Supporting the Honored Tradition of Scouting
Writer // Janelle Morrison Photos // Submitted
Scouting in Indiana has a long history, from the 1910s to the present day, of serving thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live. Scouting in Zionsville has a long-honored tradition as well and continues to cultivate its membership generations later.
The Scouts Council that serves Boone County, Crossroads of America Council (BSA Council #160), is headquartered in Indianapolis. Carolyn Small, development director for Boy Scouts of America – Crossroads of America Council, is working once again with Mayor Haak, local community members and former Scouts on hosting the 2nd Annual Zionsville Mayor’s Breakfast for Scouting on Thursday, September 21 at Lions Park.
“The mayor’s breakfasts have been occurring for a long time and for more than 10 years in Hamilton County,” Haak said. “When the mayor’s office became official in Zionsville, Anna Hudak and Carolyn Small, who are with the Scouts, reached out to me to discuss hosting a breakfast in Zionsville. I attended an event for Mayor Cook in Westfield and learned more about these events from Hamilton County officials and community leaders. I learned about how these events benefit the Scouts and their programs. My family has been active in scouting for a long time, so it was something that I obviously wanted to support.”
Part of the proceeds from these mayor’s breakfasts goes towards subsidizing the cost of the programs for Scouts who otherwise couldn’t afford to participate. Additionally, the funding goes towards the myriad of incredible programs that the organization provides for their Scouts.
Haak enthusiastically explained that last year’s inaugural breakfast was slated to raised $20,000 as a first-year event but exceeded everyone’s expectations when it raised an outstanding $40,000.
“It was an incredibly successful event last year, and we would like to exceed our goal this year,” Haak said. “It’s a very unique event being held outside, under a tent, in Lions Park. These events are usually held indoors in a banquet or conference center. It was amazing how it brought members of the community together to network and talk about scouting. It shows how deep scouting is in Zionsville. Almost half of all first grade boys are in scouting. We have more Eagle Scouts, per capita, than anybody else in the council. It’s a very active program here in town.”
The mayor explained that the Scouts are always on the scene to clean up after the Fourth of July and Fall Festival events, and they are engaged in Scout projects all over town. “Whether the public realizes it or not, the Scouts leave their mark everywhere,” Haak emphasized.
Small spoke about why having a mayor’s breakfast in Zionsville is important to the overall fundraising efforts of the organization. “The council organizes a number of these mayor’s events across the council which covers all of central Indiana,” she said. “It is a format that has worked well for scouting as it engages community leaders and members and raises awareness of scouting while generating financial support on the fundraising side.
“We were really fortunate when the Zionsville’s mayor’s office became official and to have Mayor Haak’s support who is deeply involved with scouting with his family. I have to brag on my committee who worked on last year’s event. It was phenomenal. The two co-chairs, Martin Rice and Mark Maucere, and the fantastic group of folks who worked on this last year were the most active, productive and engaged volunteer committee that I’ve ever worked with, and I’ve been with the Scouts for 11 years.”
Small explained that scouting in Zionsville is rather unique. It has a strong density, one of the strongest in the nation, and from the fundraising side, it is strong in terms of the support.
“We knew that it had potential to be successful, but we were super excited when we hit the $40,000 mark at the inaugural breakfast,” Small exclaimed. “The other cool thing about the event is that it’s held at Lions Park where a lot of the service projects are completed and is so heavily used by the Scouts in the Zionsville community.”
Last year’s event attracted over 150 of the community’s leaders, businesses, former Scouts and parents of Scouts. The program begins with a warm welcome and a breakfast that is catered by Palamino Ballroom culinary team. It is a fairly short program kept to an hour. Throughout the program, local Scouts are highlighted as well as the scouting programs in Zionsville. The keynote speaker is Mayor Haak.
“We try to bring it all together and make it meaningful, so people walk away excited and proud about what scouting is now and what it continues to do throughout the community,” Small said. “People can get involved in the breakfast by being a table sponsor (table of 10), as a table host where they come as an individual but invite nine other folks to support the table or they can come as an individual. There are many different ways to support the event and the Scouts, but our main goal is to have as many people as possible attend the mayor’s breakfast, so we can share the program and raise awareness about scouting in Zionsville and the positive effects that it has.”
For information on sponsorships and tickets to the 2nd Annual Mayor’s Breakfast for Scouting, visit tinyurl.com/Zionsville2017.