SALT LAKE CITY â€” A new lodge for Boy Scouts will bear the name of the LDS Church's current president. The Great Salt Lake Council of the Boy Scouts of America on Monday announced that it has received $3 million from the Sorenson Legacy Foundation to construct a new lodge at the Bryant S. Hinckley Scout Ranch near Bear River Station in the Uinta Mountains. The lodge will be named the Thomas S. Monson Lodge in honor of the longtime Scouter and president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
President Monson has been a lifelong friend of the Boy Scouts of America. He has served as a member of the National Executive Board of BSA since 1969. He received the BSAâ€™s Silver Beaver Award in 1971; its Silver Buffalo Award in 1978; the Bronze Wolf, international Scoutingâ€™s highest award, in 1993; and the Silver Fox Award from Scouts Canada in 2011.
The lodge will be the centerpiece of the ranch, which is home to several separate campsites including Tomahawk, Frontier, Ridgeline and Sunrise. The nearly 23,000-square-foot lodge will feature conference rooms, restrooms, a Scoutmaster area with Wi-Fi access, a full-service kitchen, a dining patio, and program pavilions.
â€śThis is more than just a lodge,â€ť said Rick Barnes, Scout executive for the Great Salt Lake Council. â€śWe have designed it as a multi-use facility that will be used for everything from trainings for adults, merit badge classes, to weekend retreats, and will truly be the heart of the ranch. We are incredibly grateful to the Sorenson Legacy Foundation for their generous gift, and canâ€™t wait to begin working on this exciting new project.â€ť
The Hinckley Scout Ranch is available to the nearly 76,500 youths and 32,000 adult volunteers of the Great Salt Lake Council as well as youths and adult volunteers who travel to Utah from other councils.
â€śWe have long been admirers of the Boy Scouts of America program and are pleased to be able to help them with the construction of this new lodge.â€ť said Ann Crocker, president of the Sorenson Legacy Foundation. â€śThe council has created exciting plans for the future of the Hinckley Scout Ranch, and we know this lodge will help them as they bring even more learning and service opportunities to the youth they serve.â€ť
After securing building and construction permits, the council plans to begin construction on the lodge this spring. The lodge is part of a large-scale remodel project for the ranch, including additional training pavilions, restrooms, additional rifle and archery ranges, climbing walls, zip lines and an amphitheater.