Category Archives: Advancement
I am very proud of Cameron who earned the rank of Eagle this week. It has been a long but fun journey for him and for our family. Congrats Cameron!!
Last weekend I finally got to feel that warm, fuzzy feeling that every Boy Scout parent looks forward to, a complete Eagle project. With football season finally behind us he was able to get things scheduled do the work. Drew tried to complete it in October but there was an event at the camp so we had to reschedule. Thirty eight people from the Troop, Crew and my work in addition to family showed up to help. It only took us about 4 hours and everything was complete. I was very thankful that we had so many people show up and give their time to make it possible. Next up, final Eagle board in December.
This has been a very good week in Scouting around our house. On Monday our youngest son, Cameron, earned the rank of Second Class. Not too bad for a Scout that just crossed over in February. Tonight our oldest son, Drew, had is Eagle project Proposal approved at the Eagle boards. We have been waiting a long time for this and we are stoked! Finally, Carly has begun work on her Girl Scout Bronze Award. The only downer is that once she completes it she has chosen not to continue on in Girl Scouts but is excited that our Venturing Crew I once again active and will be in full swing once she is 14. Mom and Dad can’t quit smiling!
Just a quick update on Drew’s Eagle Project. He is headed to the Eagle Board of Review on Tuesday to have his project proposal approved. If it is approved he hopes to complete the project sometime in the next 30-60 days depending on his fundraising and donations. He will be rebuilding a parking lot and making it handicap accessible. The project is located at Camp Dakani which is a local Camp Fire camp. It has been a long road and hopefully he is just one step closer.
This year Troop 168 attended camp at our Council owned camp, Slippery Falls Scout Ranch. The last time we were there was 2010. Before that it had been 9 years since our Scouts had chosen to go to Slip. This was my sixth Boy Scout summer camp as an adult leader. Of all the camps I have attended I have to say that this is the best camp we have attended since I have been in the Troop.
One of the things (and there are many) that I will always remember about this summer camp is this was the first summer camp for my youngest son, Cameron. Another is that he earned Tenderfoot on the last night camp along with the rest of his patrol that were there. Many of the Scouts in his “new Scout” patrol were ready to advance with the exception of making a Patrol Flag. They created that at camp and then had Scoutmaster conferences and Boards of Review.
This was also the first time I had to go to camp without my oldest son, Drew. My wife and him left on Wednesday of camp for their own adventure to the Florida National Sea Base. They got to spend the week on a 71′ schooner called Pirates Lady. They spent the week with other members of our Troop and District, snorkeling, fishing and sailing in the Florida Keys.
I had a great time at camp with Cameron but I really missed not having Drew there. Next year will be the last opportunity I get to go to camp with my sons btoh still a youth in the program. I am looking forward to it and have been since 2007.
Recently, I got the privilege of teaching the Geocaching Merit Badge to seven Boy Scouts at our Troop’s Annual Merit Badge Fair. We usually host a Merit Badge Fair (MBF) every spring with about 150 or so Scouts attending. This year was no different.
This was my 4th time to teach at the MBF but it was my first time to teach Geocaching at the MBF. Heck, it was my first time to EVER teach it. I tried Geocaching several years ago with a low end GPS unit and it was ok but not that great. Fast forward to today and with rise of the smartphone and apps it has become really easy and really fun. I have even got the family involved.
We spent the first part of the day doing the “book work” portion of the badge. They learned what GPS means and how GPS works. We discussed Geocaching etiquette and Leave No Trace. We also talked about using a map and compass and UTM (Universal Transverse Mercator) system. It was fun and then learned some new things.
in the afternoon we got in the car and went caching. I took the Scouts to an area that had several Geocaches located around an old abandoned park. All of the Geocaches were within walking distance from each other and all were in different containers. As a bonus, one of the caches was a Boy Scout related cache from the Council Centennial Camporee in 2009. it was located next to the property the campout was at and was cleverly disguised as a dove.
One of the requirements was to activate and release a new Travel Bug. A travel bug is a trackable tag that you attach to an item. This allows you to track your item on Geocaching.com. The item becomes a hitchhiker that is carried from cache to cache (or person to person) in the real world and you can follow its progress online. We got one from a fellow Scouter who was teaching a class and we walked through activating it. We attached a Scout coin with the Scout Oath on one side and the Law on the other. We put it in an ammo can and are waiting on someone to pick it up and move it.
It was a great time and they had a blast learning what may become a lifelong hobby. I had fun teaching the class and will likely teach it again next year.