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Everything posted by jethro

  1. Good ideas. I'll talk with the PLC and SM about occasionally (maybe quarterly, if that often) asking the boys to stop by my table with their books before or after a troop meeting so I can input information. It may also be a good opportunity to cajole if a boy is only missing one or two requirements for the next rank.
  2. perdidochas, there's one great thing about my snoring. I'm asleep, so I don't hear it! Apparently I make a remarkable racket, though.... I could go on and on about what Scouting did for me both as a youth and as an adult. But more importantly, if it wasn't for Scouting, my oldest son wouldn't have finally grasped the ideas of goal-setting and self-motivation. Dad can teach and teach, but the boys really learn from those around them.
  3. Sounds like some transparency was in order. "They had picked a name" but didn't say what it was? C'mon. We recently realigned districts and had a two-step naming process. First, each unit submitted two names (ostensibly picked from names suggested by the Scouts - at least that's what our pack did). District staff and volunteers did narrow down the list of names based on common sense, but presented a LONG list of names for the entire district to vote on. Every registered youth or leader had one vote. The name with the most votes won and was announced immediately. And yes, I do prefer
  4. Having just taken over as Advancement Chair for our troop, I've been poking around Troopmaster and looking at its reporting capabilities. One that looks intriguing is seeing where boys stand in their progress toward ranks, especially through First Class. It seems like a good way for the troop leaders (boys and adults) to see where they may want to focus the program in the coming months. I'm not sure, though, how the Advancement Chair or any other adult gets access to that information. In our troop, all advancement for those ranks is handled by the Patrol Leader until it's time for the boy
  5. Fantastic! My oldest son is going in late June next year - he can hardly wait!
  6. PA scouting rocks! I grew up in Hawk Mountain Council, but now I've moved far to the south ... well, 2 miles south of the state line in Del-Mar-Va.
  7. I'm a Cubmaster and have an unusual Webelos II den situation. For the last two years I've had one one-boy den, for both the Bear and Webelos I years. Each year he participated in lots of pack activities and some activities with another den, either a year younger or a year older. (BTW, each of our other grades has a full den.) For the last two years we've had plenty of new boys join, but none were his age. Skip ahead to this fall. We have not one, but two new 5th graders in the pack! This is my quandary: each boy has a very different level of Cub Scout experience. The boy I mentioned alrea
  8. I've had a pair of L.L. Bean leather Gore-Tex day hikers for the last two years, and I highly recommend them. They're mid-weight (about 3 pounds for the pair) and provide good ankle support. So far, on many day hikes and a few short weekend backpacking trips, they've been absolutely waterproof. That said, all of my Scout hiking in the 80s (Philmont, Susquehannock Trail, and many many shorter backpacking trips) was in a pair of $25 Kmart work boots that I waterproofed myself.(This message has been edited by jethro)
  9. Neckerchief slides are a fantastic idea for a number of reasons: - They can be done in a short period of time - They can be somewhat complex - Many different materials could be used - The boys get to show pride in their handiwork by wearing it to meetings and other activities - I haven't met a Cub Scout yet who hasn't lost a slide (or many slides!)
  10. All hail the mighty Beavers! (slap slap slap slap slap) ...and I'm going to work my dam ticket if I can. Jeff NE-IV-211
  11. elfdream said, "...one of our patrol members came down with a blood clot in his arm and had to miss two days but was allowed back by the SM under the condition that his patrol 'catch him up' on what he had missed." Sorry to hijack your post, elfdream. During our course, one of the participants arrived an hour or two late for the second Friday due to an unavoidable situation at work. He was told that it was national policy that he could NOT receive credit for the course, having missed one presentation. The option to "catch him up" was not available. To his credit, he chose to participate f
  12. I just finished my second weekend in NE-IV-211. Our course was terrific - dedicated, enthusiastic staffers gave us friendly but firm guidance, and our patrol normed and performed with the best of them (of course we did - we're Beavers!). So it had all the hallmarks of a great, memorable Wood Badge course. I'll never forget it. One thing, though, was truly unique. On day six, as we began singing Back to Gilwell during the closing ceremony, a bald eagle began circling the field. (Our camp is on the Chesapeake, so we're blessed with lots of eagle sightings.) He kept circling as the Beavers a
  13. rdcrisco, you may want to see if Cabela's in Hamburg offers any classes in outdoor skills. - Jeff (grew up in Hawk Mountain Council and Kittatinny Lodge 5)
  14. struax, don't worry. I don't think once a month is light for Tigers at all. When I was a Tiger leader, we did one meeting and one Go-See-It each month from October through February. They got their Tiger badges at the Blue and Gold that way. Then we had one meeting a month thereafter until they became Wolves.
  15. 1) I'm in my fourth year as a den leader, but will become CM in January. 2) Our dens follow their own schedules. As a Wolf and Bear leader, I held meetings roughly twice a month. I wanted to go to weekly meetings, but got a lot of "feedback" from the parents. When we started Webelos I this year, I told everyone we were having weekly meetings. I would never go back - we've had a LOT of fun, learned a lot, and had no complaints from parents. As CM, I'm going to strongly recommend to the DLs that they follow more regular schedules. 3) We have a major pack activity monthly: Meeti
  16. wingnut, I suppose your experience is why I asked the question in the first place. As most others have posted, I would imagine the outcome of reaching out to the CO is good in most cases. But I'm not sure the valid points that have been brought up in this thread apply in our case. To wit: - The CO does provide a free meeting place for pack meetings; it's the only space they've got. Den meeting and storage space needs are not accommodated, but there really aren't spaces available. Possibly an advantage to reach out to the CO; probably not. - We show our support by volunteering to do s
  17. I'm a new Cubmaster, having served the last three years as a den leader in our pack. By way of background, the pack has about 40 boys and delivers, in my opinion, a fun and interesting program. We have active adult involvement as well. There may be some work to do, but all in all, we've got a great thing going. In preparing to take the Cubmaster role, I've learned more about the roles of various pack leadership positions and how they're supposed to interact. It turns out that our relationship with our chartered organization is, well, nonexistent. I found out that our COR is a leader in ou
  18. Just as important, make sure the other leaders in the pack are also trained and have read the Cub Scout Leader Book. That way you're all singing from the same hymnal.
  19. Great story, Steve! I spent July 25, 1986 ("Christmas in July") at Ute Meadows Camp. It was 90 degrees that day, and the water froze in our bottles that night. Another crew member was a minister in training, and he held a Christmas service around the fire, complete with carols. (The guy trekked with a full-size guitar!) It was even a white Christmas: the next day, we saw snow in the distance on Wheeler Peak! Philmont is full of great memories....
  20. Dan, what a wonderful post! Congratulations! I try to keep my eye on a similar future vision. After tonight's Webelos I den meeting, where seven typical active fourth-graders pushed several of my buttons, I hope that maybe, just maybe, there's the seed of an Eagle in one of those boys. (Or, at the very least, a boy whose life is changed for the better by Scouting.) And even though I'm moving on to Cubmaster in January, they'll still be "my den," as they have been since Tigers.
  21. Nicely said, hotdesk. Your post got me thinking about our fundraisers when I was a boy. We held spaghetti dinners and hoagie sales (subs for those who aren't from the Philly area ). The Scouts and parents made and served/delivered EVERYTHING ourselves. Pride of ownership was never more evident. We even wore the smell of garlic and onions on our uniforms as a badge of honor. Furthermore, the hoagie sale featured a contest among the Cub Scouts to see who could sell the most. For placing in the top three all three years I was a Cub Scout, I won a fishing pole, an old-style canvas havers
  22. John, I would definitely respect the family's decision. It's not our prerogative as leaders to say what's acceptable. Good luck!
  23. Our pack's only fundraiser is an annual pancake breakfast held on a Sunday morning each November. Each family is responsible for selling one $35 packet of tickets. Just like y'all have mentioned, some sell the tickets, some write a check. No surprise there. However... Each boy also provides service at the breakfast. They staff the bake sale table, carry and wash trays, collect trash, provide counter help, etc. Only an hour or two of service is required, but the boys are thrilled to play a meaningful role. Some want to keep helping when their parents tell them it's time to leave! I've
  24. I stand corrected re. Dexy's Midnight Runners. I did hear "It's a Long Way to the Top" by AC/DC on the radio today, though. No mistaking the bagpipes there.
  25. I believe there are bagpipes in "Come On Eileen" by Dexy's Midnight Runners.
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