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Who is Joe? We''re talking about how proper it is to execute activities with no notice, no plan other than what''s already between your ears, and skipping tour permits because we don''t like them.


An adult leader decides a tour permit isn''t needed, advance notice isn''t needed, and conversation with parents isn''t needed. That doesn''t inspire a lot of confidence among the parents of the children you take along. What else isn''t needed? A second adult, PFD, enough canoes to hold all the boys that show up?


Maybe next time it''s a quickie run up the rocks. How many falls on that rope? 9 mm or 11? Gloves, rappel devices? Does every boy have a helmet? Is he still using pitons and the munter hitch?


I get mighty nervous when an adult leader gets indignant about tour permits. What other "stuff" does this adult think is not needed?



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Yah, F, I''m with da two owls, eh?


I think "Loyal" means that we begin by assuming that Joe is an ordinary, good, intelligent, caring scout leader. Seems to me from the little bit he posted that he''s got kids going out and doing service on a holiday, informing parents of changing plans and securing parent permission, having fun with kids and staying alert and creative. He''s upholding expectations that kids who do hard work on service projects get the award, and kids who didn''t come out for service projects - well, they can wait for the next time.


No reason to assume his council asks for a tour permit for such a trip. Ain''t no reason at all to assume that Joe as a fellow scouter is being unsafe. No reason to assume that because Joe takes kids paddlin'' on a pleasant local river one afternoon that it means next week he''ll be takin'' ''em skydiving. In fact, it seems downright discourteous and unneighborly to assume that.


I think most of us feel an obligation to be Trustworthy, and that means bein'' honest about what the real purpose of Tour Permits are, and how they''re used (or not used) in most councils. It means being honest with our fellow volunteers about how BSA insurance coverage works, and how and when tort law applies. People having knowledge and understandin'' is a good thing. It helps them make informed, rational, and safe judgments.




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F Scouter how come you are jumping to facts not in evidence. The Activity did have parental opinion, being they had 2 upcoming canoe trip, I would say they followed that plan, so they have they appropriate training and equipment to run the program safley. It stricks me odd that we all go through training and volunteer to serve the young men in our charge. But when a leader does something that is safe put not planned to the enth degree he is chastized as being unsafe.



Doug Buth

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Sorry I have been gone so long but I have been having computer problems. We did not have a tour permit. I have been told by my DE that if everyone provides their own transportation we don''t need a local tour permit. Everyone was tranported to the launch site and picked up by a parent. We drove about 6 mile to the launch site and our trip took about 3 hours. We have 12 canoes that belong to the troop and everyone provided their own PFD. I am safety afloat and safe swim trained. All the Scouts that went had a parent along except for one Scout who went with a brother that is 18 and an Eagle scout, his parents drove two of the vehicles to the pickup point. Our committee chair came along on the trip. All of the boys passed their swim test at camp this year and they wore their PFD''s the whole trip. The river water came up to my waist. We did fill out a float plan and one of the parents was going to come look for us if we were gone more than 4 hours. We also brought a couple of cell phones and all of the safety equipment we might need. All of the parents of kids that went knew we were going, I would never take a Scout anywhere without a parent knowing we were going somewhere.


This was a very unusual trip for us. We rarely do anything that is unplanned. It was a hot day and none of us had any plans that day. We have been planning on going on this trip and we wanted to go on it without the whole troop to see how long it would take.


My feeling is that we were safe and met the rules of our council. I also found out that junior didn''t tell momma about flags because he doesn''t like to go. He slept in that day. He has also forgotten to tell his parents about other work related activities in the past and I have gotten calls from his parents when other kids go their picture in the paper and he didn''t.

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Sounds like a great trip, Joe, and a good way to check out an activity. Nice job. Dat''s one of the bonuses of a troop having its own gear like canoes - you can take advantage of spur-of-the-moment opportunities.


So, no tour permit expected, nearly 1:1 adult coverage, all aspects of Safety Afloat covered, participant parents happy.


Any apologies from da nay-sayers?




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I applaud you for having the willingness and the agility to reward the participants in the original activity with a spur-of-the-moment canoe outing. The message that non-participants might take from this event is, "you snooze, you lose."

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Well we went on one of our planned canoe outings today. We had good participation. Only two boys that don''t have the canoeing merit badge were no shows. One boy was sick and one doesn''t really like the water. We had 5 parents go along and my scout who caused all my problems came along. He had a good time and he has come to a few activities that were work related since Memorial Day. I think that missing a fun activity made him show up at work activities incase we do an impromptu activity.


We did all of the water requirements for the canoeing merit badge. This was the first time my ASM and I ever counselled this merit badge so we were happy to have two Scouts along who just took the merit badge at camp this summer. We watched a canoeing video at our meetings and we have been working on all of the other requirements at meetings. Two more weeks, if the weather is good, and we are back on the river.

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"A boat is a hole in the water lined with aluminum, wood or fiberglass into which one pours money"


Always good to hear the end result of a situation. I just got out of a class at work about dealing with ''workman''s comp'' situations. Recording details, who said what, who saw what, when and where and how...


So the ''Tour Permit'' is needed when...

And Safe Swim planning is a good thing because...

A spur of the moment oppportunistic fun thing can happen when...

A Troop can collect equipment and use it when...

And Scouts learn that a little service to others can be recognized and rewarded ...

Parents learn things about Jr. by talking to other parents...


"Alls well that ends well"




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been watching this thread develop...


On tour permits...we "cross our tees and dot our eyes" and file a T.P. by fax with council whenever we use our boats...etc.,

along with a float plan...''course in a "quickie trip" the fax might go out on Saturday Morning! Seeing as how even when a T.P. is filed within the "time requirements" of Council they don''t get around to issuing a tour permit "in time" for some events...we don''t loose a lot of sleep over it.


As to putting a fast "quickie trip" together being difficult or impossible - I have a bunch of life and a couple of young eagle scouts who can put together a river trip plan in 20 minutes that no one could pick apart...We keep old plans on file for reference and "ideas" and have an outdoor coordinator whos job is to be our council contact for all tour permits/float plans...It is not rocket science...just fun...


And we give plans to all parents whos scouts are involved... have phone trees set up and we can load our boats and go!


you can really follow the rules and still have a good time...which is really the point isn''t it?





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I find it amazing how some families don''t have the time to do a service project, but are insulted when they find out they missed out on something that goes along with it.


This situation reminded of something that happened in my troop about 15 years ago. Our committee chair at the time was head of the local historical society. One Sunday evening, a local historic cemetery was vandalized. She was called that Monday morning by the caretaker to see if she could help find a few volunteers to help clean up. She and her son (one of our PL) called around the troop to meet that afternoon at the cemetery for a couple of hours (messages were left for those that didn''t answer the phone). Four Scouts (out of 13-14 in the troop) showed up and helped out for a couple of hours. For their help, the caretaker ordered pizza for them when they were done. Also, the Scouts that showed up got service hour credit toward their next ranks.


That evening, the CC gets a call again from the caretaker. He tells her the local newspaper wanted to do a story and take a picture of the Scouts for the paper. She calls the four Scouts who were there and told them if they wanted to be in the paper, show up the next morning. Three of the four came in uniform and had their picture in the next edition of the paper.


The next week at the troop committee meeting, a couple of the parents of Scouts that didn''t show up (they got the call, but had "other things to do") made a big stink about it. They accused the CC of just trying to make her own son and the other two Scouts in the paper (good friends of her son) look good at the expense of the rest of the troop. Fortunately, one of the other parents (whose son wasn''t there also) defended the CC and said that since everyone was called and it was a last minute thing, then it was completely fair. If the Scouts didn''t show up for the work, then they shouldn''t get to be in the newspaper picture.


As I heard someone say once, "If you think the whole world is against you, eventually, you''ll be right." Let that parent complain to whomever they want about her son "missing out" on that activity.

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