The LaSalle Council, the local chapter of the Boy Scouts America, will host a special 100th anniversary dinner and Eagle Scout reunion in the Joyce Center at 6:30 p.m.
Aside from recognizing the accomplishment of Boy Scouts of America being an active, contributing organization to society for the last 100 years, tonight’s event will also serve to reunite and honor Eagle Scouts in the area.
In boy scouting, the lifetime honor of Eagle Scout is the highest honor one can accomplish and is only achieved by about 3 percent of scouts.
“We’re giving them the opportunity to come back and celebrate,” said Patrick Bridges, Scout Executive and CEO of LaSalle Council Boy Scouts. “We’re thanking them for their service to others in scouting and for what they’ve gone on to do. We also want to help them reconnect and get involved in Boy Scouts again whether it be financially, as a leader or in any other way that can fit into their lifestyle.”
Bridges said the group is struggling to find leadership.
“Boy Scouts has changed more in the last few years than it has in the last 20,” Bridges said. “The future looks bright but it’s getting challenging to find adult leaders. We need to continue to work to get more adult leaders and need to connect more with places like Notre Dame.”
Bridges said Notre Dame was picked to host the event for two reasons.
“Notre Dame has a lot of the same values that scouting has: God, country and serving others,” he said. “Also, the guest speaker is Chris Zorich, so we thought that Notre Dame would be a good fit.”
Zorich, a former Notre Dame and NFL football player and philanthropist, was chosen to speak based on his experiences, Bridges said.
‘”We feel that his life and what he stands for will resonate with the Boy Scouts and volunteers and remind them of the Boy Scout values,” he said. “The volunteers and Eagle Scouts are excited to hear him say a few words to us.”
As the founder of the Christopher Zorich Foundation to help disadvantaged families, Zorich embodies the importance and value of service to others, which is a central part of Boy Scouts, Bridges said.
Boy Scouts has worked with over 100 million boys in the last 100 years and research indicates that involvement in Boy Scouts yields positive results in such areas as honesty and sportsmanship, Bridges said.
“People think of Boy Scouts as an outdoor or recreational program, when really that’s just the vehicle through which we help youth reach their full potential and instill in them values and morals according to scouting law,” Bridges said.
Bridges also encourages Notre Dame students to get involved by calling (800) 822-3867 or visiting the Boy Scouts website at www.lasallecouncilbsa.org
“Students can even walk over to our headquarters right next door,” Bridges said.