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Trading Patches at Jambo 2010

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  • Trading Patches at Jambo 2010

    My son just had his first troop meeting for Jambo. Most of the agenda was for parents and what to expect. A good portion of the of the meeting was about patch trading. I had no idea of how popular this is. I know that patch trading should not consume all of the scouts time at Jambo, but what is an average time a scout could expect to spend trading patches?



    Second question, how many patches should a scout take to Jambo to trade? I'm not looking for exact numbers, but I think it would be wise to start now collecting (or buying) patches to trade. So what would be a good number of patches to head to Fort A.P. with?

  • #2
    jac0033,

    Greetings!

    I would ask your son. Is he interested in swapping patches. Make sure that is what he wants to do. Some have interest in trading and it is a hobby for many Scouts/Scouters, but trading is not for everyone.

    For myself. I'm a patch collector. I have a few boxes of patches, but each patch has been a campout or event or hike, (rain, sleet, storm, and etc), each has a story behind them. Those patches don't have any value to anyone else but myself. Mrs Crew21_Adv has threatened to sell my patches on Ebay, though I would probably be the one to purchase the lot thinking I'm finally getting duplicates.

    I attended the Jamboree in 2005 and will be there next year. I really did enjoy looking at all the other patches. It was like walking thru a museum of patches, but did I care to trade. No. They were all colorful, brilliant and artistic, and a trader may have gotten a "nice" or "sweet" out of me, but they didn't have much more value to me. (I even had an adult begging me to slice one of my only three NSJ CSP patches off of a uniform shirt.)

    Now that being said. We issued 10 council NSJ CSP patches to every Scout in our Jamboree troop. That wasn't enough. The first five days, no one cared about our council patch. Our NSJ council CSP was worthless, they just were not trading. About day five, after my NSJ troop Scouts finally made some decent trades and were nearly almost all out of patches. Suddenly, Scouts started realizing we were a unique council. On the last five days, it was almost like watching the movies about wall street and the stock market floor. Scouts were desperately searching our troop out, just to get one of our CSPs.

    While walking around Jamboree, our troop had certain rules, specifically using the buddy system, and which area of Jamboree they went to. Some of our Scouts would purposely break away from their buddies, because all they wanted to do for 10 days was trade patches. Most of our Scouts would trade a patch and go to an event, trade another patch, and go to another exhibit.

    Jac0033 asked, "I know that patch trading should not consume all of the scouts time at Jambo, but what is an average time a scout could expect to spend trading patches?"

    So observing Scouts last NSJ, on the average, I would say 5 hours a day. A large population of NSJ did nothing (I mean NOTHING) but traded the entire day. The other half enjoyed what NSJ had to offer.

    Then jac0033 asked, Second question, how many patches should a scout take to Jambo to trade? ... So what would be a good number of patches to head to Fort A.P. with?

    I joked and commented with my councils 2010 NSJ Scoutmaster, Assistant Scoutmasters, telling them for those desiring to trade I recommend 50 CSPs each, and to save them till day five.

    The boys that quickly become traders, will really become disappointed when they run out of CSP/Flaps and have no more to trade.


    Good Luck and hopefully your son makes some good trades!

    Scouting Forever and Venture On!
    Crew21 Adv

    Comment


    • #3
      First I should state that I'm not a patch collector.

      Patch trading at the Jamboree is enormous.
      Scouts who have never traded a patch in their entire life seem to get caught up in it.
      I have to admit to becoming a little upset with one Troop. I think it was the 2001 Jamboree Troop that I was serving as SM for. Knowing how much money these kids parents had spent to send them to the Jamboree, for them to sit around by the side of the road all day? Seemed just wrong to me.
      In the end, under pressure from me the PLC asked that we all take a day off from trading.
      By about day five it was starting to die down as many of the Scouts were out of patches and didn't want to re-trade what they had already traded.
      In 2005, I had one Scout who paid $35.00 for a couple of patches that he needed to complete a set.(I thought he was out of his mind.)
      As part of their Jamboree fee Scouts from our Council get ten extra jamboree CSP's. The Lodge also gives all the OA members ten flaps. (It sells the flaps to recover the cost.)

      As I see it, which could be way off base!
      At the Jamboree we have the real patch traders.
      Scouts who have been doing this for a while, know what they want and will only trade for what they want. These tend to be the older Scouts who may have attended NOAC and only want Lodge Flaps. Some Scouts have set goals of collecting CPS from a set area.
      Then there are the younger Scouts who really are not patch traders but get caught up in it all. (Kinda a shame. As once they get home with all the patches they don't really know what to do with them!)These younger lads will go for the nice looking patches. Or the patches that "Everyone wants".
      Seems that word gets out about some patches. I remember one Council had Marvel Comic characters on their CSP and one Jamboree there were Hooters patches. Larger Councils and Lodges have sets that make up something! One Lodge had a set that made up a totem pole. One Council had CSP's with different planes. Trying to get the entire set can be hard.

      I'm not sure how many patches is the right number.
      My son went in 2001. He didn't get caught up in it all and was OK with the ten and ten that he went with.
      He went again in 2005, by which time he'd been around a bit. A couple of his pals were really into it all. These guys knew their patches, they knew the value (cost!) of different patches, which Lodge had done what with what patch. I think my son seen this as being way too much like hard work, so he kept away from it all.
      Not wearing my Scouter cap, but talking as a parent.
      I think sending a son with too many patches is not a good idea. I didn't spend all that money to get him to the Jamboree to have him sit around all day trading patches.
      Wearing my Scouter cap.
      I wish, I really wish that patch trading was able to do what it was intended to do.
      The idea of two Scouts who don't know each other meeting, talking and doing a fair trade is a noble and wonderful idea.
      Sadly this isn't the case. I see it as two Scouts meeting each trying to get one over on the other.
      I'm also very cheap.
      No one at the Jamboree wants to trade the cute patches that are left over from Camporees or District events. Lodge Flaps and CSP's are what is needed. These things aren't cheap.
      I can't see myself spending a couple of hundred bucks on something that once it has been traded and arrived back home will never see the light of day again.
      But I'm not a patch trader.
      Eamonn.

      Comment


      • #4
        I'm with the others on this - I'm not a trader myself. While colorful or unique patches may be cool, you'll never find one on my vest or blanket that I didn't earn.

        That being said, I'm a veteran of a world jamboree. There the interest was not so much patch trading but uniform trading. I came back with some nice souveneirs. However, there the US uniform was a currency that devalued through the week because we were a large contingent with probably more uniforms per scout on average, so the opposite of the scarcity situation that was described can happen.

        I would say, even if he thinks it doesn't interest him he should take a moderate number because once he's there, he may decide he wants to participate and without any he will be out of luck. On the flip side, even if he's very interested a limit will ensure that he spends time getting the full experience of the jambo instead of spending all his time trading.

        As for what he trades for - value is in the eye of the beholder. If he comes home with a few patches he thinks are 'cool' and better yet, a couple stories to go with them, then great!

        Comment


        • #5
          As a youth, I went to two National Jamborees, a World Jamboree, and two National OA Conferences. I really enjoyed the social aspect of patch trading. I met some wonderful people (some of whom I corresponded with for years) and learned some great things. The conversations I had with foreign Scouts opened my eyes to a much wider world.

          Although some of my most fun experiences at the Jamborees were from patch trading, I agree with the other posters when they say a Scout shouldn't spend their entire time doing that one activity. Jamborees are about experiencing different things and meeting new people. There are some great activities to do at the Jamboree. You wouldn't want a Scout to spend all of his time at any one activity, patch trading included.

          There are a couple of things to keep in mind with patch trading. As far as the cost of buying patches to trade, it is not cheap. That needs to be part of the overall budgeting the parent and Scout do together. When I went to my first National Jamboree, I took some patches to trade and spent most of my money buying souveniers in Gettysburg, Philadelphia, and DC. These were items that I really didn't think much about a week after I got them. When I went to my next National Jamboree four years later, I was really into the patch trading and spent my extra money on CSP and Lodge flaps.

          Another thing to keep in mind is that deals are totally subjective. If a Scout is happy with what he received for what he gave up, then it is a good deal, no matter what the know-it-all older guy in his patrol will say. At NOAC 1992, I managed to trade for a lodge flap issued by the OA lodge in Germany that commemorated the Fall of the Berlin Wall in 1990. As far as face value of the patches was concerned, I probably traded "too much". To me, however, that patch has incredible significance and is one of my favorite patches to this day. I don't even remember exactly what I traded for it anymore.

          One thing a Scout does need to remember when trading to keep from getting "trader's remorse" is to understand there are never any "deals of the century" and they should never feel pressured into making a trade. If they don't feel the deal is right for them, they shouldn't do it, no matter what anyone else says. There are a lot of armchair quarterbacks that will tell their buddies what they should and shouldn't trade. It really is the decision of the Scout actually involved in the deal.

          Finally, I'll put in my two cents on another subject. The BSA highly discourages (forbids?) adults from trading with youth. I'm sure the objective is to keep the youth from getting "ripped off" by unscrupulous adults. From my experience at the five major trading events I attended as a youth, the problem wasn't with adults trading with youth. It was with 16 or 17 year old youth trying to rip off the 13 or 14 year newbies. On occasion, I would see a college age kids (technically an adult) trying to pull one over on a young Scout. I had nothing but wonderful exchanges with adults in patch trading. They were always very honest and gave me some wonderful knowledge to help me in my patch trading adventures. In fact, there were times when I would make them an offer and they told me I was offering too much for the particular patch I wanted. They would then show me what a more fair deal would be for what I had to offer. It was definitely "trustworthy" at its finest.

          Comment


          • #6
            jac0033,

            Also. Just to add..


            You will hear alot of "trading protocol", here are a few that I remember, and our fellow forum members will probably chime in...

            I doubt a common camp patch or council patch would fetch much in return. It is the NSJ CSP and NSJ OA Flaps that they desire. Special NSJ issue, ghost patches, and NSJ puzzle patches or NSJ patch sets seem to be higher demand.

            As Chippewa29 stated, it is really the Scouts trading with other Scouts. Usually Scouts are out trading with their buddy(buddies). If a patch is on display, don't touch it unless allowed by the trader. (I have seen just a few adult Scouters wearing gloves to handle their displayed patches to trade) But the common etiquette usually transcends to the youth Scouts as well.

            A common rule in the deal is final after a handshake. A deal can be withdrawn before the handshake, even if you are handling, viewing or holding the patch, the handshake is the contact agreement. The handshake is the key to all of the trades.

            As Chippewa29 said. There will be youth traders and Scout traders on the side of the roads at NSJ. They are reminded in handbooks to not trade between youth and adults.

            That being said, I have been walk thru merit badge midway, and some of my Scouts come running to find me, to drag me back to an adult. What did I do? I was like a chief negotiator between North and South Korea. It happened a few times, when only the adults had NSJ limited issue patches remaining to trade. I never really made the decision, I was more of the translator-conduit.

            Finally. An old Scouting friend of mine tells me for regular trading at your local camporees, conclave, and local events. A Scout that has attended NSJ can hold any traded NSJ backpatch (or special patch) on its side and say "keep stacking" until they are satisfied with the vertical height of the stack. At least (he says) that is what the NSJ experienced Scouts did back in the 60's-70's.

            Scouting Forever and Venture On!
            Crew21 Adv

            Comment


            • #7
              Patch trading? Been known to happen. I like the idea that the patches I have on my jacket or in my shoe box are MINE, having been there and done that. However, at the NSJ I did meet some folks that offered patches as tokens of our friendship, the joint experience we had been thru, together. So, sometimes I exchanged a patch of mine, sometimes a hat, sometimes a special keyfob. I even once took off of my uni a patch in exchange for one my buddy offered. I knew I could get another of the one I removed, but my buddy's was a token of our shared time together. He may have brought a supply just for that purpose, but that wasn't the idea at the time. I felt honored, really, that he thought of me to give me this patch. And I think I surprised him when I dethreaded the patch to give him.

              It could be nascent capitalism or it could be memories or it could be it's just pretty and I like looking at it.

              Comment


              • #8
                Hey thanks to all for the replies. I realize trading should not consume the scouts at jambo, but I just wanted a feel of what my son could expect to see. He has never been a "real" patch collector, I do not even know if he is interested in collecting at all. My thought process was I would hate to see him get there and realize he should have brought more patches to trade.

                Personally I do not think he will spend much time trading, he wants to to more seeing and doing. Maybe work on obscure merit badge of his interest. He is an Eagle scout so he is not focused on merit badges, more of the scouting experiences.

                Thanks again for all your replies.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Hey thanks to all for the replies. I realize trading should not consume the scouts at jambo, but I just wanted a feel of what my son could expect to see. He has never been a "real" patch collector, I do not even know if he is interested in collecting at all. My thought process was I would hate to see him get there and realize he should have brought more patches to trade.

                  Personally I do not think he will spend much time trading, he wants to to more seeing and doing. Maybe work on obscure merit badge of his interest. He is an Eagle scout so he is not focused on merit badges, more of the scouting experiences.

                  Thanks again for all your replies.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Sorry for the double post.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      jac0033,
                      When I was SM for past Jamborees, the Council provided me with a supply of "Extra" patches. Which I do with more or less what I wanted. If I sold them to a Scout who ran out, the money went back to the Council.
                      I used these extras for gifting people who worked or helped out with the Troop.
                      The visiting Commissioner was a much nicer fellow, after he'd received a CSP!
                      Ea.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I traveled by plane, bus, camel caravan and crawling for miles and miles across burning sand, over mountains and thru thick forests from one side of the Jamboree to the other to catch Eammon in his site in 2005.....not once, but at least twice. Never found the bloody bloke there once. I wasn't sure if he even really existed anywhere except here as a figment of my imagination. On the off chance he was real, I did leave him a CSP and he was kind enough to mail me one to my home after the Jamboree.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Wish I was going but I do have a scout going with the Council troop. Besides the patches to trade, he has some hand carved neckerchief slides made of cherry (and a couple of red oak) so keep your eye out for him. You can see a preview of the slides here;

                          http://channelingwhittlinjim.blogspot.com/2010/03/phillipine-water-buffalo-and-herd.html

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            one thing popular form the Lousiana troops were the mini Tabasco bottle hatpins. Also I made a bunch of woggles and was trading those as well. Unfortuatley I spent most of my time trading pacthes.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Just a word of warning....Guard your patches. In 1997 we had some scouts lose their patches which they left in their backpacks while participating in some activities. The thieves left watches and cash and just took the patches!

                              Comment

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