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Closing Down a Troop for the summer

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Our PLC plans for the whole year. Our summer program includes one day service projects, weekend camp outs (at least once a month), summer camp and a special trip or two of 4 days to a museum or other historical site as part of a camp out. Our 4 day trips have included hiking in the U.P. and this year a trip to the straits of Mackinac.

For us shutting down in not an option.


The Cub pack is active each month of the summer as well. Family picnics, trips to a minor league baseball game and a family camp out where the cubs cook dinner.



Quatre et livre avec formage

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"moxie, I find it interesting an 11 year old, a 4th or 5th grader, would be on JV basketball. How does the Troop serve the Tenderfeet in this time? "

A lot of his Scouts must be in Junior High--which would be JV. I was 12 when I finished seventh grade


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JV...varsity...below JV...whatever. I'm not a sports person and never was. What I have been told by that troop is that they shut down due to basketball season, period.


They usually don't have any Tenderfoot Scouts by the time shut-down rolls around. They get all their cross-overs (usually one or two a year) from the pack in their town and since the next nearest town/pack is 40 miles south, there aren't other prospects, per say.


Cross over is in March, right as the troop starts-up again. If they aren't at First Class or close to it by December, something's wrong.


It's not "my" troop, unless I can count all 42 Troops in my district as "mine". Then again, they've been trying to "adopt" me for the past 8 or so years. :)

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We don't have the school we meet in the rest of the year so we meet at the church that is our CO (the room is very small for a troop our size). We also meet at the park and at a pool. We have three weeks of summer camps (one troop organized, one coucil camp and an out of state high adventure camp. I can't imagine shutting down for the summer.

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In the other thread, someone mentioned that it was the PLC's choice to shut down for the summer. My reaction is why would you allow your PLC to vote to shut down during the summer? The PLC should be making decisions within the framework of the Boy Scout program, not making fundamental changes in the program. The Boy Scout program is set up to be a year-round program with weekly meetings and regular activities as a fundamental part of Boy Scouting. Certainly, reasonable adjustments are expected - not meeting over the holidays, not meeting right after returning from camp - but to shut down for two full months? Doesn't seem reasonable to me. You're denying (or allowing your PLC to deny) the Scouting experience for a long stretch of time. How does a Tenderfoot get signed off on Second Class advancement requirements if the Troop isn't meeting? How does a Scoutmaster help guide his Scouts if he isn't meeting with them for two months?


Summertime attendance may be lower - but so what? Do you stop providing the Scouting experience to the lads that do show up just because 50% don't? If the adult leaders set the cultural expectation that the Troop will be meeting year round, the boys will follow - it may look hopeless at first but if your meetings are full of things to do (as opposed to just sitting around planning), those that don't attend in the summer will start coming. Who says a meeting can't be held in the Scoutmaster's back yard where cooking skills are polished up - in a relaxed atmosphere with cobbler and ice cream served up afterwards.



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I'm not here to defend why my troop does it, but to explain it. My troop has five youth members total. I expect to increase this a bit in March but not sure by how much.


Where we are located is hot in the summer, but the heat isn't the reason. The meeting place is available. The assertion that kids are available with ton's of free time is not quite accurate.


School lets out mid June, then a week at Summer Camp right after school. We shut down for July and August. We tried for 2 summers to meet but with only two boys showing up a week it was hard to have a meeting.


The PLC and the adults did not fight over this.


We don't plan for our vacations and other travel to conflict but it does.


Two of the boys are raised by one parent, during the summer they are out of town and can't make the meetings, leaving three boys. Two of the families are both school teachers and they are gone half the summer.


My son goes to summer camp with the Troop, then does one more week at Camp. Then he is off to a Country Outdoor Camp as a Counselor for five weeks and spends time with his Swim team.


But even if the troop was bigger I would still like July and August off. It helps me get caught up on family time with my wife, and get some stuff done around the house.


The financial break is also welcome.


So please don't poke comments at the troops that have things under control and are adapting to the circumstances.



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