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About bluecat

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  1. Sorry, not going to go there. Suffice it to say, some families were displeased.
  2. I haven't visited this site in ages...I thought I'd share what happened to my issue , 2.5+ years later. (Read the above, if you are interested.) My boy is now recently "graduated" from the troop and I am essentially out myself...just dabbling.... Here's what transpired since November 2014: - We tried our darndest to grow the troop. We did flyers, an open house, visits to cub packs, and so on. We had the inklings of success when the troop got about 5-7 new scouts from a pack. To be honest, they had a leader amongst them (a dad) with a strong personality that they all liked to follow. He chose our troop with an eye on becoming our new SM. - The existing SM did not understand that the new guy had his eyes on the crown and, in any case, wanted to stay on and was oblivious to the situation. Too bad for all of us, as it would have been a good way to ensure the future. (Old guys sometimes need to give way!) - An avoidable error then happened at a scouting event and all the new scouts subsequently left the troop. - So: the 12 or so scouts that we built up to slowly but surely wore down to just a handful. - The money we had in excess was slowly used up for special outings and for subsidizing events. - The idea (stating the thread above) of starting a feeder cub pack was mentioned but never seriously considered. (It's one of those ideas that sounds great until you realize you don't have the people interested enough to implement it.) The DM was absolutely zero help. (A look at her linkedIn page is quite illuminating as it barely speaks of her scouting accomplishments, other than her fundraising skills.) - No one even talks about recruiting anymore. There is still too much money in the treasury but it is now it's an issue for the remaining parents. I wish this particular story had a happier ending. To be optimistic, the story is not over yet and the troop may survive yet!
  3. Thanks, everyone. Some very good ideas there. Although I feel a little guilty about spending down the inheritance, I will have to now convince the rest of the Committee that I think it's the best for all of us. I'm not really inclined to see it go to the CO (who haven't been involved at all) and I always worry about a treasurer who goes AWOL with the funds. (It has happened!) I especially like the idea of spending on recruiting events and offering a discount for Webelos signing up with us. It serves the purpose of growing the ranks too.
  4. Thanks, SeattlePioneer. Yes, we are trying to up our numbers but, frankly, our troop has done a minimal job on this for quite a few years now. And now we are at that point where our small size is an obvious issue for webelos as well. The SM has his hands full already. Do you think the DE is (or should be) working on this issue with us? It's almost FOS season, so I imagine we will see him again in the near future. ;-)
  5. We are loath to spend the "extra money" because, first off, we want to be good stewards of the money and, second, we don't have any clue about what should be the "reserve". (The amount of the reserve is what I'm looking for guidance on...)
  6. One piece of advice is to put yourself in the shoes of the parent coming to listen to you. What they REALLY want to know is how your troop is different than the other troops they are visiting and why they should settle or not settle on your troop. So, although your talk is interesting to those who are new to scouting, the Webelos parents probably already know most of the generic differences (or have heard it before from other troops). In fact, you are not selling them on scouting, you are selling them (if that's the word) on your troop. This is your chance to set your troop apart.
  7. I've not seen this problem addressed before. If anyone has some pointers to good policies on this matter, please forward that (in addition to your opinions, of course!)... We're a well-established troop but in an area with declining scout enrollment. Our troop has dwindled down in size to about 10 boys and, with the current crop of boys about to age out, there is some danger of folding. (We are working on improving the numbers so this does not happen, but it is possible that it will.) We have a substantial treasury that has been passed down to us today over the past decades. My question is: how much is too much? What guidelines do you use to understand how much money should be kept for capital expenditures (tents, etc.) and for annual expenses? Any "rules of thumb"? If we decide that we have too much, what's the fairest way to spend this money down?
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