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Everything posted by mrkstvns

  1. That sure does sound astoundingly stupid, doesn't it? Yet, I can see how someone comes away with that interpretation. I'm looking at the GSSS and I see numerous references to cub scout packs doing "overnight camping" (but without a clear definition of that term). Further down, a distrinction is drawn for Scouts BSA units, which do "weekend camping". See: https://www.scouting.org/health-and-safety/gss/gss03/ Sigh. Sounds like another needless controversy brewing....
  2. Former scouts and scouters with fond memories of camping at El Rancho Cima will be somewhat pleased to learn that 533 acres of the former BSA summer camp might be preserved as a public park (out of a total original area of over 2,000 acres). It's not the whole camp, but it sounds like it includes the former River Camp and many of the camp's facilities. Story is here: https://www.kvue.com/article/news/local/plans-to-turn-wimberley-boy-scout-property-into-public-park/269-9621162b-ed9f-49d2-bfdd-cccb16dc2752
  3. In our area it's referred to as "World of Webelos". Same idea though...
  4. Maybe. But probably not. It's not straightforward. There are a lot of issues around gathering firewood that we're becoming more aware of and that are becoming increasingly important as we face ever-diminishing open lands. While we might view dead trees or downed wood as fuel ready for gathering, it is also a food source to some species and a habitat for others (think birds picking up twigs to build nests, beavers using branches and logs to build their dams, etc.) Bugs like termites might directly consume wood, and they, in turn, become food for birds or other animals. There can b
  5. In the 70s too. I don't believe our troop even OWNED a propane stove. Gathering wood and building a fire was always the first thing we had to do in the morning. I remember one campout we went on where overnight temperatures had gone below 0. We woke up and our dish soap had frozen solid so we had to thaw that out before we could even soap our pots to fix breakfast!
  6. I get depressed when I hear of councils closing down camps, so it makes me particularly happy to know that Sam Houston Area Council is opening a brand-new, state-of-the-art summer camp next year. The camp is located on the edge of the Sam Houston National Forest, so it will, hopefully, retain its rustic character for generations of scouts to come. The camp is accepting reservations for summer 2020, but already, many sessions are full (everybody wants to experience the new camp smell). I have a feeling this will quickly become the most popular scout camp in Texas. Info about Camp Strake i
  7. Another good option for you might be the Great Lakes Sailing Adventure offered by Michigan Crossroads Council. Sail the Great Lakes on a 52-foot twin-masted sailing vessel? Yeahhh, that sounds pretty awesome! Looks like they not only allow 13-year olds, but the scout doesn't have to turn 13 until September 1 (which means 12 year olds turning 13 at the end of the summer). (At least that's how I interpret it...) Info: https://scoutingevent.com/attachment/BSA272/document_15205557840_1999.pdf
  8. Sounds like you're talking about those Pillsbury croissant rolls (or biscuits). If that's what you're cooking, do you ever have a problem with the tube expanding (and maybe even exploding all over the place)??
  9. Hmm. Had to Google that to see if I could find the article y'all are talking about. I assume it's this one: https://www.outsideonline.com/1919191/thrifty-clean-and-brave I don't really see anything too radical going on here, though there's definitely some tales of hi jinx and "boys will be boys". I wouldn't be troubled by the Sea Base guy if he'd just been caught with the reefer, but LSD isn't a substance I want to just dismiss with a wink towards youthful exuberance. If he's into that stuff, I really don't want him working where I send my kids.
  10. You are correct. ...and 13 does seem too young given their program. From the Sea Base eligibility guidelines: Participants must be 13 years of age prior to their arrival at Sea Base. Participants who would turn 13 during their adventure are not eligible to participate. AGE REQUIREMENTS CANNOT BE RELAXED.
  11. We should have a contest: Pale Horse can have a group of kids standing outside a shopping center selling $20 bags of popcorn and I'll have a group of kids right next to 'em selling $1 meat sticks. Whoever makes the most money gets to buy the nicest tents for their troop.
  12. Very few of our campouts are less than 2.5 hour drive (mainly because the campsites that are closest to the city are the lamest --- paved, crowded, overbooked, etc.) We'll occasionally do up to 4 hours, but that's really got to be an exceptional camp. Totally understand your reluctance about the 2 night campout. It's always more fun to go for the 3-night campout, but Columbus Day weekend would require some quick planning since it's almost here.
  13. Yes, Eagle, but those BSA fundraisers you cited are for ADULTS, not the scouts. Dodgeball is simply much too fun for children.
  14. I've always liked the Country Meats fundraiser simply because it's such a small ask (just $1 per snack), which makes it astoundingly easy for the kids to sell. (Nobody doesn't have a buck in change lying around....) Scouters who haven't heard about Country Meats can find out more about how it works on the company's web site: https://www.countrymeats.com/
  15. How about an award to scouts who can catch and remove invasive species? If you check with your local parks department or fish & wildlife department, you might find that there are some surprising invasive species in your local lakes and streams. Last year, our troop did a fishing activity as part of working on Nature merit badge. The park sent out an angling instructor who showed the boys pictures of the kinds of fish found in the lake we were fishing. He also told the boys that fishermen had recently pulled out some tilapia and armored catfish --- neither of which are native to
  16. Florida police arrested a 23-year old staff member of BSA's Florida Sea Base. They said he had marijuana and LSD in his car. Story... https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/florida-keys/article235891442.html
  17. Scouts in Montana are working to fix up a local historic building... https://billingsgazette.com/news/local/boy-scout-service-project-helps-old-mayor-s-home-get/article_ca4b059c-9951-501c-803b-cd330092daf1.html
  18. Thanks, John! There's some good stuff there. I looked through the section for SM/ASM and was pleased to see so many useful videos about Pioneering (IMHO, this is a skill set that a lot of us aren't particularly good at, but that can be a lot of fun to do as a campout theme / weekend activity).
  19. At most HA camps, the requirement is age 14+ (or 13 and completed 8th grade). Rocky Mountain High Adventure Base in Colorado is a year younger. From their leader's guide: All youth participants must be 13 years old by January 1, or have completed the seventh grade before attending camp. All participants must be registered members of the Boy Scouts of America. It is the responsibility of the crew leader to ensure that all qualifications are met.
  20. Most people have noticed that even the thinnest, cheapest basic cotton T-shirt provides pretty good protection against serious sunburns. (Seriously! When is the last time your chest was burned while wearing a shirt....any shirt?) What might surprise people is that those light cotton T-shirts have a rating of only about 4-5 UPV, and even heavier cotton fabrics, don't go much over 10 UPV. The acid test though isn't whether my skin turns red today, but whether I'm able to dodge a skin cancer bullet 20 years from now....with that perspective in mind, I will continue looking for shirts l
  21. Staying warm in the tent....Hmmm. Not sure I have a "game" in mind, but I love being out in the snow on a beautiful winter day, and so I do have a few tips: * Remember to dress in layers when going out: wicking base layer, breathable insulation layer, waterproof/windproof outer shell but in the tent, remember that wicking is still important if you're too hot/sweating, and you really want adequate insulation (fleece and down feel warmest) * Pull clothes, hat, jacket into the sleeping bag a half hour or so before you get dressed and it won't feel like such a cold shock * Pack
  22. First Lady Melania Trump went rafting on Wyoming's Snake River with Boy Scouts. Story: https://apnews.com/60d51cc1785f462eaf590fb13134ce64
  23. Perhaps grace is more common in those units chartered by a church or temple. Grace is definitely said in my son's troop (chartered by a catholic church), and the boys just do it as a matter of routine. When I was growing up though, my troop was chartered by the school's PTA. We didn't say grace unless an adult "reminded" us...
  24. Over the past several years, my focus in the troop has been to work with newly bridged scouts to help them master basic scouting skills and work towards their First Class rank. The first couple months focus on things that scouts need to complete their Scout rank, and that includes talking about bullying and cyberbullying (as part of Scout requirement 6). We do this as a group discussion, involving parents whenever possible (despite our best efforts, some parents still just want to drop off their kid and come back a couple hours later to pick him up). Every new scout knows about bullying
  25. According to the scoutpatchcollectors web site, the most expensive scout patch ever sold was a 1947 jambo patch that went for a whopping $71,000. Hmmm. That would buy an awful lot of tent stakes... http://scoutpatchcollectors.com/12/most-expensive-scout-patch-history.html
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