Core values

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For a listing & photos by region go to:

Another good guide, meant for photographers, includes information about how to access lighthouses. Go to:

August 10 – S’mores Day
Hey – it’s August – Perfect time for camping, campfires, picnics. Celebrate S’mores Day with S’mores. Can’t go camping right now? Check out the recipes under Cub Grub – make S’mores pie, crumb bars or Indoor Honey Graham Cereal S'mores!

August 11 – Play in the Sand Day
Spend a fun day or even just a couple of hours, at a nearby beach – play some games, build a sand castle, take lots of pictures - and if it’s allowed, gather materials to do a useful project. See ideas under Den & Pack Activities.

August 12-13 – Perseid Meteor Showers
Find a good place to view this spectacular annual meteor shower – but check out the tips and information under Den & Pack Activities for more details.

August 17 – Davy Crockett’s Birthday

Davy Crockett was born to a large family that lived in the American wilderness where there were no stores, schools, or churches. The family finally settled on the Holston River and opened a tavern where travelers stopped on their way from Virginia to the West. Davy was only 8 when he started working in the tavern – he was excited by the stories visitors told, and wanted to see the world. When Davy was only 12 years old, his father agreed to let him work for a Dutchman driving a herd of cattle over the mountains to Virginia – he offered to let Davy stay, but homesickness brought him home. He was excited to learn that a new school had opened, but on his fourth day, Davy was bullied by another boy, and finally fought the boy and won – but he was afraid the boy and his friends would be waiting for him the next day, so he stayed in the woods till school would have been out and then went home. The schoolmaster sent a note to Davy’s father after a few days, and the angry father headed off with a hickory stick to find Davy. When Davy saw his father coming, he ran away and joined a drover taking cattle hundreds of miles away. For two years, Davy worked at odd jobs, earning about 25 cents a day, but finally his fear of his father faded, and he headed home. There was a great celebration. Davy was bound by customs of the time to stay with his father till he reached 21 – but his father offered to give Davy his freedom early if he would work for six months to earn off a debt his father owed. Davy developed a sense of what it meant to be honest as he worked, and discovered he could earn another $40 if he worked an extra six months. So six months later, he returned home and presented his father with a cancelled note for two debts – a total of almost $80.

Davy was now 16, and knew he should learn how to read and write. He took a job working two days a week for board, and went to school the other four days. He married, built a log cabin, and became an outstanding shot with his musket. He moved several times, settling in Tennessee, and was one of the best riflemen in Andrew Jackson’s army. His skill in hunting kept the troops from starving. He learned to write in order to serve as a magistrate, and became very popular, being a great storyteller. He was asked to run for the legislature, and his jokes and stories, and his wonderful memory helped him get elected.

There was nothing he liked more than a good bear hunt, and his skill was legendary – twice he brought down a bear weighing more than 600 pounds, and he once killed 105 bears in one year. The meat was considered a delicacy, their fur was used for coats, and their skins were used for beds and bedding. In 1827 he was elected to Congress, and introduced himself by saying, “I am …fresh from the backwoods, half horse, half alligator, a little touched with snapping turtle…I can ship my weight in wildcats.” He made quite a stir in Washington, but was always well liked. As a Congressman, Crockett’s service was outstanding – he was honest and conscientious, never took a bribe or voted for something he didn’t believe in – he was called the “Honest Congressman.” He also wrote an autobiography which he called “a plain, honest, homespun account of my life.”

In 1846, Crockett and four of his “Tennessee boys” went to the Alamo to help the Texans in their battle against a far larger Mexican force of 5,000 men. The Texans and Crockett’s men numbered only about 108. But the determined defenders inside the Alamo forced the Mexicans back twice. Out of ammunition, Crockett and the Texans were finally killed as the Mexicans stormed a short wall. On the day he died, Crockett wrote a letter to his daughter telling her not to worry, that he was among friends. His youngest daughter later wrote she remembered him leaving for Texas, “dressed in his hunting suit, wearing a coonskin cap, and carrying a fine rifle presented to him by friends in Philadelphia.”

He was a real-life hero, an honest man, and became a legend while he was still alive.

August 25 – National Banana Split Day
In honor of this fun holiday, be sure to enjoy a banana split! And if you are having a Raingutter Regatta, save one clean raingutter for a huge, community banana split!

August 31 – Trail Mix Day
Make some trail mix – talk about why different ingredients are needed; why we don’t want too much candy or salt; why we want to include some dried fruit. Now take your trail mix, water and any gear needed for protection or for possible weather conditions – and go on a hike!

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