Members of Boy Scout Troop 28 have found a way to raise money during a time when many of their usual events have been canceled. The scouts will be participating in Junk Jaunt Sept. 25-28 and will be hosting an auction tentatively set for Nov. 14 at the Phillips Memorial Hall.
In order to hold the events, the troop has decided to ask the community for donated items to sell and auction off. Scout Master Aaron Nilson noted that they will be taking donations of any items.
“Anything that people are willing to donate, we are willing to accept,” he said. “We’re going to be setting up a garage sale at the Phillips Community Hall during Junk Jaunt weekend and so we are looking for anything you might find on a garage sale.”
In addition to items, the troop is also seeking business donations like gift certificates to put on their upcoming auction.
Items can be donated up until the week before the Junk Jaunt and into November for the auction. Nilson explained that there are really no restrictions on any donations.
Troop members will be in charge of setting up the sales and have also been hard at work collecting the items. He described that they currently have a semi-trailer in Phillips where they’ve been storing items and that the Scouts will help move everything from there into the Memorial Hall.
“They’ll be working during the auction,” he said. “Of course, they’ll be in school a couple of days during the Junk Jaunt, but they’ll be out there working and helping out. We’re also planning on having some concessions out there that we will be running.”
Funds raised will go towards the general needs of the troop and will cover items like scouting equipment and future scouting trips.
“We’re looking at doing the high adventure trip here next year so that takes more funds to do that,” he voiced. “In the past, we’ve gone to places like the Florida Sea Base, where they actually camp out on a deserted island for a week. We’ve also had Scouts go to Belmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico and go backpacking for a week.”
For their upcoming adventure, Nilson has been looking at a trip to the Boundary Waters between Minnesota and Quebec, or the Louisiana swamp base where the scouts would canoe down the swamp for a week. He added that the trip is the big reason they are raising funds.
“Because of COVID-19 we’ve been limited on what we can do to fundraise this year,” he noted. “We normally have an annual hamburger feed at the Aurora Mall and those all got canceled. That’s one of our primary fundraisers that we do besides selling popcorn door to door, which has also been limited.”
These struggles are what led the troop to try something new. After seeing other troops do similar fundraising projects with success he decided to give it a go.
It began with Jamie Bergmark of Bergmark Auctioneering who donated leftover items from his auctions. Nilson explained that this gave the troop a place to start for items. Those coupled with people donating items leftover from garage sales and people doing spring cleaning have helped them began their collection.
“It’s going to be one of our primary fundraisers this year and it helps us continue our mission of teaching scouts independence, leadership and morals,” he described. “We try to teach them to be self-sufficient so this is one of the ways that we can do this. By working at the auction and sale they learn some valuable skills like dealing with the public. It just gives them that much of a head start in life.”
Those interested in donating can e-mail auroratroop28@ gmail.com or text Aaron Nilson at 402-604-0051 or Penny Evans at 308-383-2119.