By Eric Norwood Jr.
PNT staff writer
Curtis Utley attended the Boy Scouts of America’s 2013 National Jamboree in Mount Hope, W.V., from July 15-24. Utley raised more than $1,600 to attend the event by writing letters to local organizations, who provided donations. He also received a $1.600 BSA scholarship. Utley is a member of Portales Troop 18 and serves as the senior patrol leader of the troop.
What did you do at the jamboree and where did you visit?
I shot some targets at the shotgun range and got to meet new scouts by trading patches.
During the tour, my jamboree troop got to visit the Capitol Building, Lincoln Memorial, Jefferson Memorial, National Archives, Library of Congress, Korean War Memorial, and other interesting places.
In Washington, D.C., we stayed in hotels and at the jamboree camp we slept in tents in a forest in West Virginia.
How many other boy scouts were there and how was it interacting with them?
There was more than 40,000 scouts (at jamboree) there and it was nice talking to them and learning about their lives.
What did you eat when you were there?
We went to a lot of excellent restaurants, but unfortunately I cannot remember the names of the restaurants. One was kind of like a tavern.
What was your favorite moment of the trip?
The wonderful fireworks display the camp put on. It lit up the sky and shook the ground.
Did you meet anyone who had a significant impact on you?
While I was there, Mike Rowe made a guest appearance and talked about working smart and hard instead of one or the other.
He is the host of “Dirty Jobs” and he was an Eagle Scout. A lot of people made an impact on me while I was there.
How did you like visiting the East Coast?
The temperature down there is a lot lower but it’s very humid. There was a lot to see and do, and compared to New Mexico, the cities are a lot bigger.
How will you use this experience to help your troop?
The jamboree gave me leadership experience and I plan to use that to help my troop move forward.
It gave me an idea of what I am supposed to do and what I wasn’t supposed to do.
Even though I wasn’t in charge, I was paying attention to see how I should act.
If you were camping in the woods and saw a bear, what would you do?
If you see a bear, you should make yourself big and make lots of noise to scare the bear away.
Luckily, I have never had a bear encounter, but that is what I’m supposed to do.
What would you like to say to those who donated money for your trip?
Thanks for the excellent donation. We got $1,600 from all these organizations who don’t even know me. I am very thankful.