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Scouts of America
Well, that was fast!
Starting next year (2018), girls will be part of the BSA scouting program, not just Venturing, Sea Scouts, Explorers, and STEM. What, you did not realize they were in all that already?
Oh my, it will be a busy year of updates - the organization name, logos, training, uniforms, patches, stickers, books, signs, documents, ... Whew!
After unanimous approval by the BSA board of directors, girls will join Cub Scout Packs in 2018. The plan is to have separate dens for girls and for boys. Then, in 2019, girls will join Boy Scout Troops. See the BSA statement and Bryans blog post.
Will this cause the Girl Scouts of the United States of America to go under? Maybe.
In 1972, BSA had 6.5mil members, 5.1mil in 2012, and 2.3mil in 2016 - maybe this change will raise the numbers now that the entire organization welcomes anyone.
I do not know about the separate dens for girls thing (and a separate program for girls in troops is planned). Whenever I have heard the need discussed, parents were looking for siblings to join scouting "just like the boys". Finding more den leaders just for the girls will be daunting, and I bet most packs will have girls join boy dens no matter what the national organization says.
Best of luck to all you front line volunteers over the next few years. We live (scout) in interesting times! Please just remember to do your best for your scouts and keep adult stuff at adult gatherings to make their scouting experience the best you can.
When do you think the first female Eagle Scout will be awarded? My vote is for November 22, 2019. Whoever posts the closest guess here gets a cookie!
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Posted: 14:13 10-11-2017 1330
Post Your Colors
Check out the July BSA promotional program!
If you are on the net, you could win some very cool prizes including trips to the national high adventure bases down to a $50 ScoutStuff gift card. The contest is only going on through July so click here to start earning points while everyone else is out at Philmont, summer camp, or the beach.
You just post a virtual flag to your state, enter your info, and you get a chance to win.
Today, Jenny in Portland, OR is the lead person, but if you use this link to enter, we might be able to catch her!
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Posted: 16:46 07-09-2017 1329
If you have been trying to help scouts cook balanced, healthy, wholesome meals on campouts, you might as well give up on breakfast this year.
General Mills is giving away 10,000 boxes of Marshmallow Only Lucky Charms cereal!
When scouts go shopping for food, they might notice the specially-marked boxes of Lucky Charms on retail stores across the U.S. this month that include a code on the inside back panel. Just enter that 14-digit code at MarshmallowOnly.com to see if you are one of the 10,000 lucky winners.
In 2015, GM gave away 10 boxes, but this year it is 10,000 boxes!
Did you know Lucky Charms has been around for 50 years? 50 years! I have been eating it my entire life, but I think an entire box of marshmallows would make me sick.
Green clovers, yellow moon, orange star, and pink heart were the originals I enjoyed. Then, blue diamond, purple horseshoe, red balloon, and magic rainbow crept in over the years.
Well, at least maybe the scouts will brush after breakfast and they'll have enough energy for the morning!
Posted: 22:40 05-16-2017 1328
With a mild winter and warmer spring, vegetation around here is earlier than usual. I found these new growth poison ivy plants just getting started on my hike this morning. In 2013, poison ivy was almost a month later. The garlic mustard and buckthorn are also already green and growing. Sumac and honey suckle are looking strong, too.
When you're out hiking and camping, keep an eye out for these "bad" plants and steer clear.
It looks like it could be a very bad year for invasive species, at least here. This could be a great opportunity for scouts to step up and help out local parks, trails, and public lands groups with beating back some of these invaders. Check around and see how your troop can pitch in and help out.
Posted: 10:24 05-12-2017 1327
Last September, Boys Life ran a MacGyver Challenge sweepstakes. Today, I received this photo of the patch from a participant in the contest.
Doing a bit of research on the net, it looks like 1,158 people entered so all of them should have gotten a patch, 10 should have received a swag bag of stuff, and 1 got a trip to the MacGyver set in Atlanta and a pizza party. A scout from Texas Troop 565 won the big prize - Read More (thanks for the heads up, thrifty).
Three things I think are interesting:
- Many online contests like this are easy to enter and often have fewer participants than you would think. I won a nice pair of Keen boots online.
- If only 1,158 of these were given out, I wonder if any scouting memorabilia collectors would be interested in them?
- I could not find a picture of this patch searching online - so, this might be the first and only MacGyver Challenge Scout Edition patch on the entire internet! :-)
Scouts looking for another patch to collect? Read a book and send a short report to Boys Life to enter their reading contest. You will at least get a Pedro patch, and maybe a lot more.
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Posted: 7:37 03-15-2017 1326
Following up on my post from yesterday about Boy Scout projects, here is a fun one for Cub Scouts.
There are around 20,000 species of bees worldwide and they are very important for the pollination of plants. Since WWII, bee populations have been declining due to pesticides, disease, parasites, and habitat lose. In 2015, around 40% of the bee colonies in the U.S.A. collapsed. Every year, some colonies collapse, but this was a lot.
To help these pollinators recover, scouts can:
- Learn about bees
- Reduce use of pesticides - video
- Cultivate native plants, of many varieties
- Provide nesting area or materials
Plant Wildflowers - Cheerios is giving away wildflower seeds for you to scatter and grow. They've already given away 80 million seeds and are nearing their 100 million seed goal. So, get yours now! Or, go to your local nursery and buy some that you know will grow locally.
Contact your city, county, or local Dept. of Natural Resources to identify a good spot for scouts to scatter the seeds. Plan to visit the location later in the summer to see what has grown, and maybe collect seeds in late summer to be sewn in other locations this fall.
Posted: 11:39 03-14-2017 1325
Plenty O Projects
Looking for some service conservation projects for 2017?
There are TONS of opportunities for volunteers to help out, from computer data entry to banding woodcock chicks - whatever your ability or interest.
Here's a few from MN DNR:
- Eagle Project? Field desks for kids to use in outdoor classrooms.
- Pull wild parsnip.
- Count loon populations.
- Trail Monitor - remember hall monitors in grade school?
- Scientific and Natural Area volunteer - collect seeds, plan seedlings, remove invasives, and more.
- Eagle Project? Make Tree Cookies.
- Monitor lake levels.
See MN DNR Volunteer Ops for these and more ideas.
Posted: 13:36 03-13-2017 1324
A tiger den joined my Pen Pals program and included code for a tiger emoji in their name. I thought that was quite creative so I went looking for other emojis that might be useful, or at least fun.
Fleur-de-lis = ⚜
Lion = 🦁
Bobcat = 🐱
Tiger = 🐯
Wolf = 🐺
Bear = 🐻
There is a very long list of emojis here and other places on the net.
These emojis may or may not display correctly depending on the capabilities of the device you are using to view this page.
Any other Scouting-related emojis out there? Try to include them in your comment.
Posted: 10:12 02-01-2017 1323
You should view this announcement about gender identity by the BSA Chief Scout Executive today so you are keeping up with changes in the organization's processes - BSA video
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Posted: 20:22 01-30-2017 1322
I've had the good fortune to learn from a lot of good men while volunteering in the Boy Scouts of America. They range from professional artists to scientists, some with a high school diploma and others with too many letters after their name to list. They all have interesting stories and valuable experience to share.
One Scouter in particular that I know has had a very eventful career, and this year was the keynote speaker at the Northern Star Council Million Dollar Day event. Dr. Andrew Baker provided terrific leadership and support to our troop while his sons progressed through the program. Dr. Baker is a great example of how Scouting can help a boy become a better man.
If you have just 13 minutes to spare, Dr. Baker shares his international experiences, Scouting impact, and how not to go winter camping.
Posted: 10:47 01-03-2017 1321Previous Posts
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