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About scoutermomks

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  1. scoutermomks

    Retired Tiger Den Leader Knot needed

    Instead of searching eBay for just the patch try searching for uniform shirts that have patches on them. I've bought all but mine and my son's first uniforms from eBay and haven't paid more than $15 for any of them. All but one of the shirts I bought already had patches sewn on, although none of them were knots but I have seen lots of uniforms with knots on them.
  2. scoutermomks

    Looking for Ideas for Pack Meetings

    I was Cubmaster last year and used the Pack Meeting Plans from scouting.org for almost all of our pack meetings. They really do cover everything. Each plan has a gathering activity, opening ceremony, songs and/or skits, award ceremonies, and most of them give you some ideas for the program part too. We rotated through dens to split up responsibilities so that each den got a chance to do the gathering, opening, song or skit, and cleanup. The nice thing about using the meeting plans is that you don't have to do them in any special order. We used the August meeting plan in May because it fit in better with what we wanted to do that month (a "graduation" campfire). It also saved a lot of headaches when I had to unexpectedly miss a pack meeting because I was sick. My Assistant Cubmaster already knew which plan we were doing that month and all of the den leaders knew what they were covering.
  3. scoutermomks

    Same camp every year, more than one, or switch?

    We alternate going to the council camp one year and an out of council camp the next. In the past the scoutmaster always chose the out of council camp. Since I've recently taken over as scoutmaster I'm going to give the scouts a list of camps to choose from for next year. We're working on becoming boy led but I don't want to overwhelm them by saying "ok, pick any camp in the country for next year". I've done some research and picked 6 within a reasonable driving distance with a reasonable cost, I'll let them take it from there.
  4. scoutermomks

    Troop Recruiting

    I really like the idea of going into the elementary schools in the spring. Our council has started getting really into spring recruiting but they always focus on the Cubs and not so much the older scouts. I'll talk with my DE and see if we can get something special going for the 5th graders for April. I'm all for teaming up with the other troop that recruits from our closest middle school (we already team up with them for hikes and out of state camping trips) but that troop is actually worse off than we are. They also don't have a pack at their CO and they haven't had a crossover in several years. The only reason they still have a troop is because they get the random signups from recruiting at the school. I'd hate to take away the one or two boys a year that they get. The troop does have a website. I just checked and when I Google Boy Scouts in my town we're the first troop that comes up. I'm not sure if that's because Google knows that's the scout site I visit most often though. We haven't put pictures any new of the scouts on the website for a long time but that is something I can talk with the webmaster about. My son volunteered at a one day Cub Scout day camp and the district Pinewood Derby this year. I'm hoping to get more scouts back to volunteering for district events. We had several earn a district volunteer award last year but with all of the changes we had in the troop this year we weren't doing a good job of letting them know when the events were. Our district roundtable is coming up the first week of August. I'm going to talk to a couple of the Cubmasters for the packs that I know we've had crossovers from in the last few years and get their contact information so I can invite their Webelos to some of our troop activities. We have one scout from my old pack that has said he is interested in joining our troop so at least we've got some interest! He's already been to a couple of meetings and a camp out with us and he said he had a really good time. I'm hoping to get the rest of his den to join him on one of our campouts this fall. Thanks everyone for all the ideas!
  5. scoutermomks

    Troop Recruiting

    I have recently taken over as Scoutmaster of my son's troop. The troop is only 4 years old and our CO does not have a Cub Scout pack. In the past we've had boys join the troop as crossovers because they already knew some of the boys in the troop and/or our scoutmaster from various district and council events or because they were in the same pack at one time. For the past year my son has really been the only scout from our troop volunteering at any of the district or council events so our number just hasn't been out there for Cubs to see. We do currently have two den chiefs for the pack that my son was in, one with the Arrow of Light den and one with the Wolf den. That pack does have a troop associated with them but they've had a hard time getting any of those scouts to be den chiefs. I also just stepped down as Cubmaster of that pack and I don't want to seem like I'm too actively recruiting those Cubs because there has already been some hurt feelings over boys from that pack joining my current troop instead of the troop associated with the pack. Our former Scoutmaster decided to not do any active recruiting for this year so we had no crossovers. I don't want to repeat that next year. I've talked some with other leaders in my district about recruiting but they don't have a lot of ideas other than to go to the closest middle school. Another troop with the same issue as mine already does recruiting at the closest middle school. So, in a situation where a troop does not have a "feeder" pack (yes, I know that feeder packs are not a thing, but most of the parents and leaders of Cubs don't seem to know that they have other options besides the troop with the same number as their pack) how do we recruit new scouts that don't just happen to be the little brother of a boy already in the troop?
  6. scoutermomks

    What camps offer what activities

    I'm a little late to the conversation but I'm in a similar situation for next year's camp. We'll have about 5 older scouts who will want to do high adventure and the rest will need a traditional camp. Last year we went to Lewis and Clark in Yankton, SD. They have a traditional camp and also a canoe trek for older scouts. Others in my troop's acceptable driving area (we're in south central Kansas) that offer some type of optional high adventure water based activity for the older guys: Camp Arrowhead in Marshfield, MO; Camp Cedars in Cedar Bluffs, NE; Camp Rockefeller in Damascus, AR.
  7. scoutermomks

    Best tent for Scoutmaster

    Quivira Scout Ranch is my council's camp and no, they have never had tents or platforms, except for staff. Our troop went to Lewis and Clark in South Dakota last year and they didn't provide tents either. I think in the midwest it's hit and miss on camps that do provide tents. I've been looking into out of council camps for next summer and I'm finding that about half of them have tents and half don't. At QSR it's good to be in an enclosed sleeping area since there are tarantulas, snakes, ticks, and scorpions. And the campsites aren't all in areas where you could easily hang a hammock. Some have lots of trees but some don't. Any tent you bring you'll want to make sure you bring a ground cloth to put under it, some of the campsite are rocky and since there was just a wildfire there last month there could still be some stubbly vegetation in some sites. I know from experience that the stubble will poke right though the bottom of a tent.
  8. scoutermomks

    End of Year Ceremonies and Webelos

    blw2 - That is a good idea. I'll talk to the Webelos den leader and see if he will talk to the den about helping at the pack meeting. We only have 3 Webelos right now so it shouldn't be hard to give them each a chance to help out. Stosh - We are planning on doing s'mores and letting the boys run around and be boys, the ceremonies are just going to be short "cross overs" not the longer face painting ceremonies we use when they get their rank badge. In the past we've had boys (and leaders) that didn't understand that June 1 starts the next rank so the ceremonies will just be a visual reminder that now they can start working on the next book.
  9. scoutermomks

    End of Year Ceremonies and Webelos

    Our Pack is starting what I hope to be a new "end of the year" tradition. We're going to a local park for our May pack meeting and having a campfire with special "graduation" ceremonies for each rank and an induction ceremony for the boys we just signed up that will be next year's Tigers. I have the ceremonies all planned but now I'm realizing that I'll be completely leaving out our current Webelos. We had cross over for our 5th grade Webelos in February so we only have 4th grade Webelos now. I'd like to do something to recognize them as the new senior scouts in the pack but I'm not finding any ceremonies like that. I can certainly write my own ceremony but I'd like something to at least give me some idea about what to do to make them feel special too. This pack meeting will be my last hurrah as Cubmaster since I'll be taking over as Scoutmaster of my son's troop after summer camp so I'm probably obsessing a little too much about the ceremony being perfect. Anyone have any ideas?
  10. scoutermomks

    Parade Ideas

    Our pack walks in a parade every year. We don't do a float, not sure why, we just have the boys come in their uniform and bring a bag or two of candy with them. Last year we also told them to bring their Halloween buckets. The adults walking with the boys kept most of the candy and refilled the boys buckets as we walked, that way we didn't have the problem of them handing all of the candy out in the first block.
  11. scoutermomks

    Wolf Duty to God Requirement

    Thank you everyone for your comments and suggestions. I think I'll just let all of the parents know that requirement 12 should be done at home and leave it at that. If they have questions beyond that then I will use what some of you said about helping the family. This also helps me since my family falls into the "religious but not church going" category. And who knows, maybe once we start the discussion my son will be interested in going to church just to see what it's all about.
  12. scoutermomks

    Wolf Duty to God Requirement

    I should also mention that the church we meet at is not our CO. The local Lions Club is our CO but the building where they meet isn't big enough for our pack meetings. We just started meeting at the church so I thought doing a service project for them could be something to get us off on the right foot with the church and also help the scouts with their advancement.
  13. scoutermomks

    Wolf Duty to God Requirement

    I do intend to have the families do the requirement at home, I guess I should have specified that. I just know that a few boys (mine included) do not attend church and might have trouble coming up with something to satisfy that last part of the requirement. I don't think a scout should miss out on getting his rank badge because he can't complete one part of a requirement because his family chooses to not attend a church. I'm just looking for ideas to give the non-church families so they can complete the requirement at home.
  14. scoutermomks

    Wolf Duty to God Requirement

    I'm interested in getting some ideas for completing this requirement for boys whose families don't attend church. Requirements a-c are easily done at home but what about e - "Find out how you can help your church, synagogue, mosque, temple, or religious fellowship"? We do have our meetings at a church, could doing a service project for that church complete part e?
  15. scoutermomks

    Bicycle Rodeo

    Thanks for the suggestions! I do have the How-To Book at home so I'll check it out. I did talk to our Summer Program chair about doing an obstacle course and she seemed less than thrilled with that idea. I'm not sure if I wasn't getting my idea across clearly or if it's something the pack has never done before and she's afraid of change I also like the Stop on a Dime idea. I think most of our boys are more interested in going as fast as they can and don't think about stopping!