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SteveMM last won the day on September 25

SteveMM had the most liked content!

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About SteveMM

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    A former Scout whose son is a current Scout.

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  1. SteveMM

    How much water?

    I was starting to say it should be higher than 30 gallons, but I was thinking more of the first example Treflienne gave, and not the second. They say a person needs to drink two liters of water each day, and you may absolutely go through that if you're doing hiking or other exercise during your trip. Each gallon has a bit less than two liters, and I would err on the high side to be safe, so maybe 17 gallons for drinking. That leaves 13 gallons for cooking and cleaning, and as mentioned above, what kind of cooking and cleaning you're doing will determine whether that's enough.
  2. SteveMM

    Limit for Cub Scout nights of camping

    I'm no expert, but I have heard that it's recommended that Cub Scouts only camp out for one or two nights, but I'm not sure it's a rule.
  3. Well this thread has strayed pretty far from my original post.
  4. I just received a follow up email: ------------ In October 2019, the National Council of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) sent an email titled “ACTION REQUIRED Background Check Disclosures and Authorization” to every Scouting Volunteer nationwide. Here is some key information that you need to know about this email: •This is a legitimate email from the BSA. •The BSA needs all adult volunteers to print the signature page in that email (titled “Additional Disclosures & Background Check Authorization”) and sign it. •The Heart of Virginia Council needs unit leaders to collect these signed forms from all unit adult volunteers and turn them in with the unit recharter, no later than December 31, 2019. •Unit Volunteers - Please do not turn in your forms to the council office. Give these forms to your unit leader for submission with the recharter paperwork. •District Volunteers including District Committee Member, Commissioners, and Merit Badge Counselors need to turn their signed form in to their District Executive prior to Dec. 31. •Council Volunteers including Board Members and Council Members-at-large need to turn their signed form in to Ellen Milano at the Scout Service Center by Dec. 31. •The Boy Scouts of America is committed first and foremost to keeping youth safe. Part of that commitment includes continually updating our youth protection policies to help ensure we are always on the forefront of youth safety. •One of the BSA’s many barriers to abuse is a mandatory criminal background check during the adult volunteer application process. The BSA will now perform periodic rechecks of criminal backgrounds to support the continued safety of youth in our programs. •Yes, when you registered to be an adult volunteer, you signed a similar criminal background check approval at that time. However, technical limitations and changes in the law over the last five years prevent us from using existing authorizations from older applications. •The BSA needs this form to conduct periodic criminal background checks and for no other reason •The BSA will not conduct credit or traffic checks on Scouting Volunteers •Adults who do not turn in a signed background check authorization form will not be able to continue serving as a volunteer with the BSA.
  5. I received the email on Monday, which had a link to follow for the form. Here it is: https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/se-packet/2019-09-30/Additional-Disclosures-And-Background-Check-Authorization-NOT-CALIFORNIA.pdf
  6. SteveMM

    Country Meats

    Ditto to everything said already. Our troop did Country Meats as a fundraiser for Philmont. In many cases, the Scouts didn't have to look far for a buyer, since their fathers just kept buying them at Scout meetings!
  7. My son's ECoH was on Friday, and he's now officially an Eagle! I understand that he officially became an Eagle the minute national rubber-stamped his forms, but it doesn't seem real until the patch is on the uniform. He said it seemed rather surreal standing up there having the kerchief put around his neck and the medal pinned on, but pretty quickly it just seemed normal. We're incredibly proud of him, needless to say. I attached a picture below that I just love. We had a slideshow running the entire time, which featured my son's moments in Scouting. Our friend caught a picture of him standing on the stage with his Eagle, and on the slideshow was a picture of him trying on his Cub Scout uniform for the first time.
  8. I was looking through my father's old Boy Scouts "Handbook for Boys" the other day. It's from the 1949 printing, and I figure he got the book not long after that, as he turned 10 in 1950. I was very surprised to see that there were advertisements in it! I saw ads from Goodyear, more than one shoe/boot manufacturer, a knife company, Coca-Cola, and others. I've attached a few pics. I personally wouldn't mind seeing ads in the modern Scout book, as long as they were relevant to the outdoors or the program and not for video games. Thoughts?
  9. It did, actually. Attending the meeting was on the list of pre-requisites, and my son did it before camp. However, while going through the merit badge class, the instructor just showed the video and counted that as fulfilling the requirement. It was hard to believe, but giving Scouts shortcuts happens far too often.
  10. My son took Citizenship in the Community at summer camp, and ... sadly ... they "fulfilled" this requirement by showing the boys a video of a town hall meeting. One of the prerequisites was to do the public meeting visit in advance, so before camp my son and I attended a county school board meeting with him in full Class A uniform. A lot of the boys in the merit badge class at summer camp didn't do that pre-req, but were signed off after watching the video. I was pretty irritated about it. Watching a video is NOT the same as taking the time to go to the meeting and sit through all of the discussion. Not only is it lazy to just watch the video, going to a meeting in YOUR community is much more meaningful because the discussion will be about local issues.
  11. SteveMM

    Completed MB?

    I doubt many people will agree with me, but if this is an isolated incident I think you award the merit badge to the Scout. This sort of thing happened to my son with the cooking merit badge at summer camp. The counselor was very slack about requirements, and it was clear that he and another Scout from our troop only sort of completed some of the requirements. Our advancement chair considered it, and said that since he had a signed blue card (i.e. not a partial) there was no reason for my son to re-take the merit badge. Over time, he's completed the missing requirements over and over, so I'm okay with it I suppose. One thing I will say is that the troop pitched a fit about it to council, and that counselor never taught that merit badge again.
  12. I have a son who is about to have his Eagle CoH and a 17-year-old daughter who is trying to squeeze in her Gold Award before she ages out of GSA. I'm a committee member in my son's troop and my wife is a troop leader in the Girl Scouts troop. When the Boy Scouts announced they were letting girls join, my son and I kind of rolled our eyes a bit, but shrugged it off. My daughter and wife, meanwhile, were furious. I mentioned that some girls want to do "Boy Scouts stuff" like camping and backpacking. My wife said that Girl Scouts can do that too. While that's absolutely true, I think my daughter has camped out maybe three or four times in her entire scouting career, and all of them were closer to backyard campouts than high adventure. All of that aside, what it comes down to is that Girl Scouts and their troops have a LOT more leeway to do things "their own way" than Boy Scout Troops. What has happened, though, is that very few of them seem to do the kind of hiking and camping that is typical of Boy Scouting. While I'm not sure I 100% believe Scouts BSA when it said there was a groundswell of support for girls to join up, I do think there were a fairly decent number who wanted to, as we've seen from female Scouts BSA troops forming all over the country. I guess what I'm saying is that the Girl Scouts *could* have filled the needs of girls who want to do high adventure stuff ... it just appears they didn't.
  13. SteveMM

    SM dividing the troop in need of opinion

    This is a very interesting topic, because I can see in the original post a little bit of what might be happening in our troop. It started this year. The older boys, the SM, and both ASMs went to Philmont, while the remaining Scouts went to a standard summer camp with a very dedicated committee member. I looked at it as a special circumstance because obviously Philmont is a fantastic experience for the boys who get to go. However, at the very next meeting after camp and the trek, a suggestion for doing a high adventure camp at Summit Bechtel next summer was brought up by the SM's son and an ASM's son. It was VERY clear that they'd been planning this for some time, and I wonder how much the SM and ASM were involved. I raised my hand and asked where the first and second year Scouts would be going, and was told, "oh, well there's a regular camp ... they can go to there." I don't love this idea of splintering a troop's summer camp every year, although I do understand the older boys (of which my son is one) wanting to do older boy stuff. I'd sooner it was maybe an every-other-year thing. I'm a huge supporter of the traditional Boy Scout summer camp experience, and I think that experience is better for the younger Scouts when they've got some older Scouts around.
  14. SteveMM

    Philmont Gear Review

    You're right. I'm actually remembering now that my son THOUGHT they'd split the tent parts up, but they actually did what you said -- one would carry the tent while the other carried the food.