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Posts posted by moxieman

  1. Well, I've poked my head in for the first time in about a month and I am still having the same problems as before. I'm not seeing recent posts. I can look at a topic see that it's been updated in the past day or two, to to it and only see stuff a month or more old. Guess I won't be here much anymore. Kind of hard to have a "conversation" if it takes a month or more before I can see the "most recent" posts.

  2. Well, my activity has gone way, way down. Even after purging my cache in Firefox. When I log in, I can see there is current activity, but when I try to go to one of those topics, I CAN'T SEE anything recent. For example. In this topic the most recent post I'm allowed to see today was posted back on 2/5 (#30 by Eagle69). Makes it difficult to participate.
    Okay, that's weird. I'm allowed to see all the posts in thread only AFTER I post. Still makes it difficult to participate.
  3. Okay...for some reason, I can't see the "latest posts". For example, this thread claims that Moosetracker made a post earlier today. So, I come to this thread and the most recent post I can see is "#90" by Papadaddy from back on 2/25. So why can't I see the one Moosetracker did today (3/2)? And I'm sure there are others in between I can't see.


    Software specs if that helps: I use Windows XP and browse with the latest version of Firefox (v19.0).

  4. I went roughly a decade ago and was disappointed. The course I took was good, but not what was described--it was an intro-level course and not an advanced one--I could have taught said course. I gave a lot of feedback and they provided a more accurate description of the course the following year. I didn't make much $$$ at the time (and not much more now). I, literally, spent a month's pay between the course fee and travel out/back to/from Maine.


    That said, be sure whatever you pick is something you know little on and want to learn more about and you'll have a great time.

    • Upvote 1
  5. At our District Dinner:


    We recognize those who have volunteered to head-up various district activities (camporees, pinewood derby, etc.).

    We give attendance awards for roundtable--this past year, we recognized 3 units with a decade of perfect attendance and about a dozen with 5 or more years.

    We recognize groups/organizations that have helped-out the district such as the church that allows the use of their facility for a scouting event, the fairgrounds association that allowed camporee at their facility for a reduced (or free in on case) rate, etc.

    And the District Award of Merit


    Yes, there are silly/fun awards sometimes. Two examples:

    1. Two years ago, in addition to roundtable attendance recognitions, we gave out "50+ miler awards". Total number of attendees per unit for the year times the distance to roundtable. As we're a large, rural district, we had many in the 200 to 400 miler range and two with over 1,000 miles racked up in a year.

    2. Fake merit badges handed out in thanks to those who stepped up to present a roundtable topic, or who simply "deserved" a particular badge. "Underpaid" given to the DE (and for those who feel their DE is overpaid, there's one of those available too). The well known volunteer who wound-up on TV because a news crew was covering the fire that destroyed said volunteer's favorite store for morning coffee. Said volunteer, in uniform, didn't say anything about coffee. He said "I don't know where I'm now going to get a cup of coffee." He was awarded the Coffee Drinking merit badge. And so on.


    As others have said, your council is "full of it". It's your awards banquet. Do as you wish.

  6. Answers are all over the board. Some good suggestions if you read through them. In one instance in our district, we retired our district flag and gave it to the son of a long time district level volunteer after her passing.


    We have cabins at our various summer camps named for deceased scout volunteers. H*ll, the name of our largest camp has memorialized a deceased child (who was never a scout) since it was founded over 85 years ago on land donated by the deceased child's father.

  7. Jumping in a bit late on this one.


    We've had two units (one former, and one current) that have switched districts with "council blessings".


    Case A: Unit formed in a town that was officially part of the next district over. Due to where the roads were, it was easier for them to join up with our district. No one complained and they were "officially" listed as a unit within our district in Council records. Unit eventually folded when leadership relocated and no one stepped up to fill their shoes.


    Case B: An old unit that was in a district that dissolved due to low unit numbers asked to join our district. The dissolved district covered two counties. Our district absorbed one county and another district got the other county. Said unit was in the other county in a town that bordered our district. Their request to join our district was approved by council. They requested to join our district even though it was a lot further for them to drive to events (ex: 90 minutes to Roundtable vs. 20). I guess, they liked our volunteer leadership more.


    Again, in both cases, the unit's town in question bordered the other district they asked to join.


    So, it is possible, but probably depends on the local council leadership's willingness to work with the unit.

  8. Beavah: The Kennedy family are a bunch of upstarts. Ditto with the Bush family. Neither of them is the first family "dynasty" in US Politics.


    The first "dynasty" would be the Adams:

    Presidents John and son, President John Quincy Adams

    And John's 2nd cousin Samuel, one of those rabel Bostonians that stirred up trouble against the British.


    Then there was the true dynasty, the Harrison family:

    Benjamin Harrison V, a signer of the Declaration of Independence

    His Son, William Henry Harrison, 9th President

    WH's son, John Scott, US Congress

    JS's son, Benjamin Harrison, 23rd President

    Benjamin's son, Russell Benjamin "only" served at the state level in Indiana, while his daughter, Mary, filled-in as First Lady upon her mother's death. She married James McKee, one of the founders of General Electric.

    Edit: I missed Russell's son, William Henry, who served in the US Congress.(This message has been edited by moxieman)

  9. I normally stay out of the politics forum. I HATE POLITICS.


    As for gays and scouting, it is my opinion that you won't see a change in that stance until the policies of the BSA's top sponsors change. If you want gays in scouting, you'll need to out sponsor/spend those sponsors in order to influence the policies coming out of Irving.


    Who are the top sponsors? Just look at the figures from the BSA's own sources: various conservative churches. Until you get the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, various "flavors" of Baptist, the Roman Catholic Church, etc. to accept gays as something other than a sinful offense to God, you're not going to see the BSA accept gays.


    Unfortunately, money talks, even in scouting.

  10. And some topics that flopped:


    Recharter process

    Explaining Journey to Excellence

    Some outside presenters who don't truly understand the scouting program

    Council presentation on summer camp which was suppose to be 20 minutes tops, but took the entire RT--they didn't get the hint as attendees started leaving 30 minutes into the presentation


  11. So what topics would fill the hall?


    Some recent topics that have worked for us at the BS RT level:

    Hands-on GPS/Geocaching


    How to plan a weekend canoe trip

    What exactly is Venturing?

    Religious emblems and how to plan a Scout Sunday Service

    Alternate Eagle Badge Requirements

    Weather Safety

    Camp Gadgets


    As I've posted in this thread (and in past RT threads) we let the attendees choose the topics they want in the coming year. We advertise what those topics will be in the fall program kick-off packets, on our district website and in the district email newsletter. If you offer what people want, make it known it's happening and follow through, you will increase attendance at your RT.



    For example, on the Games one, we pulled several games out of the Troop Planning Guide and played them. Many of them, the attendees had never seen before. They got a kick out of the "Guess that Merit Badge" one. It can be set-up as a filler for before the meeting starts. We posted a piece of paper with photos of 10 merit badges. For fun, I included one spoof (Cat Herding) and a few older MBs. We gave the answers near the end of the evening. Meanwhile, they not only had fun, but were laughing at each other in some of the relays. Ever seen two grown adults try and carry a rubber ball the length of the room and back just using their heads? Or just throwing crumpled paper at each other for 5 minutes (newspaper tennis) just because?


    For camp gadgets, we encourages leaders to bring in their favorite camp gadget to share with others. One of our "old time" leaders (he's been SM in his hometown longer than I've been alive--seriously) brought in what looked like a moonshine still: coiled copper pipe, metal bucket/jacket for the pipe and a metal trash can. It was his unit's contraption to have continuous hot water on camping trips. The copper pipe fit inside the bucket/jacket thing. Hoses connected the pipe to the trash can. Trash can lid had two pipes that fit down into the can, one with a spigot-type head (no valve) and one with a funnel. You keep a fire going in the bucket with the copper coiled pipe. Through thermal transfer the water is kept hot. Need water? Put a bucket or whatever under the spigot while pouring cold water into the funnel to get hot water.


    For the Weather Safety one, we ran National's video training (being a meteorologist by training, hopefully I met the minimum standard to present this), pausing it to put in local weather tidbits such as the most powerful Twister in Maine was an F2, which happened to hit within our district some 40 years ago or how long it's been since we had a direct hit from a hurricane but several close calls, etc. We did this by request (like all our other topics) for many of our leaders in this rural district only have dial-up. Trying to take National's online training with dial-up isn't pleasant.


    What I'm getting at is that for RT to succeed, you need topics that will interest/grab your attendees. The best starting point for that is to find-out what your volunteers would like to learn more about. Unfortunately, from what I've read time and again on these forums, most don't pull that off.


    Then again, maybe we're just a fluke district here in the Maine Wilderness (Kennebec Valley District) who hasn't realized that RT is suppose to be dead. :)


    Yeah, maybe that's it, it's just a fluke, right?(This message has been edited by moxieman)

  12. Well, I guess we're just lucky in our district. I stepped down a year ago after serving as BS RTC for 10 years. I didn't expect to run it for 10 years, but I had made myself a promise in advance that if I made it to 10, 10 is all I would do. I remain on the RT staff, providing support to the new BS RTC, who travels 2 hours each way in good weather to oversee the program.


    We give the program the attendees ask for. Our last meeting in the spring (we take the summer off due to vacations, summer camp, etc.), attendees tell us what topics they want in the coming year (just like a troop annual planning meeting), plug the topics into a calendar and viola. Some even step forward right off to offer their expertise on this topic or that.


    The first 20-30 minutes are eaten-up by announcements/Q&A (I'd love to see the announcements reduced to flyers, but have never succeeded at that). We then move onto the training topic of the month.


    In that time period, the cub side went up and down due to changeover in Cub RTC every few years. We currently have a gung-ho RTC with several support staff and cub attendance is up again.


    We average 50 to 60 attendees each month evenly split between Cub Leaders and Scout leaders--roughly half the district's units. I'd love to see even better attendance, but then we'd need a larger meeting location (a good problem to have).


    This month (next week) the BS topic is Okpik/winter camping. The council Okpik folks cancelled 2 weeks ago due to a scheduling conflict. We put the word out and had another presenter lined-up for RT. We have some back-up info ready in case that falls through.


    The Cub topic is a round robin of the various cub derbies available out there: cars, boats, "rockets".


    So, are RT's obsolete? Not in our district.


    I found the position of BS RTC to be the easiest adult position I've had so far in scouting. Much easier and a lot less time/stress than SM (which I did for 5 years prior to RTC). Maybe I was doing it wrong for 10 years as others have mentioned how difficult a position it is to them. (shrug)

  13. Simply have your roundtable commissioner ask the attendees what they want to learn more about and there are your topics. Then put the word out that (Using qwazse's suggestions as examples):


    Winter camping will be presented in November

    Eagle requirement updates will be presented in January

    Geocaching in May



    It's worked well in our district for 15 or so years now. Last RT in the spring (May, as we take June/July off due to graduations in June and summer camp in July) we ask attendees for topics for the following fall through spring.

  14. Like others, I got attacked. It his me so hard/fast that it disabled Norton's. Thank goodness my employer provides multiple antivirus/anti-malware tools. Microsoft Essentials (of all things) purged 7 different malware/virii off the system.


    I was hesitant to peak in today to see if it was cleaned-up or not. I'm glad to see it up and running again.

  15. As I've been active at just the district level for the past decade, the most common one I hear is:


    "When can we do another camporee just like this one?"



    Then there was the Canadian scout with a lot of personal issues who turned his life around after a regional jamboree back in '99. He credited the two "Web Dudes" with making him realize his troubles were nothing compared to what he'll be facing in life as he grows up. Said "web dudes" are my brother and me. We learned this second hand from a Canadian leader a few months after jambo.

  16. InfoScouter, I *LOVE* how the BSA can't make up its mind from book to book. The (current) 12th Edition of the BSA Handbook, pg 327 lists the same "3 pot method", except it's hot rinse before the cold sanitizer rinse.


    Eagle732: Handbook says "A few drops". Most troops in our area do a half to three-quarter capfull of bleach.


    My Scouts Canada Fieldbook 2000 printing states the same order as the BSA Handbook. It lists four options for the sanitizer rinse:


    Hot Water at 77C (170F)

    100 parts per million of Chlorine Bleach

    200 ppm Quarternary Ammonium

    25ppm iodine


    In all 4 cases, submerge the item for 45 seconds minimum. Personally, I avoid the hot water method. If you use it, have some tongs on hand so the scouts don't scald themselves.

  17. Small problem with your approach, Eagle732. You're suppose to file a Unit Money-Earning Application with your council for every one of your non-council-sponsored fundraisers. Not so council can get a cut, but so council will know that Troop 111 is selling Christmas Wreaths on such-and-such a date when nosy Mary Jane calls the council office to make sure that the "scouts" wearing Troop 111 t-shirts out in front of Big Box Mart selling wreaths really are scouts. Seriously. We've had people call our council office before to verify a scouting fundraiser.


    This form from the national (hard-to-navigate) website can be found at: http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/34427.pdf

  18. The popularity of vests or blankets depends on how many of these the cubs see others displaying/wearing.


    Blankets are VERY POPULAR outside the USA.


    Then again, I'm a bit biased as I'm one of those crazy blanket/patch people:










    I need to take updated pictures of 1 (now full), 5 (ditto) and 6 (work in progress).


    2 through 5 are stuff I've picked-up trading over the years along with a few purchases (mostly fundraisers) and gifts.

    1 covers my time in the first century of the BSA

    6 covers my time to date in the second century of the BSA

    #4 is how I've seen most "camp blankets" done outside the USA--wearable as a poncho.


    Total patches on these blankets to date: about 2,400 and rising.


    If you decide to go that route, you can find simple to complex patterns on the Internet with a little searching.

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