Cold enough for a blanket and campfire?

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collection documentation

I blogged recently about cleaning my hammers and mallets ready for the Curious Collections day.

I am also displaying my Scout campfire blanket and have had to prepare it to hang from a picture rail.

Scouting is a uniformed organisation and, through the Award Scheme, Members may earn specific badges to sew on their uniform.

Groups, Districts, Branches (states) and countries have their own identifying badges on the uniform. Many members in Scouting swap and collect these badges when they meet other members.

Major events also produce badges for those attending – some are approved for wearing on the uniform, others just for the fun of collecting. Whilst some badges are obviously rarer than others, collecting etiquette decrees that one badge is swapped for one badge.

Some people will just have a box of badges, and some will create albums much the same as a stamp collector. Others will sew their badges on a jacket or hat so they can wear them. Many will create a campfire blanket. The expectation is that the Scout will sew on the badges, rather than passing the task to their mother.

I created my campfire blanket with badges I collected as a Cub, Scout and Senior Scout in SA and swaps at the 2nd Australian Venture, Nunawading 1969/70, and the 8th Australian Jamboree, Leppington 1970/71. It includes a few from my brother who attended the World Jamboree in Idaho 1967.

Whilst the blanket can be used on a bed or just wrapped around you for warmth, I designed mine to be worn over the shoulders, with a set of Scout belt buckles holding the front together. This allowed me, as a Leader, to have my arms free to lead numerous campfires over the years.

I now manage a Scout campsite on the River Murray with many campers apart from Scouts. I find individuals and groups from many backgrounds love to sit around an open fire. In Scouting though, a campfire is more than just keeping warm – it normally includes singing songs, performing humorous skits and recounting stories. A few people wearing campfire blankets adorned with memories of their adventures in Scouting adds to the atmosphere.

Part of the About Time festival, the Curious Collections event is for one day only – Sunday 18 May, 10 am – 4 pm.

Old Highercombe Hotel Museum, 3 Perseverance Road, Tea Tree Gully. Entry $2.

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