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About scoutmomma

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    Greater Philadelphia
  1. Cradle of Liberty Council cost was $1,295, and included: Jambo fee, coach bus transportation, 2 Centennial uniform shirts, 2 Centennial uniform pants, 2 pair Scout socks, 1 web belt & buckle, 1 hat, 1 daypack, 1 duffle bag, 2 council t-shirts, 1 set Jambo shoulder loops, 2 JSPs, 2 Jambo troop patches, 2 world crests with Jambo circle patches, 2 Jambo participant patches, 2 patrol patches, 1 Jambo nameplate, 1 messkit, 1 waterbottle. Council also provided each Jambo troop with new tents, tables, dining flys, and cooking gear (stoves, pots/pans, cooking utensils). I have to admit being surprised at how much stuff was provided.
  2. scoutmomma, I'd be curious to see a written reference to the "hour of his birth" requirement. How would council even know what the hour of a Scout's birth is? Ask your contact to show you the requirement - always the safest policy when someone describes what seems like a very odd rule. I don't think I've ever seen any official rule that dealt with the hour of someone's birth. Regulations always deal with the date of birth. LOL. I've never seen such a written requirement either, and doubt it exists anywhere. This scout and his parent were making this case but that doesn't mean it was based on anything written. Primarily I wanted to confirm whether the application needed to be turned in the day before the birthday, as I'd always believed. I have since learned that it is the Eagle project report that council wants turned in the day before the birthday. Further, I have learned that the scout was not just turning in his Eagle application but also his Eagle project report so I make no guesses as to how it will turn out. I am, however, relieved to know that the troop had not done anything to derail this scout.
  3. I was under the impression that the submission of the Eagle application was how the council would know that all requirements had been satisfactorily completed, thus the need for the "unavoidable paperwork." Otherwise, how would the council know that all had been completed prior to the Scout turning 18? My home council time-stamps when the application is turned in, for instance. Otherwise, why would they need to do that?
  4. My understanding has always been that the Eagle application with all paperwork and signatures must be turned in to the local council office by close of business the day before a Scout's 18th birthday. I just learned of a Scout making the case that said application is on time if turned in the day of his birthday but before the actual hour of his birth. Based on my prior understanding, he is mistaken. But if he is correct, I'd sure like to know.
  5. So there really was an appeal? In a word, yes.
  6. Personally, I am glad to hear this.
  7. For my son, it was High Noon. Sparked a very interesting conversation with his MB counselor about community involvement.
  8. If it helps, this is the theme that Cradle of Liberty Council has been using for a year. I have to admit that I was skeptical when COL rolled out this theme last year but since their membership numbers are up, National decided to use it too -- at least that's what they told us at Roundtable. You could take a look at the COL website at www.colbsa.org, or call the Council to ask about how they use the Words to Live By theme in Cub recruiting.
  9. I just got back a little while ago from our Troop's first Eagle Court of Honor in several years. Very nice ceremony, with several local dignitaries attending and many very nice letters and certificates from local and state officials, the Governor, our Congressman and one of our Senators. Afterward, all the Scouts in attendance lined up and, one by one, shook our new Eagle's hand. At the reception afterward, I pointed out to our new Eagle that there was an Eagle Scout Mentor pin with the presentation materials that he was entitled to give to an adult leader who he felt was very helpful to him on his trail to Eagle, and told him that I thought it would be very meaningful to either the Assistant Scoutmaster who had worked closely with him through the Eagle application process, or to the Assistant Scoutmaster who had collected all the great letters and coordinated the ECOH. To my surprise, he told me he wanted to give it to me! He told me that he didn't think I got enough credit for the work I do for the Troop, and without further ado, took it out of the box and pinned it on my uniform. Well, to say I was surprised would be an understatement. But a very nice surprise indeed!
  10. While I really don't know how things are set up, but a lot of the areas that the BSA is involved in does to me seem to be for profit. I'm thinking of Scout Stuff and Boy's Life Magazine. These seem to me to for profit. They of course might be set up as so to not be part of the BSA. Having non-profit status does not mean that you're only allowed to break even. A non-profit with revenue excess to expenses generally will either plow it back into the program or else place it in a contigency fund or endowment.
  11. The Lama by Ogden Nash The one-l lama, He's a priest. The two-l llama, He's a beast. And I will bet A silk pajama There isn't any Three-l lllama.* *The author's attention has been called to a type of conflagration known as a three-alarmer. Pooh.
  12. My understanding is that the only decision that has been made is that Cradle of Liberty Council's executive committee has voted not to open Treasure Island for camping in 2009. Period. There has been no decision at this time about TI's long-term future, including selling it/keeping it/executing a conservation easement/etc. The camping committee has requested input, presumably for ideas about what to do next, and apparently will be making another report to the executive committee in the spring. I would hazard a guess that if CoL were to sell it, it would not be to a developer, as there are too many insurance/permit/environmental issues to deal with to make that a viable option. Aside from which, there are two islands, one in Pennsylvania & one in New Jersey -- which, of course, doubles the bureaucracy and complicates everything times two. The National Historic Landmark status idea is interesting; I have no idea if CoL has looked at that option. That's not a quick process, though. But I would imagine CoL would do whatever it could to preserve the property as a wilderness. Over the past five years, CoL has executed conservation easements to preserve some 4,000 acres at Resica Falls Scout Reservation: http://www.poconorecord.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080627/NEWS/806270352. To JohnInKC's question about whether CoL could use it as a wilderness camping experience (pack it in/pack it out), it sounds like a possibility, other than the portapotties. Pumping out sewage apparently has been one of the problematic issues.
  13. Seems to me that only new uniform components and insignia should be worn on the new uniform and only old uniform components should be worn on the old uniform - but I could be wrong. Does anyone here know the official BSA position and where I can find documentation for that? The printed brochure from BSA that introduced the uniform states the following: "Loaded with pockets (some big enough to hold your Fieldbook), zippers, (converting pants to shorts), gadget loops and more, you'll want it all! However, each piece transitions to mix and match with your current uniform." Aside from the brochure's bad grammar (what Scout is loaded with pockets?), sounds like the answer you're looking for.
  14. As I've noted in the past, Cradle of Liberty is my home council, so I do have a stake in this. My son's troop was slated to go to TI for summer camp four summers ago (2004), when the first flood hit, and we ended up going to Ockanickon. Council rallied the troops, as it were, over the next year, raised money, and restored the camp in time to open for business the following summer (2005). Then the next flood hit, wiping out all that had been restored. Undaunted, Council repeated the process, raised even more money, and restored the camp again to open the following summer (2006). Unfortunately it's been a struggle ever since, as is detailed in the full camping committee report at http://www.doubleknot.com/openrosters/ShowPage.asp?36313734387L3837323831. The figures in the report show that COL has lost $280,000 at TI in the last two years -- but what it doesn't show is how much money was spent in 2004-2006 to restore the camp not once but twice. I had a conversation with Bill Dwyer, COL's Executive Director, this past summer, and he told me how much money has gone into that restoration. Sorry not to recount the figure -- I don't have a head for remembering numbers -- but it was astounding. Part of the reasoning in the camping committee's report is not just the fact that TI is losing money but what alternative is there if TI floods again? -- and the simple realization that pouring all that money into restoring TI has an economic effect on COL's other two camping properties, Musser Scout Reservation and Resica Falls Scout Reservation. How many councils today are operating that many scout properties anyway? I note that COL has not said they intend to sell TI, nor that the camp will remain permanently closed. At this point, they have only determined that camp will not open in 2009, and they decided to make this decision in plenty of time so individual troops can plan accordingly. Finally, here is the message sent out to Scouters by Chuck Eaton, COL Field Service Director, announcing the decision. I think it also is a telling statement: News about Treasure Island Last night the Council Executive Board ratified the recommendations of the Camping Committee and the executive committee to close Treasure Island for 2009. The evening featured a presentation from Mike Coyne our Camping Chairman along with a lengthy difficult conversation. You can read the full camping committee report here. The Executive Board did not come to this decision lightly. The Council has been working diligently to keep the camp open since the two consecutive floods of 2005 and 2006. The cost of the camp, sharp decline in attendance since the floods, and the increasing environmental restrictions forced the board to reluctantly ratify the recommendation 35 to 1. The Camping Committee will host an ongoing committee to look at the long term future of Treasure Island. Scouters can e-mail campcmte@colbsa.org to express their thoughts and opinions. That committee will report back to the Board in the spring of 2009. Scout Troops planning to attend summer camp at Treasure Island will clearly be hosted at Resica Falls, or may decide to camp elsewhere for the summer of 2009. Our troops will have first priority at Resica Falls, but we will NOT overcrowd Resica. For information on the Council's quest to become self sufficient and a review of the August operating statement click here. Editorial After the meeting is over, and everyone kicks the gravel in the parking lot some folks stay around to talk Scouting. Its an addiction. We love it. We all love it no matter what role we play Scoutmasters, Cub Masters, District Chairs, Board Members, merit badge counselors, parents, and staff. The meeting after the meeting is often about the real deal. Its about the things we could be doing better, the things we think someone else should be doing, the things that we never really get to do, the way Scouting used to be, or the way Scouting should be. In the past few years it has felt like everyday we get closer and closer to pulling together in the same direction. It is invigorating, and contagious. Everyone knew we were experiencing difficult times, and everyone rose to the occasion. I am personally sorry for this decision. I know how hard everyone has worked to make Scouting successful in our council. I would do anything in my power to avoid this day. I think of myself as a creative guy, I stayed awake night after night trying to come up with some type of creative solution. I am sorry that for my part I let you down. Mike Coyne poured his heart and soul into this decision. The people involved with Mike on the camping committee are folks that have spent their lifetime volunteering. During this process there were times they didnt agree, but always kept their attention on how this council can and should best serve the Scouts of today and tomorrow. If I feel bad abut it, trust me they are sick about it. The only way to stomach this day is to think about tomorrow. We are a great council, and this is a difficult decision, but it was unavoidable. It was, and is, the right decision. This decision will allow us to grow. Now each Scouter will make a personal decision 1. How they feel about this, and then 2. What they choose to do with their feelings. It is my hope that we can put our attention on the Scouts of today and continue to lead and provide great Scouting for them. That is our only mission. Please read the work of the camping committee. Mark Chilutti, Steve Ranjo, Warren Marley, Chuck Tomlin, Dave Sirkin, Mike McGolderick and Mike Coyne camping committee full report Yours in Service Chuck Eaton The simple fact is that the costs of camps, TI in particular, are not the only financial burden COL is carrying. Paying for two headquarters (the Firestone Center in Valley Forge and the Marks Center in Philadelphia) is also a huge financial drain. Face it, between restoring TI twice after two consecutive floods on top of the ongoing situation at the Marks Center has placed COL in a very tough place financially. What is not addressed in the camping report -- because it is an indirect effect and not properly the place of the camping committee to address it anyway -- is that the Marks Center situation is part of the reason for COL's difficulty in fundraising as well as having an indirect effect on Scouting membership within COL boundaries. It's not an easy situation for anyone, and I recognize that the Council Executive Committee in voting 35-1 to close TI for the 2009 season was making a fiscally responsible decision, even though it is a tremendously wrenching one from an emotional standpoint. Nobody wants TI to close. But as stated in the full camping committee report in what I think are the key passages: Our lack of a large dedicated funding base, inability to substantially increase attendance, looming large expenses, worsening logistic issues, ever-tightening regulations, potential floods and historically decreasing Scouting registration numbers force us to address whether it is responsible to open TI in the future. Continuing operation means at best an average program that will use a disproportionate amount of our resources. This will place severe limits on the funding of our other properties, keeping them at that average status. The looming major problems, increasing expense and uncertainty of regulations and the uninsured status that exists due to location and weather patterns force the conclusion that continued operation is an irresponsible use of council funds and efforts. I salute the camping committee and the executive committee for this difficult decision. The most helpful comments directed to them by email will not be the ones castigating them for making this decision but the ones that offer constructive suggestions for helping them find a way to reopen TI in a way that is fiscally sound and that will minimize losses and risk in the event of future flooding.
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