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Marching to their own beat

Four locals will walk with Boy Scouts of America in Rose Parade

Posted: December 29, 2009 9:40 p.m.
Updated: December 30, 2009 4:55 a.m.

Local Eagle Scouts Tim Peak, Curtis VanGrinsven, Christopher Nores and Rafael Ollervide will march in the 121st annual Rose Parade in Pasadena on New Year's Day.

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It will be a walk to remember for Eagle Scouts of the Bill Hart District when they join in the festivities of the 121st annual Rose Parade on New Year's Day.

Four local scouts were selected to join the newly formed Tournament of Roses Troop 2010 and walk a whole new path of character with 300 of their scout brethren.

Scouts from the Orange County, Los Angeles and San Gabriel Valley councils will come together in celebration of the Boy Scouts of America's 100th Anniversary, commemorating the day by marching alongside their very own float, for the very first time in history.

Float walkers from the Bill Hart District Eagle Scouts are Tim Peak from Troop 58, Curtis Van Grinsven from Troop 2222, Christopher Nores from Troop 51 and Rafael Ollervides from Troop 228.

Eagle Scout Tim Peak, 15, knows why this path of roses is one worth marching.

"This parade is giving recognition for all the achievements that the people in scouting have accomplished over the years," Peak said. "It brings awareness to others of the difference that scouting makes in the community. It is a great honor to be a part of it."

Peak was one of many district scouts to apply for the opportunity to walk in the upcoming parade.

Parade scoutmasters chose applicants to join in the march based on the ability to uphold the scout qualities of being "trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent."

Eagle Scout Curtis Van Grinsven, 17, understands the importance of living these qualities everyday.

"Being an Eagle Scout is something special because it shows others that you are able to work hard and see something through," Van Grinsven said. "Being with other scouts and walking in the parade makes me feel like I am part of something bigger and that is really important."

Scouts will get to show their stamina to the public as they set off on the 5.5-mile stretch down Colorado Avenue during the parade.

But one chosen float-walker knows that going the distance is all in a day's work for scouts.

"Being an Eagle Scout is a great honor but also a great responsibility," Eagle Scout Rafael Ollervides, 18, said.

"Scouting helps to develop the leaders of the future. I hope that during the parade, people realize how significant scouting has been to America's history, not to mention the world's."

But the parade is only the beginning of the anniversary celebrations for the scouts.

The Year of Celebration Program was developed by the BSA to demonstrate the vitality and importance of the scouting organization entering its second century of leadership and character building.

Kicking off the centennial year ahead by walking the parade, scouts hope to encourage others to remember the values that scouts represent and strive to uphold in society.

Ollervides knows why some traditions never get too old to march beside.

"We live in a world that changes from one day to the next. But some things never change and never need to," Ollervides said. "Common courtesies, good judgment, good ethics and respect for oneself and for others will always be valued by society. Those are just some of the things that make up the framework that scouting teaches and those are grounded in the traditions of scouting forever."

Alicia Dukov is a student at Hart High School.

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