2015 is taking off and Sea Scouts from Texas kick–started the year with their 11th annual Sea Scout Academy. Attracting scouts from around the state of Texas, Sea Scout Academy is three jam packed days full of interactive classes, professional teachers, and an amazing program designed to provide the experience of a lifetime to the 265 participants. Just hours into the event, people were excited about what the next couple of days will bring. “It is a very fun event,” says Anna Cairns, an Ordinary Sea Scout from Ship 502.”
This year was particularly special, being the first that this event is held at the long awaited Sea Scout Base Galveston. Many first time visitors are still in awe of the spacious bedroom suites, well planned classrooms and the close proximity to the waterfront, less than 40 yards from the buildings. These accommodations are a vast improvement from last year, when everyone had to drive to docks thirty minutes away before setting sail.
Sea Scout Base Galveston is the perfect solution to offering the Sea Scout Academy experience to growing numbers of people. Since 2008 alone, the total participant number has grown from 64 in one council to 270 from seven councils from across the entire state of Texas. The majority of this growth is contributed to by youth, as excited Sea Scouts tell their friends all about the amazing things they do. “I came to learn, gain experience and [advance in] rank” explains Olivia Hesse, an Apprentice Scout from Ship 911. Her shipmate, Margaret McGee, has a slightly different reason for coming. “I wanted to teach and have fun.” She is quite experienced in Sea Scouting, being a regular attendee since 2011.
Whether they have gone through every track, or are just starting out, there is a place for everyone at Sea Scout Academy. Apprentices just starting out go through the basics of being a Sea Scout, like radio protocol, getting familiar with boats and learning beginner’s knots. More experienced youth learn about anchoring and rope manufacturing, piloting and navigation techniques, and more complicated, decorative rope work. Even prospective Able and Quartermaster youth have their place; each is assigned to classes they can help teach, thus marking off instructor requirements of their own. Sea Scout Academy truly lives up to its name, enabling many Scouts each year to leap ahead on the rank requirements.
This is Sea Scouting at its best, with amazing facilities, awesome staff and a fantastic program guaranteed to deliver the weekend of the year to Sea Scouts around the great state of Texas. Think about joining us next year on Martin Luther King weekend!