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Beyond the Baggie

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  • Beyond the Baggie

    Hi Folks!

    Novice_Cubmaster wrote, ask any awards person what's the greatest invention of all time - they'll tell you it's the ziplock bag.

    SctDad wrote, I have heard about the ziplock method. But I have also heard that there is some things to be said about the baggie presentation.

    Our Pack generally uses the ziplock bag to distribute awards, but I remember reading somewhere a while back comments disparaging the plastic baggie and a handshake distribution of awards. Now I suppose if a really neat ceremony were involved that would go a long way to offset the mundane ziplock bag, but it still got me to thinking about novel ways to distribute awards.

    My predecessor Assistant Cubmaster once used a catapult he and his Webelos built to fling the awards, encased in plastic eggs, to the recipients. Last November we used a small paper sack that held, in addition to the awards, items such as corn, feathers, seashells and small stones that were symbolic to a Native American ceremony we were doing. For our Chinese New Year themed Blue and Gold this past February the awards were distributed in decorated take-out containers. At our Cross-Over campout last month the awards were distributed in Nalgene water bottles (with a glow stick).

    Has anyone else used any other novel methods of award distribution? Im not talking about a ceremony, just the actual container, or lack thereof, of the awards.


  • #2
    Hi Mike,

    We have done a few different things this past year that stand out. One, for a Native American theme - we had turkey feathers, with a leather string attached and a name tag at the end with the boy's name. Attached to the leather string, we had all the awards attached.

    Another time, and we have used this one a bunch, we have some small dollar store boxes that we put the awards into. Patches were taped to the outside with double-sided tape. The boys and parents have liked how simple this was.

    We also have used wide ribbon in different colors, depending on the level the scout was in. Using a sharpie, wrote their name on the top of the ribbon, then attached the awards.

    We usually try to give the awards out with some fan fare that goes along with the theme of the month, even if the way we hand the awards to the boys is simple. We always have the parents come forward to receive the award with their scout.



    • #3
      At our last pack meeting, we used frisbees for our non-rank, non-bridging awards. We taped the awards to the frisbee, read the awards the boy was receiving and then threw him the frisbee. We also talked about using balloons, but we have one boy with a fear of them.



      • #4
        While we use different ceremonies and devices to hand out awards each month, one thing always remains the same - the zip-lock baggie.

        All of the awards go into a baggie for each Scout, along with a note stating what each award is for and the Scouts name and den. The baggie is then attached to whatever is called for by the ceremony (Frisbee, leaf, Christmas ornament, etc). Without the baggie all of the small segments, belt loops, arrowpoints, beads, etc would end up all over the floor of the hall with no way of finding out who they belonged to.


        • #5
          I was awards guy for my son's pack for three years. It was a good sized pack until the last year, it had 50ish Cubs until the end was drawing near and enrollment dropped dramatically.

          I never used the ziplock method. Every award was seperate. Sometimes,if the entire den earned a pin or patch, they'd all be brought forward but each would be handed each award by itself.


          • #6
            We used the Chinese take-out boxes for Blue & Gold this year. Last year we used pineapple shaped drink glasses to go with the luau theme.

            Our pack is sorely lacking in ceremony and appropriate hoopla for awards at monthly pack meetings, though. I'm not sure, however, that I'm in a position to change things without stepping on toes.


            • #7
              I have started using a large book with pockets in it for the awards. There are document protectors for the leaders to insert their notes. It works good and I even made a cover in the colors of the Cub Scout flag for the front. I hot glued some patches on it and made it look all real nice. If anyone wantes more information let me know and I will try to post more specifics.


              • #8
                When I was ACM, we used baggies to organize all the stuff, but the Cub got each award individually.

                We also used two baggies per youth: One was for Rank and Arrow Points, the other for everything else, from belt loops to religious award square knots.


                • #9
                  For my den, I've always used the toploading sports card holders for awards. The presentation card stays clean and neat, and there's room in the holder for rank patches and arrow points. Anything else is handed out individually. We avoid the baggie and a handshake method whenever possible.



                  • #10
                    We have a very large Pack (150+ boys) and while it has many advantages, I sometimes find myself wishing we could do more things special on an individual basis. We use the baggie system, but to make it a little more special have added a section to the PowerPoint each Pack meeting which pages through each boy's name and the award's he's recieving as we call him up. We haven't gotten any complaints from boys or parents since we started putting their "name up in lights."