2011 World Scout Jamboree - Rinkaby Sweden
144 Venture Scouts and 19 Leadeers from the State of Utah attended the largest world Scout Jamboree ever, July 27 - August 7, 2011 in Rinkaby Sweden. They were among over 41,000 young men and women from 169 countries from around the world who attended the event. Scouts came from France to Finland, Austria to Australlia, from the UK to the US and everywhere in between to enjoy the event. Although, they came from many different backgrounds and circumstances, they all have one thing in common, a love of scouting.
For the young men from Utah, the journey to Rinkaby began in October of 2010, when Great Salt Lake President Charles Dahlquist was attending a meeting at the National Boy Scout offices in Texas, and learned that only three young men from the state of Utah were enrolled for the event. To Dahlquist, that was unacceptable. He was determined to find a way to have at least two Venture Crews from the State of Utah attend. That number blossomed to four. "There has never been a contingent like this from Utah before," said Dahlquist.
For six months these young men prepared themselves for this once-in-a-lifetime event, including fund raising, leadership training, camping, and singing. And sing they did. Little did they know when they joined this Venture Crew that they also joined a choir. At the Faith and Religious Beliefs program at the Jamboree, they sang “I am a Child of God,” “On My Honor,” and a Swedish hymn, and “En vänlig grönskas rika dräkt,” for an audience of about 20,000. It was beautiful.
The theme for the Jamboree was “Simply Scouting” to encourage getting back to the basics of scouting: cooking over an open fire, sleeping in tents, building furniture from logs, and of course good clean fun. The boys built gateways, tables, swings, chairs, clotheslines, and much more using nothing more than logs, twine, and ingenuity. They cooked delicious meals. They had a lot of fun.
Available events included ice skating, zip lines, zorbing, a Ferris wheel made from logs, hiking, swimming, a 4D movie, shows, and much much more.
One of the most popular activities for the Utah scouts was trading—patches, shirts, uniforms, neckerchiefs, cowboy hats, anything of value, and somethings of little value.
Trading became so popular that a trader's area popped up. It became known as the "Den of Thieves" by those who frequented it often.
But why go to all the hassle and expense to hold world Boy Scout jamborees? The reasons are plenty, including:
1. Catch the Spirit of International Peace, Goodwill, and Friendship and Return Home and Share It With Others.
2. Catch the Scouting Spirit
3. Strengthen World Friendship
4. Strengthen the Brotherhood of Scouting
5. Educational Growth
6. Meet New People From Around The World
7. Emphasize Need of Physical Fitness
8. Emphasize Need for Conservation
The young men supported and strived to reach these goals and returned home to share the goodwill spirit with their families, schools, friends, and neighborhoods. In order to meet these goals, each crew was divided into groups of 10 for every activity and paired with 3 other groups from around the world. “We met people from Sweden, Italy, Israel, UK, and many other countries from around the world. It was neat to meet so many different people from so many different cultures,” explained a Sandy scout.
After the Jamboree, the young men spent two days in Copenhagen, Denmark, seeing the sites, shopping, and learning about Copenhagen. “It was the highlight of the Jamboree,” said another Sandy scout.
For the young Venture scouts from Utah, the world jamboree was a wonderful, life-changing experience that will never be forgotten.
- 40,061 Scouts + one event with 10,000 visitors
- 146 countries were represented.
- Scouts lived in a space spread over 1,433 acres
- More than 20,000 tents were pitched making the Jamboree the fourth biggest city in southern Sweden.
- 1,500,000 meals were prepared
- Over 2,400,000 hours were volunteered to make the Jamboree happen.
- Boy Scouts of America donated 740 tents used by their contingent to Scouts from Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Armenia, Azerbijan, Georgia, Moldova, Belarus, Russia and the Ukraine, while BSA Staff donated their tents to the Great Lakes Region of Africa.