Crazy Horse Helps Scouts Celebrate 100th
The Crazy Horse Memorial mountain carving figured prominently in the national Boy Scouts of America centennial celebration.
The July 31 event shared activities at the Memorial with five other sites over a closed-circuit satellite television network. The show also was available worldwide thanks to a streaming video broadcast on the Boy Scouts’ website.
The 100th anniversary celebration, dubbed “A Shining Light Across America,” was based at the National Scout Jamboree at Fort A.P. Hill in Virginia. Televised segments also came from arenas in New York City; Durham, North Carolina; Jacksonville, Florida; and Fort Wayne, Indiana. Crazy Horse was the farthest west of the sites providing televised activities. Other locations also conducted “Shining Light” events, although not televised.
The Crazy Horse scouts and their supporters gathered in the upper level of the Memorial’s visitor parking lot. Their activities included archery, Native American arts and crafts demonstrations, and dancing by youth and adults led by Memorial cultural affairs specialist Belinda Joe and the He Sapa Ho (Voice of the Black Hills) Drum Group.
Local televised speakers included scouts Will Smith, Christian Sugrue and Ian Keegan; Gerard Baker, the recently retired assistant director of American Indian relations for the National Park Service; and Rapid City attorney Timothy Rensch, an Eagle Scout. In 1982, Rensch was one of two Scouts selected to present sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski with a plaque for his support of a three-day Order of the Arrow “Camporee” at the base of the mountain.
Korczak was a Boy Scout troop leader during his teenage years in New England. Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts in uniform are admitted free to the Memorial, and the Welcome Center features displays of various Boy Scout honors and troop badges incorporating the Crazy Horse image.
The Tasunke Witko Nature Trail at Crazy Horse was an Eagle Scout project that transformed into the hiking trail used for the annual Crazy Horse Volksmarch.
Order of the Arrow honor guards stood watch during public viewing of Korczak’s closed pine casket in the original log cabin studio-home following his death on Oct. 20,1982. A scout bugler also played taps at the conclusion of his funeral service on October 24, 1982.