On a cold and muddy Saturday in February, Troop 387 and Venture Crew 387, both chartered by Colonial Heights United Methodist Church, headed to Boone Lake to remove tires from the bed of the lake.
The tires were put there initially to create an artificial reef for fish. They were located near the dam and secured well with twine and heavy rocks. With new technology and a water-lowered dam, it was time to remove the tires.
The scouts donned their gear and gloves and prepared to work. They were under the supervision of Bryan Kegley and Randy Short with the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency. The scouts were given instructions on where to find the tires, how to clean the tires, and were then told where to stack them.
Initially, the goal was to load them on a truck but conditions were too treacherous to get any vehicle close enough to the work site.
Trees were growing through the tires so they had to be cut. Excitement was high when animal skulls were found fully intact. Even though the rain fell and temperatures were in the high 40’s to low 50’s, it was teamwork at its best.
While most of the scouts were not looking forward to the task before them, within minutes of cutting twine, using a hacksaw, and cleaning tires, everyone was truly having fun.
Working together, the scouts removed about 250 tires that day. It counted as conservation service hours for the youth, but it was obvious the scouts have learned key points of the scout law: cheerful, helpful, obedient, brave, and friendly.