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Personally, I'd rather see a scout in half unifrom who has his shirt tucked in and his necker neat, and learning and having a great time - over scouts who are in full uniform who's shirts are not tucked in, bored, not paying attention, etc.



Anybody can dress up in a uniform as mentioned before: band, ball player, police officer, McDonalds employee, inmate, lawyer, or congressman.


But like a book, the outside has nothing to do with the inside. The uniform doesn't make the band play better, the suit doesn't make the lawyer a better e litigator, and a cold blooded murderer and a fool of unlucky circumstance have the same prison garb on.



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is the full dress class A uniform even practical? I would have a miserable time wearing it while hiking x-country; I'd be too worried about the briars and burrs tearing and ripping off the patches and pins to really enjoy myself.

So, to overcome this, the Army issues two uniforms - one dressup for ceremonies, and one utility for when there's work to be done. Of course, this would be overkill for children.

A much better uniform, methinks, would be similar to what Nathaniel wore in the movie the Last of the Mohicans

Not knowing any better, on my first trip to the Boundary Waters, I wore cutoff jeans, dark blue tee, sneakers without socks, straw cowperson hat. I had a great time

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So when is it correct to wear a suit? I thought our "class A's" were our "field uniform", but I see the Council Executive and other office people wearing their class A's all the time, in the office, at award banquets. What happened to that blue blazer suit? Is it ever appropriate to wear a "civilian" suit to a Scout function if one is an adult Scouter?

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Bart --


I think that depends on what has been set for the dress of the event. Our district Golden Eagle dinners are suit and tie -- as is the annual Council Banquet. (The Eagle Scouts usually attend in uniform.)


But personally, if I saw an SE or DE at a Unit, or a Camporee, RT, etc., I'd expect to see them in Scout uniform.

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I am a firm believer that when you are correctly dressed a. the world treats you better and b. you treat yourself better.


I agree with the observation that no other child activity makes the uniform optional


I agree that the BSA uniform IS expensive especially in light of the rapid growth of some children (I have 3 sons, I REALLY understand this)


I know the woes of buying clothes and finding knee holes but I would challenge ANY uniform cop to have a problem with well patched pants using as close a color cloth as possible. Remember, as scout IS thrifty!


I most definitely beleive there are events when a scout uniform is NOT the right clothing for the event.



But, everybody had a full uniform when I was a scout, cost was not an issue the pack and troop both had fundraisers to make sure all the boys went on the trips and had what they needed to be a scout. Books, uniforms, whatever... We all worked together! Unifroms were passed from scout to scout and we all looked sharp. We were PROUD of being ascouts and more importantly we took pride in our apperarance in or out of uniform...


Fast forward a few too many years to the Jamboree last July, I took my eldest son, a Bear Cub, down for a day trip (long day trip from Jersey;) and as we were walking he learned the value of a full uniform. Literally every 10 minutes a Scout or a leader was giving him a nice comment or a random patch because he was in full uniform. I now have a boy who has already planned out how to make first class in time to go to the next Jamboree. The patches were nothing special, a couple CSP's a klondike patch maybe a camporee patch. But I know he will have them the rest of his life, all because the kindness of those scouts who positively reinforced the importance of a full uniform.


I do worry that the uniform is a cash grab by BSA, then I realize they do have to subsidize the staff and legal expenses and such. (Like everyone I believe there are efficiencies to be had on Nationals part but that is a different matter) I most definitely agree the quality of pants at REI and other outfitters are a better.


As to the uniform, I think it is more suited, by far, to the outdoors then the previous generation was. The pants as observed are an epic win over the previous version and the suplex is a nice option. The shirt? I despise the technology pocket for many reasons (it seemingly undermines many units no electronics rule, sewing patches on it is less then fun, it does not fit my phone properly...) but it works. There is room for improvement but it is a better outdoor uniform then the one I wore outdoors as a boy. When worn with a CSP, unit numerals, POR and rank it does not seem at all to me, to be ridiculous outdoor clothes.






The bottom line is the units that have good uniformed leaders and scouts in our council seem to excel. And consistently I find they all have a uniform exchange of some sort so the cost is less of an issue. I also discovered many of these units are doing the same thing my unit does. We tell EVERYONE when we find a great deal.


For Example:

Ladies Centenial shirts for FIVE DOLLARS



Ladies yellow Cub Leader Blouses FIVE DOLLARS




And the most hard to encourage uniform item

Cub Scout pants FIVE DOLLARS



Now, tell me how jeans are cheaper then $5.00 cub scout pants?



I picked up a few pairs of the centenial switchback pants for $15.00 last year. The deals are there if you care enough to look.


ALL that said (sorry for being long winded) I just do not think cost is a valid arguement about not being uniformed... And of course their are absolutely instances where your exchange is out of a scouts size, it happens, you deal with it until you can find something.





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I just looked at the Canadian Uniforms. For the older levels, I have to say I do NOT like them, it looks like casual day at the offices of IBM


They opted for a left arm pocket which I am not a fan of (granted it does not look like they had the stupidity to put patches on it which is my main source of dislike, the Canadian flag is there and I am presuming pre-sewn, good design!)


Their patches are vastly different then ours, simple and clean and smaller. I have to say I am conflicted, I think they look good but the patch trader in me squirms a little at it. Overall a nice way to go though


The Cub Scout shirts being a pullover is an awesome idea! And the bucket hat for the Beaver level is something they should have available to all of their scouts. Of course I would LOVE to see those here too!


Is it just me? I just think neckerchiefs look dorky with a t-shirt, sweat shirt or polo shirt...



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Adam --


You need to spend more time with Scouts on an International level ... you go anywhere in Europe and you will see Scouts in jeans and some random tee, but they all have their neckers on! (Normally tied in a friendship knot -- woggles are rarely seen.)




How to tie a Friendship Knot: http://goo.gl/DGhKi

(From the UK Girl Guides)


And yes, their patch system is MUCH simpler than ours. The thing that I am seeing is a great reception of the new uniforms by the youth!


(And a red shirt for Adults and Rovers makes a lot of sense for a Canadian organization - and shows some real patriotism.)

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For Boy Scouts we (Scouters) signed up to deliver the program by using the eight methods. Why not honor our commitment?


My only complaint about the uniform is that it seems to change almost every other year!

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UCEagle72 - I get what your saying, I know it is out there, but much like my grandparents hated people wearing jeans if they were not actively working (They were always "dressed up") I just cannot dig the neckerchief over plain clothes, I admit I am a fossil.


I like their clean patches better then the 2010 rank patches national put out last year. I thought the 1910/2010 thing was ridiculous. Then I saw the commissioner patches and really knew they went overboard...


I have always been a fan of the friendship knot, but have carved to many of my own woggles to abandon them.

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As a youth, I was in full uniform. The troop had no real policy on uniforms. At Troop meeting and indoor events you where in uniform. Scout camp and camporees you where in uniforms. There was peer pressure to be in uniform. There were about 8 troops in the school district.


As an adult, I am active with a different troop. They believe in just the shirt. There are 2 troops in the school district. When I am asked to help with the troop I am in uniform. Mind you I am wearing shorts and a shirt.




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Whatever the uniform is or becomes, we need to wear it properly. if it goes the way of the UnderArmour experiement, i.e. rank t-shirts, I will not like it, but I will wear it. If we go the way of Europe, i.e. just the neckers, as long as the neckers are the proper size, I will not be happy, but I will support it. I WILL NOT WEAR A NECKER WITHOUT A SHIRT :) (Caps for joking, look at the 1995 WSJ stamp and you'll see what I mean).


As for the field uniform not being practical, hear are my thoughts.


1) pants are AWESOME with the cargo pockets. They are comfortable and they work. Wish the sizing was correct. I not only wear them in scouting functions, but occasional outside of scouting.


2) Socks are better geared to hiking than the old ones. Glas they also make the heavier hiking socks that are allowed with the uniform, although I wish the socks were not stamped on the foot with BSA that comes off after a few washes. Glad they brought back knee socks.


3)The nylon version is field usable, just get rid of the smokes pocket. Do I wish the new shirt was more like the old Activity shirt or similar, not identical too, the Venturing shirt, but that's OK. I've worn it in the field before and had no problems. Eventually I will get a stripped down version to wear in the field all the time.


4) I kow the uniform is field usable not only from my experience, but form one Arrowman I saw last weekend. He lead his group of candidates in his field uniform the entire weekend.

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Eagle92, you're correct that one can get by in the field with the uniform shirt, esp. in decent weather. The material is a better choice than the old poly/cotton ones.


On the other hand, just because you can survive a weekend in it, does not mean it is a great option. Based solely on functionality (and not objections to design, of which there are several), the current uniform shirt is still a long ways from fabulous, all the more so in lousy weather (cold, especially).





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"1995 WSJ stamp" The 1995 Wall Street Journal stamp? Where might I see this at?


Anyway, I'm not really a fan of neckerchiefs. As a scarf to keep your neck warm, ok. As a tie under the collar, ok. As this extra thing that lays outside your collar, it just seems a little strange, especially for Canada -- if you're outside during the winter, then you're going to need to wear a second thing around your neck to keep cold drafts from blowing down your open neck shirt collar (I'm presuming that if Boy Scouts are outside during the winter then they'll be too active, too warm, to be wearing a coat). If it is so bitterly cold that you have to wear a coat anyway, well, that's when you "really" want a scarf. I keep a wool scarf and a knit cap in my front two coat pockets, just in case. I don't use them that often, but when I'm outside at night and the temperature's dropping below freezing with a wind chill on top of that, I'm glad to have them. The weather can be erratic down here in the mountains of Southern CA -- tomorrow the temperature is supposed to rise to about 70 and fall back down to about 30 at night. Anyway, I'm not really a fan of a neckerchief unless I'm wearing it as a tie on a non-open shirt collar (and Scout shirts are open) or unless I'm wearing it like Baden Powell did, to keep my neck warm.


I do think we shouldn't follow Canada -- the Boy Scout uniform shirt is iconic, known the world over. When Libya started falling to pieces recently and Boy Scouts stepped in to direct traffic and handle other normal functions of local government, not all of them had uniforms, but most did and I think that made them far more recognizable than they otherwise would have been.

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Scroll all the way down to see what i am talking about for the 18th World Scout Jamboree in 1995



I must respectfully disagree, the necker has hundreds of uses, and that's why BP wore one, not just to keep him warm. remember he did serve in the tropics when wearing a necker. In summertime it can cool you, wet it and place around your neck. Protects from sun and cools. If it starts getting cold at nite, tighten it up like you said. It can also be used in first aid, signalling, carrying stuff shall I go on?


The problem with US neckers, and this sis slowly being resolved, is that they are nto the proper size to be useful. Now the newer ones are.

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