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National Scouting Museum

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Happily I had a chance to visit the National Scouting Museum in Irving, Tx. recently and am curious who has been there and what were their impressions.

 

I was kinda underimpressed, I was hoping for more in the venue of scouting history, scout gear history, etc. Some of the areas were interesting but what kinda capped the whole thing off was how when you finished the tour you ended up in the scout shop. Struck me as a little PT Barnham. (you know...'This way to the Egress')

 

yis

 

 

 

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I visited about a year and a half ago when it first opened. I also visited the museum a couple of times at its previous location in Murray, KY.

 

The new museum certainly is an improvement in terms of layout and glitz. A number of old faves from Kentucky were moved over. While I don't think you could fit all of scouting history in one museum, seems like there were some program features or areas that are not featured that deserve a place in there.

 

Biggest disappointment was that the confidence/ropes course at Murray was not moved to the new location. That was a great team building activity for the scouts and always their favorite part of the trip.

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I would love to visit the new museum, but my girlfriend seems to want to spend a vacation on a tropical island instead! So we went to the Bahamas for spring break, and of course in the taxi I asked if they had Boy Scouts in the Bahamas( i knew they did I just wanted to hear it again) I guess Scouting isn't all too popular there, church groups are the norm for boys in the bahamas. I'll have to persuade her for texas next break! Whats a scout to do!?

 

But back to the subject I have heard good things about the museum, and hope to one day visit.

 

What was lacking in scout history and gear?

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I laughed at the trip thru the gift shop. Our Jamboree Troop toured the National Cathedral in Washington DC and were very impressed with the ornateness, the history, and reverence of the building. When the tour ended, we were led to the exit, RIGHT THRU THE NATIONAL CATHEDRAL GIFT SHOP! I guess even religion has its financial needs!

 

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I visited last May during a business trip to Dallas. My favorite was the exhibit hall of original Rockwell and Csatari paintings. I was in heaven, seeing my old Boys' Life covers in their original versions! The museum itself was kind of a disappointment, but I guess their main target audience is the 11-12 year old. Just about every cub scout has raced a pinewood derby car, so I'm not sure they need to take up valuable space with a track. I know they have a lot of memorabilia in storage, and I wish they would have more of that on display for the adult memorabilia/antique enthusiast. I did like seeing the original uniform of James E. West, and Eagle medal #1. Also there was a replica (I assume) of the orginal bead necklace that B-P liberated from the hut of Dinizulu. Of course, I spent about 50 bucks in the Scout Shop, so the strategy obviously works. My overall conclusion is, if you are in Dallas anyway, make a point to visit. But it's not worth a trip on it's own. You can do the whole thing in under 2 hours.

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In reference to the lack of scouting history and gear.

 

I would have liked to see how the scout uniform has evolved over the years and how scout gear (tents, packs, etc.) has changed with the times and materials.

 

Most definately visit the Museum if you are in the area. Parts are very interesting but more could be done.

 

yis

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My guess is that a display of tents from over 90-years would take up too much space. I seem to recall a then and now of back packs being there. I have been to the museum twice, and when the computer driven stuff is working its a pretty interesting place for scouts. I too liked the rockwell exhibit.

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We should be proud that the BSA is investing in preserving our scouting history , most scout museums around the country are private and propietary in nature .

Our museum is new and like all new adventures , it will grow and mature , always getting better . Post some positive feedback on what you would like to see , who knows ? maybey you will improve the next visitors experiance .

On a broader scale , BSA needed a place to call home , where old scouters could leave their scout experianceS without fear of privateering and let the next generation of scouts learn from their journey .

The National Scouting Museum is a must see for all scouts , young and old , its a blend of the old with some interactive displays for the young scouts .

Life is about expectations , have open expectations when you visit , you will not be dissapointed.

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I have been to there twice in the last year. The Rockwell exhibit was awsome! The meuseum seemed to be in devolopment, and a bit dark. I did really enjoy all of the displays, but I thought there would be more. I liked the earlier posted idea of a progression of the uniform with examples from each era displayed.

 

Don't miss it, if you are in the area.

 

CE

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I got a chance to visit last November on a business trip. It was kind of nice that it is so close to DFW that you can get there in a few minutes.

 

I, like some of you that posted, was a little disappointed with the museum myself, although the Rockwell gallery is worth the trip!

 

I also was looking for more old memorabilia. The animation of Baden Powell telling the panoramic wide screen story was kind of cool. I'd also lose the Pinewood Derby display. The scouts I saw going through seemed to really like the virtual reality rock climbing/whitewater rafting/biking display.

 

And yeah, I spent some bucks in the gift shop.

 

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I went to the old museum in Murray once during an OA lodge event. I liked the museum, but the facilities it was in could have used some work, and there was little room for growth. Also, Murray isn't exactly the easiest place in the world to get to. I seem to recall one of the major reasons for the move being a lack of continuing support from Murray State University (the old museum location) and the local community. Also, there were essentially offers of large amounts of money that would only become available if the museum moved to some different location. I seem to recall hearing that St. Louis had been one of the stronger alternatives.

 

On the other hand, Texas is far from being the most traveled place in the nation, and it certainly isn't centrally located, particularly on the north/south axis.

 

I have yet to have any reason to travel to, or through Texas, and I can't think of any reason to do so in the near future. Maybe some day I will get to the new museum, but I won't be holding my breath.

 

I wonder if the collection is extensive and redundant enough to establish either a permanent traveling exhibition, or some sort of secondary location at some point in the future. I would think a secondary collection located some place like Washington D.C. would be a good idea if money ever became available for the purpose. After all, the Scouting museum will probably never really be an attraction that will draw people from the farthest states unless they have other reasons to travel to the area.

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Proud Eagle,

 

I like your idea of the museum out near D.C. I think you would have many more visitors, especially on years when they hold the National Jamboree.

 

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