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08-19-2022    09:25 AM    OPINION    Does age or purpose matter to a weak infrastructure?

How Many of WHAT Age Group?!

The ages of the participants is a murky area.  According to a Wisconsin article, they were expecting tens of thousands of teenagers to the 2019 event, contrary to my stated understanding that the ages would be 4-12.  I called Jessica Seders, Executive Director of the Campbell County Convention and Visitors Bureau, and according to the information she was given by the International Pathfinders Organization, the attendees are kids aged 5-11.  Teenagers may be in attendance as counselors.  Basically the ratio expected is one adult per one child, she said, is what the organization told her.

Another proponent of the Camporee said those numbers don't sound right to him at all.  He thinks all the attendees are teenagers up to the age of 16, and that there is no way there is one adult per every child.  Certainly the photos published by Pathfinders suggest the attendees are mostly older kids.

Based on the historical growth of the event, from 16,129 in 1985 to more than 55,000 in 2019, the expected number should be more like 60,000+.

I am still waiting on an official response from Ron Whitehead of Pathfinders, regarding the numbers of people and the ages of people, but wanted to get this clarification out since a number of Wyoming residents wondered if 55,000+ kids aged 4-12 was a typo.

How Long Will This Expanded Population Affect Us?

An early News Record article cited a 2 week occupancy period, but that is now being downplayed into a one week period of occupation.  That may have been a typo in the article.

There will be auxillary personnel here for at least a month, but no one has said how many.

Oshkosh Didn't Break Up With Her, SHE Broke Up With Oshkosh!

Another correction I was asked to make is that Oshkosh did not reject Pathfinders, Pathfinders felt they could find a better situation for themselves by relocating.  Pathfinders believe that Gillette, Wyoming can offer more support for the International Camporee than Oshkosh, Wisconsin can.

Local News Coverage

The Gillette News Record has done an excellent job of reporting on this cataclysmic event every time it was discussed in Gillette.  Many thanks to the Gillette News Record for their great reporting on this particular event, and many others.

The Gillette News Record has printed a number of articles regarding the 2024 International Pathfinders Camporee.  On August 28, 2021, they announced that parts of the Rec Center including the teen locker rooms and the three basketball courts will be closed to local residents during the huge event to make way for the 55,000+ expected visitors.  No, that is not a typo.  55,000+ people, "most of them kids" according to a News Record article.

One newspaper article suggested it would be 1/3 kids, 1/3 counselors, and 1/3 personnel.

The city infrastructure (or lack thereof) doesn't care how old the 55,000 campers are, but if the age doesn't matter then why doesn't the propagated information match up?  Even the supporters of the International Camporee all have different ideas of what the ages are and how long Campbell County and its townships will be impacted by it... before, during, and after the event itself.

Laugh or Cry?

From one perspective, it's amusing.  From another perspective it's devastating.  The result of 55,000+ people descending on Gillette for a week seems similar to a swarm of locusts destroying all resources, as evidenced by the fact that it is stated they can't tell you often enough to be stocked up on supplies including food and gas before the Camporee arrives in August of 2024.

The proponents of the event state that you should plan your life around the Camporee!  Take a 2 week vacation if you can, and rent your home out as an Air B&B!  In my 66 years, even when I had paid vacations I could never afford to take a vacation.

As good neighbors, has Campbell County advertised to citizens of surrounding counties, and to nearby Montana and South Dakota cities, of this impending population explosion?  Along with the day trips and tours the Pathfinders have planned, they will most likely be purchasing supplies in nearby cities as well.

What a great opportunity for our city to host an international event that outgrew Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

Thank you for reading. The purpose of my campaigns is to highlight corruption and to get assistance from anyone who is able and willing to help return Gillette and Campbell County and Wyoming to American Ideals, and hopefully a culture that applies the law equally to all citizens regardless of position or social class. Thank you so much for the efforts you are making and have already made. Please forward to everyone that you know who might be interested in the information I share. God Bless You, and God Bless America.

Links to PDF files, direct quotations, and reproduced content in this document are presented here to document the object of the criticisms outlined above, to inform those who may not be aware of these oppositional opinions, and finally to provide a historical reference to the issues Americans faced at the time of publication.