Eight fall recruiting ideas you haven’t tried

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Fall is approaching, whether we realize it or not, and with it comes our most productive recruiting season. School starts back up, and our Cub Scout program kicks into gear. Each year, packs need to form new Tiger dens and add to the others, replacing those who aren’t returning or have moved away.

We also need to make an effort to reach out to all available youth and give them the opportunity to join Scouting. Even if they’ve seen us before, boys grow and develop and their interests change rapidly. Last year’s lukewarm prospect may be this year’s go-getter.

By now, every pack should have held its annual program planning meeting – if yours hasn’t, get together as soon as possible to map out the year’s pack meetings and activities. You should also be scheduling your recruiting events: Continue reading “Eight fall recruiting ideas you haven’t tried”

Put me in, Coach!

baseball_in_grass_200Spring has sprung, or is in the process of springing, in much of the country, and with it comes the national pastime. Major leaguers have been warming up in sun country for a couple weeks, and our young people are dusting off their spikes and swinging for the fences as youth baseball leagues get ready to start up if they haven’t already.

Every year at this time we are reminded of the words of Solomon 2:11 that our beloved Detroit baseball broadcaster Ernie Harwell used to quote as spring training got underway:

For lo, the winter is past; the rain is over and gone, the flowers appear on the earth, the time of the singing birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land…

It’s a potent reminder that as sure as the sun rises, spring will arrive and our enjoyment of being in the outdoors will once again guide our Scouting programs. Continue reading “Put me in, Coach!”

To play, or not to play?

ccsoccer_200Ready or not, summer is coming to a close, fall is rapidly approaching, and with it the start of school. We’re gearing up for our Join Scouting nights and Boy Talks and enticing young people (and their parents) to join our packs with our fun programs and cool activities.

There are also those who have had a year or two experience with Scouting and are on the fence, deciding whether they’d like to continue on with more of the same or branch off into other activities. It’s always a shame to lose a Scout and his family if  they have the impression that they’ll see the year ahead as “been there, done that” with the kinds of things they’ve done already rather than as a progression into activities that build on what they’ve done and involve new things they can do as they grow.

One reason for this reluctance is the preponderance of youth sports teams, whose seasons are really anything but a continuum or progression. Continue reading “To play, or not to play?”

Build it and they will come

Field_Of_DreamsAbout four years ago, our community voted on itself a tax increase to build a new library. Even though it was only twenty or so years old, the former library building was way too small. There was hardly any space to hold the burgeoning collection of materials and provide room for modern technology such as computers and DVDs. Though it had lots of programs and regular users, there just wasn’t enough room. A committee of dedicated volunteers and professionals designed and built a beautiful new building so big that six of our former libraries could fit inside. There are quiet areas, conference rooms, a coffee shop and a large conference room, plus room to grow. The amazing thing to note is that in this day and age of being able to look up just about anything online, the parking lot is packed every time I drive by, seven days a week, and it’s difficult sometimes to find an available study room when I meet Scouts there to go over merit badges. Continue reading “Build it and they will come”