Jul 29, 2014

Girl Scouts to Ask Permission for Archery in Glen Farm Park

Scouts disappointed that archery is not allowed in the park.

Girl Scouts to Ask Permission for Archery in Glen Farm Park
Portsmouth Girl Scouts are hoping the Town Council grants them permission for archery in Glen Farm Park.

The Town Council will review the request at tonight's Town Council meeting after Deborah Barandiaran, Portsmouth service unit manager, wrote a letter asking for the council to re-think the prohibition on archery in the town park.

"We never had an incident caused from our activities," Barandiarian wrote. "Archery has always been an activity that the girls love but I know first hand that the older girls on one troop have voted to not attend the campout due to the elimination of the archery activity."

The camp in question is the annual Service Unit Camp Out planned for the weekend of May 16 to 17. It's a popular event with more than 100 girls attending.

Barandiarian said she told the girls that archery was disallowed and it was "not well received" for a variety of reasons including the fact older girls liked having an event they were allowed to participate in.

The Girl Scouts uses Buckley Family Archery to conduct sessions and they would occur in a confined location with one-on-one instruction. 

"Everyone takes this event seriously and is proud to be a part of," Barandiarian wrote. "It also gave the younger girls a goal to work towards."

Barandiarian said safety concerns are addressed with adequate safety plans, the Girl Scouts carries insurance and "extreme care" is taken to keep the activity safe and separate from other events during the weekend.

She said the scouts are willing to post a permit in clear view to make sure passers-by know they have specific permission for the activity "so no one is under the assumption that the park is available for individual Archery activities" and said it's unfair to penalize the Girl Scouts because someone might see it and want to copy it.

And, she said, it's a shame that the older girls are disappointed because "it's not easy to keep girls in scouting during their high school years."

What do you think? Should the Girl Scouts be allowed to have archery in the park?

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