Bobwhite Blather

Information, Observation, and Inspiration for Scouters

ScoutingU: The new look of online training

If you have ever tatrained_monitorken an online course, you know how cumbersome they can be. Usually it just involves watching some video clips, or reading text (sometimes with pictures) and possibly taking a quiz. At best, it’s a one-way introduction to a topic; at worst, it’s a nightmare that never seems to end, as the progress bar slowly moves along.

The Boy Scouts of America has tried to fix some of this with the rollout of the new online training system. Continue reading

Financial practices for units: Non-profit status and sales tax

To continue our series of articles on unit finance, we’ll discuss a couple issues that can be complex: whether your unit holds non-profit status and its implications, including sales tax liability.

Bear in mind that I am not an accountant or tax lawyer. The information presented here is from personal experience. Also, rules and regulations may vary from state to state. As always, check with your council, chartered organization or a professional if you want definitive advice. Continue reading

Just tell me what I need to do!

TigerDenLeaderGuide_200School starts in most places in just a few weeks, which means we’re heading into our big recruiting season. Packs will be going out into the schools to spread the word about Cub Scouting, enticing boys with the thrill of adventure, exploration and fun, and hoping they’ll run home to tell their parents that they want to join.

We’re also going to be recruiting their parents as den leaders, committee members and even Cubmasters. Without adult volunteers, Scouting simply wouldn’t exist.

Recruiting boys is relatively easy. They’ll go for anything that appeals to them, and Cub Scouting has it all – and then some.

But recruiting adults is another story. Continue reading

NOAC 2015: It Starts With Us

noac_banner_montano_250More than fifteen thousand Arrowmen – Scouting’s best – converge on the campus of Michigan State University in East Lansing starting today to take part in the largest Scouting event in the United States other than the National Jamboree. The National Order of the Arrow Conference, or NOAC, gives these young men the opportunity to participate in a wide range of leadership enhancing, life-skill development and fun activities while living on a college campus for a week.

Scouts travel and live with those from their home lodge but will meet and participate with others from around the country in a wide variety of activities intended to not only help them be better lodge and chapter officers and leaders but to be of service to their troops and others in Scouting. Training sessions include subjects like high adventure, camping, ceremonies, American Indian activities and supporting their local units. Historical exhibits give attendees a glimpse of Scouting’s origins and the opportunity to see items such as memorabilia from the first hundred years of the OA. There’s plenty of fun, too, with sports and competitions that challenge Scouts physically and mentally, and nightly arena shows that feature keynote speeches and entertainment in a once-in-a-lifetime setting. Continue reading