5/17/2008–Essex, MD–Members from two squadrons from Group Two of the Maryland Wing represented the Civil Air Patrol in a joint recruiting effort at Baltimore County’s 4th annual Water Front Festival held in Wilson Point. The event included cadets and officers from the Glenn L. Martin Composite Squadron, Osprey Composite Squadron, and Fort McHenry Composite Squadron, three units that serve the eastern Baltimore area.
The Water Front Festival, or “WaterFest” as it is popularly referred to, is an annual event that showcases many of the community’s volunteer organizations and neighborhood businesses, and features live music from local musicians and school bands. The fact that the festival was geared towards organizations that service the community made it an ideal environment for staging a joint Civil Air Patrol recruiting booth.
“We often joke in the Maryland Wing that Civil Air Patrol is one of the best kept secrets in the nation, with very few people being aware of the opportunities that exist for America’s youth from 12 to 21 years of age. Waterfest is one of those activities that help to bridge the gap between a random kid on the street and your squadron’s next cadet commander. It really gets the word out there”, stated Cadet Chief Master Sgt. Shaharazad Purvis of the Osprey Composite Squadron.
The event was an exciting and worthwhile experience, with members from both squadrons given the opportunity to discuss the three missions of the Civil Air Patrol and the benefits of membership in one of America’s top volunteer organizations.
In order to continue the “recruiting momentum”, Osprey Composite Squadron is planning to host recruiting stations at the Dundalk Heritage Day Festival and Essex Day, two annual events that are local to the eastern Baltimore area. With these two events, the squadron is hoping to increase the public awareness of the Civil Air Patrol and also highlight the Aerospace Education Membership Program specifically for teachers.
With recruiting events such as Waterfest, the Dundalk Heritage Day Festival, and Essex Day, more than ever teens will learn to “Fly-High” with the Civil Air Patrol.
The Civil Air Patrol, the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, was founded on Dec. 1, 1941, less than a week before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor brought the U.S. into World War II. CAP is a nonprofit organization with more than 55,000 members nationwide. The organization's members perform 95 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions, as tasked by the Air Force's Rescue Coordination Center, and was credited by the AFRCC with saving 58 lives in 2006. Its volunteers also perform homeland security, disaster relief and counterdrug missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies.
Members take a leading role in aerospace education and serve as mentors to the almost 25,000 young people currently participating in the CAP Cadet Program. CAP's cadet programs provide young men and women with a safe and motivating environment in which to grow and explore opportunities in the military and aviation industries. CAP has been performing missions for America for more than 63 years.
There are more than 1,300 members of CAP in Maryland. Last fiscal year wing members flew 42 search and rescue missions and were credited with 31 finds.
For information about the Maryland Wing of CAP, visit http://mdcap.org.
Public Affairs also offers an e-mail alert system for news releases. When news breaks, a subscriber receives an automatic e-mail with a summary of the news release and a link back to the story on the MDWG web site. Signing up for e-mail news alerts is easy. Just go to: http://mdcap.org/?fuseaction=newsalert.form and fill in your e-mail address.
The Osprey Composite Squadron meets on Tuesday evenings at Essex Skypark. Prospective members are always welcome. For additional information, visit the squadron's website at: http://www.ospreycap.org/.