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AnnLaurelB

On a campout? Really?

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*sigh*

It has come around to leaving the campout to movies huh?

 

I just came back from a Camporee with close to 400 Scouts and Scouters. The hosting Troop had done a credible job with activities and program (I have some small quibbles, but that is for me and the host SM). But the Campfire...

In a wide open field, They had stacked cargo pallets 9 feet high, in four (4 ) piles together (got that picture?), so we were faced with a pyre 10' square by almost 10' tall, against which more logs were stacked. When the Scouts were seated (30 feet away, they did think thru the safety. Also had 100+ gallons of water in 5 gallon buckets, and several shovels and piles of dirt), then watched the Scout MC pour a fluid over the front of the pyre. And, at the appointed time, reach in with his adjusted Bic and FROOOSH! We had lift off. The program went quickly thru the usual skits, but no songs, no cheers, no indian legends, no 'ghost' stories, no ash tradition, no Scoutmaster minutes. When the fire had dropped to the low coals level, (still plenty hot) , our brave Scout MC tried to lead the group in Scout Vespers. Didn't work. So we had had a fun time, but IMHO could've been handled better.

 

I think movies have their place, but the center of a campfire program should be a campfire, if at all possible. Maybe not one visible from the Satelite, but a campfire. And I would favor the usual plan of Excitement, Fun, followed by more Meditative stuff, leading up to Closing. I missed that this time.

 

Our Troop has a movie night in early January, when the holidays are past, the Troop meeting needs a break from the usual. We show "Second Hand Lions" or somesuch, popcorn and cider made fresh, and make sure that the whole family is invited, along with school buddies and folks from our CO. Did I hear somebody say "recruiting"?

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Movies have their place, I won't argue that. Trainerlady brought up a great example of when one would be of good timing.

 

And we show a movie in place of a den meeting a few weeks before PWD. We don't show Down & Derby mthough...to many scouts going comatose with drool pouring out of their mouth. Instead, we play "Litt;e Rascals the Movie" . It has a downhill soapbox derbt race, the jokes are played out at the scouts mentality level and their level of humor too.

 

During that time, they eat popcorn and drink water while they sit in cardboard cars that they made at home and decorated with all the bling, bells and whistles and whatnot.

 

But at campouts, we do someting else.

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They have their time and place. I know that as exhausted as we were last nite, DOWN AND DERBY, which a bunch of us saw for the first time last nite, was a welcome relief.

 

Would I rather a campfire, ABSOLULTELY. but I'd rather a funny movie than a lame campfire.

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Thanks for the responses, everyone; it's interesting to read everyone's viewpoints!

 

We ended up not showing the movie; I *knew* that running around the campsite with flashlights and just being goofy would keep them occupied for a long time. Then we got a fire going, and EVERYONE wanted to make s'mores, of course. Then they ran around some more (we had, as I mentioned, electricity, so there were some overhead lights, or I wouldn't have allowed the full-tilt running amok).

 

I couldn't have IMAGINED getting those kids to sit still for a movie. No. Way. And sure enough, my son said his favorite times were Fri and Sat night when, "We all just played."

 

Now, had we been rained out, and needed to huddle under the pavillion? A movie would have been a lifesaver. But the weather was BEEYOOTEEFUL.

 

Also, over the summer, I want to do a Camp IN (in the blessed A/C'd fellowship hall) for the families new to camping; I plan to show a movie THAT Friday night, but OUTSIDE? I'm glad we didn't try it.

 

We had a great time, and the only thing we used the electricity for was the area lights before campfire, and the electric skillet for the sausage.

 

I'm sticking to my guns on the movie thing, unless absolutely desperate. I feel MY job as Cubmaster is to be ABLE to come up with activities to keep the boys happy WITHOUT electronics.

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I'll admit. The projector for the playoff game was more a luxury for me and the SM who had committed to this weekend when play-off hopes were thin. The boys' memories of that weekend involve sledding, snow-men, campfire, and who left their boots outside of their tent while it snowed overnight.

 

Keep up the good work.

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I would never say never but would argue against it.

 

1-They could watch at home.

2-It is a more passive activity than participating in a sing-along.

3-A lot of cities do this anyway--so why is scouts unique.

4-Never estimate the power of a campfire.

5-A lost opportunity for (good quality) skits and songs. May be the only opportunity for some boy to EVER do this.

6-If the reason for having a movie is a substitute for the leaders to put on a great outdoor program (which is some work) then I would not do it.

 

A shared movie is a great group experience, and outdoors feel it is somehow special, but seeing the movies outdoors is actually a pretty poor venue. Sound is bad at least. I would expect the boys to run around a lot.

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Forgot to add, while the council family campout did have a movie instead of a campfire, each pack could have their own campfires, and most did. Some while the movie was playing, but most afterwards.

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Tampa,

 

Actually is was not a bad experience overall. Only major problem was from the unit across the pond that used their spotlight and laser on the screen while the movie was on. Once they were taken care, it was a very good expereince.

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ALB -- isn't this you new CC who's obsessive/compulsive about you doing your job and not getting involved in her committee functions? Is that not a two-way street? Why is the CC programming your campout?

 

But to the movie, per se: the critical questions is "how does this support the mission, aims or core values of Scouting?"

 

While a movie night may have it's place (we do one following all-day junior leader training in August) and I suppose an argument could be made that a particular movie could be said to teach a lesson on citizenship or perserverance or whatnot, I have to say showing a movie on a campout seems like a really lame waste of a camping opportunity. Kids can watch movies any old time, but particularly with Cubs, they only get a few camping opportunities per year. I would prefer doing NOTHING than a movie. Nothing will naturally turn into talking with their friends, joking around and developing friendships.

 

If you CC wants to watch a movie, suggest "Stand By Me."

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I don't see anything wrong with a movie night at a lock in. But a camp out probably not.

 

Our guys enjoy godzilla movies. What is learned, not much. but it is a lot of fun. We also enjoy Johnny socko and the flying robot. They are terrible but a lot of fun.

 

We have seen follow me boys a number of times,

 

 

 

 

 

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Not being much of a movie buff I realize I'm biased here. But seriously, I can think of 101 things I would rather be doing outdoors, day or night, than watching a movie. When I did WB, this was my absolute least favorite part of the course even though the movies themselves were not bad ones.

 

Glad things worked out for you as they did, Ann.

 

 

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We had a camporee with a movie, and it was good, but we haven't done it since. We usually have one at our OA Winter Fellowship, but that's kind a tradition.

At National Camping School, Central Region, at Cole Canoe Base in 2010 the campfire WAS a movie, a video of a fire, projected on a screen. I though it was strange.

:~)

WWW

 

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Kinda confused as to why your Committee Chair would develop a plan for your campfire. As a fellow CC, there's absolutely no way I would get involved in planning a camp fire program, pack meeting, etc without the direct request of the Cubmaster.

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*sigh*

 

Well, she's a lawt to handle, if I'm honest. She seems to have this videotape that runs in her head of how things should be, and it's frustrating to her when reality doesn't match the loop running through her mind.

 

Mind you, I didn't have to plan the campfire PROGRAM; it was a Cub-O-Ree, so a District (very fun) guy came in and did the overall campfire. But at our little campfire, we did s'mores, and I told stories. It was quintessential camp out! :0)

 

As for the CC, I *was* warned that she's ...off-putting...

 

I feel like I can deal with it for this year, and next year. Next year I will spend training up a new CM, and I'll be the ACM during my son's Web2 year (and hopefully he'll bridge in Feb).

 

Then I'm outta here.

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