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Posts posted by mashmaster

  1. 2 hours ago, seguru said:

    These stories infuriate me as we continue to "dumb-down" the requirements and/or have Scouters involved who are too willing to give away "achievements".   There is NO WAY a Cooking MB can be earned in a single day.   MB requirements are to be completed "as written"... which requires multiple meals to be done "at camp" and other multiple meals to be done while "on a trail hike".

    Even with "prerequisites" like First Aid done ahead of time, there is no way any Eagle-required badge can be done in a single day.   

    First off, Welcome to the forum.

    Agreed, although Swimming and First Aid could be be earned in a day.  It would be a full day but could be completed in a day.  I think most Eagle MBs have requirements that would keep them from being able to be completed in a day.  I wouldn't recommend them to be rushed through though.  I recently had scouts go through proper Red Cross training for First Aid, CPR/AED, and Wilderness First Aid.  I wondered to myself how well they would sit through the 16 hour Wilderness course but our 5 scouts did great.  We had a great instructor and the scouts were more mature.  (We are Sea Scouts so they are older than Troop scouts.)

    The point I have is they should do the requirements as stated, if they can do them in a day, great.  But they still need to actually do them.

    • Upvote 2
  2. 5 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

    I think Venturing may fade away but Sea Scouts will remain fairly stable in or outside BSA.  I see almost no value to them staying in BSA.  When I talk with our local Ship, the leader spent an hour complaining about the BSA and that it provides nothing.   I guess I question why stay in the BSA at that point ... create a stand alone organization without the burden of BSA overhead.  On the BSA side, if they are not going to invest or do anything with Sea Scouts ... then why keep them?  It is definitely concerning based on the comments above that leaders in BSA don't even know they exist.  At that point, it is simply a $50M liability waiting in the wings...

    Again, I'm 100% pro Sea Scouts and think its a great program.  I hope my son joins when he is old enough.  The leaders I talked to are great.  I just question if the marriage with BSA is the right fit going forward.

    FWIW, this debate is meaningless as BSA is headed in the opposite direction.  I didn't realize it, but they expanded into STEM Scout Labs.

    I am not sure what group would be a good fit.  Probably a combination of Coast Guard Auxiliary and US Sailing.  What is missing is the character piece that scouting bring to the table.  

  3. The current drop in Venturing and Sea Scouting is directly attributed to the fact that a lot of Crews and Ships stopped doing anything in person last year.  The youth are mainly high school age and done with doing more online stuff.  My son is in a Ship and a Crew.  The Ship has been active sailing since last June and we have held steady on our membership, scouts aged out and we gained a few new scouts.  If we didn't have to modify, I think we could have grown more.  The Crew did online meetings and dropped membership by 50%.  The youth are bored out of their minds for online meetings.

    Recovery for those programs will not be easy, a lot of scouts and leadership have left the program.  For Sea Scouts, the partnership with the Coast Guard Auxiliary could be utilized as a benefit.  I wish we could have a tighter relationship with US Sailing.  The future is unclear, but from the number of troops reaching out to me about doing things together for their bored older scout is increasing.  So, maybe that will be Venturing, I feel that it may go to more of a program that is part of troops as a patrol for older scouts.  The hard part will be the co-ed part of it with the troops being single sex programs.  The age group of 14-19 really need something for themselves.  In my experience, very few stick around after High School.

    The fact that Packs have basically shut down is the scariest part.  If Packs die, BSA dies all together.  Older units should be reaching out to Packs to help them recruit and run program.  

    Exploring is very healthy and most likely will be sold off to some other entity.  They are so profession based, they have different factors.  From what I have heard, that program brings in money.

    • Upvote 1
  4. 42 minutes ago, CynicalScouter said:

    When even trying to discuss merging Sea Scouts into Venture was part of the Churchill plan, Sea Scouts rallied and saved their program.

    I cannot imaging that BSA will touch that hot stove again, at least for awhile. And going after Venture? No, I don't see that happening anytime soon.

    That is because the programs are pretty radically different other than the age.

  5. My daughter is getting her masters degree in Public Health.  She has told me the percentage of vacinated people to reach herd immunity is >70%.  So we are looking for a simple majority here.   

    The India situation is horrible.  Lots of different factors in play, very little access to vaccinations, health care access, new strain, higher density population...... Prayers go out for them, hopefully we can divert some of our vaccine to them since at least here in Texas the vaccines are plentiful.

    • Upvote 1
  6. 3 hours ago, David CO said:

    I hear that all the time.  


    Visitors are allowed to observe our unit activities, but they are not allowed to join in.  


    We would note any visitors in our troop log.  We would not report it to the visitors' unit.  If their unit requires notification of their visits, we would expect them to do it themselves.  A scout is trustworthy.


    Your troop and paperwork is much more than any unit I have ever been involved with or even visited.  And that number is a pretty large number.  Also, all those units would let the visiting scout join in the reindeer games.

    If I may ask, What type of organization is your charter?


    • Upvote 1
  7. Our CO is much more hands off than that.  How do you handle a new prospective scout that just shows up that isn't part of your unit?  Would you turn them away?  My guess is that you report that they attended afterwards, but I could be wrong.

    It isn't a bad thing, but it isn't necessary as well.  Potentially a scout wants to see and evaluate units separate from the rest of the den for some reason?  I am not saying that is why this happened, but it could happen.

    • Like 1
  8. 4 hours ago, David CO said:

    I don't know of any BSA rules that were violated by the visit, or for his failure to let you know about it.  However, if this were my unit, his actions would have violated several of my Chartered Organization's policies and practices.


    What policies?  How is it a bad thing to have a scout visit a troop meeting?  

    • Upvote 2
  9. 38 minutes ago, MtnFisher said:

    Thanks!  My main worry was that there may have been YPT, or Guide To Safe Scouting guidelines that were violated, and that may cause issues or negative impacts for my pack.  If there's nothing preventing visits like this, then I'm fine with it too.

    No YPT issues here.  The only issue would be if they were camping and he tented with a scout 2 years older than him.  But at meetings nothing that I can think of.

    The only guide to safe scouting issue would be if they did an activity that isn't allowed for his age group, like shooting shotguns for example.  

    It all good, welcome to the forum!

    • Upvote 1
  10. I don't see any rules or in fact any problems with this.  The boy got to do stuff with the older scouts and hopefully had fun.  Maybe that will excite him to join the troop when he is old enough. It would have been worse if he attended and didn't get to do anything.  He might have decided Troops are boring and don't want him.

    I don't understand the point about why they should have informed you.  Any of your scouts should feel comfortable visiting any troop at anytime, not just when there is an invitation.

    My advice would be to let it go, it is all good.

    • Like 1
    • Upvote 3
  11. I guess I am trying to understand what they hope to accomplish with this?  Is it to get TV ads?  From my personal interactions with the non-scouting public, everyone I talk to always seem to have positive feedback on scouting.  I don't think that is what we need to solve.  What we need to get something like this to figure out how to "get the butts in the seats".  What is it that mom and dad need sign their 1st or 2nd grader up for cub scouts?  If they can get TV ads and advertise to those parents, that would be great.  I was hopeful that the TV show would be better.  Sadly, it really wasn't a good show.  

  12. I don't understand why you are disagreeing?  If the current CO no longer is willing or able to charter Scout units, what do you expect them to do?  Finding a CO that is a good fit is important.  We recently switched CO's because 95% of our scouts were no longer within 30 minutes of the location and we needed a place to meet. So when we begun our search, the district commissioner had a couple of Church's that were looking to charter a ship.

    The prior CO was a great organization, but they understood why we needed to move.  Location was causing  scouts not being able to attend, now they have the ability to attend.

  13. I have interacted with her and the previous two boatswains.  They are all fine examples of our youth.  The Sea Scout program does a great job nuturing the youth to continue to grow when they hit that stagnant stage of Troop scouting.  That is why I am involved in it, even though it is a small program, it really is a great next step that I think many older scouts would benefit from.

  14. Just now, mashmaster said:

    Our scouts paddled the Buffalo River in Arkansas two years ago.  They had a great time.

    I should mention it was scout led and planned.  Not guide service needed, they owned the process from beginning to end.  The only adult help planning was helping to contact local troops in the area who lent us the canoes.

    • Thanks 1
  15. 23 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

    We do not do masks in any aquatic activity.  You go in the water with one on, and your breathing is immediately impaired.  Not a good idea, IMHO.

    We only wear them on land or on a boat where you can't social distance.  On a the boats that you can't social distance there is a keel, so you aren't going in the water.  You are wearing a PFD at all times, so you pop out of the water pretty quick in the very small chance you enter the water.  When you are sailing a Sunfish or Laser, you are alone and social distanced: you don't wear a mask.


  16. 3 hours ago, scoutldr said:

    I would prefer the Norman Rockwell Museum at his home in Stockbridge, Mass.  We went there over Christmas two years ago...beautiful town.  The highlights of my trip were the museum and the original "Alice's Restaurant", now the Guthrie Center.

    That would be nice as well.  The reason I mentioned the Getty, is that their museum is free.  It is huge, they have a really nice facility and are in a major metroplex so it could be seen by so many people.

    • Upvote 1
  17. It is such a fine line.  We do lots of sailing with masks and when they are on a single person dinghy, they remove the masks.  At meetings we are outdoors with masks.  Only complaints we get are from Adults trying to make a political point. I shut those down.

    One of our local schools recently forced all students to come into school to take a standardized test.  The cheerleading team apparently all had covid and spread it to 26 kids.  ugh

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