How Long Should You Let A 4 Month Old Cry A Eureka Tent Was My 7 Year Old’s Favorite Birthday Present

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A Eureka Tent Was My 7 Year Old’s Favorite Birthday Present

My son just turned 7 this week. His favorite surprise birthday present was a Eureka tent. We signed him up for youth scouting a few months ago. My wife and I agree that scouting is a great life experience for our boy. Which is good because otherwise I’d have to sneak it to meetings. My son, John, is a bit of a ham. He loves attention, and will get it any way he can. When I started to take him out to fish or hike, he would act scared. I think he was just acting to get attention, because in other situations he looks very scary. Like running through the woods in the dark… I’ll finish this story later in just a minute. So my son was very excited about being a young scout. At his age, scouting is all about fun and getting kids to learn something without realizing it and running away to cover the ear.

For John’s 7th birthday, his grandmother went online to the Scout supply store and bought him a Class A uniform, and other Scout supplies including the BSA 75th Anniversary Akela 2 person Eureka tent, which is no longer available. John’s mother and I found it… game. We thought we’d get him to open grandma’s presents first, thinking he’d like them but want toys, so we saved the remote helicopter and video games and transformers for last. Well, we should do it the other way around, who knew. After opening everything the first thing he wanted to do was set up the tent.

So we went back out and started unpacking it. Of course John wanted to do everything, even if he didn’t know what he was doing. I have to give it to him though, after a few minutes he figured most of it out. He was not strong enough to bend the poles in order to insert the pins, but I was there to help him with that. Once I put the pins in the poles, he started cutting the sides of the tent from the poles. I told you the quick clips, shock cord studs, and pin ring / stud features are really great. They make setting up and tearing down a breeze. I was really surprised once we set it up. The thing is big for a child of 7 years. I’m sure it will last him clear until he is a full BoyScout, especially since he was made by Eureka. Most of you probably already know that a 2 person tent will only fit 1 person comfortably, because you need room for your gear. Well, John definitely had a lot of room. The dogs loved it too.

The next day, I had to rush home from work at the end of the day because John’s Boy Scout troop had a camping trip planned at Starkey Park. Starkey Park is a great campground by the way. It is located in New Port Richey, Florida approximately 45 minutes from Tampa Bay. It’s a good thing Jan and I got used to the tent the night before, because when I took us there it was already dark. Making camp was not too difficult even though light was scarce. When the Troop Chief stopped by to say hello, he noticed we had two tents and looked a little confused. He thought it was really strange that John would be sleeping alone. I just told her John was very independent and did not want to share his new tent. After that we started building a fire, which did not take long. John decided he wanted to move his tent a few feet away from the fire and before I could say anything he removed the stakes and moved the whole thing back. I couldn’t do that with my old pop tent. That ring and pin/pole feature is really cool.

This is the part where my son received his first black eye. It’s that special moment in a boy’s life when he realizes being hurt isn’t as bad as the fear of being hurt. John saw his best friend camped away from us and ran after him, completely ignoring my calls. You would think it common sense not to run in the woods in the dark (unless you were chased by a madman with a machete), unfortunately common sense is not common in children. John tripped over a log and fell into a tree. He held it just below his left eye. Half an inch taller and his nickname, “Pirate John” would have some real weight to it. John stood up and held his eyes, which made me start to despair just a little. Luckily it wasn’t anywhere near as bad as my father’s overactive imagination first thought. I was relieved when I saw that his eyes were still very much intact, but I could tell right away that he was going to have a shine.

John took it like a man, I couldn’t believe it. He didn’t cry or anything, he just took a little attitude because he was embarrassed that he fell. After John let me look at his wound, he went into his tent and closed the doors and windows. He thought the other boys were making fun of him. One of the pit moms took us on some ice to keep the swelling down. We gave John the ice and talked him out of the tent with the prospect of roasted marshmallows. John is surprised, and not me, all the other boys thought that John was the toughest scout because of the lack of tears in his eyes; and even some of the older boys admitted they were crying.

The next morning, before breakfast at the pavilion, Jan and I packed. We ate and did some activities and played baseball with the other scouts. I had a hard time with him when it was time to go, until I told him we had to go to another birthday party (big families are the best). After we got home, I told Jan that we had to clean all the camp equipment. I got to listen to some moaning and groaning about it, until I told him he was responsible for keeping his tent dry. John’s party tent made a fun weekend unforgettable.

I started writing this article to recommend the BSA’s 75th anniversary Akela Eureka Tent, but before I could finish it I realized that it is no longer available. I can, however, recommend a comparable Eureka tent that would suit a young scout or boyscout. The Apex 2 – 3 Season Eureka Tent is almost identical to the Akela Eureka Tent. Both are about 36 square feet in area, ring and pin/post assemblies, and shock cord posts. They also weigh about the same at just over 5 pounds. And you can count on a Eureka tent to last.

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