Bobwhite Blather

Information, Observation, and Inspiration for Scouters

Our Eagle Scout President

FordBoyScout_200As a Scouter, you’re most likely more familiar with American history and civics than most people. You also probably know which U.S. president:

  • was never elected to national office?
  • was the only one from the state of Michigan?
  • was the only one to attend the University of Michigan?
  • was the only president to grant a pardon to another president?
  • was the only Eagle Scout to serve as president?

I’m referring, of course, to the thirty-eighth President of the United States, Gerald R. Ford, whose 103rd birthday we observe this week.

President Ford took office during a turbulent time in our nation’s history – upon the resignation of President Richard Nixon. Mr. Nixon was embroiled in the scandal surrounding the cover-up following the break-in by Republican operatives at the Democratic campaign headquarters in Washington’s Watergate complex. Mr. Ford, a long-serving congressman from Grand Rapids, Michigan, was serving as Mr. Nixon’s appointed vice-president after Spiro T. Agnew resigned the vice-presidency due to unrelated charges of federal income tax evasion less than a year earlier. Anyone who was alive and paying attention to the news then remembers vividly the chains of events leading up to Mr. Ford’s becoming the unlikely President of the United States. Continue reading

Is there a “recruiting season”?

another_250In a couple all-too-short months, it’ll be fall, and Cub Scout packs will be holding Boy Talks and Join Scouting nights, re-registering boys for another year of fun and accepting new ones into the fold. Fun lies ahead, and we don’t want them to miss out on any of it.

Boy Scout troops usually accept new members in the winter or spring when Cub Scouts cross over. Months of preparation go into planning joint activities, going to den meetings and having the Arrow of Light Scouts visit our troops. The two meet at crossover, where the new Boy Scouts take the leap into their next adventure.

Looking at the way we do things, it’s as if we open our doors twice a year: once in the fall for the Cub Scouts, and once in the winter for Boy Scouts.

But step back – it really isn’t that way. Continue reading

Summer camp survival kit

Even though summer camp rolls around each year at this time, we’re never quite prepared for it. We generally do a pretty good job, but there are details we tend to forget from one year to the next. Add to this the changing nature of our troops and a refresher becomes a good idea.

So, whether you’re heading to camp next week or next month, here are some summer camp-related articles that I and others have written on the subject recently. Continue reading

Cellphones at summer camp

phone-1031070_250Earlier this week I posted an article giving adults some guidance, sometimes tongue-in-cheek, about what they should pack for spending a week at summer camp with their troop. In it, I included a link to a packing list for Scouts that my troop has used for a few years now, and on that list was a mention that cellphones shouldn’t be brought to, or used at, camp.

Here’s the paragraph:

Scouts should not bring…Cell phones – these should not be carried or used in camp because they are a distraction. Boys may bring them in the car to and from camp, but they must be left in the car. Adults are requested to leave their phones in their cars or tents.

The list was written several years ago back when cellphones were basically telephones and not much else. Continue reading