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Chicago Area Council? Anyone?

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Maybe there is something to be fixed in Chicagoland but we aren't in any position to fix anything except by donating a few bucks to a "fix-it fund" for the camp.


From my vantage point, it seems that the Chicago area is "under scouted." I looked at their web site and saw that they have 50,000 youth members in seven districts. Someone mentioned that the population of the Chicago area is about 8 million.


Here in the DC area, we have a population of about half that of Chicagoland with 75,000 scouts and 24,000 Scouters. My county started out as one district years ago, was spit into three about ten years ago and is now being split into six. We have over three hundred units in my county alone.


In NCAC we have quite the variety of types of units. We have units in the ghetto, we have units of rich kids, we have Korean Baptist units, we have LDS units.


What are we doing that's right? I don't know. We have the same trouble anyone has in recruiting volunteers. But we keep growing. Maybe our DEs work harder. Maybe people are just more Scout friendly around here.



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ASM1 -


Re-reading the posts I did not find one that said you were "Nosey" or told you to "mind your own business." What I did find were people, involved in their OWN scouting communities, who simply asked what the heck you thought THEY could do that would influence a council that was, in many instances, across the country from them! You responded in the following manner :


"This forum has lost my respect."


"If you ignore this, you do not deserve to be in Scouting."


"I am sorry for you."


"You folks are a joke."


Wonderful responses. How scout-like, insightful and above all HELPFUL!


The ONLY course of action that you have recomended is the following:


"Only an immediate replacement of this Council President who has ignored recruitment for so many years can save one of the greatest Scout reservations in the nation. This man has got to go." "Please write letters asking for his removal to save this reservation."


This we are supposed to do why? Because YOU said to? Because you were a Scout and Scouter in CAC? Because you will write mean things about us if we don't? I do NOT think so!


You have offered no VERIFIABLE facts to back up this request. I am NOT about to put my name on any document asking for a person to be fired from his job when I know ZIPPO about the situation. Hearsay does NOT count!


You asked me the following :


"And ScoutNut, tell me, why do you think contributing money to Owasippe will fix the problem if there are no scouts to attend?"


Actually the little I read about the plan sounds interesting. Joe Sener, Owasipp Committee Chair states :


"In my conversation with the Executive Board, I proposed that we, the Chicago Area Council, raise funds for an endowment to cover the annual loss from operations as well as the infrastructure improvement costs and that we develop an off-season use plan that utilizes Owasippe far more than the current six-week season. This off-season use will generate additional revenue and provide an outdoor education experience for the youth of Western Michigan."


He realizes that the camp will probably continue to lose money and that it needs extensive repairs. This is what the endowment is ment to cover. He also seems to realize that the endowment alone will not be enough. That is why he is proposing the camp be utilized year-round and opened to all of the youth of Michigan. If they can increase "customers" to the camp, possibly at increased prices, this will do a lot to offset the deficit caused by offering a low cost camping experience to Scouts. I wish him well. This effort will take a lot of work on his part.


Unfortunatly, I doubt it will save the other camp in question. Hoover Outdoor Eduction Center is the camp that concerns Eagle90 (waving wildly to fellow VT Scouter!) and myself. We actually USE this camp and I wish that there was a way for us to help keep it open. Unfortunatly I do not know of any.


If you have anything CONCRETE to tell us about this situation, we would like to hear it. If you have any PRACTICAL ideas of ways we might help, we are all ears. But please, stop all of the jumping up and down and shouting at us. It does no one any good.


BTW - the REAL scouting movement is NOT the Chicago Area Council. It is in the heart of every boy (or girl) who puts on a orange, blue, tan or green shirt. Or who wishes they could. No matter where they live. THAT movement NONE of us are ignoring!!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Bob White, you sir have stired my ire with these statements:


So ASM1 ednlighten us. How do you intend to sit in Baltimore and recruit thousands of new scouts in Chicago? Which packs should a boy consider joining? What troop do you feel has the best program? What night do they meet? Maybe what they need are more units in general. Who would be a good chartering organization and who is the executive of organization? Who do you think they should recruit to be the new Council President. Have you talked with them yet? Are they willing to do the job?


I'm sure your your inimate knowledge of their community, its resources, their problems and the solution, will be invaluable to the people of Chicago.


By the way if the problem is membership the solution is better unit meetings not a different president or the status of any piece of council property.


God grant me the serenity

to accept the things I cannot change;

courage to change the things I can;

and wisdom to know the difference.


Your heart is in the right place ASM1, but your body is in a different council.


Bob White



I grew up and lived in Chicago for 28 years, and still have an extremely large list of freinds and clients.


Your ignorance is only overpowered by your stupidity and isolationism mental state. You pretend to be a Scouter, you have no clue what Scouting is about. You follow that book and may even pray to it. But you cannot see the forest for the trees. Your blind.


I just got a letter from BSA National Council thanking our company for our views and requesting our corporation to assist in the CAC disaster. IF you had bothered to even check out our company web site, you would have seen that this corporation is a deligent supporter of the World Scouting movement. Our CEO resides in Mumbia India and is a member on the Board of Directors of the Bahrat Scout Guides of India.


After my last post on September 30, 2002, I made arrangements to open an office in Chicago and, as you say, RECRUIT! I will however, ask your forgiveness for caring about the national movement. I realize from your post to me, that it really is none of my business and that I should remain in my little troop and district.


But alas, I care. See you in Kandersteg in 2006. Oh, I'm sorry, that is a little bit further than the stop sign at the end of your street. Oh well, buy a map!



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And your troop didn't want you as a member? I can't imagine why. You're such a pleasant guy. Even National has seen fit to recognize you with a collector's edition form letter. I for one am honored to walk the same planet as you. I called the neighborhood association and we are making plans to rename the stop sign after you.


Best wishes always,


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Over here in little ole' backwards Oklahoma (the true cultural center of the universe) we get a kick out of the self importance of places like New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles. The problem is that people in the BIG cities are the ones who can't see beyond their own noses. They seem to think that the world follows their lead. We don't. It was great that New York cleaned up Times Square and closed down the strip joints and got rid of the hookers. It really had little effect on me 1,700 miles away. I want the hookers off of MY city streets. Yes, I am concerned when any council or district can't provide a good scouting experience, but I'm most concerned when it happens in my council or district. There is nothing wrong with that attitude. I understand that you have ties to that council and therefore sentimental feelings. It is because of that that you are so outraged by what is happening there. But as someone else said, this happens in councils throughout the country......where was YOUR outrage then and what did you do about it? It is YOU who are being blinded by your sentimental feelings and outrage, not us in our responses. Put the show on the other foot and consider why we feel the way WE do.

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