Jump to content

Pack Website?

Recommended Posts

Yet another post from the new CM in the room.


Looking for a way to get a Pack website out there for a few express purposes--online calendar; online document storage/distribution; perhaps even an email list service. First two are most important.


I had used myscoutlink.com at the Den level for a bit and it was great, but they changed to a fee structure and we have a budget of $0 so I had to drop it. I've looked at PBWorks, which is free, but I'm not sure if that really fits what I am looking for. The other site hosting options I have found are all fee-based.


I'm looking for two bits of advice:


1. What are the concerns/considerations/BSA requirements for Pack websites regarding privacy, YP, etc.? I recall reading this..."somewhere"...but I can't find it here or at scouting.org. Maybe I'm just missing it.


2. Any recommendations for low- or no-cost website options that will fit the bill?

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have heard that Scoutlander is liked, and is free.


See http://www.scoutlander.com/PublicSite/home.aspx


(We use SOAR, with Packmaster, but it's not free, just worth it for our pack of 70 or so).


I think there are some general guidelines, and you might find them through this unofficial site: http://www.escouting.net/.


Generally, keep private stuff private (names, addresses of Scouts and Families), behind "password protected" pages. There is more, and it likely will evolve.

Link to post
Share on other sites

We use scoutlander. It is free and meets our needs. It can be a little slow at times. Out troop is now using it too. We like that there is a public part of our site and also a private part to the site that only members can view. It has been a very valuable tool for us.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi I have set up a site thru smdscouts. It is low cost $12.00 a year if you use there server. It works well for me as I don't know how many people actually uses it? It has everything we need, might give a try? their site is,





Link to post
Share on other sites

No one has mentioned that this site, Scouter.com, offers free web hosting. It is simply hosting - someone has to design your site. I would expect most units have a parent or older scout who is capable of creating simple content. I don't know if it is compatible with Joomla or Wordpress. You cannot have your own URL if you use Scouter, but since the site is only directed toward members, they can simply save it as a favorite.

Link to post
Share on other sites

We don't have a website, but we have a blog (cubscoutpack29.blogspot.com). It doesn't "do" alot but I can post updates, schedules, pictures, etc. I can also tell everybody to "check the blog" instead of trying to run through details of every event we have coming up. You can link it to facebook, which is nice, and you can also allow comments. It works for us...and it's free. www.blogger.com

Link to post
Share on other sites

our troop uses google groups which is very much like a mass email set up... they are changing some of the things with it in that you will soon not be able to upload files. I use it as well for my old HS youth group.


my GS unit uses facebook - the one nice thing about it is that you can post photos.


the nice thing about both these sites is you can limit viewing to members of the group only,

Link to post
Share on other sites

I also use a Google website. I bought the domain name through GoDaddy, but host it on Google. The calendar is attached to an email address that we use for most Pack communications- this forwards to my email address, but can be set to forward to anyone in the Pack as the leadership changes over time.

Link to post
Share on other sites

We don't have a Pack website but ScoutManage can do double duty as both. It can do everything you want a website to do, and more.


You can do Pack, and den calendars, and have email reminders of events sent out to (only) the folks involved.


You can put special notices/reminders on the Pack's landing page.


You can have a question/answer blog for your DL, CM, and/or CC.


You can have links to needed websites.


You can store photos.


You can have permission slips, fliers, signup sheets, health forms, etc, available for downloading by the Pack families.


You can do targeted emails to specific people/groups (leaders/dens/everyone/etc).


You can keep track of payments for events, and attendance.


You can add individualized, Pack only, awards and recognitions (This is one of the big reasons we went with ScoutManage).


Rosters, and contact info lists.


Historical info.


And much more.


All for $44.95 per year. If you can afford to pay for the first year yourself, I am sure it will be worth it to the Pack to pick up the cost after that.

Link to post
Share on other sites

my pack uses facebook and shutterfly . . mainly for distributing pictures.


If you want to go with Google Sites, I'd recommend registering the domain name with Google, not Godaddy. with Google, for $10, you get individual email accounts (using gmail, but with your own 'site'.com)


I'm not familiar with the scout-centered services. It might be a good idea . . even if you are knowledgeable, you'll want to pass it off some day to someone who may have a tougher time maintaining a complex site.

Link to post
Share on other sites

While it is fee-based, our Pack uses SOAR and the bang-for-the-buck ($99 flat annually for all the bells & whistles) value is so great that I'm sure our committee would consider cuts in other areas of the budget before this!


We use it for the following:

- Announcements

- Pack Roster

- One central calendar with events that are filterable by den

- Weekly email newsletter

- Customizable email lists

- Event sign-up

- File/photo storage

- Den-specific pages

- New member recruitment


Having email lists is nice, but the weekly email newsletter is fantastic because it automatically gives parents a reminder of upcoming events that is filtered for the den(s) to which their son(s) belong. We use the email lists mostly for communication among leaders/committee.


It does an excellent job of protecting privacy by requiring account log-in for much of its access, while still allowing some public content to support recruitment. I had several new parents this year who visited the site and printed off a new application and medical form and brought them to me.


At a relatively low cost, it is hands-down better than what we were trying to accomplish before using the free Yahoo! Groups.


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...