.  We were to do the low course in the morning and the high course after lunch.  After a wait in the museum and looking around the Scout Shop, we were ready to go.

OK, now let's see.  The ship is sinking, the porthole is filled with jagged glass, we only have one first aid kit and it's nearly empty, what do we do?  I guess one person just has to go through first and get cut.  After he tends his wounds he can help lift the other guys through the porthole without letting them hit the glass.  OK, let's make the SPL go first.  After all, he's big and expendable.

The first things that we did involved working as a team, something that Troop 521 has always done well.  One look at the smiles on these guys' faces and you can tell they're having a great time.

Next we had to transport a bucket of water over a radioactive pit.  First we took our belts and made a sling for the bucket.  Then we sent the bucket across the pit to the other side on a rope.  The trick was to keep our pants from heading south as the bucket went west.

We took a break for lunch and the guys got to spend some time in the museum.  The maze was especially popular.  Then it started raining and it really rained heavily.  That cancelled our time on the high course.  To make matters worse, we got word that there were tornados spotted between us and home.  No problem.  We stayed where we were and the Scouts made the most of the rain by running through it.  Remember, Scouting is an outdoor activity.  When it was finally safe to get on the road, we said goodbye to the National Scouting Museum for the last time.  We'll miss it, for sure.

National Scouting Museum - May 2000

Until December 2000, the National Scouting Museum was housed at Murray State University in Murray, Kentucky.  About a 90 minute drive from Clarksville, the museum was a favorite place for local troops to go for fun and to learn about the history of Scouting.  In addition to the museum and a really nice Scout Shop, the Gateway Challenge course taught teamwork, trust, and self-reliance.  Essentially a smaller version of the COPE course at Boxwell Reservation, the Gateway Challenge consisted of a "low course" of team-building exercises and a "high course" of climbing and wire-walking.  This was Troop 521's last trip to the museum and took place on the same day that the representatives from the National BSA meeting going on in nearby Nashville came to visit the museum.  We didn't know at that time that they had made the decision to move it to Texas.