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Local Boy Scout troop takes first in derby

HARLEM VALLEY — Boy Scout Troop 29, comprised of Scouts from Millerton, Amenia and Wassaic, figured out the perfect combination for this year’s Klondike Derby, as one of the troop’s two teams turned in a first-place finish at Camp Nooteeming near Salt Point last month.To compete, teams needed to construct a sled to push to different stations along the course. In the sled were certain items to help them at different stations. For example, at one stop the Scouts had to start a fire from scratch, hot enough to burn through a piece of rope. At another, Scouts had to pitch a tent, blindfolded.“Each year they get better and better,” said Scoutmaster Martha Schultz, who has been with the group since the boys were in first grade. Her own son, Andrew, is now 18 and in his last year with the Boy Scouts.For Troop 29, 10 Scouts split into two teams; each team constructed their own lightweight sled out of sheet metal. The sleds had a Dr. Seuss theme, with the two teams named Thing 1 and Thing 2.The Klondike Derby is a councilwide event that Schultz said features teams not only from Dutchess County but from Rockland as well. Twenty districts competed this year.“It’s been a great ride to watch them mature,” she added. “The boys know what each of their teammates’ strengths are, and it really is tremendous to see them all working together.”

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