Scouts Preparing for the Heat

By: Tony Tagliavia
By: Tony Tagliavia

Eight thousand scouts and leaders are expected in East Lansing for the National Order of the Arrow Conference -- scouts from every state across the country.

They're here for leadership training, but there are plenty of outdoor activites planned.

"Sailing, kayaking ... volleyball, basketball programs," Clyde Mayer, the Boy Scouts of America's National Order of the Arrow Director, told News 10. The conference happens every two years, usually at a college or university.

"This is my first one, so I'm really, really, really excited," said scout Mike Rudy.

But right now, there's one other thing weighing on the minds of some scouts.

"Oh yeah, it's pretty hot," Rudy, who's from near Gettysburg, Pa., said.

Hot, yes -- still, not as hot as what he remembers at last year's Boy Scout jamboree.

"It was about 103 degrees," Rudy recalled.

As many as 300 people reportedly collapsed from the heat at that event. So in these slightly-less-opressive conditions, he says he should be just fine.

"I'll drink lots of water and stay away from the Mountain Dew. I'll try," Rudy said.

That's what scout leaders are advising the thousands of scouts here to do.

"We have water stations all over campus," Mayer said.

In addition, ice trucks were stationed on campus when the heat was at its worst Saturday. And to provide some relief from mostly non-air-conditioned MSU dorms, fans have been put in place.

Organizers say some temporary air conditioners will be available. Still, the leaders are warning scouts not to brush it off if they feel lightheaded.

"Get indoors, take it easy," Mayer said.

And if something does happen, he says there's a medical team of 20 to 25 people in place.

"The Boy Scout motto is: 'Be Prepared.' And I think our guys will be."


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