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  1. 9 points
    Our shirts have an upside down camp map on the front. That way, they can lift up the bottom of the front of their shirt and have a camp map ready at all times.
  2. 7 points
    A one time event, sure why not. Every campout? no way in hell.
  3. 6 points
    From going through various forums and blog: The Don't worry be happy..."we have a benefactor who is paying the 2000 increase.....nothing to see here" The ones getting a council bail out or assistance vs the crickets The OMG...we are out of business. thanks BSA The WTH...how incompetent is national announcing this just before recharters. No Transparency with the risk analysis. A lot of folks concurring with this one. The look down the nosers ...It's only $5 a month or two cups of coffee, suck it up not knowing the individual financial situation of others or volunteering to pay it for them. The "it's a bargain" compared to sports ..of course never actually calculating the total annual cost of scouting and comparing apples to oranges. Probably a few others.
  4. 6 points
    So for good news from this weekend. We are a small, one patrol troop. The SM had some serious concerns about the patrol as they were your typical Scouts: having fun, not focused on practicing for the events, etc. But he followed Green Bar Bill's adage: "Train 'em. Trust 'em. LET THEM LEAD!" Over the past 2 months as they prepped, he had some major concerns, and thought he was setting them up to fail. Took all of his self control not to step in. And to his credit he did not interfere. At camporee, our Scouts had no adults following them around events. In fact we saw them only at 2 events the entire weekend: the event our adults were running, and the one right next to us. The success or failure of the weekend was all on them. They came in 3rd overall. And that was with one event they were DQed from for safety issues. They built a catapult at camp, using a shovel as part of the arm instead of some type of basket end. Scouts will surprise you , if you let them.
  5. 6 points
    This just in from my Coucil. (Circle 10) https://circleten.ihubapp.org/posts/34541/the-national-executive-board-of-the-bsa-just-approved-a-new-membership-fee?fbclid=IwAR3XPx25zXr6Caf_KUgxzGXLJ4MKX1tpT023gvKAPuf51Jx9DF3BUTiWTjg Beginning with the 2020 recharter (due December 31, 2019) the following fees will be collected by the National Council (no portion will remain within the Circle Ten Council): Cub Scout, Scouts BSA, Venturing youth - $60 Exploring youth - $36 Stem youth - $250 Adults - $36 Unit Charter Fee - $60
  6. 5 points
    Make Scouting Great Again
  7. 5 points
    Well that's a complete nightmare. 😵
  8. 5 points
    I recently sat on three Tenderfoot boards of review. One girl and two boys. Very impressive scouts, these three. The highlight question was "what do you like best about scouting?" All three brightened and said "camping!" Each in their own way, they articulated what they like about their first camporee. They mentioned the good points and looked back on the low points with humor. Collectively couldn't wait to go camping again. To me, this is what the BSA is all about.
  9. 5 points
    By Larry Geiger on January 25, 2012 in Scoutmastership,The Patrol System Adult leaders often say things like; “I don’t override the boys decisions at all. ” “I asked them what they wanted to do.” “This was their decision.” What most of us fail to recognize is that many of these ‘boy led’ decisions were probably coerced, at least in part, by the presence of adults when they were discussed. It’s not that the adults shined bright lights in their eyes or twisted their arms behind their backs – it is much more subtle than that. When adults are present youth leadership – the Scouting way- is not happening. Say what? You mean when I am in the room listening and not talking I am somehow affecting the outcome of their decision making process? Yes! So I want to suggest that you lead by walking away. Let Me explain: When adults are listening, watching or talking Scouts are instinctively looking for the assent and approval of the adults. This is a result what they do at School and at home; listen to adults and seek their approval. So even if you say absolutely nothing at all your presence is somewhat coercive. It’s not that you are a bad person or anything – it’s just the way things are. So if we are not supposed to be around and not supposed to talk to them and not supposed to watch what they are doing, how do we do our jobs as adult leaders? Excellent question. We use very specific, scheduled, regular, and commonly understood opportunities to interact with youth leadership. Otherwise we leave them alone; alone enough that sometimes we cannot see them or hear them. I have found that one good opportunity to exercise this concept is when patrols go grocery shopping. The Scouts create a menu, estimate how much money they need, schedule a time and place, their parents drop them off and leave them to shop. No adult leaders or parents accompany them into the store. They work totally autonomously until they exit the store after successfully shopping and paying. Are you comfortable with doing something like that? What do you think would happen if you did? No adult is assigning, watching, checking, offering oversight or any other means of interference or intervention. Drop them off at the door and pick them up when they exit the store. Only the patrol leader works with his guys to get it done. A patrol leader given this opportunity is leading; if adults are present he is looking for their approval. In my experience his is true of all Scouts up to around age sixteen or so. Here’s a few of the times when adults and youth leaders talk with one another: 1. Occasional reflections with a senior patrol leader or patrol leader after a Scout meeting. 2. Scoutmaster Conferences. 3. Scoutmaster senior patrol leader two-minute chat before a patrol leader’s council. 4. Scoutmaster’s minute. 5. Troop Leadership Training. This is the Scoutmaster’s show. [BSA says the SPL should help lead the training .] 6. When a senior patrol leader or patrol leader walks over and asks the Scoutmaster a specific question or asks for help. [Note: "senior patrol leader" vs "Scoutmaster. How about "Senior Patrol Leader"?] Here’s times when you should refrain from interacting with youth leadership: 1. During patrol and troop meetings. 2. During patrol leader’s councils. [Even if they ask a question?] 3. During campouts. 4. During the troop annual planning conference. 5. During summer camp at meals/around the picnic table during the day/etc. 6. During patrol shopping trips. 7. During patrol and troop activities when a Scout is in charge. I cannot overemphasize how important it is to realize that when adults are physically present Scouts are looking for approval – not leading. Think about this, think about it a lot; When adults are physically present Scouts are looking for approval – not leading. Start observing how this happens and change the way you do things; I’d be interested to hear the results!
  10. 5 points
    Imagining a young @Eagledad and his Flaming Arrows floating up to the boardwalk intersection, idling the engine, and showting: "Hey, ladies! Throw your tanks on this here hover craft of ours, and we'll get you to that dive site in sixty seconds flat! "
  11. 5 points
    No matter what the registration is for 2020 and beyond, I will continue to work with an inner city pack and troop. The youth need Scouting and I am helping to fulfill their needs.
  12. 5 points
    The statement you posted says: That's because they got outed in 2018:
  13. 4 points
    The issue is what services does National provide that we are paying to receive. National does not provide facilities for meetings, any of the District or Council paid staff, most camps any scout goes to, etc. National provides the program outline (actual program materials comes with extra cost), insurance (but not the insurance that councils provide for injuries at outings), IT systems, and administrative overhead. The actual program is put on by units, districts and councils. The correct comparison is GSUSA, Trail Life, 4H, etc. who’s National fees are much less than BSA. My disappointment is not necessarily the increase, but the lack of any transparency on what they did to ensure their financial house gets back in order.
  14. 4 points
    My troop as a Scout was founded in 1908 in Santa Ana, California. BSA showed up after the troop had been in operation eighteen years and had, at least on paper, 61 members. They "figured" they were the forty-third Peace Scout troop in California when formed in 1908 from two preexisting patrols. I Scouted twenty-five years with a Cleveland-area troop formed in 1908. There were ninety-nine troops in the area when BSA appeared in 1912 (five claiming to be the first), not counting independent patrols, that could register as such for the next fifty years. We owe BSA for many thing, but especially giving Bill Hillcourt the opportunity to become the most influential person in Scouting, but BSA, who hailed him as such, has forgotten most of his lessons about the centrality of the Patrol Method and the Outdoor Program. Program builds and sustains membership, which, in turn, relieves financial problems, but program is seldom the focus of BSA, especially patrol program. I have met some very fine Scouters who were employees, friends for decades even when they escaped this area for Scouting jobs elsewhere. I assume that all "professionals" I deal with mean well and should be treated with respect, even when they are not respectful to some volunteers and are focused on whether I have "done my duty to Scouting in my estate planning." Areas like NE Ohio are a tough stage on which to perform. I have seen membership, with a few trivial exceptions in the late 80s, fall in this area for twenty-eight years. History, eventually, will reach a consensus on the whys and wherefores. I do wish we would try, if only experimentally, what worked before it was abandoned as obsolete when membership was at historic highs, only to see steady declines since - Scouting. There is hope. We have a few unusual units that have clung to the old ways. One took 67 Scouts to their own summer camp in PA a couple of years ago. The next year they bicycled around Lake Erie [clockwise] except for being ferried through Detroit for safety reasons (Asleep at 8:00PM the day I met up with them back in Ohio to observe for District and take pictures). Fifty-nine Scouts finished the trip, and the leaders (Scouts) decided afterwards that they had underestimated the effort required. They had six patrols at their last COH that I attended this Spring, plus troop staff. They tent camp every month as a troop but with separate patrol sites, plus patrol campouts and hikes. I regret that at my age a 90-mile round trip in the dark every week is not practicable, especially in Winter, or I would sign up. In this work, they receive no recognition from Council, Area, Region, or National. They do not lead in percentage "advancing," but I have counseled some on Wilderness Survival, and they are remarkably ready. Philmont next year! Isle Royal the next - if First Class and Swimming MB. I am jealous. Perfect? No. But they know where they are trying to go. Yogi would be impressed: ""You've got to be very careful if you don't know where you are going, because you might not get there."
  15. 4 points
    @5thGenTexan, though it may look a bit odd, I hit the "thanks" button to show my gratitude and respect for all you're doing for scouting. As a rural scouter myself, I believe there are more leaders in circumstances similar to yours than the BSA recognizes. Especially in rural areas, where there are limited numbers of adults who could or should work with scouts. Often the rural leaders do double and triple duty, and must put up with long-term dysfunctional circumstances simply because there are no other options. This can be very draining on a number of levels. My recommendation is a frank talk with all of the adults. Here's what I'm observing/experiencing, here's the impact it's having on the unit and me personally, and close with an "I" message (your expectations going forward, your plans to possibly step down, etc.). If the others can't or won't respect that, then stepping down may be the best thing for you and your family. "Is the juice worth the squeeze?" My personal experience: I've stayed the course and "never say die" many times during my professional life and volunteer experiences. But there is a line. I've crossed that line several times to the detriment of my family and myself. You'll know when and where that line is. Again, my respects and thanks to you! Best wishes and please let us know how it goes.
  16. 4 points
    The answers aren't easy. First, district level positions are chair position, which are generally director level, or even visionary level positions. Most districts don't recruit volunteers with director level skills. In fact, they "likely" don't even have the skills for their specific responsibility like membership chair. So, right at the beginning the district is managed by incompetent volunteers who were recruited only because they were willing to fill a slot. And, district is responsibile for the activity chairman. Our district camporees and Webelorees were getting worse and worse each year. When the committee recognized that most of the directors where volunteering to complete a WoodBadge ticket, we changed the policy of how to recruit district activity directors. But, I can honestly say that the committee still didn't understand their problem, because their solution was to "assign" Scoutmaster to direct these activities. As if all Scoutmasters had the skills to plan and run these events. Where I'm going is that for a district to be the leader in unit quality, quality recruiting is imperative. I would guess that the reason your District Chairman who are burned out by the status quo weren't good recruiters because their committee is reinforcing the status quo. In my opinion, Council should recruit a District Chairman who has the qualifications to RECRUIT. Ideally the District Chairman should also be a visionary and direct the committee toward the goals. But, I would be happy if districts just found someone with recruiting skills to fill their chair positions with competent volunteers. The other area that districts are lacking is a vision or set of goals for the units. I hinted on this moment ago, but think about it, have you heard your committee express goals for standardizing a higher quality programs. Or, are they just doing what they have always been doing. When I was asked by the new district training chairman to help her develop a new district training program, the first thing we did was create a vision to guide our development, then I went out and recruited professional teachers to help develop a plan for reaching the goals. Our program was recognized for a high quality program and the district training chairman earned the Silver Beaver from all those efforts. Finally, quality expectations for units are best set and maintained by the district training committee. The reason I was willing to help the new training chairman was because I knew we could make a big difference with unit quality. Training is the one area where all units typically get continued instruction at the adult level. Training is the one area that can quickly change trends of poor programming. Training has the mechanism to continually inform all the units of acceptable unit performance. I'm not sure if those thoughts help or not. In once since, good recruiting seems logical and even a simple solution for building a quality district committee. But, that isn't so simple if the authoritative folks who control recruiting aren't concerned with qualifications. Probably the hardest step toward a quality district is finding someone with the authority to believe good recruiting is important. And then the next step is the vision. Barry
  17. 4 points
    It was not required, because it WAS, largely THE program. "Scouting is Outing" was the motto. Boy Scouting was camping and hiking. Requiring camping is a valid effort to try and get adults to do what they should be doing voluntarily. That effort peaked, then crashed in 2017. Scouts are growing less as people because we reach so few of them The "bait' as B-P out it was the outdoor program in the patrol context - so different from school and all the other adult-run activities. They can get to computers anywhere. "Sales" are WAY down over the previous "models," but the advocates of what worked are old fogies nostalgic for the good old days. Darn right. It worked, and we will never know if it would still work because our lords and masters don't even know what it was that worked, and "risk management" trumps sales.
  18. 4 points
    Pure desperation on the OA's part. The lodge's actions are completely contrary to everything we've be taught about our Order. What would E. Urner Goodman and Carroll Edson say if they saw the OA today?
  19. 4 points
    That is what might happen if you overcorrect to solve problems. Add to it the misunderstanding of many regarding OA and Native American cultures, and you end up with the proverbial milk-toast. I have posted before that the main issue I see is, as you put it, the gimme and no limit elections. But, it is mostly the lack of true mystique due to the fear of "secret societies"and the flack regarding regalia that seems most damaging. Pure lack of pride also often seems present to me. When we old guys were inducted, ceremonies not only had the regalia, but all of the players knew their parts without reading them. Ordeals had consequences if candidates chose to violate the restrictions. I have no answer though. Maybe I am becoming too jaded.
  20. 4 points
    I also taught Woods Tools at IOLS and found one hour challenging just because so many adults were so uncomfortable with handling them. Looking back on the last few generations of adult leader courses, I believe the BSA had it right in the 90's because the basic classes were pretty good a defining the big picture, and WB was advanced teaching skills. Instead of reinventing the courses and their structure, they should have added one day specific skills courses. Each course would spend several hours specifically on Outdoor Tools, First Class First-aid, Cooking, leadership development, Patrol Method, Character development and so on. That would give adults more time on specific skills. Or course there would be the challenge of creating these courses several times a year, but if each district took one month with the purpose of offering it for the whole counsel, then adults could count on the course being offered one every month or two. Barry
  21. 4 points
    Kind of sad. My best friend growing up had two older brothers, so he had a stack of Boys Life magazines that dated back into the 50's. We used to lay on his bedroom floor for hours reading Boys Life and Mad magazines. We almost bought the Hovercraft plans in the back of the magazine. We had a 3.5 horse Briggs and Stratton waiting to be used for the hovercraft or minibike. We ended up getting into scuba and joined a Scuba Explorer Post instead. Scuba had the girls in bikini's that the hovercraft would never had attracted. Barry
  22. 4 points
    Our standard is patrol's setup tarps, they have a table, and a patrol box for each group. They setup patrol gear before they setup tents and tarps. Troop uses a roughly 12 x 16 tarp (available at Home Depot). Typically set up between trees, but the Scouts like to use poles. We looked at actual expandable tarp poles ($15 to $20 each) and bought a bunch of 2" x 2" x 8' lumber (also from Home Depot) for about $2 each. Put a nail in the end and we had tarp poles. The nice thing with the tarps is the Scouts set them up, gives them an area to congregate, if there is rainy / damp weather good to have cover. For backpacking we have a couple of lighter trail tarps Here we are recreating Norman Rockwell's painting.."We Thank Thee O Lord" (Our's is on top, original for reference)
  23. 4 points
    defcon 1 here at the office. Phones are unplugged and doors are locked. We are sacrificing the interns (kidding of course)
  24. 4 points
    Yes! Our district made it a weekend camping program. We had 6 scouts complete the radio merit badge and 4 begin pioneering. We are in NJ and we connected to folks, some scouts, in Maine, Florida, Tennessee, Ohio, Louisiana, Canada and Germany. It was open to cubs, scouts and venturers. It was cold, but lots of fun!
  25. 4 points
    After being a leader what have you found out about yourself? District / Council campouts that are packed 8 am to 10 pm with program have shown me I do A LOT of "boredom eating" and sitting. Yesterday over the course of an entire day I walked ten miles only eating at the designated times. I don't need to nap, I don't need to scrounge for candy all day. Big revelation for me really.
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