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What does everyone think about an OA Chapter commiting to an Arrow of Light ceremony 6 months before Blue and Gold, working with the Cub Scout pack, and then informing that pack that they will not be able to participate just 12 hours before the Blue and Gold Banquet? Just wondering...

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Agree that there would be few valid excuses...severe illness or death, or weather conditions which prohibit travel are about all that come to mind. Even in the event of illness, the chapter should have attempted to find substitutes from within the Lodge. I would send a letter to the Chapter Chief, copy to the Lodge Chief and Chapter Advisor expressing my displeasure with their definition of "Trustworthy" and "Service".

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If I was the Cubmaster or whoever was in charge of the ceremony I'm sure that mu Irish temper might well get the best of me.

But when I calmed down I might ask myself the following questions:

Did I do a good job of communicating? Did I really follow up and make sure everything was in order?

What went wrong?


I don't know how it is in other Lodges but I have seen things fall apart very quickly.

We have a youth in the Ship who is a member of the OA Dance Team, he was telling me that they (the team) were to dance at some sort of Community Festival, at the OA weekend everyone said this was a great idea and said they would be there, but on the day he was the only one to show. He wasn't a happy dancer!!

Some wise man in this forum once talked about herding cats?? At times trying to get a group of Lads all from different units to turn up for anything is really hard.

This of course doesn't make things right, but maybe if I thought about it along these lines, maybe, just maybe I wouldn't be as upset?


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12 hours out is tight for a cancellation for anything short of bad weather.


That said, we don't know circumstances, Mr/Ms ASM1, and you've not told us.


- Weather?

- Injuries?

- Cars broken down?

- Young men GROUNDED (it happens, even with 16 year olds)


BTW, this is a reason for you to attend Wood Badge: ALWAYS!!! have a Plan B!



I agree with both scoutldr and Eamonn here ...

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Not performing as promised is certainly unfortunate.


As Scouts and Scouters, we are only expected to do our best. Even then, we can fail that standard often enough.


There might be circumstances in which they should be praised for being able and actually giving a twelve hour warning that they would not be able to perform.


Certainly, with twelve hours notice a Cub Pack leader should be able to come up with a variety of substitutes. Pack leaders have a responsibility to be prepared for the unexpected as well.


I do think it would be a good idea for the Cubmaster to write to the OA chapter and explain any heardships or disappointments created by the failure to perform. That would keep the OA leaders informed of the consequences of their failure to keep those arrangements. They need to know the consequences of that failure so they will do a better job of planning that kind of activity in the future.




Seattle Pioneer

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Hey, 12 hrs is a virtual eternity! We had one a few years back just never show up!


Our local OA dance team was a GREAT bunch. They were talented, trustworthy boys from the area who were very busy because they were so good. Unfortunately, as these things happen, the leader & many of the the group either finally aged out or went away to college. The remaining guys were not interested in continuing the dance team.


Because of the great experiences we had with our Lodge's group, we decided to find another dance team for our Crossover one year. We called around to some other area councils/lodges & finally found one that sounded good & could make our event. Our CM made the arrangements.


This was our final Pack meeting of the school year & graduation ceremonies were planned for every level with the Indian Dance Team as the final highlight. Everything was ready & the boys were hyped & looking forward to the ceremonies.


The meeting starts & no dance team in sight. After many phone calls & much gnashing of teeth, the CM finally gets thru to the parents of the head of the dance team. It seems the dad driving got "lost" on his way & decided it was to late & raining, so he just went home. No phone call requesting directions, no phone call to let us know what happened, no nothing. Now, I could have been a bit sympathetic if we were at a place that is extremely hard to find, in the middle of nowhere. However, we are in a western 'burb of Chicago, practically on top of an expressway. The dance team was coming from a northern 'burb and was on another expressway coming into the city when they turned back. I think it was more a case of late & lazy than lost!


Luckily, we were able to change the graduation ceremony (painted face) a bit to include the boys crossing to Boy Scouts, but the boys were VERY disappointed. Our CM did call their council to express his disappointment & we NEVER used (or recommended) them again!

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Well I'd be a little ticked off. Yes of course everyone should always have a back up plan and 12 hours is better than no notice at all. But still. I've organized B&Gs and I know that 12 hours before, there are three things I don't want to hear. 1. The food isn't going to be there; 2. The awards aren't going to be there; and 3. A major portion of the program/entertainment/ceremony isn't going to be there.


Our B&Gs were always on a weeknight (usually Friday) so with 12 hours notice, I'd have time to deal with this problem on my way from work to the B&G. Not a good thing! And unless there were some extremely extenuating circumstances, you can bet the OA folks would be hearing from me.



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We need more information to be able to come up with a proper response. I can think of all sorts of extenuating circumstances. I can also think of a bunch of lame excuses.


However, I will share a little thing I have learned over the last year or so:


Promise little and then keep those promises. Don't promise big things. Don't promise things that may not happen. Only promise those things you are totally certain you can and will make happen.


I think Southwest airlines operates on a similar philosophy. Set the expectations very low, then exceed them by a wide margin.


I have a tendency to want to promise things that I may not be able to deliver on. That has caused me more than a few problems. So, I am trying not to do that any more. (Though I am still working on it.)

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Proud Eagle,


Yeah BUT........this is the OA DANCE TEAM. This is what THEY do. THEY too should have a plan B. If Billy is sick and Tommy is grounded, who are their back-ups? These things have to be scheduled as they are usually in high demand. If they are going to be a dance team and schedule events, they had better be able to deliver unless something really MAJOR prevents ALL team members from being there.


OA are not the only folks who can have a dance team. Because the OA dance team is in such high demand and can only make so many events, we have a Troop that has put together a dance team to help do B&G's and crossovers. It is great PR for recruiting into their Troop.

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