Oxford Cub Scout leads local Council in fundraising

By Errol Castens/NEMS Daily Journal

OXFORD – Carter Diggs, a member of Cub Scout Pack 146 in Oxford, was named the Yocona Area Council’s leading salesman for 2009.
Chicksa District Scout Executive John Paul Nix presented him with a flat-screen television Monday at the Pack meeting at North Oxford Baptist Church, its organizing sponsor. Nix also announced a national recognition that Diggs will receive.
“He’s going to be in ‘Sports Illustrated for Kids,’” Nix said. The appearance will be a promotion for Scouting, which is celebrating its centennial this year.
As a Webelos 2 – one of the “elder statesmen” of Cub Scouts – Diggs sold more than $3,400 worth of popcorn.
“I just went to some really good locations that I go to every year,” said the 11-year-old, who attends 5th grade at Della Davidson Elementary School. “I like to keep my special locations a secret.”
He did disclose one prime territory, however – Sorority Row on the University of Mississippi campus.
“The girls go gaga over me there,” he acknowledged.
Diggs’ effort involved a lot of Saturdays wearing out shoe leather. As with most of the other Cub Scouts in the pack, it also involved a lot of parental involvement.
“I basically became his driver and his business manager,” said Carter’s father, Mitchell Diggs. “I would take him to neighborhoods in town, and he would walk the streets and knock on doors. He developed the ability to go up and make a sale to people.”
There were also a few days of team-effort sales in front of Kroger and Walmart.
“We sit back and let the boys do the selling,” said Carter’s mom, Tammy Diggs. “They do the work.”
The Cub Scouts’ two annual fundraisers pay the way for most of their activities, from weekend trips to places like Shiloh National Military Park or an all-night visit to the Memphis Zoo to the year’s highlight –several summer days at Camp Yocona.
“They learn presentation skills – presenting themselves and the organization to the community,” said Julie Chambers, one of several adult volunteers with Pack 146. “It’s really cool to watch them as they age, so that with experience it’s not so scary to walk up and say ‘Hi.’”
Diggs was the leading salesman, but it was definitely a team effort. Pack 146 outdistanced all brother groups in the Yocona Area Council, selling nearly $14,000 worth of popcorn.
“Thank y’all,” Nix told the crowd of boys, echoing one of the frequent affirmations that are a staple of the Cub Scout experience. “Good job.”

Contact Errol Castens at (662) 281-1069 or errol.castens@djournal.com.