The 2019 World Scout Jamboree will be held July 22 to Aug. 2 at the Summit Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia.

The 2019 World Scout Jamboree will be held July 22 to Aug. 2 at the Summit Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia. It will carry the distinction of being only the second jamboree held in the United States.

Held every four years, the jamboree will be the first held in North America in 36 years (1983, Alberta, Canada) and the first held in the United States in 52 years (1967, Idaho). The last jamboree in 2015 was held in Japan. The event is considered a once-in-a-generation opportunity for boys and girls.

As a local Boy Scout leader, Mark Whiteaker has been active in Scouting for 25 years in different leadership roles. His three sons have all been involved in Scouting. Corey and Liam are Eagle Scouts and Devin attained the Life rank. He and his sons have never attended a jamboree, but Mark will head to West Virginia in July to attend his first.

He believes that Scouting teaches young boys and girls many positive lessons.

“They learn character through leadership, challenges, accomplishment and being an integral part of family and community,” says Mark.

He says he has benefitted from Scouting the most by witnessing and being a part of the growth and development of the youth of his community.

It is estimated that the jamboree will draw at least 50,000 Scouts, both boys and girls, from 169 countries. All boys and girls between the ages of 14-17 who are currently registered Scouts can attend.

The event will last 10 days and include adventure activities such as rock climbing, rafting, zip lines, etc., along with cultural activities unique to the different countries represented.

While Mark was a Scout only a few years when he was a boy, he still has a lifelong love for Scouting. His boys are now grown, but Mark is committed to continue to encourage and support Scouting and lead troops.

“Scouting is such an important and popular activity for kids and teens around the world because it is about having fun through organized activities and well thought out and proven programs in the backdrop of camping and community service,” says Mark.

For more information, call Mark at 816-878-9067 or email him at markwhiteaker@yahoo.com