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Posts posted by MTDScouter

  1. One thing that I noticed when I entered our troop was that the unit number needed to be a four digit number. We are Troop 100, but the unit number had to be entered as "0100" in order for it to work.


    Depending on your troop number, that might be the problem.


    Laurie's right, however, that once you get into the site and registered, it's very easy to enter your information.



  2. While I haven't used a canoe, the area north of St. Louis, from the Iowa border to St. Louis is a beautiful trip by boat. An added plus is you have smaller towns and cities along the river, both on the Missouri and Illinois side of the river that are anywhere from 20 to 30 miles apart. Smaller towns are more open to people setting up tents at the riverfront areas than the big city .. and I won't even mention the safety issue.


    Eagle90 is correct about the locks, as well. Get yourself a Corp of Engineers map of the Mississippi and find out where those locks are and what is in the area. In northern MO, at least, where the locks are there are also many, many fishing areas and boat access points around the locks. If the wait is too long, it's possible to portage around the locks to avoid the wait using these access points.


    If you're camping along the way, there are some big sand bars and islands in the river north of St. Louis ... just bring lots of mosquito spray. If you're not camping, and you're north of St. Louis, IM me, and I can get you info on Scout troops along the Missouri and Illinois sides that might be able to provide a place to stay or advice on an area to camp along the river. I could guarantee a semi-comfortable bed and a good hot meal if you hit the Hannibal area. ;)



  3. I'm in the process of creating the very same type of slideshow - from Cub to Eagle - for a COH in November.


    Music Choice - Theme from "Band of Brothers".


    Reason - These scouts have been together since cub scouts, bridged over together, been to summer camp together, and been in school together since elementary school. They truly are a band of brothers.(This message has been edited by MTDScouter)

  4. Dancin:


    Are you asking where the Mentor pin came from? This is a fairly recent addition to the package.


    I don't know the official reason, but it was put forth at a district meeting that it's purpose is to recognize that there are a lot of scouts who are from 'non-traditional' families, and that sometimes it is not 'mom' or 'dad' who is the one that helps the scout the most. It might be step-dad, it might be mom's boyfriend, and it might be step-mom or dad's girlfriend.


    In that situation, especially when mom and dad are there with that significant other, the scout is in an uncomfortable position. Does he give the dad pin to natural dad ... or step-dad (who was the one who helped). Does he give the mom pin to natural mom ... or step-mom ... same reasoning?


    The mentor pin gives the way out. Mom pin to mom, dad pin to dad, mentor pin to the one who helped. If the situation doesn't apply, the mentor pin can go to a scoutmaster, committee member, advancement chair, favored uncle, or in the case of my son, an older Eagle scout who showed him the way and kept saying 'you can do this too'.


    Maybe someone knows more officially and can answer better.




    -edit-Please give me spell check!(This message has been edited by MTDScouter)

  5. It wouldn't be discriminatory in and of itself, but a poor application of a "pay or don't play" rule.


    Situations such as this can be handled. I have two scouts that come to mind who are in similar circumstances. They are brothers, both are in state custody from abusive homes and had no positive male role model in their lives.


    One was 'adopted' by the Fraternal Order of Police chapter at our local PD, the other by our Fire Department. They pay the dues, bought their uniforms, and help with camp.


    Our Charter Org. is aware of the situation, and will help also if we ask, although I suspect that it would come out of the COR's back pocket - thus we don't ask.


    Finally, our CC has a stash of 'secret SM funds' which cover emergencies. I don't know where he gets it .. I don't ask .. but when something hits the fan, there's always an envelope in his briefcase with some spare cash in it that fills in any blank spots.


    Yes, it's important for a boy to pay his own way through scouting, but when times get tough for some of them and their families, I think it's even more important that we find a way to keep those scouts involved and worry less about the money. When times are tough for a family, it may be then that those scouts need us most.



  6. This is just a shot in the dark, but when I was in a Drum and Bugle Corps as a youngster, we used the military designations for "Attention", "Parade Rest", etc. At one point there was a complaint because it was too militaristic (you have to remember the 'peace-loving' 70's!) so those same terms were simply numbered as position 1, position 2.


    When I was in High School, the marching band used those same terms, but dropped the 'position' calling it 'one' and 'two'.


    Some of the older scouters on here might know better, but could it be the same type of situation where instead of saying 'at ease' the phrase was just made to be 'two' for position two.


    Just a wild thought in the early morning ...



  7. This evening, September 9, 2004, the scout who did this project successfully completed his Eagle Board of Review, consisting of several community members and three distinguished Eagle Scouts.


    As his scout leader, I was touched by their sincerity as they welcomed him to the ranks.


    As his dad, it was all I could do to keep the buttons on my shirt.


    God Bless the BSA.




  8. Welcome to the forum, there's lots of great scouters and information here.


    I'd suggest you first start with your District Executive, he should know what is available, or how to contact your District Training Chair.


    Depending on your role, you might be able to start with the fast start training, and move up to the more position specific program training from there. Welcome to scouting, you'll find that the experience is unparallelled in anything.



  9. Camp Mack Morris, West Tennessee Area Council.


    Superb program and very willing to work with out of council scouters to make a positive visit.


    Along with the regular summer camp program, there is the opportunity for a half day canoe trip on the Buffalo River. This has been the best summer camp experience for my troop's scouts so far.


    Although I was not involved in the troop at the time, I've heard from those that went to both that Medicine Mountain Scout Ranch in the Black Hills of South Dakota was also an excellent trip and runs a close second to Camp Mack Morris.


    I think the canoe trip was the difference!




  10. Art Teachers for Art, Graphic Arts, Pottery, and Sculpture.


    History Teachers for American Cultures and American Heritage.


    Speech and Drama Teachers for Theater and Public Speaking.


    Music Teachers for Music and Bugling.


    Drafting teachers for .. Drafting, of course.


    Shop/Industrial Arts for Auto Mechanics, Electricity, Electronics, Home Repairs, Leatherwork, Metalwork, Plumbing, Wood Carving, and Woodwork. (depending on their specialty and the size of your school)


    The opportunities are endless, and if you've got a good District Advancement Chair, he should be checking these out and actively recruiting.



  11. Scoutingus, I share your concerns that those who volunteer as MBC's are not recognized enough. I became the District Advancement Chair in a two year old district last year. When the new district was carved out of the old, all the existing district level positions stayed with the old district and we had a key three as the entire district committee. In those two intervening years, there were NO MBC's registered in the district at all. Yes, somebody dropped the ball, but that's a 'whole nuther story'.


    In the last year, working with scouters and the public, we're almost to a position where we've got at least one MBC for every merit badge in our district. Those we don't have covered, such as Oceanography and Whitewater, are badges that are rather unlikely to be earned locally.


    The idea of a MBC uniform knot for scouters isn't a bad idea, and I would support that. However, not all MBC's are uniformed scouters, and those individuals need recognition as well.


    What I've proposed at the District level, and plan to propose at the next Council advancement committee meeting is that we order patch 8801CH (at the bottom half of the Custom Design page 3 in the 2004 BSA Leaders Edition catalog). This patch consists of the Timeless Values logo on a blue background with a yellow border. They can be customized with two lines of text. My thought is to have them embroidered "Merit Badge Counselor" over the top, and our council or district name across the bottom.


    Uniformed scouters could wear them on their right pocket, civilian MBC's could wear them with a pocket clip on their shirt or jacket pocket. Unless I'm told this is against some policy or rule somewhere, I hope to do this, at least in our district (and probably at my own expense), and hopefully council wide.


    I have one gentleman who has taught Auto Mechanics for our merit badge camporee the last two years. I went to him and scheduled next years camporee a week or so ago. He called me into his office and pointed to the wall. Next to his ASE certificates, his training certificates from every major automotive company in the world, and his University diploma are two framed BSA certificates of appreciation, and two Staff patches from our camporees.


    Recognition helps to keep good volunteers, and if it can't or won't be done on a national level, a little creativity at the local level might fill the bill.




  12. I've never been there, but my sons troop went there the summer before we joined, really enjoyed it, and still talk about being one of the very best.


    The only complaint they had about it was the walk to pick up food from the commissary. It was apparently a long walk ... up hill both ways, etc.


    Overall, the response from all was very positive.



  13. That is correct, it should be done at the district level or within the troop leadership with a district representative in attendance.


    Another question on this same topic. It our policy that once the scout has completed his project, gathered the approval signatures from the troop and benefiting organization, and filled out the Eagle Application, he sends the whole packet, including the reference letters obtained by the Advancement Chair, to the Council Eagle Chair for approval. Council checks everything for accuracy, required merit badges, time in position, etc., and if he approves it, sends it back to the District Eagle Board Chair for a BOR.


    Once it's in the District Eagle Board Chair's hands, what is the approximate length of time (in your district or area) before a BOR is scheduled?



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