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Is Boy scouting Family scouting????

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More and more I am reading and hearing about Troop's summer trips becoming Family vacations.



How common is this?????


I know of two troops locally that function that way. they have gone to Glacier, mammoth cave, gettysburg, DC bringing the entire family along.



Is it a good thing or bad thing??????


I don't think is was what was intended,

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Wife's line to me at Seabase Bahamas: "You bring me sailing on the most beautiful calmest sea, to the most beautiful island in that Sea, to walk along the best beach in the world .... WITH TEN KIDS????"


Actually our captain said the most difficult crews were the ones with a disproportionate number of adults.

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Family camping is for Cub Scouts. Troops need parents for transportation and other support but they shouldn't all be camping, especially as a family.


We do have a core group of 3 or 4 parents that camp with us in addition to 4 ASMs. It is sometimes a challenge to keep the parents from interjecting themselves into the process.

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Boy SCouting is about turning boys into self-reliant men. Families should schedule their own vacations. I'm observing an increasing trend of kids (and parents) who never seem to cut the apron strings...still living with mommy and daddy into their 30's, unable to fend for themselves. We are doing them a grave disservice. My own niece is graduating from college at age 24 and has decided to move out on her own to a different state. Mom is so distraught she can hardly function. Get a grip.

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Well, Ive noticed that a lot of Troops have and support "family scouting" at meetings, fundraisers, activities, and camping. Little brother and sister allowed to participate in activities while parents weave in and out. I've been told lots of reasons for this - "if that's what brings the boy...", "Well, he is a cub in the feeder", "I think of this as a family program", "We've always done it this way", "That's the (CC's, SM's, etc) kids".


Personally, it always seems disruptive - not necessarily to the group at large but certainly to the actual Scout from that family. Instead of Scouting being about THEM and THEIR fun, THEIR experience, etc it becomes a SHARED activity - often with the expectation that they should "look out for" the sibling. I think Scouting should be FOR and BY the Scouts - we include family at recognitions ceremonies, some campfires, etc. But Scouts like having something of their own - there's a reason kids don't come home and tell you everything about their day at school...


I did have a summer camp experience where a lot of parents insisted on tagging along. It was to a beautiful location, our first "big trip" as a troop, and many were "nervous" because we were "so far away". Parents couldn't accept that I spent most of time in the campsite away from the Scouts. They thought I should be parenting them each step of the way - one (Eagle Scout Dad) wanted to literally hold his (13 year old) son's hand as he walked him to his activities throughout the day. Fortunately, the camp had lots of opportunities for the adults to do things during the day to serve as distractors. Most of the parents responded well to some gentle conversations about Scouting and the need for their "boys" to be left alone. No parents ever attended another of our camps (that weren't ASMs) and even the hand-holding Dad finally left the camp and went to a hotel for the rest of the week; they left the troop a year later to find something "less outdoorsy".


Patrols function best without parents. Generally speaking, "family" troops operate as troops, not Patrols.

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Had the old SM bring his grandson camping with him. He was a tiger cub in what ever town they lived in.......the boy scouts would sit around the Campfire whittling and next thing ya know SM's grandson had his knife out too whittling. the boys complained that they hadn't been allowed to whittle as a tiger.... The old SM said that the tiger was under his control and it was ok.


After the last outing I pulled the now ASM aside and requested that if grandson comes with him on future scout outings that he follow the BSA guidelines and a tiger should not use a knife.



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Well, it sounds like these troops are scheduling trips that cost mucho buckaroos, and more than a week in total travel/experience. How many families can afford the cost and the time for two family vacations?

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I believe if you look at BSA duties for committee members, one of the duties of the troop secretary is to organize a family campout. Personally, I see no problem with having an occasional (annual) family campout. Certainly not every time though.


I moved to a new state about 3 years ago. Last summer, our old troop and new troop met in Gettysburg and rented a huge cabin. We opened it up to families from both troops although the scouts handled much of the meal preparations.


That was a tough deal. Most of the boys didn't know each other on Friday. My boys knew virtualy everyone and had to work to not just hang with their old friends. (one of whom my son literally met in the nursery at the hospital the day they were born) Pls that, no one, adults or kids had any real experience cooking for 50.


Set some parameters and note that certain trips are for families and certain ones are scouts and leaders only.

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We used to have an occasional family campout. They really didn't work for us. You would think it would be an opportunity for the boys to show off their skills to their parents, but no, they became just the opposite. The Scouts generally sat down and expected the parents to wait on them, just like at home.


Consequently we haven't had such a campout in several years. I would like to think the Scouts and the troop have matured to the point they could pull it off. I doubt, however, most parents have. We have a hard time fitting everything we want to do on the calendar, so I don't see any reason for adding a campout like this to the schedule.

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This might tie in with the thread on Troop Culture.

I have a very good friend who belongs to a family where everyone is deeply involved in Scouting.

He married into a family where his Mother in law was the Cubmaster, his Father in law the SM and his brother in law an ASM.

His wife helped out where needed.

He took over as SM.

It wasn't unusual when they went to camp for them to bring their little son along, even when he was a tiny little fellow.

Before becoming ASM the BIL had been in Venture Scouts with me. A super nice fellow who when he had kids brought his offspring along.


Then there's people like me!

I never thought of even asking HWMBO if she wanted to tag along!

My view is that I'm there for the Scouts and as a rule parents just get in the way.

I'd never dream of taking a small child along. - Mainly because my feeling is that I just don't have the time to care and look after him or her.

I'm willing to admit that I'm an old stick in the mud and that my way is not the only way.

Also when it comes to "Roughing it" HWMBO thinks a Holiday Inn Express is just that.



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