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Everything posted by Eagle1982

  1. "This past summer we went to Skymont Scout Camp near Monteagle, TN. On the way we passed through South Pittsburgh, TN, home of the Lodge factory (and only factory outlet store). I could not convince the other leaders to stop, even though it was only 5 miles off the freeway." Been there, it is just off I40 a few miles. Selection is really good, though most things are not less expensive. There may be some "factory seconds" and imperfect items that you will find a good deal on though. It's moved locations in the last few years, a little farther from the expressway. I'm sure if you had mentioned to the boys that the Smokey Mountain Knifeworks was pretty much right next door and that it was in the same plaza as a Coleman outlet, there may have been more interest in stopping. http://www.eknifeworks.com/webapp/eCommerce/main_front.jsp
  2. I have to agree with Beavah also. It sounds like something you should not want to be involved in, and you should let the professionals handle it.
  3. This is spun from a thread about contact Merit Badge counselors, where eventually text messaging and emailing for troop communication was mentioned. I think more and more troops are using the latest technologies, including email, to assist with communications. My question, for troops that do the majority of their communicating with email, for things like what's new, what's upcoming, etc. how is it working for you? How often do you send them out? How much lead time do you use? Do you expect replies via email or a different method? Do people reply when necessary? In my son's troop, it doesn't seem to work too well, and perhaps someone has some suggestions.
  4. Eagle1982

    How to create patrols?

    BW, do please explain the commonalities I seem to be missing? I'm always open to other feedback and suggestions. Like I stated, I've never tried it that way, but it is logical (and maybe that's part of the problem)
  5. Eagle1982

    No-cook meals

    Food Network, Alton Brown's site, has several recipes for protein bars, they are pretty good too! http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/protein-bars-recipe/index.html Small cream cheese packages (in squeeze pouch or in small bowl from Panara Bread) keep for several days on the trail without refrigeration. Nothing like a salty, everything bagel and cream cheese after some hard hiking. Hummus keeps for a day or two or three. Cucumbers keep a while (they are heavy though) Add dehydrated apples to some cooked pie crust in a bag for a yummy no-cook snack. Instant pudding, with an oreo or two crumbled in is great. Mix granola and instant pudding for a nice treat.
  6. Eagle1982

    How to create patrols?

    I like the idea of having patrols of boys with like interests and not too dissimilar in ages. I've never had the opportunity to try, but the idea of a sheet each boy would fill out on their own. Questions like: I would rather: Work on a new merit badge at home or go camping Work on Hiking Merit Badge or Reading Merit Badge I think I'd rather try Backpacking over camp-o-rees Summer camp Cope program or Leatherworking merit badge I think you could find out which boys are wired more for the outdoor activities and high-adventure, and which ones prefer the field trips and merit badge homework. Make patrols from there.
  7. Eagle1982

    Flag Ceremony Question

    It would be nice to be able to trust your SPL eh? Safety first, and agree with the camp director or not, you were informed, and a authority of the camp made the decision. What you did was send a message that you don't trust your SPL, that you don't trust the system.
  8. Eagle1982

    Scouts contacting MB counselors

    Raisinemright said: "and have asked the SM to recommend these guys to some of our boys. He told me that he wants to use MBC's in our district, most of whom are 20-30 miles away while some of the local ones are literally walking distance. Thoughts? Oh, changing troops is off the table. " Then perhaps change Scoutmasters It's OK for him to allow scouts to go to other counselors, this often gets covered at roundtable and was brought up in (at least in my) SM/ASM training.
  9. Eagle1982

    Polar Bear Award

    It's managed at the council level. It think our current council has one patch, and you can get smaller year patches to go around the main one for multiple years. When I was a youth, we got a new polar bear patch each year. The design was the same, only some of the colors changed.
  10. Hmm, I seem to recall some quarterstaff training material for Scouts... I think the BSA stance on certain martial arts is just as out of hand as the lasertag concept. I disagree with the assertion that lasertag and paintball are not team building, it's situations like that where groups of boys do some of their best team building. Every boy is gifted differently, not everyone can be quarterback, not everyone can be the pitcher. Sometimes being a team is using the gifts people have to their fullest. This does of course have to be tempered and not just run amok. (This message has been edited by Eagle1982)
  11. You may think your kids are blissfully unaware of Brady's personal life, but I have found that, especially after they start puberty, they are more aware than adults give them credit for. I've had issues with some of the advertisements in the past in BL also. I actually sent them a letter, and they did reply, though not really addressing the actual points in the letter.
  12. Eagle1982

    Is it time to scrap the Eagle project?

    So if you remove the Eagle Service project, then what is the difference between 1st class and Eagle? Just a bunch of merit badges, which they can get at merit badge factory camp.
  13. Eagle1982

    Communications with home

    Movie night, not too outrageous an idea. The very first time I saw "follow Me Boys" was at summer camp. Back then, there was one night where they mixed kids from all the different troops into patrols. This new patrol, for the night, would compete in different Scout skill contests. Our patrol won front row seats to the movie. An appropriate movie one night at summercamp - doesn't bother me. Every night of Adam Sandler, I'd think it a bit much (aren't most of his movies PG13?)
  14. Eagle1982

    Is it time to scrap the Eagle project?

    Is this an instance of local adult leaders placing additional "requirements" or "suggestions" to the service project to make it more difficult to attain Eagle? What I've noticed since my youth is how summer camp has turned into merit badge camp. Then, as if that were not enough, there are week long programs to get your Eagle required merit badges. Have some local troops rebelled, and made the Eagle Service project process more complicated to make sure it remains a prestigious event?
  15. Eagle1982

    question about camping merit badge

    "I don't feel the current requirement is trying to exclude more than one week of long term camp if the scout pitches his own tent." You may have "a" cookie. Is it then OK to take a handful of cookies? You can go to the store and rent "a" movie. Is it then OK to rent 5 movies? While I agree, it's whatever the MBC signs off on, "a" is singular in usage. In both cases, a week of camp can be included. Oh, and I agree, with an active troop, comprised of active patrols, it shouldn't be an issue. (This message has been edited by Eagle1982)
  16. The Kelty Tioga is indeed a nice pack. The problem is that it's huge. People with a pack that large often end carrying more than they ought to just because, "hey, it fits." The trekker is a good pack also, slightly smaller torso adjestment, and still carries everything necessary.
  17. Eagle1982

    Back Pack Stoves - What to buy

    I can say that I've met several professional guides. Hot weather, cold weather, all weather. The Whisperlight is definitely the #1 stove among guides. For Scouts, it's pretty easy to use, shouldn't be a problem.
  18. While I believe Boy Scouting can be beneficial to every boy, I also can realize it's not for every boy. While it's an admirable thing to work hard to retain the youth, in the hopes of reaching them, it does a disservice to the boys that actually did complete the requirements for the rank. I've come to understand Scouting is not for everyone, and I'd rather a kid move on to something he will truly enjoy than stay in a troop and be a part time participant. Scouting is both a team activity, with the patrol method and the whole troop, as much as it is an individual activity, with rank advancement and merit badges. It is an outdoor program. If people aren't hip with that, they should simply move on instead of wasting their time and the leaders time. If the boy really really wants it, he'll convince his parents, recruit friends his parents like to go on outings too or whatever. Now the other question, if you don't go on activities, is that considered "Active in troop and patrol?"
  19. Eagle1982

    Criminal Background Checks

    It's quite possible to run background checks with simply a name and address. I don't trust all troop volunteers to keep my SSN secure. I don't completely trust council to keep my SSN secure. I had the same issue when volunteering at our church and had to pass a background check, I asked what they were doing to ensure the security of the data, and they had nothing. But they were able to do the check based on name and address.
  20. Eagle1982

    When did summercamp change?

    Where I did summercamp in the late 70's early 80's, all troops did their own cooking, there was no dining hall. You carried your personal gear to your site, as it was not car accessible (the pontoon boat brought the troop gear). You only had time to work on one or maybe two merit badges the whole week. However, everyone gained actual experience cooking, gained experience in the axeyard... It's sad you run into kids with the cooking MB yet still can't cook on a campout. I'm all for earning merit badges, but I'm also all for gaining experience on the routine stuff. The summercamp now has merit badge blocks. Kids show up to camp, drive their stuff to the site, and show up and get their patch. It is different.
  21. I know this sounds horrible, but if the Troop Committee wants to make using the patrol method a priority of the troop, and the committee chair is behind this, if the Scoutmaster does not agree and does not take the steps necessary, it may be time to gently move the SM to another position. How is this different than running a business, and having a company president not following the boards wishes? So my question to the original post is, what does the board want?
  22. I'm all for lean. Not all troops can afford a trailer, to haul more and more stuff around. Lean forces you to put more effort into planning and logistics. To learn to get by on what you have, instead of pulling out another toy, I mean tool. Hauling less stuff, and thus buying less stuff to haul means you are acting more thrifty. You are saving gas and thus have a smaller "carbon footprint"... However, lean has some drawbacks: (1) You could do single burner stoves, but they are not nearly as stable, and if a table gets bumped, or someone stumbles, you have a pot flying one way, and a fiery bottle of gas going another. (2) Lighter tents may not be as durable. Is it being thrifty to replace stuff more often? Throwing older equipment into the land fills. There is no clear cut answer. It really comes down to what kind of troop do you want to be? If you want to be a troop that does all sorts of high adventure all the time, you may want to steer towards the liteweight option. If you will do mostly car camping, steer towards "car camping" type of gear. If you get quality car camping type gear, you can always rent liteweight stuff on an as needed basis, if they are only used once in a while.
  23. Sounds like it was a good event. It's a little late but... Besides gear, a little education will go a long way. Look up and explain the different kinds of heat transfer, Conduction, convection and radiation. Which type allows the most heat transfer? That is, you will lose the more heat with one type than another. (Conduction)- so what touches the ground all the time? The boots, more a lot of heat loss can happen there where, coupled with the feet getting less circulation. Boots that keep the feet dry are very important. Speaking of circulation, what happens if you ahve too many socks and the boot is tight? Less circulation, thus less heat. Which one is the least efficient? (radiation, which is why I'd rather carry more insulation instead of a reflective blanket) What happens when your clothes get wet? (convection heat loss turns into conduction heat loss, and you lose a lot more heat that way) A little science in relation to talking about gear can help bring it all together.(This message has been edited by Eagle1982)
  24. Eagle1982

    bad Philmont experiences?

    Lots can happen, between unexpected wildlife encounters to crazy weather. This is what Scouting trains boys for. Eventually, we hope they get strong enough and mature enough to handle adversity. Otherwise, why are they in Scouting. Being prepared, including good gear, broken in boots, skills training and physical conditioning will go a long way to helping a Scout handle whatever is thrown at him at Philmont. I went, had a blast. It rained some, it was dry some, people complained, some Scouts helped fellow Scouts as necessary. The TEAM worked.
  25. I think the older boys practice and hone their skills when they are leading and teaching younger scouts. As such, I think having mixed patrols makes sense. There are of course special circumstances, like when all the new scouts already are bonded together, but even then, they need to eventually learn to work with and under others.