AMHERST – Traveling to interesting places at a young age is something most cadets get to experience at least once.
The 258 Amherst Sea Cadet Corp recently spent a week in Ottawa.
“We did a wreath laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier,” said 16-year-old Jordan Jones, a fourth-year sea cadet.
People stopped to take their photo while laying wreaths.
“We had our own paparazzi,” said Jones.
The cadets laid two wreaths at the tomb, one for the Sea Cadets and one for the Amherst Legion.
“You can tell by their demeanor that they got it. They did an excellent job,” said Dan Arsneau, recently appointed president of the 258 Amherst Sea Cadet Corp.
Seventeen cadets, along with about 20 parents and guardians took a bus to Ottawa and visited many of the capital’s landmarks, including the Royal Canadian Mint, the Diefenbunker Museum and Parliament Hill.
“For me the highlight was definitely going to the parliament building and going to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier,” said sixth-year cadet Brayden Morris.
William Arsneau also enjoyed visiting parliament.
“We got to see the two seats of government, the House of Commons and the Senate,” said Arsneau, a fifth-year cadet.
Unfortunately, the Government was out for summer recess during their visit.
“We got to imagine them there,” said Jones with a laugh.
Jones enjoyed the Musical Ride put on the RCMP, and 12-year-old Kathleen Sproul, a second-year sea cadet, said she enjoyed visiting the Diefenbunker Museum, an underground bunker opened in 1961 to house Canadian government officials and military officers in the event of a nuclear war.
They also went to an Ottawa Senators NHL hockey game.
“You sit in the seat you’re given, there’s a jumbo screen, and the lights dim and come back up,” said Jones. “It’s nothing like an Amherst Ramblers hockey game, nothing at all.”
“We were on the jumbo screen while we sang sweet Caroline,” said Sproul.
The Scotiabank donated tickets for the hockey game. “They were good seats,” said Sproul.
The cadets stayed at the Connaught National Cadet Training Centre in Ottawa during the weeklong trip.
“It was very hot. It’s not easy sleeping when it’s that hot,” said Jones.
Other activities included going to the National Museum, taking a ride on the harbor hopper on the Ottawa River, going on a haunted walk, swimming in a wave pool, and going to the Kanata Mall.
Dan Arsneau says there are a lot of organizations that make Sea Cadet activities possible, such as the Christie Foundation, the Scotiabank, Weston Bakeries and The Bordertown Biker Bash.
“There’s a tremendous amount of people who support the cadets,” said Arsneau.
The Sea Cadets train every Tuesday night from 6 to 9 p.m.
“We’ll also sometimes train on weekends,” said Brayden.
They recently had a sail weekend in Charlottetown, PEI.
Sea Cadets can be ages 12 to 18, and they are always looking for more to join.
Anybody interested in seeing what the Sea Cadets do can go to the Colonel James Layton Ralston Armoury in Amherst during their training session on Tuesday nights. It is located on the corner of Acadia and Agnew Street.