Scavenger hunt a growing success
Since the article on our 2004 district scavenger hunt ("In Search of... Knowledge, Teamwork, Fun") appeared in the September 2005 issue, more than 75 people have asked for information, with most either starting a similar event or planning to do so.
In our 2005 hunt, a councilwide activity called the Western Los Angeles County Council Patrol Challenge, we had 54 patrols participate. For 2006, we included neighboring councils and Girl Scouts, anticipating more than 100 patrols entering.
One fun addition to the program was to rent a theater and show the movie "Down and Derby." Almost 700 Scouts, leaders in uniform, and parents attended two screenings.
The district scavenger hunt article is available in our online archive. Scoutmaster Oliver continues his offer to provide information on organizing such an event to interested Scouters who contact him at email@example.com.
A Scouting family
If there were an award for Scouting families, I would nominate my husband's family, because without them our own family would not be what it is today.
I confess that I did not want to be a part of Cub Scouts, but my in-laws were determined that our boys should join. So I left it up to our oldest son, Robbie, and he decided to try it.
Now, having recently earned his Arrow of Light, he will soon be a Tenderfoot Boy Scout. And our younger son, Charles Evans, is a Wolf Cub Scout with so many belt loops he either has to get bigger quick or we will have to find some other way to display the awards.
What I find amazing is that every member of our family became involved. My mother-in-law, Barbara Poe, had been a den leader and troop committee member while my nephew, Jonathan, was in Scouting. (He became an Eagle Scout and is now a Marine who served two years in Iraq.)
My father-in-law, Bill Poe, was a den leader and Cubmaster when his sons were in Scouting. Since his grandsons joined, he has served as den leader, pack trainer, and assistant Scoutmaster.
My husband, Mike, is the Cubmaster of Charles Evans's pack and assistant Scoutmaster of the troop Robbie is joining. He also has served as assistant den leader, den leader, pack trainer, and assistant Cubmaster. Mike and his brother, Charles, were the key leaders in bringing this area's pack back to life when our nephew, Jonathan, was a Cub Scout. Charles also served as an assistant Cubmaster and Cubmaster.
And Iwho did not want to be in this programhave been the den leader for our younger son's den for the past two years.
Everywhere we go, we are known as the "Scouting Poes." We have taken just about every training class available, including University of Scouting.
I could write much more about our family and how, for all of them, every day is about giving. But I just want them to be recognized as examples of how valuable it is for the entire family to support their children in this way.
Articles portray the 'real stuff'
As a new member of the Greater Yosemite Council, I enjoyed the May-June issue of Scouting magazine.
Because the Boy Scouts got me into mountain climbing (for which I owe the organization a debt of gratitude), I especially enjoyed the article about Troop 474 reaching the top of Mount Rainier for the 25th year in a row. Bravo! That's the kind of real stuff that will get the boys away from their electronic toys.
Speaking of which, I thought the May-June article "The Wonder of the WoodsWhat Are Our Children Missing?" was also right on target. The writer, Mary Jacobs, did a fine job summarizing author Richard Louv's views regarding our need for nature.
Bravo also to illustrator Dan Andreasen for capturing so perfectly the contrast between playing electronic games indoors and enjoying the real stuff and genuine beauty of the outdoors.
Keeping a balance
I am the wife of a Scoutmaster who has been involved in various leadership roles over the past six years. He spends at least three weekends a month on Scout activities, as a trainer and with the pack, Order of the Arrow, Varsity Scouts, and other duties in addition to his Scoutmaster responsibilities.
We have two sons in Scouting, but we also have a 12-year-old daughter who feels neglected, because, with Dad, it seems to be all about Boy Scouts.
You had an article in the March-April 2004 issue, about volunteers maintaining a balance between family and Scouting, which was very worthwhile in helping Scout leaders find ways to keep a good balance.
A Scoutmaster's wife
Reader responses to the March-April 2004 Front Line Stuff question "Can a leader be too involved in Scouting?" are available on the Scouting magazine Web site at www.scoutingmagazine.org/issues/0403/d-flin.html.
Next year's photo contest
I missed the deadline for entering your photo contest. However, after seeing the winners in the March-April 2006 issue, I wondered if I could submit a picture I think really captures the heart of Cub Scouting.
Every year the theme of Scouting magazine's annual reader competition is announced in the May-June issue, and the winning entries are published in the March-April issue of the following year. While the current contest involves cartoon captions, every other year the theme is photography. When the next photo contest is announced in the May-June 2007 issue, youand all of the magazine's other readersare welcome to send in your best images of Scouting in action. In the meantime, all the winning entries from past competitionsphotography and otherscan be seen on our Web site. Go to the "search" page and click on "Contest Winners."
A special visitor
The Cub Scouts of Pack 945 gathered for their March meeting at St. Maximilian Kolbe parish, expecting the usual stuffflag ceremonies, awards, and games. Then a member of the United States Marine Corps entered the room in dress uniform and stood with them as they recited the Pledge of Allegiance. A hush fell over the room.
Marine Sgt. Phillip Stephenson was there to thank the Cub Scouts. Last November, they had prepared 17 care packages filled with snacks, hand-decorated T-shirts, and personal letters to send to Sgt. Stephenson's base in Camp Blue Diamond, Iraq. The packages came at an opportune time; the base had recently lost nearly everything when its barracks burned down in an electrical fire.
Back from his tour of duty, Sgt. Stephenson came from his hometown in Minnesota to thank the pack. He also presented a flag that flew over Camp Blue Diamond to Cubmaster Mark Bange, who, along with the rest of the pack, felt it was a great honor to have the marine visit and answer questions.
Copyright © 2006 by the Boy Scouts of America. All rights thereunder reserved; anything appearing in Scouting magazine or on its Web site may not be reprinted either wholly or in part without written permission. Because of freedom given authors, opinions may not reflect official concurrence.