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NewCubDad

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About NewCubDad

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  1. I spent a bit of time between our pack meeting last night and now pondering this question. We ended up with a situation where a boy didn't bring his car to the weigh in at the Pack meeting. Why isn't important. What bothers me is the CM was firm in not allowing the boy to have his car measured some other day so he could be included in the races. Keep in mind that our weigh in date is 10 days before race date, so there isn't any time crunch that would preclude anyone from being able to measure another car before race day. Now I understand the need to follow the rules, but unwavering adherance to a deadline that results in the exclusion of a boy seems a bit extreme. It's not like he cheated. But what's most important? Participation or strict adherance to all the rules?
  2. NewCubDad

    pinewood derby questions

    Semper - I found a pack, but got the "Don't Leave Us" speech from a couple of the den parents. I decided to try to be a better scout and suck it up for a little while longer. Though after digging into the PWD rules & procedures (something I didn't do when I'd decided to step down) and browsing through the Scouter forums, I'm sure you can guess what I think of my decision to be a better scout - but hey, we've got a 6-lane track, so it's not all bad.
  3. NewCubDad

    pinewood derby questions

    Actually, the cars are weighed in and 'impounded' 10 days before the race. So the opportunity to cheat is the same as if the cars were weighed in the day of the race. My preference would be to have the workshops & unofficial weigh in earlier and a final weigh in the day of the race. But for some reason we've got folks who think it's easier to collect all the cars early, transport them to a holding area, store them, then transport them to the racing venue, then sort them out before the races - without damaging a single one in the process.
  4. NewCubDad

    pinewood derby questions

    EagleInKY - I agree, when I first saw 'single elimination' in the pack handout I was bothered, because it means 'one & done.' I got one of the old timers to explain what the format is & now us newbies are a bit happier. Semper - I see the pluses to having the cars handled by the officials after weigh in. But it'd sure be nice if the kids were more than observers during race day. The other point I didn't mention is our weigh in is at the monthly pack meeting, which is 10 days before the race. I think that's a bit too far in advance, but you take the hand you're dealt.
  5. NewCubDad

    pinewood derby questions

    I'm struggling with the 'elimination' descriptions myself. Our pack calls the race method 'Single Elimination,' but here are the race rules: "Each car will race once on each lane (6 lane track). So each kids car will go down the track a minimum of 6 times. When there is more than one den in a rank level, the top three racers from each den will go onto the Rank Championship. The top three racers from each rank will then go onto the pack championship." So rather than 'single elimination' it sounds a bit like a cross between a balanced racing method and an elimination method. I say a mix because if you've got 2 dens at a level, or a large den, then only the top 3 finishers in their round of 6 heats race each other. I don't know what name this might be, but I'm still stuck with the problem of at least 50% of the kids being done after their 6 heat round. Hey, I'm also curious, are the boys pretty much spectators after car inspection (adults set up and run all the heats), or are the boys responsible for their cars during race day?
  6. NewCubDad

    looking for 75th anniversary graphic

    Try this one http://www.trcbsa.org/anniversary/anniversary.htm
  7. NewCubDad

    Looking for a new pack

    I was going to let this thread die, but yesterday we received a Christmas card (don't call the PC police, we still have Christmas!) from a distant relative whom we haven't been in touch with in over a decade. Turns out they have a boy in 2nd grade & they just joined scouts this year. Here's what they had to say: "...He has joined the Cub Scouts, and he really likes it but they run it nothing like when my brothers were in it in (DELETED). Here, they only have meetings every other week and they only get their badges once a year, rather than as they earn them. It makes it hard to get him to work towards them, and it really aggravates my mom and dad. But (HE) likes it and I don't want to discourage him. We're going to try a pack in (DELETED) to see if they're a little more structured and organized because that was my main motivation in putting him in. We'll see what happens." No kidding - This relative is on my wive's side of the family and is probably a 2nd or 3rd cousin and lives 800 miles away from us. (possibly a new thread, but..) Has this type of thing always happened with scouting? or is there an increase in the number of newcomers to scouts that are surprised to find that things are 'more relaxed' or 'less organized' than what they expected?
  8. NewCubDad

    Pack budget to den level

    Yeah, I almost bit on Fscouter's sarcasm, too....
  9. NewCubDad

    Looking for a new pack

    Alright, it's a day later now. I've visited the other pack in my area and talked with the CM, CC and a couple of den leaders. I've seen a huge difference in the way this other pack is run. As I look back on the other postings, what I've determined is it comes back my 'responsibility' rant of last night. Some leaders/parents accept the responsibility and some leaders/parents do not. Top differences: Pride - Check the uniforms - 'Quality Unit' badges - I saw 2 different years displayed (on different leaders) and I was witness to a National Den Award ceremony. Volunteers - 3 parents sitting on the Popcorn/wreath sales committee & others assisting. A separate person chairing the Pinewood derby. Someone else handling membership & awards. Plus, during the Web2 awards, the CM made sure to point out that the pack would need additional volunteers when these boys leave the pack. Goals - One of the pack goals is to achieve Quality Unit status and National Den Awards for each pack. Execution - Goals are OK, but these guys sat down and planned the year to help the Pack and the dens meet the goals. They might fail, but they're making sure the opportunities for success are scheduled. Crossover - Most Webelos make the crossover into scouting. Family Camping - The pack is involved with not 1, but 2 family camping activities (spring & fall). To do this, they are working 'out of district' to be a part of their camping program. Experience - CM was an Eagle. CC was an Eagle. Community - The pack contributes to the community - last night was 'shelter sock' night. Instead of making ornaments or having a gift exchange, the pack collected toiletries for a charitable organization and the boys packaged them in felt socks. The Webelos boys will deliver them to the organization. Did I ask about the CO? No - it's a church and I am familiar with them and have fewer reservations about the relationship than I do with the CO of my current pack - though they do provide the space for the Pinewood derby and the scouts serve on Scout Sunday there. I don't think this other pack is some sort of overachieving, all-work-no-fun pack. They're trying to follow the model and they're providing a good (quality?) program. Head and shoulders above my current pack - and quite a few others if the responses to my posts are any indication.
  10. NewCubDad

    Pack budget to den level

    It seems to all come back to the quality & imagination of the pack leaders. Of course, as den leaders, it's up to us to either reign in our extravagant plans or share them with the committee and ask for financial help - either with ideas to make them happen with less money or with actual dollars.
  11. NewCubDad

    Looking for a new pack

    Yes, I'm beginning to understand that the CO is mostly a 'requirement' that has few enforced obligations. I imagine that most go through a 'testing the limits' phase as the boys do, and found that they can get away with doing very little and that's worked out fine for them. Assuming the pack has decent leadership, I don't see that a pack would be hurt too badly by an inactive CO. Do I expect a CO to spoon feed me a program? Not at all. I've got plenty of program help available to me. I generally expect that people and organizations live up to their responsibilities. When a CO takes responsibility for a Pack, I would expect no less of them. I expect the boys to take thier responsibilities seriously, I take mine seriously, why should I expect less of the CO? (I can already hear the 'Where's the fun?' posts being typed)
  12. NewCubDad

    Looking for a new pack

    I have sympathy for fotoscout's POV, but I struggle with the ever increasing likelihood that I'll end up 'doing it all' in the pack because the entrenched leadership as well as the CO have not shown much interest in changing things. So instead of having a Pack structure that supports the dens, it'll be a den making things available for the rest of the pack. Burnout, here I come!! Plus, if the other pack leaders are happy with the way things are, aren't I just being a big pain to them by pushing for changes that they don't feel are necessary? I'd think that there could be some sort of modified darwinism that would take place if more people at least looked at other packs. Poor packs would shrink, good packs would grow & eventually the poor packs would disappear and the good packs would split - presumably with some people who have an idea of how a well-run pack should run and fill the void left by the dead pack. Seems more humane than locking families who don't know any different into a relationship with a poor pack/CO. RE: CO popcorn - we actually completed popcorn sales prior to my initiation to scout leadership - at the time I wasn't aware that a CO even existed, much less what thier responsibilities might be. PS - I have no illusions about being a 'awesome scouter' I'm just a guy trying to find a good fit & a good program.
  13. NewCubDad

    Pack budget to den level

    The Leader Book assumes a pack budget that is funded, in part, by the den dues. The den dues are transferred to the Pack & then the dens would request funds from the Pack Treasurer up to an amount that was agreed upon during the Pack Budgeting process. The Leader Book makes no specific mention of collecting dues for den level crafts or activities - it seems to assume that these items are included in the Pack budget. Hmm. I like the idea of budgeting for Pack activities, doing the fundraising and any amount above the fundraising target (or after a 'cushion' of a few hundred dollars is funded) could be available to the dens for crafts or other things.
  14. NewCubDad

    Pack budget to den level

    How's this - not only do we pay pack dues of $60/yr and sell popcorn, but the den dues are $2/wk. No money comes from the pack.
  15. NewCubDad

    Looking for a new pack

    Well, I was working under the assumption that the CO provides support, financial and otherwise to the Pack. So I was surprised that someone, either an enterprising young scout or a pack leader, had not contacted the CO to set up a popcorn sale stand or at least to post a flyer at the fire station to sell some popcorn. Why wouldn't a pack make such arrangements? I would think the CO would normally be happy to let the scouts solicit their employees or patrons and be proud to be associated with the boys. What am I missing?
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