Pinewood Derby!

Ah yes, besides popcorn, Pinewood Derby is one of those iconic images that people tend to have when they think of Scouting and Cub Scouts get to be in on the fun too.  New Cub Scout parents or families considering giving Cub Scouts a try this is a low key, high fun event that the scouts love.  Obviously the car build is much more hands on for the parents of Cub Scouts, but Pack 350 organizes a build day to help.  So even if you’ve never wielded a wood saw in anger after a creative venture turned south, the extended Scout family of Pack 350 is there to help, all that is needed is a good attitude and participation.

Stick around for the video below and you’ll see what the Pack 350 Cub Scouts think of Pinewood Derby.  It is hard to hide such excitement.

Troop 976 provided their own track and Scouts to help the Cub Scouts have a fun and successful Pinewood Derby race day.

What To Expect:  Race Day

Race day is when your son has a chance to show off their creativity and hard work with their friends, every car starts as the same block of wood but the designs, colors and approaches are all different.  Some builds are streamlined racing hotrods, others are wonderfully unique.  We’ve seen a pirate ship, an airplane (with folding wings), an authentic looking Woody surfing station wagon (complete with roof mounted surf board) and really there are only a few limitations to make sure your scout’s car is safe to race and will fit on the track.

Car check in. Extra weight and car building tools are on hand to help with some last minute adjustments.

The morning begins with the car check in that includes a test to make sure that the car fits in the guidelines of the rules, including a weigh in.  Cars can weigh a maximum of 5oz.  Don’t fret, if your car comes in a little under weight, you and your Scout can choose to keep to leave the car as is or use some of the extra weight others have brought to add to the car.  Once the car is checked in it goes to a table where it is kept untouched except by a race official (Pack leadership and volunteers) or the Scout that made it.

The Pinewood Derby cars that have been checked in await their turn on the track.

There are multiple heats so that every car has the chance to race a few times.  As the winners move on through the different heats an overall champion is determined, but each Den has a winner and there are awards for creative car entries.  The competition is low key, a lot of fun and a great way to introduce some positive lessons that your son will remember even if he doesn’t continue with Scouts after Cub Scouts.

A Cub Scout’s little sister races the car she made in one of the sibling races.

Cub Scouts includes family and Pack 350 wants to make sure that siblings who aren’t in Cub Scouts have a chance to race as well.  Sibling races are often held between the actual race heats with cars that the brother or sister made themselves at home or at the Pack build day.

Awards are announced and presented with their fellow Cub Scouts, family and friends cheering.