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Who else is going over the edge?

May 29, 2012

Dale Van Stratten

How did you hear about the event? 

I heard about the event through the normal BSA communications process, via email updates and news letters…  I am the Scout Master for Troop 143 in Blair, NE.

Why did you decide to rappel over the Woodmen Tower this year? 

Ever since the MAC brought the Over the Edge program to Omaha I have wanted to join in.  I enjoy the thrill of an event like this.  On my bucket list I just happened to have a goal to rappel at least 30 floors or more.  Since the Woodman Tower has 33 floors, it made the cut.  I actually thought raising the money would be easy.  Facebook, Twitter and email make it easier than ever before to reach out to a number of folks.  I was correct.  I was done and had a lot of little donations in no time.

Finally, I thought of doing this to showcase Troop 143 and what we are all capable of.  Raising money for the Troop and for BSA/MAC are always a great cause.  After I made the decision I was contacted by a friend who saw the update on facebook and they wanted to rappel with me.  So… we started a team.  My son, who is a Life Scout and also in the Venture Crew is the third member of our team.  The team now consists of; Myself, Denise McCauley (who works in the Woodman building and has always wanted to do this) and my Son, 14, Dalton Van Stratten.  Our Team name is ‘The 3 D’s from 143’.

 Have you ever rappelled before? If so, where? 

Yes I have rappelled before while serving in the US Army and I still rappell with the BSA Venture Crew 143, in Blair, NE of which I am also an active adult leader.  As a matter of fact, the crew is currently in training for a 4 day trip to Blue Mound, MN where we will be rock climbing and rappelling yet this summer.  We are fortunate in that our Venture Crew is affiliated under the same charter as our Boy Scout Troop from 143.  We share a lot of the same boys and leverage/share in joint training offerings, ie, backpack training for high adventure this summer.  We are somewhat unique in this regard and very fortunate to have such great adult leadership to drive these programs for our Scouts.

Does anything scare you about rappelling down the Woodmen? If so, what? 

The beauty of being an occasional rush seeker is that you don’t tend to dwell on the facts.  Meaning, you focus on the positive, fun and exhilarating aspects of the event vs the raw truth that this is inherently dangerous.  If I was going to focus on the scary details I would probably worry about the sudden stop at the bottom.

What excites you about rappelling? 

This is a trick question.  The same thing that excites somebody about an event like this is the same reason that most people wouldn’t do it.  Meaning, it’s scary, high, vulnerable……the hardest moment is when you have to lean back and put your trust in the rope.  Scary things revolve around trust.
Why support the Boy Scouts? 

I’ve seen first-hand what ‘good’ the BSA program does for a young boy.  Roy Rogers used to say the best thing for the inside of a man is the outside of a horse.  I think you could expand on that and say the best thing for the inside of a boy is the outdoors.  Let’s face it, camping, and scouting craft are simply the tools the program uses to help achieve the goals of leadership, service and stewardship.

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