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October Pack Meeting Plan

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  • October Pack Meeting Plan

    I like to have a major activity or competition as the focus for pack meetings. Do the activity, hand out awards and that can often make a good meeting that boys and families can enjoy.

    I've suggested a pumpkin carving event for our October pack meeting to our Cubmaster. I've further suggested that we hand out pumpkin seeds to boys to plant this summer, with the idea of growing pumpkins for carving at the pack meeting.'

    There are lots of ways that basic theme could be embroidered, such as taking pictures of Cub Scouts and families beside their pumpkin that can be e-mailed to family members, contests for the biggest or largest number of pumkins grown and brought to the pack meeting and so on.

    All the carved pumpkins could be illuminated with candles and viewed with the lights off. That would probably be impressive.

    I'm thinking you might get a lot of mileage from a $2 packet of seeds.

    There are lots of ways that
    Sounds like a great idea!
    Ummm... Booooring!
    I have problems with this.

    The poll is expired.

  • #2
    I know this was posted today but its already expired I think it sounds great


    • #3
      Sounds like a great idea but need to consider those that didn't grow pumpkins or failed in their pumpkin growing. We did a halloween themed fair night with several game stations for the kids to do. The pumpkin could be one of those stations for awards along with halloween costumes.


      • #4
        If you want to do this, you're probably going to budget for pumpkins for everyone when the time comes. I've tried growing pumpkins in my garden for the last 5 or more years, and haven't yet been able to harvest one. They've succumbed to drought, blight and squirrels. A better idea would be to have a separate pumpkin growing competition and then a carving competition.

        We use our October meeting as a membership drive. For us, Halloween is when soccer, football and the other fall sports end. We seem to get more recruits and returning Scouts at these meetings than we do at our regular meetings.

        We try something similar: Everyone wears their costume. At the beginning of the night, we've got Halloween game/activity stations for the boys to rotate through, one per den. We finish the evening off with a costume contest.


        • #5
          Hello TSS Chris,

          Thanks for your cautionary tail. It supports the idea of encouraging multiple families to grow pumpkins.

          Even if the experience produces few pumpkins, I think it could be a fun Cub Scout experience!

          I like the idea of doing a recruiting night as part of your Halloween activities. Can you describe in more detail how you promote this activity and what things you do during your meeting? How do parents respond and what percentage of new boys wind up joining the pack?


          • #6
            Two words: Pumpkin Catapult.

            Heck, its a Webelos Engineering requirement, right?


            • #7
              @SeattlePioneer: I don't mean to be too negative about the pumpkins, I still think this is a great idea that helps the kids learn what it means to grow something and reach a long-term goal. However knowing my sons (Tiger & Bear), there would be tears if they couldn't carve a pumpkin because theirs didn't grow.

              For our event, we promote it heavily: Posters in our CO and at local businesses, a special page on the website, email blasts, news releases, articles in our local Patch. For the boys we call it "bring a friend" night, and I award recruiter strips for anyone who brings a friend that signs up.

              For the meeting itself, it's Cub Scouting Lite. The uniform is Halloween costumes. We still open with the Pledge, Promise and Law. After that we break the group up into Dens, with the guests included as part of the Den, and have vparents run various Halloween-themed game/activity stations. For this year the stations were: make Oreo spiders, ring toss with glow-in-the-dark necklaces on pumpkins, see how much the den remembers of a tray of Halloween & Scouting themed items, and a candy-corn relay where the den needs to transfer candy corn from one bowl to another 20' away using a teaspoon. Really, you could use any kind of group game that can be tweaked so it is Halloween themed. If you've got a parent that has a fog machine, that adds a great mood to the night, especially if you have a place where some of the stations can be done outdoors.

              A snack station rounds out the stations for each of the 5 dens. We rotate stations every 5-8 mins to keep the kids from getting bored. At the end of the meeting, we have a dance/costume contest (where I pick inactive parents to be the judges) and a group photo opportunity.

              The boys enjoy this. Two of the three schools we draw from don't allow the kids to wear their costumes to school, so it gives them a chance to show off their costumes to their friends.

              With all of the current parents involved in activities, it gives me and the other committee members time to talk to the prospective parents and answer their questions. Usually, if their kids had fun, they come back.

              Our event this past year was a washout -- literally. We had to cancel it because of Hurricane Sandy, so I can't give you good membership numbers. Ask me again in November. Two years ago, we got about 30% of the guests who showed up that night signed up as members. Most who signed up were friends of a current Cub Scout who missed our "back to school night" meeting because of a fall sport commitment.


              • #8
                Hello Chris,

                Oh, my aim would be to have a pumkin for at least eaxch family to carve --- preferably a pumpkin for each child to carve with a parent, Cub Scout or not.

                I think it would be good to invite families to bring in as many of the pumkins that they have grown as they wish to minimize the cost to the pack, and to givwe those growing pumkins some recognition.

                It sounds like your pack activity is best described as a Halloween party. A pack for which I'm Commissioner does a Halloween Party each year with various activities. I like the structure for the party that you suggest.

                Our pack hasn't done a Halloween Party. This might be the start of that kind of activity, which could grow and develope over a period of years.

                Thanks for the good ideas!


                • #9
                  Well, I'm planting pumkins in several different locations. I'll be interested to see what grows.

                  I've picked a couple of street ends that have mostly grown weeds and brush to see what they might turn up.

                  Just call me Johnny Pumpkin Seed!