People of all ages enjoyed a wonderful celebration to mark the 50th anniversary of the scouts in Thomastown and the opening of their new den.
Scout Treasurer, Mary Kelly said that the day was a great success.
“There was a big parade around the town with the De La Salle Pipe Band. Hundreds of people came out to watch and it was a really wonderful atmosphere. There was great community effort and involvement,” she said.
The highlight of the day was the official opening of the new den by one of the original scout leaders Joe Dunphy.
One of the original four scouts Nicholas Walsh was also present.
Trojan work has been carried out at the den, which is the old primary school which was kindly donated by the Sisters of Mercy earlier this year. “There is a group of people who come down every Saturday to clean and paint and we are always looking for new volunteers,” she added.
The 3rd Kilkenny, Thomastown Scout Troop was founded in Thomastown in November 1963.
The Thomastown scouts have over 80 members ranging from in age from 6 to 18 and from all areas of the community and different social backgrounds. It is a unisex, multidenominational group.
The scouts are currentely made up of four sections, which are led by 21 trained volunteers, a large number of leaders are themselves ex scouts.
The aim of the Thomastown Scouts is to encourage new ideas and new experiences, to develop a sense of independence and self worth, to embrace their surroundings, their community and each other, in spite of and because of their differences.
Members are encouraged to develop their own programme of events for the year.
The level of involvement increases in each section. The oldest group, the Ventures, research, organise and manage their own activities, the leaders at that stage are there in an advisory role only, to lend support and advise when and if it is needed.
Cross community support and development is strongly encouraged within the Thomastown Scouts and there is interaction with a number of community groups including The Tidy Towns Committee, the Soccer Club, the River
Trust, The Anglers Association, the Vintage Rally Club the Arts Centre and many more.
Scouting Ireland is a worldwide youth organisation, with the aim of supporting young people in their physical, mental and spiritual development, so that they may go on to lead productive and constructive roles in society with competence and confidence.