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Rock Doc

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About Rock Doc

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    Assistant Scoutmaster

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  1. YPT

    The "new" format of modular YPT has only been around for a month or so. Several of our venturers completed the "old" Venturing-specific YPT last month. The crew committee training was revised close to a year ago, and now consists of a dozen or so modules. Regardless, the question remains - how does this "new" YPT format serve Venturing? For that matter, how does it serve the newly-forming dens of female cub scouts?
  2. YPT

    Has anyone in Venturing completed the new YPT? I'm hearing that it's missing coed issues as well as older teen concerns. Seems like the one-size fits all may not adequately address the Venturing program...
  3. Arrow of Light Ceremony - Flaming Arrows!

    This might just work! Adding details like this can make a relatively simple action quite impressive and highly memorable - and what soon-to-be Boy Scout isn't going to love fire raging at the sound of his name!
  4. Arrow of Light Ceremony - Flaming Arrows!

    We tried the adminstrative approach, but the camp ranger wasn't into playing games, and we're not interested in incurring his wrath! So, no bow-fired projectiles, pointy or not. And yes, the Boy Scouts had great fun retrieving the "spent rounds"
  5. Arrow of Light Ceremony - Flaming Arrows!

    I've seen fires lit this way, and given enough "liquid encouragement" the effect can be "illuminating"! In our instance though, we could have upwards of a dozen AOLs, so I guess mulitple zip lines might work. Thanks!
  6. Many years ago, our Pack began the tradition of holding the AOL ceremony at a lakeside amphitheater, and launching flaming arrows into the lake as each scouts name was called. Since it's now been determined that these theatrics aren't entirely in keeping with the GTSS with respect to range safety, safe use of fire, etc., we're trying to come up with an impactful, albeit compliant, replacement. I've seen elaborate pulley systems that draw flaming objects along controlled paths, bundles of glow sticks tossed in the air, drum beats, etc. So, what are other Packs/Troops using?
  7. Adopted sites in Council Camp?

    I've seen adopted camp sites at several NC camps, including Raven Knob, Grimes, and Daniel Boone. Some get pretty elaborate, with shelters, power, engineered fire pits, hammock stands, and benches. These camps all have online registration for weekend camping, so it's easy to reserve your favorites.
  8. Our Crew is looking for an integrated, highly-accessible (smartphone, tablet, and laptop) system to track events, training, progress, money, and messaging, and Scoutbook by all accounts should be the silver bullet, right? Not so fast, as it really lacks Venturing-specific functions. So, what are other crews using to keep everyone informed and in touch?
  9. NYLT strip?

    Our NYLT program (http://topgun.mcc-bsa.org/home) is also a week-long camping experience. The SEALS program (https://sites.google.com/site/mccseals/what-is-seals) has been around in our Council for about 10 years.
  10. NYLT strip?

    We also use the Introduction to Leadership Skills for Troops (ILST) training materials following each unit election, which provides a solid foundation for all younger youth. The PLC is required to attend ILST to be considered trained to position, but all are welcome. ILST covers much of the same territory as SEALS, but doesn't have the same immersion (SEALS is a weekend camping experience). We find that SEALS grads come back energized and ready to lead, and are often recruited to serve as staff for SEALS and District/Council camps. I agree with NAYLE being more appropriate for VOA, but it's not readily accessible to most in our area.
  11. NYLT strip?

    In our council, SEALS (Scouts Excited About Leaderships Skills) is a precursor to NYLT (aka Top Gun). The SEALS program focuses on the 11 to 14 year-old scouts who predominantly fill PL roles, while NYLT is for 14+ (including Venturers) destined for SPL and VOA roles
  12. When does your PLC meet?

    Ours meets once a month, usually right after the monthly campout. The PLC plans the next month's meetings, and at the same time ASMs work with the Instructors and Quartermaster to prepare for the upcoming activities.
  13. Some camps require everyone to do the swim check at camp, rather than at home in a pool. Just something to consider if you're planning to manage a fear of murky "natural water" - check the camp-specific leaders guide.
  14. Sorry to hear this unfortunate situation. You say that your son is already an Eagle Scout, so is this project an extension of his commitment to a lifetime of service, or is he actually a Life Scout working on his Eagle Scout Service Project? Either way, it sounds like a situation that could have been avoided if expectations were clearly communicated before work commenced (in the Eagle Scout Project Proposal and Work Plan) and feedback was received during construction. Firstly, I'd recommend a face to face meeting with the beneficiary, your son, and his Eagle Coach, so that all parties can review the Proposal (which the beneficiary signed agreeing to the scope of work). I encourage our scouts to share the Work Plan with the beneficiary to agree on the details developed from the Proposal, and then hold a pre-construction meeting at the project site to agree on the specifics. Hopefully, the Proposal was detailed enough to show that the work was only to be performed on the exterior and to meet certain standards. Good luck!
  15. Several years ago, our troop decided to invest a small windfall into a fleet of Kelty Gunnison backpacking tents. In the early days, the scouts took great care of the tents; kept them clean and dry, and respected what they were given. These tents have shown to be remarkably durable, they're lightweight for backpacking (when shared between 2 or 3 scouts), and until recently Kelty took care of most repairs. However, Kelty has just informed us that they will no longer provide warranty repairs, and we're on our own to keep them serviceable. I don't doubt that many of them will last several more years, but we're now faced with what to do going forward. Managing a fleet of troop tents can be a chore, but if it means we get more scouts camping, and especially backpacking, I think it's worth the effort. So, my long-winded question is, do many troops provide tents, and if so do you opt for backpacking-style (full coverage fly, <5 lbs, etc) or heavier outfitter-style tents suitable for tail gate camping? And as a follow-up, does your Quartermaster take the lead on managing tent inventory and maintenance, or is there significant adult "support" involved?