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Award Presentation Secrecy

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Our district awards dinner will take place this month. The committee is in the process of selecting recipients for the District Award of Merit, Cubmaster of the Year, etc. They are being tight-lipped about the particulars. The identity of the recipients will not be known until the envelopes are opened. Some like the element of surprise. Others want to know in advance. They want to be able to invite the close friends of the recipient, which cannot be done unless the identities are known in advance.

 

In the past, some recipients a have lamented that they wished that spouses, relatives, or other unit members could have been there when their award was presented. Others have lamented that they would have attended the event if they had only known their friend was going to be formally recognized.

 

So, what is the rationale for keeping award presentations secret until the moment? Is the surprise factor a critical element of the award presentation?

 

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Her That Must Be Obeyed is the chair. For the Council Recognition Dinner to be held later this month. In order to boost attendance at the dinner the committee requested that the names of the Silver Beaver recipients not be made public.

In the past we never posted the names and then we started to announce them.

The Silver Beaver committee (Yes I was on it) said that they were going to announce the names. (Yes I'm in the dog house.) The feeling of the Beaver committee was that if the person knew he or she would be sure to be at the dinner. One guy nearly didn't make it one year he was on his way to the airport when his wife had to break down and tell him.

The dinner committee felt that more people would attend the dinner if all the people who thought that they were getting something were there.

At the district level we at present do not have a District dinner due to lack of attendance. We present two District Awards of Merit at the Corn Roast in August. The committee who selects the awardees doesn't tell anyone till the event.

Her Who Must Be Obeyed was a recipient last year. I wasn't on the committee but somehow managed to get on the wrong side of her for signing the certificate!! I was informed that it didn't look right with my signature??

If you ask me it is about as long as it is wide.

A little like my dog house.

Eamonn

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When I received an award a few years ago, I had an inkling that I was getting something because my wife insisted on coming to the District Awards Dinner. "Hmmmmmm..." I said, "something is up." but I wasn't sure and I acted very surprised when my name was announced (even my wife, who knows me very well, thought that I was surprised).

 

I like the element of surprise. Our troop always sends a large contingent to the District Dinner so it usually isn't a problem getting the awardee there.

 

Maybe the solution is to get more people to go on a regular basis so more people can be surprised.

 

 

 

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Our district dinner last year was held the same weekend as my husband had the JLTC developmental weekend.

 

I didn't know he was going to get the District Award of Merit until the awards chair started asking me "odd" questions about my husband. During that conversation I mentioned that I would be coming to the dinner alone because of my husbad's need to be at the developmental. The chair about swallowed his teeth! So, I contacted the JLTC course director, swearing him to secrecy but getting him to tell my husband that attending the district dinner was important. My husband relented, suspecting that he was getting some sort of recognition but not realizing it was the District Award of Merit. It all worked out in the end but there were some tense moments!

 

I feel like someone in the family or unit should be informed so they can help get the person there. The secrecy and surprise are fun but only if the person is there to get the award.

 

 

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The decision to keep the recipients identity a secret is a local one. No district is required to do it. It's treated by some a s local version of the Oscars. That's unfortunate.

 

As Eamonn points out, releasing the names in advance will normally increase attendance at the event. perhaps if you were to suggest to the District committee the advantages of releasing the names in advance they would consider it for next year if not this year.

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Our SM knows when he is getting an award becuase huis wife only comes when he does get one.

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Along the same lines as JimmyD.

Some years back there was a Den Coach in our pack that was all out for Scouting. She was active in the pack as well as being on the Round Table staff for another District. This Lady was everywhere always in full uniform. She was dating the District Commissioner of the other district. I often thought that their idea of a good time was to go out and do a FOS presentation!! I never ever saw her out of some sort of Scout uniform.

Along came the Council Recognition Dinner. Nearly everyone wears a uniform. She was so sure that her District Commissioner friend was getting the Silver Beaver she was all dressed up the only thing missing was the family tiara!!

Sad to say he didn't get it. He went on to be hired by the council and later quit Scouting. She is still on the troop committee where her son is a troop member.

Eamonn

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In our council, we ask that units buy dinner for the Unit Award of Appreciation recipients. It has been met with quite a bit of positive feedback. Recipients are notified by US mail a week or so before the dinner.

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The District Award of Merit & Silver Beavers are kept secret. I think the element of suprise adds to the award. Especially these two! When I received mine (DAM & SB) I was totally suprised.

 

Ed Mori

1 Peter 4:10

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When I recieved the District Award of Merit, I did't know until the dinner and it was announced,that I had recieved it, however, the council formally notified me when I recieved Silver Beaver to allow me to invite family and friends and to provide a photograph, updated bio, etc.

 

Scott

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Our District Dinner last month was well attended, for some reason, many Scouters were told that they were nominated for an award. This in turn gave a pretty big turn out from other units with the exception of my units due to an unfortunate incident with one of our volunteer leaders.

 

Anyway, the turn out was bigger than expected. Another unit took our place for entertainment.

 

Bob, you gave me an idea for our next District Dinner next year. "The Oscars", what a magnificent template for a dinner.

 

We could increase attendance by having different leaders be presenters for awards, instead of two presenters the whole night.

 

We could announce the nominations for all awards just like the Oscars. This would surely bring the family or guests of the nominees to dinner.

 

There is so much we could do. What a production this will be. My mind is racing, gotta put this on paper.

 

Matua

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