Jacob Hensley doesn’t enjoy being high off the ground, so taking a turn walking across a suspended rope in front of fellow Boy Scouts at the Santa Maria Town Center on Saturday was no minor task.
The 9-year-old from Lompoc took tentative steps at first, then gained the confidence to reach the other side where his mom waited to share in his victory.
“I wanna do that again. That was fun!” said Jacob, who has been a member of Lompoc Cub Scout Pack 2103 for just three weeks.
Jacob was one of many experiencing new activities and learning new skills at the third annual “Scout-O-Rama” to celebrate the 102nd anniversary of the Boy Scouts of America.
The public was invited to see what Scouting is all about from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. during the event for troops and packs from the Los Padres Council, which serves more than 9,000 youths in Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.
A climbing wall, rain gutter regatta and pinewood derby races drew some crowds, along with a station staffed by Arroyo Grande Boy Scout Troop 26 where Central Coast Scouts took turns shooting plastic darts from plastic crossbows.
People of all ages tried out the jousting provided each year by Santa Maria Cub Scout Pack 1538, whose members added a rope tug-of-war element this year.
“It’s all about working together and keeping your balance,” Cub master Tom Negrete said.
John Pollard, 9, of Arroyo Grande valiantly fought but lost his first jousting match before gaining his balance back to a win on his second try.
He and fellow Arroyo Grande Cub Scout Pack 13 member Riley Stewart wandered around from booth to booth Saturday but were especially excited about the pinewood derby races.
“You get to do fun stuff and learn new stuff,” 9-year-old Riley said of being a Boy Scout. “I’m here because I’ve never won in a pinewood derby ever. “
Nipomo Boy Scout Troop 450 member Garrett Morgan, 13, said he enjoys Scouts because his friends are in it and because he’s learning about responsibilities.
“It’s worth the time to go to outings,” Garrett said.
Trevor Neri of Santa Maria Boy Scout Troop 76 showed youngsters how to shoot marshmallows from out of a PVC pipe at empty soda cans to help with archery skills.
“This is supposed to help Boy Scouts aim,” said Trevor, a freshman at Pioneer Valley High School who hopes to be an Eagle Scout by the time he graduates.