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About swilliams

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    Troop Committee, Crew Associate Advisor

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    Central NJ

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  1. Combined with the requirement now that all adults who attend scout events have to be registered... yeah that's great!! Our Troop wants and needs parents to be involved but can't afford it, and if you ask for them to volunteer then turn around and tell them they have to pay for it, that's not going to go over well. At all. We're in a position with the Crew already where only ONE of the five consistently involved adults has a kid in the program, and that kid graduates this year. I suspect the decision will be made to fold the crew.
  2. My boys like the old-ish uniforms. Not the old canvas pants and cotton shirts, and not the stuff they started offering when the branding switched - where the shirt just says 'BSA'. The shirt is some sort of synthetic or synthetic blend, as are the pants, but there isn't any lycra or spandex in them. Two gripes are that the pants are ill-fitting (but that has always been the case, regardless of version) and they tear/wear a little too easily. When everything changed the last time, I scooped up two shirts and a pair of pants. I did end up having to buy a second pair of pants off eBay.
  3. Take baby steps wherever you can. I'm not Scoutmaster, nor even an Assistant Scoutmaster. Our SM, like yours, expects the SPL to lead the entire Troop, and the scout who was doing so just quit last Tuesday. It's too much to expect one scout to rein in 30-35 younger ones. Very, very few of our older scouts will come to the weekly meetings anymore because it's "babysitting" (with all scouts in one big, unruly group). So here's an example of a baby step. I create and run an orienteering event every year. I didn't even ask permission, I just did it and invited whomever wanted to come.
  4. Isn't Raccoon Ridge the best spot? When it's just my daughter and I we stealth camp in a little grassy spot just south of where the ridge opens up to the views. I use AllTrails, plus I have paper maps of the AT from Swatara Gap in PA all the way through the Berkshires. That link is very cool, though. Going to take a closer look at it after dinner.
  5. Thank you! That's sort of why I was asking. Our older scouts want to do an AT backpacking trip in two weeks. Delaware Water Gap to at least Camp NoBeBoSco but more likely to Crater Lake. 3.6 miles Friday evening to the Backpacker campsite. 9.1 the second day. 2.0 Sunday morning. Worried that might be too much for our Webelos who are crossing over tonight and have never backpacked. Younger son suggested making it "high adventure" and limiting it to scouts 14 and older. I'm a little surprised younger son wants to go. My boys went to Philmont last summer. The scouts narrowly vote
  6. Hmmmm..... Orienteering this year will be in two weeks. Now you've got me thinking. Speaking of, I need to stop messing around and go finish the new/revised map. This will be the third year, and we've done two different courses. I think too soon to bring back the course from year before last. Anyway, the ribbons do look kind of neat, but they definitely remind me of my dad's military uniform. As a female who wasn't involved in scouting until my boys joined, and who wasn't an official uniformed leader until a few years ago, I have no knots. I did receive a same-sized patch tha
  7. Along these same lines, is backpacking considered high adventure? Or can it be? If it's not high adventure in and of itself, are there added components that would place it in that category?
  8. Thank you, @InquisitiveScouter and @RememberSchiff for this! Son created an account and posted here. Let him know if the link should be posted in a different spot. I guess I need to be careful now what I say, since he'll be able to read this forum. 🤣
  9. Approval to fundraise came last night. Son has swimming today and tomorrow (Meet of Champions!!) but will get the GoFundMe up and running Sunday. The scout who did the other Eagle project there gave my son the name of a local lumber yard that will give him a break on the price of the 4X4s, and he found out the guy who owns NJ Gravel and Sand (where he sourced the rock and crushed oyster shell) is an Eagle Scout. He's giving my son a good price on the materials. Delivery will be a beast, but no break there. Diesel fuel is the price it is. Swimming is over after this weekend, so that g
  10. Ugh. He confused which signatures are needed. Only beneficiary and unit leader before sending fundraising to Council. Another edit: he's right. He was looking at the Council website which says (in part) If the “public” is to be asked to assist with funding the project (e. outside of the Unit, chartering organization, beneficiary or Scout’s family), there MUST be a Fundraising Application completed. If it is anticipated that there will be Fundraising in excess of $2500, the District Advancement Chair must sign your Fundraising Application in the Authorized Council Approval sect
  11. After talking to many someones on the phone - just about everyone we know that has any connection at all to scouting - an exec from the Venture Crew district sent an email that convinced our District Advancement Chair to approve the swim club as a beneficiary. Son's project was approved, but the DAC didn't sign the fundraising application page. Son has already sent an email with several questions to his Eagle Coach, but if you all don't mind continuing to offer up advice I'd like to pose the same questions here that son sent. Guide to Advancement says the scout should not start fundrais
  12. The Eagle Project has been “escalated to Council” by the Council Advancement Chair, despite the other scout’s project having been done in the same location, despite the “business” making space for kids from a special needs camp to use the facility, and despite our Troop being given permission to do free swim tests at the location. Two Advancement Chairs have now looked at it and can’t make a decision, but are giving it to?… God only knows who, but if they were going to say yes, it seems they would have done it already. You know what? To those saying “Your son needs to take care of t
  13. Back to Camping Merit Badge…. younger son connected in Scoutbook to the fourth counselor, scanned and sent his workbook. Haven’t heard anything - not even acknowledgement that it was received. At this point, I’m just going to sign up to be a merit badge counselor. I’m going to request hiking, camping, and textiles.
  14. His plan was to send the GoFundMe to pool members. He's building a bocce ball court, and his estimated cost is $2,962. I wish we were in a position to just pay for it, but we're not. It's making me a little crazy that our unit/district/council can't just follow what is set by National. It leads to so much confusion. Sometimes I feel like the adults around here like to stick their fingers in the pie a little too much, even as they say "scout led" with their mouths full of pie. Maybe it's fine that younger son wants to quit. Less headache all around.
  15. The Eagle Coach says he emailed it to the District Advancement Chair. The DAC says he never got it. And here's the thing I wanted to FIGHT but my son asked me not to. Our District WILL NOT allow a scout to submit the proposal paperwork directly on their own. For fundraising, Council says under $2,500 you only need approval from the Unit/CC. Between $2,500 and $10,000 you need District Approval (DAC and whatever committee is reviewing. Over that, and you need Council approval. I have no idea if or whether the fundraising differs from National guidelines. I know the approval proce
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