Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by scoutergipper

  1. My experience is that the only time we have really serious problems on campouts is when we're forced by circumstances to be "too close" to each other, or all in one large campsite. Separation works. However, it can take some real foresight, research and planning in some areas to get the separation between Patrols you need. State campgrounds can work if they are generally large enough and one campsite can house a Patrol under whatever rules they have. You just have to reserve individual sites that are far enough apart. This does create a bit of a security problem, in that you never kno
  2. Not bad - 25 of 33 earned at least one. Most popular were Climbing, Fish & Wildlife Management and Mammal Study with 7 Scouts each.
  3. This is the kind of thing I'd never tell the Scouts about, i.e. "Hey, if you guys earn 38 'Outdoor' Merit Badges and half the Troop goes on all the campouts, we'll win an Award!" That way, none of my gung-ho Scouts thinks, "hey, I'll get a few of my fellow gun-hoers together and we'll earn 38 Outdoor badges ourselves!" I just keep good records and look at this stuff on an annual basis. If we qualify, we qualify and it's a nice surprise at the Court of Honor. FYI, the boys earned 42 "Outdoor" Merit Badges at Summer Camp alone this year (see: "Summer Camp Merit Badge Mill" threads for m
  4. In my neck of the woods, many homeowners put up "No Spray!" signs along the road in front of their houses for precisely this reason, I think. Hate to have the County Transportation Department kill your buzz.
  5. I'll say right now that an "Only Cub Scouts who's parent has signed up to help with at least one event this year will be able to compete in the Pinewood Derby" policy will either get all your events chaired or get you thrown out on your ear.
  6. Assuming the facts are as stated, this person has no business in the Scouting program in my opinion. I would definitely inform your local Scout Executive that it is possible the alcohol was involved.
  7. Wow! - 700 campers in 15 sites? That's almost 50 Scouts in each site! That is impressive. We don't have a single Summer Camp in our Council with even one campsite that would hold that many Scouts.
  8. Boys decide. We have 5 camps we have typically visited, but new ideas are encouraged. As far as I'm concerned, there aren't any limits on what they can choose. In fact we're going somewhere next year we've never gone previously at the recommendation of a transfer Scout who's previous Troop loved it. Objectively, it seems going the same place every year would get boring, but to each his own.
  9. I would much prefer having Summer Camps limited to non-Eagle-required Merit Badges. As with most here, I know for a fact the Scouts are not doing all the work required for these Badges during a one-week Summer Camp. Our previous Scoutmaster, whom I admire greatly, once had a Scout come up to him at a campout where I (then just a Scout Parent) happened to be within earshot. The Scout was excitedly telling the Scoutmaster that he had just completed the Orienteering Merit Badge and how much he liked it. The Scoutmaster pulled a map and said, "That's great, Jonny! Orient this map." The k
  10. Well, that might meet the letter of the policy, but I'd never do it if there were no other people milling around the area. With that reading, you could probably drive a single Scout somewhere because there are no more open, public areas than the roads during rush hour. I take the "no one-one-one" pretty literally, as much for my own protection as the Scout's, since they have nothing to fear from me.
  11. Here's another post that got glitched I just had this happen last week. Scout wanted a SM conference for Star, but has been an infrequent camper (also due to sports) and really hadn't done anything with his POR even when on campouts. So I just flat-out told him - without giving him my opinion - to take some time and think about whether he had fulfilled the responsibilities of his POR. He came back the next day and said "no" - that he was going to pick up a different POR in the Fall and work at that one. Not helpful in your position, if this kid and his family aren't interested in living t
  12. Lenae - "Never be anywhere alone with a single Scout who is not your son." So yes, a single Adult can escort two Scouts somewhere, but cannot allow one Scout (for instance) to go into the bathroom, leaving the other Scout alone with the Adult.
  13. I don't think you're picking on me. I understand the concern and you may be right. If something happens to one of these boys, the family can have everything I own - I won't need it in the dark room where I'll be spending the rest of my days.
  14. A graph of cricket chirps by hour is key to any successful campout. Mid-week, we sent all the boys who had not straightened up their adirondack's prior to leaving for flag back to camp with no breakfast to get the job finished. It didn't take long for the second effort to meet the approval of the ASM and it was back to the Dining Hall. Choices and consequences.
  15. I'd personally like to see the program move toward more outdoor and more backwoods focus, and I'm trying to encourage my own Troop in that direction. I have encouraged my Patrols - particularly the Leadership group that's clearly capable - to go out on their own sometime. Hikes, camping, whatever you want. Not an "official" Scout event, you understand, just a group of young friends going camping or hiking. I completely agree with "Realize you can't teach all first class skills in 6 hours." I had a kid transfer to my Troop who had been on 2 campouts and attended Summer Camp and was tw
  16. No military Scout is going to pack in a camp kitchen and cook up his meals. I don't see much qualitative difference between a dining hall and an MRE.
  17. We generally discourage Scouts from working with their own parent on Merit Badges. A parent that would want to (and a Scout that's working on 6 Merit Badges at one time for that matter - I'd never authorize that many at once) would raise gigantic red flags for me. This seems to me to diminish the benefit Scouts are expected to gain from the "Adult Association" Method.
  18. "is there truly anything that is purely altruistic?" The short answer is "no" - as Stosh notes, doing nice things make him feel good about himself based essentially on how he was raised. In fact, I don't believe it's possible to do anything that isn't done because you "gain" something from doing it. Most of the time, these gains are not tangible or maybe even measurable - you don't get paid or get a dozen eggs in trade. It's a "good feeling" or you just want to. We do a lot of small things for our CO, in fact any time they ask in addition to whatever we can think of before they as
  19. So the idea behind the "Adult Association" piece of Scouting is for the Scouts to see how lots of different Adults practice leadership, the Oath & Law and etc. In my personal view as an SM, I will not counsel Merit Badges. The Scouts have plenty of chances (probably too many) to see me in "action." Both I and our Boards of Review strongly encourage the Scouts to not come forward with books showing only one or two Adults are signing off on all their Advancement Requirements. I have recently started giving our Scouts a list of 5 potential Merit Badge Counselors which includes only one Ad
  20. I agree. Most "kids" strive to live up to the expectations that are set by Adults. These don't have to be "in your face" expectations or anything, but if the Scouts understand that "the Troop's" expectation is that you're going to stick around regardless of the age you earn Eagle, most Scouts will do that, especially if they've seen other Troop Members do it in the past. One of the most important questions that I ask at Eagle Scoutmaster Conferences is what they plan to do to continue their Scouting career and "give back" to Scouting. If they're 15, that's a much different question than if
  21. It's always fun in threads like this to have the dope smokers come on with the "it's no big deal" line. In my Troop, he's gone. I'd never trust him again and most importantly neither would any Parent in the Troop.
  22. While I wouldn't delay a boy, I have made it pretty clear I don't look favorably on 13- or 14-year old Eagles. We are not about advancement, and I never "push" boys to advance when they aren't interested. They all understand it's up to them. No Scout has ever quit the Troop because of this. My personal belief is that good, servant leadership can only come with experience. Scouts of that age simply don't have it, and have a lot to learn about what being a "leader" really means. Maybe one in a thousand is a "born" leader. I would expect the percentage of Scouts who Eagle at 13 or 14
  23. We've been fortunate to have people ask to help. In some instances their role has to be limited until they don't "get" what the whole "boy led" thing is all about. If they don't ever get it, their role remains limited. We have more people that want to help than we have legitimate roles for them.
  24. Adult Leaders should, of course, always remember that they are supposed to be modeling the behavior embodied in the Oath and Law and the behavior they want their Scouts to exhibit.
  25. In this day and age, it's almost "expected" that you're going to have a website. They make a great marketing tool for your unit. Please be aware of security issues - don't post Scout names along with any pictures, etc. The home page should be publicly available as a marketing device, but everything else should be password protected for members of your unit only.
  • Create New...