The World Is Waiting

Photograph by Gary Hartley

Do you remember the last time the World Jamboree was held in the United States? If so, you're either a student of BSA history or a longtime Scouter. The answer is 1967, two years before humans landed on the moon. Lyndon B. Johnson was president of the United States.

The big bash hasn't been held on the North American continent since 1983, when Canada played host. Now Scouting's 24th World Jamboree is headed back to the USA in 2019, bound for The Summit Bechtel Family National Scout Reserve in West Virginia. The selection, showcasing Scouting's newest adventure base, was a win-win-win thanks to a joint bid by the BSA, Scouts Canada, and Asociación de Scouts de México.

In the meantime, this summer's world event will be held in Sweden, while Japan will precede the United States in 2015.


Jack Pape, a 17-year old Life Scout from Troop 374 in Omaha, Neb., has become the first Boy Scout representative to receive the prestigious American Spirit Award. He was honored for his heroism in providing first aid to Scouts injured during the tornado at Little Sioux Scout Ranch in 2008 and for pulling a young boy from a swimming pool and administering CPR in 2009. Jack earned the Boy Scout Honor Medal and the American Red Cross Certificate of Merit, respectively, for these actions.

Photograph by Warren Johnson/Lens Art Photography

Given by the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation and the society of America's living Medal of Honor recipients, the American Spirit Award honors individuals for extraordinary skill, professionalism, and excellence in a challenging situation. This year, in celebration of its 100th anniversary, Boys' Life magazine helped select a Scout to receive the award. Online voting held in January and February made up 50 percent of the evaluation process. "I just did what needed to be done," Jack said of his heroic actions. "There wasn't really any other option."

Jack flew to Washington, D.C., in March to receive the award and participate in National Medal of Honor Day activities. He also will be featured in an upcoming issue of Boys' Life and will serve as an ambassador for the magazine throughout the remainder of its yearlong celebration.  

For Foreign Service

With the World Scout Jamboree set for Sweden in July, here's a look at some of the United States' contingent patches from past jamborees.

Patch courtesy of Roy More

There was no official patch for the first gathering in 1920 in Kensington, England, but a U.S.-created temporary badge was used, with minor variations, through 1951. Redesigned in 1953, it saw service through the 1963 Jamboree in Greece. But there was no contingent badge for the 1967 event hosted by the BSA in Idaho.

In 1971, the 13th World Scout Jamboree held in Japan was the first such patch (above) to specifically mention the World Jamboree. And there have been specific contingent patches for every such gathering since, including the 1979 event that was canceled because of the overthrow of the Shah in Iran.


The Sierra Club Granite Gourmet Knowledge Cards app dishes up tasty trailside recipes for campers and hikers, along with tips on single-burner cooking and more. A portion of the apps' sales goes to the Sierra Club. If you don't own a BlackBerry or Android, you can buy the physical deck of cards at

Cost: $4.99 on the BlackBerry App World store or Android Marketplace.

Photograph by Seth Levy/Courtesy of American Hiking Society

Get On the Trail

Talk about a natural partnership. On June 4, the Boy Scouts of America will team up with the American Hiking Society to celebrate National Trails Day. More than 2,000 events across the country will remind us of the beauty of America's 200,000-plus miles of trails.

The options are many: trail maintenance, hiking, biking, paddle trips, and more. How will your pack, troop, or crew celebrate? Go to for ideas and to find events planned in your area.

A Knot That Binds

Some time later this year, you may see a new patch or lapel pin on some uniforms and suit jackets. The red, blue, and gold square knot is the BSA Alumni Award, and it signifies a Scouter who has helped other Scouting alumni reconnect.

Developed by the national Alumni Relations Committee, the award goes to alums who have demonstrated accomplishments in four areas: alumni identification and promotion, alumni engagement, personal participation, and personal education. For details about the registration process, go to

In the Event of an Emergency

Here's a multifunction device that will come in handy all over the outdoors. For openers, the solar-powered Raptor from Eton Corp. ( will charge your cell phone via USB. And what else does it bring to the party? Try an altimeter, barometer, compass, AM-FM-weather band digital radio, LED flashlight, digital clock with alarm, and—we're not kidding—a bottle opener. Rugged, rubberized, and weighing just 11.3 ounces, the Raptor is one power-packing device. $130.


Photograph by Roger Morgan/BSA Files

A Wilderness Odyssey

Youth Arrowmen can take part in two life-changing, 12-day programs at Northern Tier. The OA Wilderness Voyage in northern Minnesota's Superior National Forest and OA Canadian Odyssey in Ontario's Quetico Provincial Park stress the principles of Scouting while immersing boys in one of the nation's last true wilderness areas. 

During the first week, Arrowmen provide "Cheerful Service," helping to repair portage trails. The second week is spent paddling the beautiful lakes, observing wildlife, and building lasting friendships. Cost: $200. For more information and to register, go to

Report to the Nation


White House photo/Peter Souza

After crisscrossing our nation's capital from one unforgettable site to the next, a group of nine delegates met President Barack Obama to hand-deliver the BSA's official Report to the Nation. The report, given to the president annually, summarized Scouting's 2010 accomplishments. Some highlights from last year: Scouts performed millions of volunteer hours, and a record number of boys achieved Eagle Scout—56,000. The delegates included (from left) National Order of the Arrow Chief Jonathan Hillis, National Venturing President Jennifer Lowe, Angel Luis Cabanilla, Tony DeMarco Hansberry II, and National Sea Scout Boatswain Vanya Marie Keyes. Also in the delegation, but not pictured, were Vasant Bhardwaj, Kevin Garcia, Solomon G. Goodwin, and Jace C. Taliaferro.

Back in the Day


Photograph by John R. Fulton Jr.

Joe Davis followed in the steps of Scouting legends such as George Bullock and Jack Rhea. And he left some mighty big footprints of his own.

Now, Davis' colorful life in Scouting have been captured in Carry On: The Life Adventures of Joe Davis, Former Director of Camping, Philmont Scout Ranch. Written by James E. Sundergill, Davis' nephew-in-law, the book details Davis' life from his Eagle Scout days in the 1920s to his tenure as Philmont's director of camping from 1965 to 1973.

Davis made his mark with his successful response to Philmont's devastating flood of 1965. He also launched the Rayado programs and led the way in hiring young women as Rangers.

Carry On ($16) is available from the Philmont Staff Association. Order by phone (575-376-1138) or at

Schooled in Scouting

Photograph by Marc Sledjeski

Jeff Parrett, a history teacher and Scout leader in Hauppauge Middle School, Long Island, N.Y., has found a way to keep Scouts active and interested. Parrett and colleague (and Eagle Scout) Marc Sledjeski created a homeroom/advisory class for Scouts only.

The idea bloomed two years ago when Parrett's son and other Scout friends would come to Parrett's advisory class to work on merit badges. The school already permitted "special-interest" advisory classes for student council and other activities, so school administrators welcomed Parrett's suggestion.

Soon, he had 35 Scouts reporting for duty each day. Between them, Parrett and Sledjeski are certified counselors for 13 merit badges. Parrett calls Scouting in school a "tremendous" benefit for his boys. "Before we started this, I had seven or eight boys telling me they were going to quit Scouts," he said. "Two years later, we've already got a waiting list for next year."

Top of Page

May - June 2011 Table of Contents