web1_WEB1110TrailLife02

Going on an adventure

Trail Life group offers outdoor youth program

Natalie Turman

Daily News intern

A youth with the Trail Life program scales part of an obstacle course. The program, a Christian-based outdoor activity group, started last year in Troup County.
http://lagrangenews.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/web1_WEB1110TrailLife01.jpgA youth with the Trail Life program scales part of an obstacle course. The program, a Christian-based outdoor activity group, started last year in Troup County. Submitted
Attendees of Trail Life gather around a camp fire.
http://lagrangenews.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/web1_WEB1110TrailLife02.jpgAttendees of Trail Life gather around a camp fire. Submitted

LaGRANGE — The national Trail Life program has found a new home in Troup County.

The local troop started last year and hopes to continue and grow, according to its organizers.

The Trail Life program’s goal is for parents and families of every faith to be able to place their boys in a youth program that endeavors to provide moral consistency and ethical integrity in its adult leaders, according to the Trail Life website. The program brings an adventurous and Christian-based program for Troup County boys, grades kindergarten through 12. The program was started in 2014 and meets once a week at Saint Peter’s Catholic Church.

“If we teach them all these skills but not about Jesus we have failed,” said David Bergeron, one of the local organizers, on the focus of Christian beliefs in the groups.

Bergeron worked with Boy Scouts of America for many years. After the First Baptist Church on the Square troop ended, Bergeron, Fern Berger and Jim Schaffer brought Trail Life to Troup County last year. They soon hope to form an American Heritage Girls Troop, a Christian-based youth group, and spread to other churches.

“This is more adventure-driven, in a sense, that we’re going to learn.We’re going to learn our skills, but it’s more having fun, enjoying and getting to know each other,” said Bergeron on one of the differences between Trail Life and Boy Scouts of America.

Trail Life works to guide generations of young men to honor God, lead with integrity, serve others and experience outdoor adventure, according to the group’s mission statement.

They participate in various camps and activities. One major event is the Night Ops Course in North Carolina, where the boys participate in a course that test the skills they have learned. The course stretches across the entire campsite and the boys are placed in teams to complete the course.

“It was a fun activity, but at the same time it was testing their skills. They had a blast,” said Bergeron on the success of the recent Night Ops course.

To register for Trail Life there is a $26 fee that can be paid online. There are also troop fees. Anyone with questions about the organization can check out www.TrailLifeUSA.com.

Natalie Turman is an intern at LaGrange Daily News and a student at the THINC College and Career Academy. Reach the LaGrange Daily News at 706-884-7311.