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Everything posted by PETAL_MS_SCOUTER


    Cell Phones at Summer Camp

    Returned Saturday from our week at summer camp. For the first time, we had several scouts bring personal cell phones from home, including an eleven year old spending his first year at camp. The scout made numerous calls home during the week, which seemed to contribute to a worsening case of homesickness as the week progressed. Luckily his family stayed the course and the young man completed the entire week. Our troop has a policy against electronic devices on outings, and I'm considering asking the boys to add cell phones to the list. Interested in how other troops handle this issue.

    Patrol Flags

    Can anyone direct me to a web site or page(s)that feature either patrol flags or instructions on putting patrol flags together? Thanks in advance ...

    day camp theme ideas...

    I served as a day camp director that used a space theme. A good number of the activities, group names, etc played off the myriad of space movies and tv shows. We brought out a guy one day to shoot off model rockets. The possibilities seemed limitless. Also had a lot of fun attending a pirate theme cub resident camp with my son. You also hear the wild west theme used a lot, though I've not seen one in person.

    One of my Scouts Passed away

    I experienced something similar about four years ago. I received a phone call that an Eagle scout I had worked with in another city had suddenly passed away. He was a senior in college who most would consider the picture of health. The next few days were rough to say the least. Very sad to see his parents, his older brother (also on Eagle scout), and other members and friends of the troop under such circumstances. His scouting achievements were highlighted as his mother had pinned his Eagle medal on him and asked me to make a few comments at his memorial service. A year or so later I received a call from another leader in that troop that the scout's mom had called to see if the troop was interested in any of her son's camping gear. Several of the items have made their way to Mississippi and are being used by my 13 year old son. I reflect often on this outstanding young man. Makes you appreciate what an enormous impact even the very young can make in the world.

    National Camp School

    I went to one several years ago prior to serving as a camp director for a Cub Scout day camp. They had a variety of breakout sessions for camp directors, program directors, etc. Very important in terms of accreditation for your camp. A lot of safety things you probably never thought of are usually covered as well. It still ranks as one of the better scout training activities I've participated in. I imagine someone in the camping hierarchy at your council office can provide additional details.
  6. Here's one to make you feel good about the scouting program. Hope the link works (from www.cnn.com 4/30/04) http://www.cnn.com/2004/US/West/04/29/forgotten.diver.ap/index.html

    Forgotten Diver Saved by Boy Scout

    I did find the breakdown of the buddy system a little frightening as well ...

    Forgotten Diver Saved by Boy Scout

    My apologies to Padre, who posted story under SCOUTMASTER MINUTES as well ... Awesome story nonetheless .

    Does your troop sing?

    Despite the fact that we have several boys that sing in school and church groups, I have to tag our troop as "non-singing". It's unfortunate that more units don't go the song route. I've always been impressed with summer camp staffs that sing well. I also remember some campfires that were enhanced by a good song or two. Give me a good song over a poor (or often repeated) skit any day. I'd also challenge our troop and others to select songs that appeal to the modern generation. Can't tell you the beating the "Hokey Pokey" took from the kids when performed at a recent camporee.


    I would think your husband should be able to provide a basic overview. If not, visit with some scouts/families in your son's troop that might already be members. Otherwise, contact your local scout office and they'll hook you up with a lodge or chapter advisor. Sounds like he has yet to seal his membership by participating in the "ordeal". He'll get more detail as that date approaches. Congratulations to your son.

    Patrol Spirit

    When I took over as scoutmaster of our troop last fall, implementing the patrol system was one of my greatest challenges. The troop was small and all the boys either considered themselves members of one unnamed patrol (no one wore patrol patches) or thought we did not do patrols. We now have two strong patrols in place. I'd say stressing the patrol method in your regular meeting program is key to having it function when you get to a camporee or summer camp type setting. I'd also suggest you consider reshuffling the patrol rosters. I've done this a couple of times. Alas, some boys tend to not get along with select others. Perhaps then you will have a better shot at achieving espirit de corps. This past weekend we participated in our spring camporee. The boys received a red ribbon for the campsite inspection and a rather thorough uniform inspection, by patrols, as well. We discussed their scores and what we could have done better. We had points knocked off for not setting up separate patrol camp sites and no patrol flags. When reviewing the trip last night, I had a number that wanted to know when we'd get to work on the patrol flags. I considered that a small sign that they were taking pride in their patrols and troop.

    Summer Activities that scouts can do.

    As far as weekly meetings, we meet up until summer camp (early June) and take a break until school and roundup time (August). We do look at outings, perhaps a one day merit badge class, and other special opportunities like the religious emblem program. I also encourage the boys to use the summer to complete any merit badge incompletes that accrued during the year or a summer camp.

    FOS Presentations

    We recently had ours done by a professional scouter, who also did a presentation on summer camp and the 2005 National Jamboree. He did a good job, but a number of the parents stayed home (wondered if it was because a FOS presentation was scheduled). I also felt that some families felt they were being put on the spot in terms of making a pledge. Last week at a district roundtable, a cubmaster shared that his pack combined their FOS night with the Blue and Gold banquet. They did a cake bake and took bids on the cakes with all proceeds going to FOS. I thought that was a good way to get a lot of folks involved and allowed folks to participate at a level they would be comfortable with. Any other FOS ideas similar to the above?

    Webelos Crossover Ceremony

    I am attending a Blue and Gold banquet this weekend where three Arrow of Light recipients will be crossing over to local troops. There are three or four other boys who evidently will not complete either their Webelos badge or Arrow of Light but will not be able to return next year to Webelos. I was asked if these boys could participate in the ceremony. I told the leader that I thought the crossover was symbolic of moving over to Boy Scouting and that I did not think the Webelos badge or Arrow of Light awards were a prerequisite. Nonetheless, I'm interested in what some of you might share on the topic.

    National Scouting Museum

    I visited about a year and a half ago when it first opened. I also visited the museum a couple of times at its previous location in Murray, KY. The new museum certainly is an improvement in terms of layout and glitz. A number of old faves from Kentucky were moved over. While I don't think you could fit all of scouting history in one museum, seems like there were some program features or areas that are not featured that deserve a place in there. Biggest disappointment was that the confidence/ropes course at Murray was not moved to the new location. That was a great team building activity for the scouts and always their favorite part of the trip.

    Religious Emblem Question

    I picked up some materials for the religious emblem program. The protestant program offers several courses based on the age of the participant. I have a few questions 1. Are boys that earned the emblem as Cub Scouts (ie God and Family) entitled to wear the purple/silver knot on their Boy Scout uni? 2. For scouts earning the award as Boy Scouts, I would assume that scouts earning the award as 6-8 graders (God and Church) would not have to take the 9-12 program (God and Life) to be considered religious emblem recipients when they reach that age. 3. Of those of you with scouts that earned their religious emblems, how many took the courses at multiple age/grade levels? Thanks in advance ...

    Floating The Ocoee River

    I've did the Ocoee with a non-scout group several years ago and give it a white water thumbs up. Sounds like money probably not an issue, but if it gets pricey you might want to look at the nearby Hiwassee River. Not the white water adventure the Ocoee is, but plenty of rapids, you have the option of doing the trip on your own (without guides), and probably less than half the cost in fees. I especially recommend it for younger scouts. Trips like that are one thing I really miss about Tennessee. I've yet to find anything similar float wise in South Mississippi.

    Troop Numerals Online ?

    I am trying to meet with a graphics person today before bolting town. Does anyone know where I can find sample troop numerals online? Specifically looking for 6 and 8. Tried to have the local council fax me, but they were out of 6's and 8's. I found an 8 at the scout supply site, but still looking for the 6. Thanks in advance to anyone that can help.

    Scout Sunday Flag Protocol

    Our troop is preparing for Scout Sunday. We may do a flag presentation. We normally do a crossover before posting the colors. Wanted to confirm the US flag proceeds before the church (Christian)flag.

    Dear Santa,

    My top stocking stuffers: 1. Sierra cup - Most underrated piece of camping equipment. 2. Fleece gloves 3. Nested silverware (I prefer stainless) ... and to all a good night !!!
  21. A troop I formerly worked with had a short but meaningful ceremony we used when installing boy officers. Wondered of anyone out there might share their ceremony with me. Thanks in advance ...
  22. That I cared enough about the boys that I work with and serve to attend one of the most stringent adult training classes offered by the scouting program. I moved away from the area where I took the course. Unfortunately, I've lost touch with the other members of my patrol ...

    Declination Assistance Needed

    Is there a website or other source out there that gives declination for various locales? I was looking at an old Scout Fieldbook that gave them for 1985, but noted that the readings change over time. I recently purchased a couple of maps that did not show any declination in the margins. Help !

    Scouting Attractions in England

    My son and wife are spending a week in England. They have some free time and I suggested they might want to try and locate some Baden Powell or scouting attractions in the area. Any suggestions? Websites for these would also be appreciated. Thanks in advance ...

    ? for Tennessee friends

    My wife and I are actually transplants from the Nashville area. A few of my faves that might appeal to scouting types (in no particular order) ... 1. Shiloh (Memphis area), Fort Donelson or Stones River (Nashville area) Civil War Battlefields. Shiloh is biggest and my personal fave. 2. Both cities have AAA baseball. Memphis has a new park that's only a couple of years old. 3. The elevator riding ducks at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis, followed by dry ribs at The Rendezvous. 4. Jack Daniels Distillery tour in Lynchburg, TN. 5. The Opryland amusement park is no more, but the Opryland Hotel is colossal and worth a visit. 6. A riverboat or water taxi ride along the Mississippi or Cumberland Rivers. Hope these help ...