Centennial year of Estonian scouting begins

RIINA KINDLAM, Tallinn 29. nov. 2011

Centennial year inaugural celebrations were held outdoors simultaneously in Tallinn, Tartu, Kilingi-Nõmme, Haapsalu and Rakvere.

Centennial year of Estonian scouting begins
Karolin Lillemäe, editor-in-chief of Eesti Skaut magazine cuts the cake honouring the birthday of the founder of Estonian scouting Anton Õunapuu (born Nov. 7, 1887) and marking the opening of the jubilee year of 100 years of Estonian scouting. The first troop was established in 1912 in Pärnu. Anton Õunapuu väljak, the main field at Kotkajärve (the Canadian Estonian scout and guide camp) was named after the phys. ed. teacher who introduced scouting to Estonia and fell fighting its War of Independence in 1919 at the age of 31. Photo: Riina Kindlam


In Tallinn, scouts and friends of scouts gathered in Vabaduse väljak / Freedom Square where they lit candles, played games, sang and watched video greetings from other troops. Cake was later served at the Tudengimaja / Student House on Raekoja plats where a video was shown of President Toomas Hendrik Ilves speaking about his vivid memories of Estonian scouting in the U.S.

Cake-cutter Karolin is a member of the ökoskaudid – "ecological" scouts within the Estonian Scout Association (ESÜ) whose motto is not just "Be Prepared", but be prepared to lend a hand to help the environment (Keskkonna nimel – alati valmis.) Karolin is also assistant coordinator of Eesti skautlus 100, alongside Monika Ojala (see this week's Estonian section). Women leading scouts – Lady Olave Baden-Powell would be proud, since before becoming Chief Guide for Britain in 1918, she was Scoutmaster of a troop founded in Sussex in 1913.