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Everything posted by thrifty

  1. thrifty

    World Jamboree - Reviews

    I realized my question might not have a simple answer but didn't intend for it to go so far off topic. I will just accept that GSUSA probably doesn't want to be involved with World Organization of the Scout Movement. I'm just curious about the dynamics of these various groups and how it all fits together. Seems like the GSUSA would fit well with the more liberal point of view I've been seeing from European scouts on Facebook for the past year. My family was only at WSJ on Sat. but we had a great time. No complaints for our one day. Arrival and departure were easy and everyone was nice.
  2. thrifty

    World Jamboree - Reviews

    I wondered about this. I saw posts about Girl Guides being as WSJ and that is the equivalent of GSUSA correct? That's the whole reason for qwazse's comment. Can anyone explain to me the relationship, if any, between GSUSA and WS? I like all of qwazse's other ideas.
  3. thrifty

    World Jamboree - Reviews

    At least several people did try to take the tent with stakes and poles as a carry on because there was a warning not to do this posted on the WSJ Facebook page after some people had to leave their tents behind.
  4. thrifty

    Jack Links Fundraiser Partnership with BSA

    can't comment on Jack Links but I bought one of each variety Country Meats from a local troop and thought they were disgusting. Would not buy again but probably a good fundraiser b/c it's only $1.
  5. thrifty

    Uniform Inspections

    Our troop does them and I don't care for them. As a PL, my son had several interactions with scouts that could not afford pants that would quickly be outgrown, over priced socks or a belt that would be worn once a week for an hour. He'd tell them to be as prepared as they could and that's what they did. But when the SM has everyone line up by patrol like a military drill and the PL's check off boxes on the uniform sheet, all that does is bring attention to the fact that some scouts did not have the entire uniform. Well guess what, those scouts aren't with the troop anymore. I was the only person interested in starting a uniform exchange so that didn't get very far. When a scout earns a rank or leadership position, those patches are given to him/her. I think its reasonable to request a few minutes of effort to update the shirt but I'd rather have a scout family spend $30 on a campout then on a pair of official pants that rarely get used.
  6. thrifty

    What constitutes an "Eagle Factory"?

    I don't like it when labels are thrown around. Unless someone is familiar with the troop and scouts, it's impossible to know what the personality of a specific troop is like. Maybe the scouts are motivated and having so much fun that Eagle comes naturally. That being said, I know many adults, including leaders, who believe that Eagle should be the end result of scouting. SM told my son that the MB he wanted to do wasn't important because it wasn't an Eagle. I agree with DuctTape and he said it better then I could.
  7. thrifty

    Merit Badge Workshops and Universities

    I could talk about this topic all day if given the chance. Lots of negative opinions about this type of activity from scouters, doesn't matter if it is in this forum or many other places. My son has been to a lot of these all over the state because he has a desire to do so and I see it as a learning opportunity. Learning not only the MB but also how people, scouting and regions of our state are different. We've had nothing but great experiences. Every complaint I've read about these events, I have also witnessed at summer camps and even in our own troop. Adults will either take the MB requirements seriously or they will cut corners. The event isn't the problem, it's the type of personalities that deem it ok to cut corners and people like that are everywhere. I feel that most summer camp MBs are a joke from what I've witnessed and been told. Every MB event that we've been to has clearly defined the pre-reqs as well as what will be covered. My son has talked to counselors that were experts in their fields and very passionate about what they were doing and has been inspired by some of them. He's had opportunities to learn in environments that summer camp could never hope to equal. MB events are somewhat convenient compared to the scout calling a random MBC. I don't see this as any different from summer camp supplying counselors or troops that have registered in-house MBCs for everything. My son has contacted random MBCs that say they would help but then never respond to his messages and he's had trouble finding counselors in our area for some badges. Our counsel has started planning and hosting more of these events at our local camps.
  8. thrifty


    does the troop ask that a specific woggle be used? if not, some creativity could turn it into one.
  9. thrifty

    Skit in Underwear - JCPenny

    I was at a wake tonight. It was very informal, I was probably the only person in a suit and maybe one of eight that had a tie on. Most were in t-shirts and jeans because that's what they own and no one expected anything else. The wife and son told me later that someone actually wore pajama pants. The three of us agreed that maybe that was crossing a line even for this easy going family situation. But at least she came to honor the deceased and that is more important. I hate the JC Penny sketch just because I've seen it more than any other skit. There have been scouts in underwear and shorts but I thought the best solution was the scout that held a bath towel around his waist. I could imagine the other scouts taking his clothes while he was swimming or showering.
  10. thrifty

    Tan Velcro for patches?

    The Velcro I buy at Joann Fabric has adhesive on the back of both parts. No sewing required. That adhesive has never come off the uniform or the patches even after several years. Soft side goes on the uniform, plastic goes on the patch. It can also be pealed off the uniform but will leave a residue. The residue can also be removed with a lot of work but there will always be a discoloration on that area of the uniform.
  11. thrifty


    I try to always refer to the scouts as such when in their presence. I usually call them boys if I'm at home and they can't hear me. I've known many of them as cubs and I didn't call them cubs at that time but I try to be a little more respectful as they are older. Same with the girls now. in March my son was leading the campfire program and said Boy Scouts during his presentation. He was quickly corrected that it was now Scouts BSA by an ASM that is also participating in our girl troop. There were no girls at this campout. My son said it didn't bother him. I wasn't there but hearing about it bothered me. I'm sure it was innocent enough but it just rubs me the wrong way. I don't care what's on the paperwork now or what any leadership says, it's still Boys Scouts for us. We just had our annual fundraiser for the boy troop and I don't tell our relatives they are coming to a Scout BSA event, they'd just be confused. My son joined Boy Scouts and has been in Boy Scouts for years. I will continue to call it Boy Scouts long after he's aged out. I'll make an effort not to do so around the girls but most people outside of the BSA don't understand Scouts BSA. I also just say Scouts sometimes now but with the official GSUSA and Scouts BSA girls saying "Scouts" is just as confusing in my opinion.
  12. My Life scout has 44 MBs from all over the state and I can tell you that each counselor will do things differently. It can be frustrating sometimes but it's not the scout's fault and I don't think it's the scout's responsibility to demand a blue card is filled out in a certain manner as long as the counselor signature and the date it was completed are included or in this case noted that requirement #4 still needs done. Was the counselor info filled out? Your example is odd. Usually when my son had a partial, the counselors put initials on the requirements he's done and leave the counselor info blank for the last counselor to sign off when fully completed. The counselor that finishes the MB with him fills in the counselor details, signs and dates complete. I would be concerned that a counselor helps the scout with #4 but doesn't want to sign off the blue card as completed if everything else is blank. It shouldn't be too hard for the scout to track down the counselor and get an email confirmation of the situation to provide to any future counselor of #4 versus having to schedule a meeting and driving back to wherever they went.
  13. I joined an international scouting facebook page months ago because I was curious and because international scouting is constantly used as an example of why girls should be in the BSA and why it will work. I have a lot of good and bad opinions about what has been posted on that page. I just read a comment a few days ago and wish I would have kept a screen shot. It didn't originate because of any co-ed argument but was just a UK leader's nonchalant comment about her group. I am paraphrasing but she said something to the effect of "I'm glad that scouting is coed, the girls are the first to volunteer for everything." Well, that can be taken several ways but I think it justifies some of my concerns about girls in scouting. I'm not worried about girl troops. I'm worried because I don't trust the BSA and eventually it will be co-ed troops.
  14. Hello, We are a reasonable driving distance from Summit. WSJ is too expensive but my family is considering the possibility of driving to Summit for a day pass during WSJ. We didn't know about day passes prior to NSJ '17. I've seen the info online for NSJ day passes but those details are too vague for my comfort. I've heard stories about NSJ and I would expect WSJ to be even crazier with regards to lines, crowds, etc.. What I would like to know is what exactly a day pass entitles the user to do/see, what kind of access is the user allowed? I don't think my scout would want to wait in line for 3 hours to do a zip line or other activity so I'm not worried about that but we would like to see the entire camp and be able to explore and people watch and feel like we're a part of the celebration. We wouldn't want to be cordoned off in some small area or only be allowed access to limited areas. That would be a wasted trip. Any feedback on what should happen at WSJ or what did happen at NSJ with regards to day passes is appreciated. Thank you.
  15. we are going for just Saturday. Got a room, so driving down the night before. I believe visitors are kicked out at 5pm so we'll just drive home then. I just want my son to have a chance to experience WSJ without spending thousands of dollars so the one day should be enough. We've never been to the Summit either so it's two birds with one stone. He obviously won't get that summer camp type experience but we're getting what we paid for. I'm wondering if there will be any opportunity to trade with other scouts during the day while we are there. Visitors aren't allowed in the camping areas and we have to leave at 5pm. Scouts should be at activities all day right? Without any kind of prior experience, its difficult to envision what this will be like. I just assume it will be organized chaos similar to a large fair or camporee.
  16. thrifty

    Blue & Gold cost

    our pack has done it several different ways the past few years. The Webelos 1 parents are responsible for B&G every year with anyone else that wants to volunteer. The year before us got a caterer and it was nice so we did the exact same thing. The food was dropped off to the church basement. Chicken, spaghetti, rolls etc.. $10/person, scouts were free. All money covered costs. I don't recall the price but the next year there was a chef in the group so they had a similar meal but he cooked everything in the church kitchen. The year after that it was decided that a big meal was too much work and they kept it simple with a nice sheet cake and beverages. The pack paid for the cake and there was no parent fee. Take a pole of the parents. Give them a few options with estimated family cost and see what they say. B&G should be about the scouts and a scout is thrifty so I like the cake only idea. It's easy and fast so it takes less time from the volunteers/planners.
  17. thrifty

    Selling Camp Cards

    Lake Erie formerly Greater Cleveland. Not going to lose any sleep over it, I just find it interesting. I wonder why they aren't in our council because I would think the council is aware of them. Or maybe not. We have popcorn and maple syrup! The troops in the area also have their pancakes, spaghetti or other fundraisers because popcorn doesn't sell enough to support the troop. We do ok.
  18. thrifty

    Selling Camp Cards

    well, it seems like everyone is selling camp cards except us. Interesting.
  19. thrifty

    Selling Camp Cards

    what's a camp card? I assume its one of those plastic cards that has coupons to various local vendors? Our school athletics program does something like that. I don't see anything wrong with this. Assuming I am correct in what they are, my opinion is that you are advertising the fundraiser on social media. The customers are still dealing directly with you or another parent/scout/leader when purchasing the card. Our troop and many others in the area advertise our fundraisers on our local media websites. Our troop doesn't post pics of the scouts online, its just usually a flier and details. Something else to consider, is this a Troop fundraiser or a council fundraiser? If the troop is doing this under the radar of the council then posting online might draw unwanted attention from council. Its unlikely but possible. Our council doesn't care, but maybe yours would. See if this helps you. It's specifically about fundraising. I haven't read it lately. https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/financeimpact/pdf/cfd-manuals/policies_and_procedures.pdf
  20. thrifty

    2018 Membership numbers are in

    Good to hear. As far as I'm concerned this should be where the BSA devotes more of its energy. I know that in our area the term Explorers has recently been used for short term classes with specialists in Engineering or other careers but I am most familiar with the Law Enforcement and Fire programs. My son is enjoying his LE explorer post more than his troop because the post meetings are fun and active. My brother has 20+ years in law enforcement and still says the time he spent with his post was inspirational and important to his career. I live in the suburb of a large midwest city. If a teen is motivated enough to want to rock climb, cave or hike they don't need to form a group to do it. A simple google search will show that there are already local groups that are established and have experts waiting with open arms. I don't think it was that easy in the past and I know its not that easy everywhere. Most likely, the teen will convince a buddy or two and just go do it. why form a group at all? Took my son to a new Venturing crew meeting because it was supposed to be about a topic he had interest in. With the exception of my son and another scout, the teens were clueless about Venturing and the adults hosting the meeting had planned poorly, did a terrible job explaining the goals of the new crew or why anyone would even want to be in the group. They were talking about elections and they hadn't even established what was going to motivate the crew to show up. I understand that Venturing is crew lead but I don't think most people join a group and then ask what does this group do? After two hours of talking about everything except why we were there my son decided he wasn't interested in joining. When anyone mentions Venturing I cant help but think back to the meetings we had when our troop was starting a crew. One of the people that spoke about venturing was a gentleman that was active and an adult advisor in several crews that did different activities. He mentioned that the crews had more adult participation at planned activities than the youth. They had to set rules to limit the number of adults. The adults were more interested than the youth. I'm not talking about 21 yo's, I'm talking about the parents of the crews and the advisors. I'll never forget that
  21. thrifty

    Privacy of Health Forms

    This isn't your question but I thought I would share this. Our CC does not destroy any of the forms when they are outdated. She hand delivers those forms back to the parents. It may seem like a small detail, any of these forms could be photocopied or the details could be written down but I think it shows responsibility and accountability for the details entrusted to her. Maybe the parents care about the paperwork, maybe they don't, but they gave it to her and she gives it back so they can dispose of it instead of wondering or assuming that she did.
  22. The pack didn't do much of anything in the past. Someone finally decided to do the arrow similar to Eagle87's pic above without the plaque. Its simple, cheap and we just used various bits and electrical tape. Presenting the arrow and describing what the individual colors represented added some flair so family members understood what it all meant. My son is a 14yo Life scout and his arrow still hangs in his room. I would assume that eventually that arrow will be delegated to a cardboard box in the basement until he's an adult and wants to see it again. Personally, I think its important to keep in mind that a gift of some sort will mean something different to each scout and family. I think its safe to assume that many of the webelow arrows have unfortunately been tossed in the trash. Others will cherish them forever. I've witnessed Eagle Scouts purge almost everything scout related that they owned (except patches, never patches) as if they had just quit a job. So I would say any gift should be of moderate value. The troop provides a necker and book upon crossing over.
  23. thrifty

    Tent fire buckets

    Never heard of the fire buckets. Our tents have a laminated sheet in each tent identifying that there are no fires in tents. If you want buckets, try asking Firehouse Subs if you have one near you. Their pickles come in red buckets and they sell them cheap after emptying. Individual stores have been known to donate the buckets upon request. Otherwise the $2 goes towards helping firemen. https://www.firehousesubs.com/ The buckets have print on them but you could easily paint WATER or SAND over the print if you wanted.
  24. How much drama could there be if everyone was onboard with the decision? Of course there would be drama with the objectors but it also lets everyone know where the CO and/or troop leadership stands on any future changes. Backdoor meetings and whispers between leaders certainly doesn't build respect or trust.
  25. I don't disagree but many COs don't have any involvement with the packs or troops other than providing meeting space. It wasn't our CO that wanted a girl troop, it was the leaders with daughters that wanted the girl troop and asked for one. Every leader and committee member in our troop has a child in the troop. Some adult leaders actively petitioned for the girl troop and their voices were heard. Being involved with committee meetings would have been the only opportunity for anti-girl parents to voice their opinions. If parents are not actively involved in the troop, decisions will be made by the parents that are. Our troop always encourages anyone to attend the committee meetings but sadly few do.