Hippo Food Challenge at Hairy Hippo Fun Land

Hairy Hippo Fun Land is great place to take the family and Chris took the group there to partake in the Hippo Food Challenge. The idea of the food challenge is to try some regular fair food like blue cotton candy as well as some more acquired tastes like berry dipped bananas and pickles on a stick while avoiding trips to the bathroom. If you get sick you need to get to the washrooms as soon as possible otherwise there might big mess! We started off with simple things like yellow lollipops but had to chow down on the biggest burger on the pier, the Hungry Hippo Burger!

Our presence in Bay City was noticed by the Bay City Port Authority who landed their helicopter right on the dock to see what were were up to, and we were greeted by some street performers from Bay City. There was a lot of action and people dropping by it was easy to forget the challenge! Those that finished the challenge weren’t disappointed with the special prize, a transparent balloon with mini hippos inside. Some of the kids and family also partook in the rope climb and strength testing which awarded prizes too!

Ready for the challenge at Hairy Hippo Fun Land!


Our first stop, the candy store and lollipops!

Hungry Hippo Burger!

Bay City Port Authority and Street Performers

Prizes, and waiting by the restrooms.


National History Merit Badge at WW II Memorial (Washington DC) and The Cenotaph (London) (2012-11-11)

As Scouts fulfill the requirements for this merit badge, they will learn how to become active citizens are aware of and grateful for their liberties and rights, to participate in their governments and protect their freedom, helping to defend their country and standing up for individual rights on behalf of all its citizens..

Two scout laws applied in this special trip in honor of Remembrance/Veterans Day:

A scout is Loyal to his country

A scout is reverent

The troop visited the WW II Memorial and the sacrifices by the Men and Women to protect freedom.  Later we travelled to The Cenotaph in Whitehall, London and learn about the sacrifices for freedom by the Europeans.  We each got a Poppy flower to wear in remembrance of their sacrifices.


Scouts getting ready to travel to the memorial monuments


Chris explaining the WW II monument for the Pacific and Atlantic wars (Washington DC)


Hunter examining the recognition to women’s efforts in WW II


Scouts paying their respects at The Cenotaph (London)

Horsemanship Merit Badge at Aero Pines Park (2012-11-08)

Scout Law #6 : A scout is a friend to animals

In addition to learning how to safely ride and care for horses, Scouts who earn this merit badge will gain an understanding of the instincts and behaviors of horses and humane and effective methods for training horses.

At Camp Cawabata we learned the main parts of a horse and the various breeds of horses and their advantages.

Afterwards, we went for a lovely horse ride at Aero Pines Park.   There we saw Chris and his “bandoleros” riding like ghost riders in the sky.


Chris teaching the scouts the parts of a horse body


Scouts saddling up at Aero Pines Park


Scouts enjoying a sunny day at Aero Pines Park and letting the horses rest for a while

SL Cultures Merit badge at The Perryn Lord Mieville Theatre (2012-11-04)

This merit badge has as a goal to promote better understanding of the value and contributions that different races, nationalities, genders, abilities, and ages can bring to the SL community as a whole

By attending the Magic Lantern show at Mieville, our scouts were exposed to information on different cultures, ethnicities that teach us to celebrate differences and respect diversity.

We visited a special presentation for the scouts of the Magic Lantern show for Halloween.  It was extra special since it was run 100% by the scouts (Chris, Eric and Caddy).  This show helped us understand the beginnings of the Halloween traditions in the US and well as its contributions from China as well as Ireland.


Scouts getting their seats for the Magic Lantern show


Scouts deeply watching the Halloween mystery in the show


Scouts enjoying the show and learning about Chinese and Irish cultures

Halloween Fun at Aero Pines Trail

Billy wanted to do something fun for Halloween so he gave the cubs and scouts a fun introduction to trick or treating and the tradition of Jack-o-Lanterns. Some of the scouts and cubs had costumes on, like Pac-Man, Death, Carl Grimes, A Princess, along with some super heroes. After the fun lesson we headed over to Aero Pines to do the Corn Maze and see some of the scary things in the Bates Motel.

History Lesson on Trick or Treating and Jack-O-Lanterns

About to get lost in the Corn Maze.

Checking in at the Bates Motel

Shotgun Shooting & Zombie Defense Merit Badge at Grim Bloodbath

In keeping with the Halloween Tradition the Cubs and Scouts earned their Shotgun Shooting and Zombie Defense Badges on the meeting before Halloween. We started off at camp learning about how to use shotguns, as usual no self inflicted injuries were reported this year thankfully.  After getting our shotguns and s quick lesson on zombie survival we were promptly informed our freebies were not welcome to be used at Grim Bloodbath and Beyond so we all used the default rifle. While the lag was getting bad we all managed to get outside the door and fight our way though a hoarde. We mostly stayed near the entrance and none of us turned! (But I think Matt may have already been infected)

Ready with Shotguns at camp

No T3 for you! Bloodbath Officers tell us our shotguns are banned

Fighting our way outside with the help of the National Guard

Teamwork makes for a nice display of zombie guts.

Faith Awareness Merit Badge at OnIslam Virtual Hajj

The scouts and cubs went to OnIslam Virtual Hajj to learn about the Annual Pilgrimage. Mecca where the Hajj is centred is restricted to Muslims only  this is the only chance most of us have to experience it. We visited the Masjid al-Haram, the largest Mosque in the world, saw where they pilgrims stay and the stoning of he devil ceremony.

Arriving at OnIslam

In the centre of the Mosque by the Kabaa

Side of the Mosque

Stoning of the Devil Ceremony.


Cooking Merit Badge @ Virtual State Fair

Chris introduced a new merit badge to scouts, focused mainly on food safety we completed the Virtual Health Inspector Game at the state fair. The cubs and scouts helped  find health code violations in a dinner kitchen including improperly stored food in the fridge and food not cooked to a the proper temperatures. Hunter said she had trouble eating doing this badge and David won’t talk stop talking  about salmonella. We think this badge was worth learning about considering the recent E coli scare in Canada.

Going over some different types of food borne illness at camp.

Putting on our Virtual Health Inspector hats.

Grabbing a bite to eat before your report is done?

Diner kitchen

Connor moonlighting as a server?


Fish and Wildlife Conservation Merit Badge

Teddy took the cubs and scouts to the Bay City for the Fish and Wildlife Merit Badge. This was one of our biggest trips ever to a homesstead sim so we actually had to split into two groups because we wouldn’t fit on the sim. Chris guided the second group on their badge work at camp while Teddy lead the other group around the aquarium. We had a lot of fun in the tube looking at giant squids and octopuses. One of the gags to do there is just start running down the tube yelling “Run!” in a panic and see the reaction you get.

Scouts splitting into two groups for the aquarium

Second group at the entrance to the aquarium.

Fish feeding, the one in the middle is quite hungry.

Inside the scary underwater tube.


Nuclear Science Merit Badge at Areva Nuclear Power Plant

Chris took the Cubs and Scouts on a tour of  the Areva Nuclear Power Plant to learn about how a Nuclear Power Plant Generates Electricity. We started off in the core and saw the actual rods that generate heat to run the generators, this particular power plant is an pressurized water reactor. While in the generator room we saw how the steam drives the turbines that generate the electricity to power over 500,000 homes. After the tour of the Areva planed we went over to a nearby exhibit on the Fukishima Nuclear disaster to learn about the effect of radiation on the human body and the scale of that and other Nuclear Incidents. We all arrived back at camp safely and with no extra toes or fingers.

Ready to head to the Nuclear Power Plant!

Chris talking about the Reactor Core.

Turbines and Generator.

Model of the Fukishima Reactor

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