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Local Scouts attend Trump’s inauguration

February 2, 2017
By J.T. Whitehouse , The Town Crier

A group of 15 Scouts and troop leaders from Boy Scout Troop 60 made the trip Jan. 20 to Washington, D.C., to witness the inauguration of Donald Trump as the 45th president of the United States.

The troop delegation left Boardman Jan. 19 and returned Jan. 21.

The whole trip was credited to troop member Jaden Rivera, 14. According to his father, Ralph Rivera, Jaden came up with a plan to make the trip some time ago.

"The idea behind the trip came from Boy Scout Jaden Rivera about a year ago," Ralph said. "He approached his Scoutmaster, Byron Harnishfeger, about attending it as one of the troop's monthly trips and campouts. He became drawn to this election by Donald Trump."

Ralph said Harnishfeger embraced the idea, and with enough support from his fellow Scouts and parents from Troop 60, the trip became a reality.

The 15-member delegation left from Westminster Presbyterian Church, 119 Stadium Drive, which is the church that Troop 60 is chartered to. The group included eight Boy Scouts and seven adult leaders.

The first stop on the trip was Cherry Hill Park Campground in College Park, Md.

"This is the closest campground to Washington, D.C.," Ralph said. "Cherry Hill offered the convenience of a Metrobus stop and took us directly to the College Park metro. We had stayed at this camp when the troop visited D.C. in 2014."

Through U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan's office, the troop received tickets for the west standing area in front of the U.S. Capitol. The boys had to arrive early and were actually standing in their assigned area at 8:30 a.m.

"The trip to and from the National Mall on Inauguration Day was met with very little waiting, and we passed through security extremely fast," Ralph said. "We did not encounter any protesters or any hostile persons."

Following the ceremony, the troop members made their way to Ryan's office for a reception, where the boys met the congressman and thanked him for the hospitality that his office showed towards the Scouts.

On Saturday morning, the delegation returned to Boardman, realizing they had witnessed an important part of history.



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