The effects of the government shutdown on Oct. 1 have undoubtedly been felt all over Bel Air, as many people face furloughs and a myriad of inconveniences.
But now the shutdown is affecting some of Bel Air’s youngest residents—Cub Scout Pack 564 with Saint Margaret’s.
Jason Evans’ 8-year-old son is in Pack 564, and to help out, Evans volunteered to organize an event to help the pack fill Achievement 3 of the Bear Handbook: "What Makes America Special."
Part of the Achievement 3 requirement is to "Find out where places of historical interest are located in or near your town or city. Go to visit one of them with your family or den."
Evans’ plan was to take the boys to Fort McHenry, but when he went to navigate the website, he was faced with a shutdown message. As part of the shutdown on Oct. 1, all national parks are closed, and so are their websites.
“That just seemed like a good fit for a lot of the requirements for the achievement we had to do,” Evans said. “It’s an unfortunate side effect of the shutdown, and shows that it can effect anybody really.”
If the shutdown ends soon, Evans said he hopes they can still go, but they won’t be able to do it if the weather gets too cold.
Evans works at Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG), and while he wasn’t furloughed, many of his coworkers were. They are all now back at work, but don’t know when they will collect a paycheck.
“It affected a lot of us here and there’s a lot of angst about it,” Evans said. “And the pay is up in the air. We don’t know when we will get paid, and if it will be on time.”
Working at APG, Evans and his coworkers may have expected to feel some effects of the shutdown, but what wasn’t expected was that it would interfere with his 8-year-old Cub Scout.