August 15, 2019 | Oshkosh, Wisconsin, United States | Lindsey Gendke, for Texas Conference News
The projected world’s largest “neckerchief and woggle” (scarf and slide) arrived in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, United States on August 12, 2019, for the Pathfinder International Camporee. Measuring around 300 feet (91 meters) from tip to tip and 150 feet (46 meters) from the center to back tip, the scarf portion was created by Texas Pathfinders and weighs approximately 800 pounds (360 kilograms). Designed by Arkansas Louisiana Conference of Seventh-day Adventists members, the shield for the slide measures about 10 feet (3 meters) tall and weighs about 500 pounds (227 kilograms).
Marilyn Boismier, Texas Conference of Seventh-day Adventists Pathfinder coordinator; Ruben Albarran, Texas Conference North Dallas area Pathfinder coordinator; and Lloyd Clapp, retired Arkansas-Louisiana Conference Pathfinder director, figured out the logistics for this enormous undertaking.
“This project appealed to me,” Boismier says, “because I like to make things, and I like math; the design was an exercise in math.” Both designers, Boismier and Clapp worked through calculations and concepts, talking with others, pricing materials, and praying before they were ready for the action phase. Both the scarf and slide were completed in stages and contained separate, smaller projects.
Once Boismier worked out the details, she handed off the project to Albarran, who enlisted around 250 North Texas Pathfinders to physically sew the scarf, mostly at the Richardson Seventh-day Adventist Church Family Life Center in Richardson, Texas.
The process was truly a group effort with an average of 7 to 10 people per day showing up to create what Boismier describes as an “assembly line” to sew and pin the 64 pieces of poly-cotton, which amounted to approximately 800 pounds (360 kilograms) of fabric.
Finally, what began in April was completed at Celebration Park in Allen, Texas, on Sunday, July 28, 2019, where more than 100 volunteers unrolled the scarf and held it for seamstresses to stitch the final seams.
In Louisiana, Clapp worked on the slide logistics. “The design we ended up creating was to put the shield on the front of the slide with three hoops on the back side to feed the scarf through it,” Clapp said. The biggest challenge for them was figuring out how to make the hoops on the back side. “We had planned to use 2-inch (5-centimeter) tubing in a 6-foot (2-meter) circle, but each time we contacted potential suppliers, it was way too expensive. So, we prayed about it, and God gave us the idea of the haybale rings. Then I found a vendor who gave them to us for a very reasonable price.”
The slide project took about four weeks from concept to completion and involved the help of about eight skilled individuals from welders to fabricators to sign designers.
Both the scarf and slide are scheduled to be displayed on Sabbath, August 17, during the Investiture Service using two large cranes.
The original story was posted on the Texas Conference of Seventh-day Adventists Facebook page.