During this year’s annual camp at Kotkajärve, a special invitation was made by the 1st Port Elgin Scout Troop to the Kalev and Lembitu Skauts and Venturers from the Toronto Estonian Skauting Group. They were invited to experience the Haliburton Scout Reserve (HSR) on Lake Kennabi near Haliburton Ontario that has serviced Canadian Scouts for over 60 years. Our goal was to link together the Scouts and Skaudid to share a common experience on a Scouts Canada property that was similar to Kotkajarve. Kalev and Lembitu came with 12 Youth and 3 Adults as they joined the 19 youth and 5 Leaders from the 1st Port Elgin Canadian Scouts for two nights! Together, we were a mighty Estonian-Canadian Scouting force of 39 participants! We learned about each others traditions, similarities and differences. Strong friendships and unique memories were made! At a formal campfire we were able to share songs, skits and cheers. Needless to say, the Estonian Skaudid were a welcomed addition as they rang out with their traditional songs and shared in their humorous skits, (although the punch line translation was required in most cases) The Canadian Scouts enjoyed hearing the rolling r’s and the long vowels as the night progressed. I am sure the rest of the lake heard us as well.
Program offered was varied and interesting that included rappelling, climbing wall, low ropes and a Regatta event competition with other the 200 other Scouts that were camping at the 24 other sites located around the lake
The Toronto Estonian Skauting Group representative Endel Mell presented Scouter Eric Tiisler with a very special gift of a carved hand displaying the three finger Scout salute.
Endel Mell, Estonian Scout Leader was presented with a Canadian flag that had hung from the 1st Port Elgin Hall as well as a limited edition, signed wooden paddle to commemorate the occasion. Each patrol representative from Kalev and Lembitu were given a HSR banner to hang on the walls of their respective troop camps.
Special thanks to Andres Jeeger, Lucas Mell and Edu Otsa for helping us move our outhouse to a new location. It was a skill that was unfamiliar to our Canadian Scouts and you did it with strange familiarity and skill!
Scouter Eric Tiisler
1st Port Elgin Scouts
Haliburton Scout Reserve 2014