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Everything posted by mrkstvns

  1. Whenever you talk about things that affect how the logos and symbols are presented you risk running afoul of the marketing types. Most organizations do have pretty tight rules and guidelines about when things like this are and when they are not allowed. Even if nobody in BSA sees a problem with it, you might have a problem with the Masons, who would also need to buy in (and probably not at your local lodge level). Here is some info on BSA's branding standards, but you may want to dig deeper on uniform-specific issues: https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/310-0231.pdf https://scou
  2. BSA is now discovering what happens when you ignore obvious cyber security risks (like pushing kids to download 3rd party commercial apps to manage popcorn sales). Trails End got hacked and the media is reporting that exposed data includes personally identifiable info like kids' birthdays, full legal names, names of parents, addresses and more. The extent of the data breach has not yet been made public. If you are one of the scouters who let their kids use the popcorn sales app, keep an eye open for signs of identity theft, etc. No need to become a victim twice if you can avoid it..
  3. The crime wave continues. Thieves in Duncanville, Texas steal another Boy Scout trailer... http://www.wbap.com/2019/09/09/thief-steals-trailer-belonging-to-duncanville-boy-scout-troop/
  4. Interesting article. I followed the links in there to the FAQ and the Fund Raising Application. There, I had to pause at guideline #5... 5. If a commercial product is to be sold, will it be sold on its own merits and without reference to the needs of Scouting? All commercial products must sell on their own merits, not the benefit received by the Boy Scouts. The principle of value received is critical in choosing what to sell. Soooooo, you're telling me that popcorn is actually *WORTH* the ridiculously inflated prices shown in the Trails End catalog? If it weren't for the promi
  5. Yes. It is specifically allowed and no unit or district should be putting in place rules that state otherwise. To do so is to put up obstacles to the scouts advancement and is a disservice to the scouts. From the Guide to Advancement, rule "Approved counselors may work with and pass any member, including their own son, ward, or relative. Nevertheless, we often teach young people the importance of broadening horizons. Scouts meeting with counselors beyond their families and beyond even their own units are doing that. They will benefit from the perspectives of many “t
  6. The Internet Pledge I've used in teaching Cyber Chip is the one that's printed on the back of the cards you hand to scouts when they complete the requirements...
  7. It's good that BSA is doing something to introduce scouts to the myriad cyber risks that exist today....but I'm not convinced that the Netsmartz materials ever treated the topics as broadly or deeply as they should have. It's also bothered me that many of the Netsmartz materials appear outdated with few new videos that adequately explain the ever-involving risks of using social media, smart phones, downloading apps, etc. Scouters who want to do a good job talking to scouts (and parents) about cyber risks can educate themselves by looking at sites beyond Netsmartz. There are quite a few
  8. Yeah, I think that enlisting older scouts as the Outdoor Ethics Guide (new POR name) is a tough sell, although it really is the most mature scouts who are able to "own" that role and make it sing. (Most troops never fill that POR and many that do never train their OE Guide. VERY few troops have any adults who really understand OE either.) I think it may have been a Center for Outdoor Ethics guideline that suggested age 16+ for LNT training. I'm seeing councils nowadays opening up their LNT Trainer courses to youth 14+ (which I think is good, since the training costs $$$ and is a signifi
  9. Boy Scout travels to Ghana to distribute first aid kits... https://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/winnetka/ct-wtk-winnetka-boy-scouts-volunteer-in-ghana-tl-0822-20190903-vssxprosp5cjpj7x2aissyk2qe-story.html
  10. Could be. And that is exactly why they make good subjects for a community booth --- they are things that scouts DO and things that are fun and interesting. (Not so sure I'd do a 10x10 booth around rockets or boats, but if more space were available....
  11. Science is cool, and there are SOOOO many fun things you can do that bring science to life. Take a look through the NOVA program guidebook, or just read through the requirements for the Cub Scouting NOVA program: https://www.scouting.org/stem-nova-awards/awards/cub-scout/ In almost every award, I can see ideas for doing things that Cub-age kids would get into, and that could make for a very fun activity that would fit within a 10x10 booth. You could.... Do an animal tracking activity (maybe plaster casts?) Make a fog machine Make an erupting volcano model Bu
  12. I think a small, tasteful plaque is an excellent idea. It's a way to help keep scouting in the public eye and to let people know that scouting contributes to their local communities. (Not to mention a little ego-boo for the Eagle scout.)
  13. Scout builds beds for kids who have no beds... https://www.kens5.com/article/news/kids-who-make-sa-great-boy-scout-builds-beds-for-the-bed-less/273-8d49d3ec-9b05-48d1-a461-9c1949ed3c40
  14. I don't mean to be flippant, but if he's in a group setting, nobody will notice if he lip syncs or hums...
  15. Wow! I sure do wish the scouts in my troop could do Leatherwork MB with y'all!! Sounds to me like you're really doing it right --- finding meaningful projects and giving scouts enough time to actually appreciate and understand what they're doing.
  16. Thanks, Matt! As you can see, mathematics is not my strong point. STAY IN SCHOOL, kids!
  17. In my personal opinion, I would not recommend a flag bigger than 4x6' or a pole higher than 5 feet. The reason is simply one of practicality: how big can kids handle? If you go much bigger than 4x6, you're going to have flags being dragged on the ground when they carry the flags. There's been some talk lately about synthetic flags creating noxious fumes when it comes to burn them. Well, if you stick to cotton you can eliminate that problem. There's also been talk about the hypocrisy of buying American flags that are made in China. Well, it's not that hard to find good quality, Amer
  18. I'm kind of surprised to see so many folks embracing the idea of hammock camping. That's great because there are a lot of situations where the size/weight advantage can let you go further or deeper into the wilderness, and there are a lot of situations where hammock camping can help us be "conservation minded" by putting less impact on the environment (hence, more LNT friendly). But it's not always the case.... In many situations, hammock camping is actually a far BIGGER impact than tent camping. It just depends... So what does the experienced and responsible outdoorsman d
  19. What motivated Baden-Powell to start the boy scout movement? Was it purely an altruistic desire to see boys grow up with values, confidence, and integrity? Or could it have been a bit darker, reflecting his own shortcomings in battle and a yearning to recapture the innocence of his own youth? Here's one writer's venture into the rabbit hole of conjecture... https://daily.jstor.org/boy-scouts-and-the-phenomenon-of-boyification/
  20. It's always a good idea to practice a skill and make sure you can do it before it comes time to put it to the test. Work out the kinks before training other scouts. Do a dry run of an event...don't wait until it's too late to find out you're not prepared. Came across this interesting Scoutmaster Minuted on the retired scoutmaster web site.... Practice it First I recently saw a program on TV about President Harry Truman and one event stuck in my mind. When he first ran for office in the early 1920s - it was for something like County Board - some of his army buddies thought it wo
  21. Just thought I'd mention that in locations requiring bear-proof food containment operated by National Park Service or US Forest Service, the Ursack is not an approved container. If you're using an Ursack in the back country, you can still get fined for not securing your food --- not sure why since the Ursack does seem effective against bears...
  22. So do flour tortillas. The scouts then call 'em "pizzadillas"
  23. Are y'all still hanging bear bags? Or have you moved on to bear canisters? The canisters seem to me a better approach to keeping food and smellables safe from our ursine trail companions. https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/bear-resistant-canisters.html
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