We offer a huge congratulatory thumbs up to Nathaniel "Kase" Williams of Randolph for having earned the rank of Eagle Scout. We note as well that of the 21 merit badges that must be earned as part of the Eagle Scout requirements, 12 are mandatory: first aid, citizenship in the community, citizenship in the nation, citizenship in the world, communications, personal fitness, environmental science, personal management, camping, family life, emergency preparedness or lifesaving, and swimming or hiking or cycling
We know there are issues at the national level of Boy Scouting, but at the troop level - where Boy Scouting really happens - just think about how well off our country would be if every boy every where earned those 12 merit badges.
Back to Kase Williams: let's give a thumbs up as well to the adults who have been involved in his journey to become an Eagle Scout.
Staying on the topic of scouting, thumbs up to Adam Nester who trains Boy Scouts in the art of matchless fire starting - most recently Troop 137 of Bemus Point. Nester showed them the bow drill method using dry cattails, leaves and the inner bark of tree as the tinder.
The boys may never be in a situation where their well-being depends on starting a fire with a bow drill, but we can assure you that there is an inner satisfaction, an assurance of self reliance, in simply knowing how.
Thumbs up to the U.S. Mint honoring the centennial of the founding of Girl Scouts of the USA with the minting of a commemorative coin. Some 350,000 silver dollar coins will be minted featuring three girls and the inscription Courage, Confidence and Character on one side and the traditional Girl Scout trefoil emblem on the other. The coins will be minted next year and can be ordered online through the U.S. Mint. Although we haven't yet seen a price, we note that this year's commemorative silver dollar honoring the U.S. infantry soldier costs in the range of $50.
Whatever the price for each $1 coin, it includes $10 that will be donated to Girl Scouts of the USA.
Thumbs up to the emergency services drill at the Chautauqua County airport this morning. The drill is designed to test the capability of responders to handle an emergency at the airport. It is worth noting that there seems to be more volunteer emergency services groups involved in the drill than there are paid professionals - a testament to the by-our-bootstraps nature of how we look after ourselves. It is also a salute to the seamless way professionals and volunteers meld their efforts to create the excellent emergency services available to residents here.
The exercise starts at 9 a.m. If you notice anything at all, it will likely be increased non-emergency ambulance traffic to WCA Hospital as well as minor traffic disruptions near the airport on West Oak Hill Road.
And, finally, thumbs up to everyone who makes the time to take unused prescription drugs and expired over-the-counter pills to the "drug take-back day" at Southside Pharmacy at the plaza on Foote Avenue in Jamestown and at Chautauqua Mall. It runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. - and will be staffed by police, by the way.
As a society, we need to be meticulous about how we dispose of unneeded drug supplies - too much is getting into our water supply because we are flushing the pills away or tossing them out in the garbage.