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In 2013, I took my two sons and nephew on a day visit to the Jamboree.  I must say, it wasn't really a great experience.  Mainly, with limited time at the site, and thunder storms shutting things down multiple times while we were there, a lot of time was spent doing nothing.  My younger son, wearing his cub scout uniform, got a lot of attention, just about everyone with a patch of some sort gave him one.  Apparently they don't see many cub scout in uniform visitors there.

 

On to 2017 - my son signed himself up, I found out about it when I got the e-mail for parental permission.  Then, he told me I wasn't allowed to go.  He is looking forward to it and has set his goal for earning Eagle to be before the Jamboree, in fact, he wants his Eagle CoH before.  He seems to be on track for doing that, but, I guess we'll know when we get there.  He really worked his unit over to get his fellow scouts to join him.  He was hoping for 8, a full patrol, but only got 4.  His age is such that he only had one opportunity to go to a Jamboree as a youth, and this is it, my younger son will have the same problem. 

 

So, after talking it over with my son, we decided I could go too, I'm just not allowed to bother him too much!  I volunteered to be on staff and I'm really looking forward to it.  It was a decision I actually made during one of my woodbadge weekends.  I'm fortunate that I can drive to the Summit in a reasonable amount of time.  Hopefully some of the other staffers in my area can coordinate schedules and we can car pool.

 

This is making for an expensive 2016 though, as I'm paying for this summer's activities, and Jamboree all this year.  The scouts are fundraising too, we'll see what they can muster, but the payments are due when they are due! 

 

 

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Have fun!

I gotta say, back in the day, I enjoyed going to Jambo with complete strangers. (Well, one other scout from my troop, but he and I clicked with different boys in our patrol, so except for when we crashed in our tents exhausted, we hardly saw each other.)

 

Thanks in advance for staffing. I think you'll find it rewarding to help thousands of boys.

 

Definitely pinch pennies where you can. It sounds like your boy is all about the big-ticket scouting. It won't end at Jambo. So, find him a job this summer so that he can have some liquidity for the future.

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Definitely pinch pennies where you can. It sounds like your boy is all about the big-ticket scouting. It won't end at Jambo. So, find him a job this summer so that he can have some liquidity for the future.

 

I think it was less about him wanting to go with his troop friends, and more that he didn't want them to miss out on something he thought was so awesome, like, the National Jamboree.  Complete strangers is good too.  He enjoys that a lot as well.  When he arrived at NYLT last summer, he knew no one there, when he got home a week later, he had friends from around the council, I was surprised at the number of scouts he knew from other OA chapters when he went to the next fellowship.

 

I look at staffing several ways.  In some ways, it is selfish, I want the experience, and my job, combines a hobby that I have done a lot less of as I've grown to be a more active scouter.  But I also want to give back to the program.  Lets face it, it is expensive to be a staffer, but, I was able to get it into the budget.  It takes a long time commitment from work, and I often lose vacation time at the end of the year because I often use compensated time from late nights and weekend work when I take days off here and there.  My boys get a lot out of scouting, from others that put in hundreds of hours per year to make it work.  I know I can never personally give back at the collective level given to my sons' program, when my time and treasure can be put to good use giving back, I'm going to do it.

 

Yeah, big ticket is rough on the wallet.  He does fundraise, but not at the level that would cover everything.  I'm happy that OA high adventure is available - summit experience this summer $250 compared to $749, it saves a lot, as does the summit for us, again, we can drive there, which saves a lot (also have property and family in WV, not real close, but makes a good place to crash for a night).  Of course, he does plan to go to every high adventure base, and for at least one, he'll go while the rest of us go to the beach! 

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If you look at the Jamboree the right way, it is a bargain.  It can be a "working" vacation yeah, away from the rest of the family (means you will eventually "owe" them. Spouse time! )

 

Really, camping with a few thousand good friends, top notch entertainment,  exciting activities (well, sure, not the adult staff, shucks.  Still, lots of things to see and participate in),  pleasant natural surroundings (for the most part).  Food for staff is "catered", you don't have to cook, might even be invited to eat with some others from around the country and the world.  Souvenirs galore.  Much of the gear (tents, bunks, etc.) are provided,  .  They say our "ambient" showers will be less "ambient" this time.  Ten days?  Do the math.  What vacation time could you do cheaper?  With such interesting, companionable folks.  

 

Time off work?  Ask your Council Contingent to write your boss "the letter", congratulating him for having such a responsible and generous employee who willingly uses his time off for the benefit of our Nation's Future, our youth.    In fact every one of your Contingents' staff should get such a letter.  Suggest it to them!   I got one when I escorted my Troop to summer camp.  My Department Head was surprised and pleased to receive it! I got an "attaboy" in my file, worth points toward my raise!.

 

Buy your new boots early and break them in. Wool socks. Sandals for around camp.   Rain hat.   Extra rope and some laundry detergent and an extra bucket will make you popular with your fellow staff come laundry time.   Insect repellant. Sun glasses.  Paper plates and a marker to make signs for your "stand"?  Canteen or other water carrier.  Day pack.  Read everything. and....    Good Jambo!

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If you look at the Jamboree the right way, it is a bargain.

If you are in the right council it may be a "bargain". 

 

$2,300 to sleep in a tent and eat lousy food for one week is not a bargain in my book.

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In conversation in another place, it seems that scouters, and scouts, tend to fall roughly into two camps, Jamboree Johnnies, and Bushcraft Bennies.

 

Jamboree Johnnies will be able to justify these big national camps on all sorts of grounds that would be an anathema to the Bushcraft Bennies.

 

Sounds like a great camp. Enjoy!

 

Ian

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I don't know how international your national jamborees get but if you do get a lot of contingents I'd say go for it!

 

I took a mixed unit of scouts and explorers from my district here in the UK to the European Jamboree in 2005. It was frankly a life changing experience. Our unit were camped next to a Polish unit one side, who had Israelis the other side of them and Italians the other side with Irish the other side of them. Across the track from us we had Dutch, Swiss, Portuguese and Ugandan units. Also on our sub camp we have Norway, France, Mexico, South Korea and others I've forgotten. That melting pot of cultures and kids, many of who can't speak each other's language but are nevertheless forced to cooperate is like nothing else. Go for it!

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In conversation in another place, it seems that scouters, and scouts, tend to fall roughly into two camps, Jamboree Johnnies, and Bushcraft Bennies.

 

Jamboree Johnnies will be able to justify these big national camps on all sorts of grounds that would be an anathema to the Bushcraft Bennies.

 

Sounds like a great camp. Enjoy!

 

Ian

I've been. Twice. You're better off giving your scout a personal trip elsewhere. For the money spent (if around what I quoted) the value gained is less than what he'd gain elsewhere.

 

It's worth the trip, just not that much.

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In conversation in another place, it seems that scouters, and scouts, tend to fall roughly into two camps, Jamboree Johnnies, and Bushcraft Bennies.

 

Jamboree Johnnies will be able to justify these big national camps on all sorts of grounds that would be an anathema to the Bushcraft Bennies.

 

Sounds like a great camp. Enjoy!

 

Ian

 

I don't think you have be in either camp permanently.  I personally don't like crowds or a lot of people, I'm really not in my element there.  But isn't that one of the things we do to our scouts, take them out of their element so that they can have experiences that they wouldn't ordinarily have?  On the other hand, I've been known to strap a backpack on and head into the woods on an old trail that probably hasn't seen a person all year. 

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I don't know how international your national jamborees get but if you do get a lot of contingents I'd say go for it!

 

I took a mixed unit of scouts and explorers from my district here in the UK to the European Jamboree in 2005. It was frankly a life changing experience. Our unit were camped next to a Polish unit one side, who had Israelis the other side of them and Italians the other side with Irish the other side of them. Across the track from us we had Dutch, Swiss, Portuguese and Ugandan units. Also on our sub camp we have Norway, France, Mexico, South Korea and others I've forgotten. That melting pot of cultures and kids, many of who can't speak each other's language but are nevertheless forced to cooperate is like nothing else. Go for it!

 

I don't know if they'd have that experience, but I do know that my son has penciled in the World Jamboree in 2019 on his schedule.  I'm a little disappointed that his only chance to go to a World Jamboree as a youth and it will be held in the United States, but my wallet will be happier I'm sure.  He has a couple of requirements he has to satisfy for me to help him pay for that.  1, he has to improve his French & 2, I expect him to remain active with his troop through the jamboree, and 3, he will need to have a better fundraising effort than he's had so far for the National Jamboree. 

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I've been. Twice. You're better off giving your scout a personal trip elsewhere. For the money spent (if around what I quoted) the value gained is less than what he'd gain elsewhere.

 

It's worth the trip, just not that much.

 

$850 for staff - it would be interesting to see how they came up with that number.  I know when I do a budget, I'm expected to provide every detail.

 

$1250 council contingent fee

I'm sure it saves a lot of money being just a few hours by bus from the Summit.  Also, being in the National Capital Area Council, there is no need for a tour of DC as we are around it all the time.  It seems like a lot of further out councils add that to their Jamboree trip.  The $950 participant fee is the bulk of that.  The bus and the swag that I know about can't account for the $300, so I'm sure there is some council overhead in there somewhere. 

 

It is not cheap, that is for sure, I've spent less on 10 day vacations for 5 of us.  If a scout can't afford to go, many councils have options to help them.  That's why I buy all of those over priced fundraiser patches! 

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I don't know if they'd have that experience, but I do know that my son has penciled in the World Jamboree in 2019 on his schedule.  I'm a little disappointed that his only chance to go to a World Jamboree as a youth and it will be held in the United States, but my wallet will be happier I'm sure.  He has a couple of requirements he has to satisfy for me to help him pay for that.  1, he has to improve his French & 2, I expect him to remain active with his troop through the jamboree, and 3, he will need to have a better fundraising effort than he's had so far for the National Jamboree. 

Don't count on it being easy on your wallet. The fee for BSA members will likely be increased because of demand, and to offset discounts to scouts from less well-off countries.

 

Perhaps a call to scouts Canada to see if they need staff for a camp in Quebec. Maybe ease the wallet and offset the language deficit at the same time. :)

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I'm a little disappointed that his only chance to go to a World Jamboree as a youth and it will be held in the United States,

 

We had the same when the world Jamboree was in the UK in 2007, and as a tier 1 nation (or whatever they call it, basically, we pay the most to subsidise others), lots of people started off by looking at the price, $1700 (£1200), and people going..."Twelve hundred quid! For ten days in Essex!?!"

 

(Essex has a reputation as being not the most picturesque part of the UK)

 

But that was missing the point. It's the world scout jamboree, and it is where it is, and you only get one shot, as a youth, so you make the best of it.

 

I've never been to a jamboree, but the fact that people will pay $1000s to be on bin duty for weeks speaks volumes.

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$850 for staff - it would be interesting to see how they came up with that number.  I know when I do a budget, I'm expected to provide every detail.

 

$1250 council contingent fee

I'm sure it saves a lot of money being just a few hours by bus from the Summit.  Also, being in the National Capital Area Council, there is no need for a tour of DC as we are around it all the time.  It seems like a lot of further out councils add that to their Jamboree trip.  The $950 participant fee is the bulk of that.  The bus and the swag that I know about can't account for the $300, so I'm sure there is some council overhead in there somewhere. 

 

It is not cheap, that is for sure, I've spent less on 10 day vacations for 5 of us.  If a scout can't afford to go, many councils have options to help them.  That's why I buy all of those over priced fundraiser patches! 

 

$850 for the "honor" of taking 5 days off of work and travelling to do volunteer work for an organization that makes a profit off of an event like this? No thanks. When you total up what you pay BSA plus your PTO and travel, frankly I'd rather invest the money in a better trip like to Philmont, Seabase or NT. Better yet, head to Alaska and do a high adventure camp there. Far more bang for the buck.

 

$1200 is what you spend. Many other councils the cost is twice that...for one Scout!! I can send my kid to Philmont once and NT once for that same cost. I can send him to Kandersteg for the summer and still have money left over to travel around Europe after I'm done.

 

Financial aid dries up fast and goes to those who know how to work the system, so forget that.

 

As I've said, I've been there twice. Once as a Scout and once as an adult. It is okay but I wouldn't do it again. It checks a box but if I had it to do over I wouldn't do it. I'd save my money and have a truly great adventure that I will fondly remember.

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I'm kinda in @@Krampus's camp on this one.  A Scout is Thrifty.  I never attended Jamboree as a youth, but I went as 2nd ASM to a contingent.  Yeah, we camped as patrols, but it was still an major adult run operation.  The SPL and ASPL did NOTHING the whole time. The 3rd ASM (one of my Eagle Scouts) and I hung out together.  It was a good experience, but had I paid more than the $650 I paid out, I wouldn't do it again.  At the prices indicated by those on the forum, I would much rather be backpacking Denali or canoeing the Yukon.  It would be cheaper.  A Scout is Thrifty.

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