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Scouts To Mark 9/11 Anniversary With Ceremony in Wheeling

Scouts BSA will commemorate the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on America with a service in Woodsdale this year, which will be followed by a carnival and recruitment event in Woodsdale’s park.

Events are being organized by Scouts BSA Troop 79 — an all-girl troop based out of the Simpson United Methodist Church in Moundsville, and Troop 82 — an all-boy troop that meets at the Glen Dale Methodist Church. Scouts BSA was previously known as Boy Scouts of America.

Details are still being finalized, but organizers plan to have a 9-11 ceremony beginning at 9 a.m. in the park on Sept. 11.

The Wheeling Fire Department’s Edgwood fire station at 110 South Park St. sits near the park, and as part of the ceremony the girls of Troop 79 will participate in a ceremony to replace the flag there.

There will be a prayer service, and a 20-bell salute to mark the 20-year anniversary of 9/11.

Pat Duffy, Americanism chairman for the Wheeling Elks Lodge 28, is also expected to speak. He said his 9/11 speech typically focuses on how the date Sept. 11, 2001 started out as a day with “normal people doing normal things.”

“It is important that this not be a celebration, but a memorial,” he told organizers, who met at the park on Sunday afternoon. “You should really have the (Scouts BSA) scouts singing the national anthem or leading the Pledge of Allegiance.”

Gary Weekley, a committee member for Troop 82, reminded the scouts present to practice their flag ceremony and be prepared because “it has to be flawless.”

Following the 9/11 ceremony, a carnival and scouting recruiting event will take place in the park.

More than 20 vendors already have committed to the event, and Weekley said he hopes to have at least 25. Many will be selling food.

Games related to scouting activities such as fishing and archery will be set up, as will an inflatable BB gun range.

The Seventh Day Adventist Church also sits close by at 110 South Park St. and will take part in the event. Coinciding with the carnival will be a diaper drive, and visitors are invited to bring diapers and other baby items for the church’s Agape Closet.

There also will be 50-50 drawings and a raffle during the carnival.

“We want to recruit more boys and girls from Ohio County, and we definitely need more girls,” Weekley said.

Troop 79 presently has nine girls as members, and eligible members must be between the ages of 11 and 17, according to scoutmaster Liz Yaron.

“We’re always recruiting, and you can join at any time,” she said.

“We do a lot of outdoor stuff, such as camping, horseback riding and canoeing.”

Scoutmaster Colleen Weekley of Troop 79 is excited for the event.

“We’re looking forward to having the end of the summer event, and giving the community the opportunity to experience what the Scouts are about,” she said.

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