Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Dedication – Troop 96 Answering the Call
Troop 96, which is affiliated with The People’s Community Baptist Church in Silver Spring, Maryland, answered the call for volunteers for the recent events surrounding the dedication of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial. On August 16, 2011, a week before the event, the Scoutmaster of Troop 96 (Heinz Stubblefield) received a call from the organizers of the Memorial dedication asking for help from the Boy Scouts to act as ‘greeters’ to the worldwide visitors coming to Washington, DC to participate in the unveiling festivities scheduled for the following week.
Troop 96 immediately went into action soliciting its membership, other local Girl and Boy Scout troops, and members of The People’s Community Baptist Church to help in this one-time historically and culturally significant event. Despite an earthquake earlier in the week and a pending hurricane in the Washington, DC area during the weekend of the of the Memorial unveiling, Troop 96 was able to put together a group of volunteers that filled over 80 volunteer slots representing more than 600 hours of community service over a four day period.
On Thursday and Friday, August 25th and 26th, Scout volunteers manned the four entrances of the Washington Convention Center as greeters to guests from all over the world who came to register for the weekend’s events and also who came for the pre-dedication special events being put on at the Center. The first face that was seen by the worldwide guests was that of a smiling Scout welcoming him or her to the Convention Center and to the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial dedication events. The Scouts directed the guests to the appropriate areas of the Conventions Center and helped them in the registration process.
Unfortunately, due to a pending Hurricane scheduled to hit Washington, DC over the weekend, the event organizers announced that they had to reschedule the weekend’s dedication events, including the Memorial unveiling. Troop 96 looks forward to again working with the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial dedication organizing committee in the near future once a reschedule date is announced.