The Mattapoisett Fire Station became the hot spot for local fundraising this past Saturday, August 24, for two events, both sparked by scouts with a desire to give back and fueled by the energy of the adolescent years.
Those who drove by the station could see scouts flanked along the sidewalks with signs proudly announcing their car wash taking place in the station’s parking lot, while others waved at the Dog Walk-a-Thon mascot pointing down Barstow Street to direct them to his fundraiser at the Center School.
The Rochester Cub Scout Pack 30 has a packed docket of adventures slated for the upcoming scout year and, to alleviate the financial burden from the pack’s caregivers, the cubs held their first car wash.
Tapping into the fire hydrant at the front of the station at 10:00 am, scouts filled buckets of suds, prepared their sponges, and patiently awaited their first visitor of the day, which didn’t take long. A steady stream of cars filled the station spots, and, at times, there was even a line forming with local residents waiting their turn.
For the scouts, giggles were aplenty as they wiped away the summer sand, dirt, and grime from cars, careful to not scratch anything, while the older boy scouts and leaders rinsed off the suds. Visitors were asked to donate $5 per car washed to help fund the scouts’ upcoming year, but many left heftier bills, thankful for their clean car and energetic scouts.
For many of the scouts, the best part was playing in the water, but many of them laughed and smiled at the familiar faces, especially the Rochester Memorial School teacher who came back a few times with different family cars for the scouts to clean off. The support of the youth in the Tri-Town was shown that summer day with the 30-plus cars that lined up and the over $600 the scouts raised for camping, events, and activities.
Alongside the cub scouts was the Dog Walk-A-Thon mascot who stood at the corner of Route 6 and Barstow Street pointing his supporters to the Center School. Behind that dog mask was none other than Freemin Bauer, a Mattapoisett Eagle Scout whose passion for dogs has fueled his multi-year effort to bring a dog park to the town. Judging by the pooch-filled cars entering and leaving the street and the car wash, it was another successful event for him.
Bauer’s Eagle project a few years back sparked his continued efforts to bring the dog park to fruition and, despite being in college and beginning his adult life, he hasn’t lost sight of his dream. Every year, he holds the event where dog lovers, owners, and dogs bond while walking around the school and town, dreaming of the day when their dog park becomes a reality. For now, the Center School will do until Bauer raises the benchmark amount he needs to start the next phase. Despite being in his college years, Bauer has kept his promise and continues to work on his goal of raising enough money to build the park.
A cornerstone of scouting is to give back to the community, which Bauer showed the young cubs that day doesn’t end when you age out of scouts, but is a fire that continues to burn when it’s properly fueled by passion, determination, and loyalty – another trait that runs deep into the scouting world.
By Michelle Wood