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Posts posted by dedkad

  1. From http://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/CubScouts/FAQS/joining.aspx:

    [h=3]How old (or young) can a boy be to join Cub Scouting?[/h] Cub Scouting is for boys in the first through fifth grades, or 7 to 10 years of age. Boys who are older than 10, or who have completed the fifth grade, can no longer join Cub Scouting, but they may be eligible to join the Boy Scouting or Venturing program.


    OR is the key word and tricky phrase. Sign him up. From my perspective he's no different than a 7 year old homeschooled kid who doesn't have an official "grade."

    "Boys who are older than 10, or who have completed the fifth grade, can no longer join Cub Scouting." So this raises a question for me. We have several boys in our Webelos II den who are in the 5th grade but have already turned 11 because they have late summer or early fall birthdays. They plan on bridging in February with the rest of the den when they all earn AOL. When the recharter rolls around this month will they be able to continue with the pack for the first few months of the year even though they are 11 years old?

  2. My current pack only has one Pack campout a year and I am trying to up that to two. We have Pack activities but meals are coordinated and cooked by den. Cooking for 100 people is a pain and is called catering not camping. :). If turnout is low some dens will combine, this keeps the size manageable and parents involved. You may want to consider lowering the pack campouts and increasing the Webelos campouts. I personally think camping should be mostly on the den level anyway especially with larger packs, though the guidelines don't like that. :(
    5 pack campouts a year? No wonder you are burned out. There are so many other fun weekend outdoor pack activities you could do without the hassle of planning a campout. Use those weekends to do other activities like service projects, bike riding, hiking, game day, etc.


    Our pack does one campout a year. Two would probably be ideal, but one is what we've always done. It's just a one-nighter. Dinner is a potluck dinner with hot dogs provided by the pack as main dish. It's not too hard to find a couple people to man the BBQ for hot dogs, or the kids can roast their own on sticks over the campfire. I wouldn't even bother with a pack kitchen. We use this website for people to sign up for the potluck and other needed items like charcoal, wood, soap, etc. https://www.bringit.bz/ Everyone is responsible for their own breakfast. Our only planned activity is our advancement ceremony and skits around the campfire. The rest of the time the boys are free to do what they like to do best, which is run around and come up with their own games, which usually consist of zombies and glow sticks. Super easy, everyone has a great time, and nobody feels dumped on.

  3. So you guys are ok with a Cubedwelling code monkey teaching engineering or scientific method????



    Kinda like the Kmart security guard teaching Atomic Energy........Doesn't make sense.


    Sorry I want a Pilot teaching Aviation, Engineer teaching engineering or a Journeyman teaching electricity.

    I think the operative word here is "pack". Sqyire is teaching the requirements to boys in grades 1 through 5. Anyone who had a high school math and science class knows more than these boys, and I'm sure with a little internet research would be more than capable of teaching this age group the requirements for the NOVA award. It's par for the course for every Cub Scout requirement. Does every den leader bring in a nutritionist to go over the food pyramid? Do they bring in a doctor to cover the first-aid requirements? A P.E. teacher to talk about the exercise requirements? A pro-basketball player to go over the basketball belt loop requirements? Although it would be nice to be able to do that for every requirement, the practical answer is no. The NOVA award is really no different.

  4. I dunno.


    If he completed Requirement 5 with a cat, I would award him the merit badge and the Pet Trainer of the Year trophy! :D


    Explain the correct way to obedience train a dog and what equipment you would need. Show with your dog any three of these commands: "come," "sit," "down," "heel," "stay," "fetch" or "get it," and "drop it."

    And how can a MB counselor sign off an a card when he hasn't been shown that the boy's dog does these things? Ridiculous, but probably common.

  5. Ya I am cynical......


    We had a number of troops without packs associated and a number of packs without troops associated. It worked for the units and the boys, the boys would visit the unit and find one to their taste.


    So what did our then DE do.......He created a number of new troops to associate directly with Packs that did not have them. End result three years later all of the troops with out packs directly associated with the troops are folding. We have lost three troops this year from this, the last unit folded Monday last week.


    I can hear old Bando, In his best rah rah scout voice," Why didn't those lazy scouters go and create a Pack directly with their Troops?" Good question, Because every single school that could support a Pack did, and the Units that had multiple schools refused to give one up to a new unit.



    So the DE screwed several 40 year old troops for greed. Sure he met his numbers, but the poor new guy, is hosed, with more units folding than that idiot created. What about all that local scouting history he flushed down the toilet.


    I have had 4 DE's in the last 4 years, NONE of them has keep their word or delivered on the councils obligation to provide books and shirts as requested. I am not even going to get into the money one DE stole from me.



    Buy you guys think it is great and fine....so be it. I know a number of retired scouters who would make fantastic DE's.


    Life long scouters, these guys have 40 years in scouting and are completely selfless. They would do the job because they love it not because of a paycheck.



    Scouting in this country is in big trouble, If you guys are too blind to see it I am sorry.

    Maybe the deficit stems from their share of salaries distributed to them by Council? Someone has to pay the salaries of the Council and District employees. I imagine it is probably distributed based on size of each District.

  6. I realize this thread is not about "backpack" cooking, but the idea of sedan chair carriable chuck/cook boxes and drive up and drop trailer camping always brings to mind my favorite article, which I give out at IOLS training, to wit, I present "Courageous Cookery" :


    *(( The true author of this article is unknown. It is here copied from the COME HOSTELING newsletter, Sept. 1980, of the Potomac Area Council of the American Youth Hostels, who received it from Dick Schwanke, Senior PAC Staff Trainer, who read it in the APPALACHIAN HIKER by Ed Garvey, who got it from the Potomac Appalachian Trail Conference Bulletin, which quoted it from THE RAMBLER of the Wasatch Mountain Club of Salt Lake City, which reportedly cribbed it from the I.A.C. News of Idaho Falls, which reported it from the 1966 PEAKS & TRAILS. I offer it here for your enjoyment and inspiration. Note that some of the ingredients are a bit dated. Adjust as necessary. Enjoy!))



    "Courageous Cookery" by John Echo*

    Once the convert backpacker or cycle camper has accepted the subtle gustatory nuances associated with sustained operations beyond the chrome, he should try the advantages of ultra fringe living so that he will realize what he is paying for his nested pots and pretty pans carried so diligently and brought home so dirty after every "wilderness experience". The following system works. It is dependable and functional. It works on the big rock. It even works when the weather has gone to hell, you are wet and cold and the wind is blowing down the back of your hairy neck. It is not for the timid. It consists of a stove, a six inch sauce pan, a plastic cup and a soup spoon. If you insist on a metal cup, you must never fail to mutter "I'm having fun, I'm having fun", every time you spill the soup on your sleeping bag.

    Breakfast: Instant wheat cereal-- sugar and powdered milk added-- ready two minutes after water boils. Eat from pot. Do not wash pot. Add water, boil, and add powdered eggs and ham. You'll never taste the cereal anyway. In three minutes, eat eggs. Do not wash pot. Add water or snow and boil for tea. Do not wash pot. Most of the residue eggs will come off in the tea water. Make it strong and add sugar. Tastes like tea. Do not wash pot. With reasonable technique, it should be clean. Pack pot in rucksack and enjoy last cup of tea while others are dirtying entire series of nested cookware.

    Lunch: Boil pot of tea. Have snack of rye bread, cheese and dried beef Continue journey in 10 minutes if necessary.

    Dinner: Boil pot of water, add Wylers dried vegetable soup and beef bar. Eat from pot. Do not wash pot. Add water and potatoes from dry potatoe powder. Add gravy mix to taste. Eat potatoes from pot. Do not wash pot. Add water and boil for tea. Fortuitous fish or meat can be cooked easily. You do not need oil or fat. Put half inch of water in pot. Add cleaned and salted fish. Do not let water boil away. Eat from pot when done. Process can be done rapidly. Fish can even be browned somewhat by a masterful hand.

    Do not change menu. Variation only recedes from the optimum. Beginners may be allowed to wash pot once a day for three consecutive days only. It is obvious that burning or sticking food destroys the beauty of the technique. If you insist on carrying a heavier pack, make up the weight you save with extra food. Stay three days longer.




    I'm a lazy backpack cook too, but I prefer the term efficient. I'll buy the cup of noodles in the Styrofoam containers. Eat that for dinner, rinse out and save the container, then use it for oatmeal the next morning, then crush the container to make space. I don't even bring a pot. Just a cup to boil water. For some people it seems that cooking outdoors is part of the experience. For me it just gets in the way of enjoying what's around me. The cup of noodles would never work for longer than a 2-night trip, though, because they take up too much space. Then I might have to break down and bring instant mac-and-cheese packets and soil my cup.

  7. I took my Webelos to visit two different troops in the past couple of months. The first troop was mostly on the young side, like 15 and under. I felt like I was at one of my Webelos meetings. Although they sat in their seats, the boys kept interrupting the speaker and joking around. That particular meeting wasn't really boy-led. There was a young man (several years out of Scouting) talking about the first aid merit badge. Then they went outside where a different man demonstrated his ham radio. The second troop we visited had a wider range of ages from 11 years old to almost 18. There was also a lot of joking going on during that meeting, along with some verbal confrontations between a difficult boy and the SPL. That meeting wasn't really boy-led either. The SM and the CC were showing the boys the equipment they have in their backpacks, in preparation for an upcoming backpacking trip the troop was doing. Although both meetings were a little dry, the boys all seemed to be enjoying themselves. When talking to the SM's to plan our visits, I found out they don't always do fun activities at every meeting. At least with these two troops, they might do a fun meeting maybe once a month, and an outdoor weekend adventure once a month. The rest of the meetings are planning meetings and merit badge meetings.

  8. growing my troop thru the Pack...A shame more SM's don't understand that.


    Tell me about it. As a Webelos DL, I have had to go way beyond the extra mile just to get the SM's to return my call about visiting their troops. My suggestions for having some kind of joint activity fall on deaf ears. Just because we share the same unit number doesn't necessarily mean my boys are going to move on to their troop. They are going to go with a troop where they feel a connection, and that connection is more than just a number on a patch.


    On the topic of recruitment, 10 boys is pretty good! Did he really think just taking their money and getting their name on the roster was going to be enough? He had to have a better plan than that....I hope.


  9. And one of the culprit's character is turning out to be even more deplorable. He's apparently strong enough to hike around and topple a large rock, but is still suing someone for his "disability" caused in an auto accident. http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2013/10/man-who-toppled-ancient-rock-suing-for-disability/


    This man needs to be kicked out of the BSA.

    Frank, I think they are goblin' up the publicity.

  10. And don't do what one facilitator did recently at a Cub Scout Leader training. He gave us a handout with websites to go to for game ideas. C'mon, dude. Couldn't you have spent a little time researching those sites yourself and at least come up with a few specific game ideas to start a good discussion? Why send 20 leaders off to research your websites, when you could have spent an hour preparing for the class and saving the rest of us the trouble.

  11. On the subject of knots, which one do you prefer when tying a hammock to a tree?
    JoeBob, that's exactly why I was asking! I've been using two half hitches, but I have the hardest time getting them untied when done. I was wondering if clove hitch works for hammocks because it seems like an easy knot to untie. I'm just not sure how secure it would be as far as not slipping down the tree when I get in the hammock.

  12. At the risk of angering some here who may be LDS, it has been my personal observation that many of the stories we hear regarding deaths, injuries and just dumb antics come from LDS troops. Not all, but many. I'm not anti-LDS. I don't know what it is like in Utah where the vast majority of scouts are LDS, but where I'm from, the LDS troops participate in nothing......including training. Most LDS leaders don't register because they want to, but because they are directed to. They use the Boy Scout program, but they don't necessarily follow the Boy Scout program. I believe that if they would participate in the available training and network with units and leaders outside of LDS, they would be the better for it. Just my .02 cents. I apologize if that is offensive to anyone.
    In our Council, the LDS units (at least for Cub Scouts because that's all I'm familiar with) are very well run and the leaders dedicated. Without their effort, we wouldn't have anyone running our day camp and our leader training sessions. Membership in Boy Scouts is required for LDS boys and the leaders are basically told that they have to be leaders, whether they want to or not. I believe I read it on here, maybe on the Snake River thread, but someone pointed out that because of this mandatory membership and leadership, you are going to run into problems with people who don't really want to be there and couldn't care less about the program and its principles. Just look at many of christineka's posts. She's a dedicated leader who is really trying to put her best into the program, but she keeps running up against boys who don't want to be there and upper management who doesn't want to help her.

  13. In my area the day camp is for only 2 days. I have the same problem with parents marking anything that was sorta like the achievement. I even have a parent marking stuff for her Webelos that he sorta did when he was a Bear. It doesn't count if he wasn't a webelos!
    Belt loops and their corresponding pins, yes, but not OK for rank achievements or Webelos activity pins.

  14. Make it a true Roundtable. Have Scouters talk about what their unit did the past month - where did they camp? How was the location? What did you do there? Cost? Any interesting troop meeting activities? What's coming up? A sharing of ideas. Just don't put me in a classroom and treat me like a 12 year old. My time is more valuable than that.
    I think a good Roundtable is a combination of these things. Have a set topic, facilitator talks briefly about the topic, and then opens it up to the SM's to give their ideas. For instance, have a topic on recruitment. Facilitator comes up with some ideas and throws those out there, then give the SM's time to share ideas of what's worked and hasn't worked in that regard.

  15. So I spoke with the troop's CC today to see if they saw the problem and to ask how they handle this type of situation. He said they are well aware of it. They have talked with the boy individually and also with him and his parents. Apparently, this is an on-going problem they've had with the boy. So it doesn't sound like it has anything to do with animosity between the SPL and this boy, but rather it's a boy with some behavior issues instead. "Difficult childhood" was what I was told. I am still amazed the SPL was able to keep his cool.

  16. It depends what your goal is.

    Y'all need to quit making irrelevant statements just to discount something you don't personally like about the requirement.


    The requirements do NOT specify "rip tide" or "shark infested water." They do specify "open water" and the ability to swim a "course."


    You might as well argue your "open water" means that you swim without the pool cover, or that you only go when the pool is "open."


    But as always, it's up to whoever is administering the award to sign off on whatever he or she feels qualifies.


    Ironically, while getting riled up over my choice of rhetoric, you demonstrate my point perfectly: You want to speak from a position of authority assumed by interpreting them as strictly as possible, yet you do so from a position of ignorance.


    That is exactly why the Guide to Advancement specifically addresses the "no more, no less" issue.


    For your enlightenment, the requirement regarding the actual swimming reads "Swim one mile over a measured course that has been approved by the trained instructor who will supervise the swim."

    Not one mention of what type or size of the body of water. And as pcola pointed out, for those who read more that what's actually written on the page, the literature references swimming pools 3 times, but silence from you on the issue.

    Like I said, tin gods.


    It's admirable and desirable to push our boys to reach their full potential, and I know that's your goal, but in the course of doing so we do not help them by making up requirements that don't exist.

    Brew, I admire your integrity.

  17. Best one I went to a few years ago was a presentation about sucessfully crossing over Webelos to Troops. Even provided Webelos leaders with tips sheets to pass along to parents of Webelos on the meaning of boy lead. Not parent lead & driven. Other good ones would be cooking demos
    I was also going to suggest a Webelos transition topic. As a Web II den leader, I have been frustrated to no end trying to coordinate with the local troops to (1) allow the Webelos to attend a troop meeting to learn about the troop, and (2) encourage the troops to provide some sort of outdoor activity so the Webelos can achieve their Arrow of Light. My emails and phone calls to the SM's go unanswered, they have no interest in helping us with our outdoor AOL activity, and they don't seem to be too interested in building a relationship with my Webelos, which is probably one of the most important factors my Webelos will use to decide what troop they want to join. Granted, when we finally do get to one of their meetings, the SM's have been great and pulled the parents aside to talk about the specifics of their troop, but the coordination with them has just been disappointing, to say the least. I would love to see a Roundtable topic for the SM's about the importance of recruiting Webelos to their troop and how to go about doing it, such as building a relationship with these boys while they are still Cubs by providing den chiefs, encouraging joint activities, etc. No wonder so many Cubs don't go on to Boy Scouts.

  18. Glad BSA acted fairly quickly on this matter by getting rid of these idiots and denouncing their actions instead of trying to defend them. BSA can now give this public-relations disaster a more positive spin by focusing on the goals and good deeds of Scouting instead.