Commission helps fund a unique camp experience for local youths


TAYLOR COUNTY— The Taylor County Commission met last week to discuss multiple items on their agenda.

During the meeting, Doug Robinson, with the American Legion Mountaineer Boys State, asked commissioners for help funding this year’s camp, and the Taylor County Commission agreed to help fund a once-in-a-lifetime experience for youths in the county.

Robinson, the Americanism Coordinator for the camp, revealed that the 82nd Annual American Legion Mountaineer Boys State will be held June 9-15, at West Virginia University Jackson’s Mill.

This year, he and a guidance counselor at Grafton High School have a total of eight boys who are interested in attending this year’s camp, including two students, as well as six counselors.

He added that there are a few other boys who have expressed interest in the camp, but have yet made the commitment.

“We have funding secured for one boy through the American Legion Post 12. We have a couple businesses and private individuals who usually will sponsor boys to go,” disclosed Robinson. “And, the Grafton City Council has pledged to support us in the amount of $700.”

The program provides young males with the opportunity to see what it takes to run a state, affording students a chance to hold positions ranging from governor and national guardsmen to county commissioners and officials.

“It is amazing what is accomplished in a three-day span,” expressed Robinson. “We are basically setting up the 51st state and run through scenarios including natural disasters and live drills, that show exactly what has to be done from the top rung of the ladder all the way down to the bottom.”

He shared that the camp’s motto is “A week that changes a lifetime,” and organizers believe that the camp does just that. With teaching boys to respect the flag and honoring the fallen, the camp focuses on Americanism, while providing structure to attendees.

“It is a really good experience,” said Robinson. “We would like to think that it is very beneficial to youths in the county. We would like to think that it helps provide a life check for these young men that will eventually be our future.”

The commissioners agreed to donate $1,050 to send four boys to this year’s camp.

To find out more about The American Legion Mountaineer Boys State visit them online at www.wvboysstate.org, contact your local American Legion Post, contact your local High School Guidance Counselor or The American Legion Department of West Virginia Headquarters at www.wvlegion.org.

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