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Oklahomans for Equality Hosting New Tulsa Cub Scout Pack

Steven Michaels

On the heels of the Boy Scouts announcing openly gay adults can serve as scout masters, Oklahomans for Equality decide the Dennis R Neill Equality Center will host a new Cub Scout pack.

Cubmaster Andrew Grimes comes from a scouting family and achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. He also worked as a district executive with Boy Scouts of America.

"I truly believe in the benefits of the character development, the leadership opportunities and the family time that scouting provides," Grimes said.

Grimes and his fiancé Keith McClain thought their sons wouldn’t be Boy Scouts. Now, Grimes is filling out the paperwork to have the new pack chartered.

"The next steps will be training the leaders and getting the program started," Grimes said. "We probably won't start having den meetings and stuff like that for a month or so. We hope to have everything going about the time school starts back, which is prime Cub Scout recruiting season."

Some of the Scouts’ programs and merit badges have changed since Grimes was a scout, but he said he’ll stick with it as long as his sons are interested.

He’s not all that concerned about possible negative reactions from the community.

"We're not going out and asking the Mormon church to let me be their scout master," Grimes said. "By operating a Cub Scout pack at Oklahomans for Equality, we're sending a clear message that we are here for the children and not trying to discriminate."

Grimes said he’s already had interest from gay and straight parents in signing up their boys for the new pack.

Matt Trotter joined KWGS as a reporter in 2013. Before coming to Public Radio Tulsa, he was the investigative producer at KJRH. His freelance work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times and on MSNBC and CNN.