To celebrate the 25th anniversary of its first Supertrip in 1987, Boy Scouts of America Troop 1254 of Cooperstown is planning to return to the Grand Canyon during the school vacation in March 2013, according to a media release from the troop.

Nearly 50 scouts, siblings, and adult troop members have already begun preparing for the rigors of camping in below freezing weather and hiking through the high desert. The biennial Supertrips have taken scouts to the four corners of the United States, on adventures to Mt. Rainier, the Florida Everglades, and Mt. Katahdin in Maine. This trip will mark the fifth time the troop has ventured to Grand Canyon.

“The trips change the lives of those fortunate enough to attend. Scouts learn leadership, self reliance, self esteem and team work in a wilderness backpacking environment,” Scoutmaster Emeritus Hank Nicols, who has led many of the Supertrips, said in the release.

His goal is to get every youth to the Colorado River and back to the rim, though the more-adventurous groups may attempt to hike rim to rim to rim. Including the flight to Las Vegas and a 250-mile drive to the canyon, the trip will span nine days, five of which will be spent camping and hiking in the canyon.

The troop has agreed that no scout will miss the trip for a lack of financial means, the release stated.

In addition to holding monthly bottle drives year-round, several fundraisers are planned for the upcoming months. The first event is a spaghetti dinner from 5 to 7 p.m., Monday, Dec. 3, at the Fly Creek United Methodist Church. The menu includes spaghetti with homemade sauce, meatballs, salad, garlic bread, drink and dessert. Adults are $7, children under 12 are $5.

A scholarship fund is also being established to assist scouts who are unable to pay the full $1,200 cost of the trip. Donations may be sent to BSA Troop 1254, c/o Nicols, 14 Walnut St., Cooperstown, N.Y. 13326. All funds raised will directly benefit local scouting families who need support.

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