When Is It Right To Return To In-Person Meetings And Camping?

When can we go back? The scouting question for the month of May! Just about everyone is itching to get back to in-person troop meetings and asking what they should be doing. With the states starting to open up everyone is asking what is the guidance for scouting. Some adult leaders are ready to go now and some are content with online meetings for the foreseeable future.  Just like everything else, Some people are looking for what others are doing first and some are pioneers blazing the trails for others to follow.  Some people are worried about the “second wave” and some are not. Just about everyone’s summer camp is closed and for those camps that are still open, everyone is wondering how that experience is going to measure up. Some councils are even pulling out all the stops and trying to create a great virtual summer camp experience. So… lots of questions for the start of the summer of 2020 and the scouting experience. We recommend that your unit needs to make two checklists. One checklist for meeting in person and the other for going camping or on activities. Here are some good items to add to those checklists…

  1. You need to pay close attention to your state and county mandates: No question. If your state is opening up but your county isn’t, you have to follow the rules of where your Charter Organization resides. There really isn’t any way around that. If you plan to camp in a different county make sure you know what “phase” that county is in to abide bit it’s rules.
  2. The ‘public meeting number’ is the metric you need to watch: This includes people in one area at a time like parents, adult leaders, and scouts. Ask yourself, “Are you the only unit meeting there at the same time?” It all adds up.
  3. Find out what your Charter Organization is doing. When do they plan on opening up again? If you are ready but they aren’t then what? Ask about their concerns with your unit meeting on their property. 
  4. Your council leadership should be putting out guidance now. Ask your unit commissioner for some documentation either online or printed copies. Nationals has been in meetings with many councils about their recommended guidance. It is fair for you to ask your council for theirs.
  5. Take a poll of your parents and ask what their comfort level is. Go into it expecting mixed results and that not everyone will agree with when you want to bring people back together. Try not to give a specific date but rather something like “Hey, we are thinking about starting up in-person meetings next month. What are your thoughts?” Fully expect that there will be some parents not comfortable with attending meetings in person to begin with. Ask them what they need to see before allowing their scouts to come back to in-person meetings. Make sure to write it all down. There will be “feelings” and we will go into how to slowly work at that too.
  6. You absolutely need consensus from your adult leaders in the unit on your checklists. Get agreement on that checklist with all your adult leaders. You may not have all the parents on board and that’s ok because they can choose not to participate but you do need to make sure your adult leadership is in sync because they are the ones attending and overseeing the meetings. For ScoutsBSA troops, you need to make sure your youth senior leadership is on board as well since they are supposed to be running the program. If that checklist is agreed to and when everything is checked off, there is little there to haggle over. It’s much cleaner than the Scoutmaster/Cubmaster/Advisor simply saying we are going on this date… then it’s opinion vs opinion and it only gets ugly after that.
  7. Set the expectation that plans may need to be suspended given a flareup of Covid-19 and there are new governance measures in place.

How can you slowly bring back in-person scout meetings especially considering parent comfort levels? Here are some suggestions…

  • Start your meetings outside. Weather is going to be a small factor but hey… it’s scouting. Fresh air, laughing and doing some physical activity (like the physical fitness requirements for ranks or Personal Fitness merit badge) could be just the ticket.
  • The simple science states people in close proximity (even closer than social distance recommendations) should be wearing a mask and keeping their hands clean. Make sure scouts have personal pocket-sized hand sanitizers and personal masks. If your agreed checklist states that everyone needs be wearing a mask then make it mandatory for the meetings. If not, then make sure parents are aware of that decision. Have some disposable masks and some hand sanitizer for those that forget. No matter which way your unit decides to go on this volatile subject, someone is probably going to be upset about it which is why there has to be agreement by the group in the first place.  
  • Make everyone bring a meeting backpack. Everyone should have their own book, pencil, paper, water bottle, towel for sweat, first aid kit, disposable gloves, etc for meetings.
  • Make sure there is sanitizer in bathrooms with written instructions on how to use it.
  • Social distancing and patrol meetings will be a bit tedious but if you are creative you can manage. Eventually it stands to reason social distancing will decrease over time.
  • Keep meetings short and fun. Remember when you first started online meetings? Scouts and leaders need some time to change things up and get used to something different.
  • Go into all this with a perspective that everyone won’t agree 100% and that there will be a learning curve and everyone needs time to adjust. Give some grace and ask for some. 
  • Make it very clear that if a scout doesn’t feel good then they can’t make the meetings. There is no sense adding extra stress to everyone having someone there who everyone is scared to interact with…

In the end the parents make the call whether their scout attends meetings or campouts. There shouldn’t be any pressure put on them, or their scout, to convince them one way or the other. When parents are comfortable enough they will bring their scout(s). Offer up the 30 day rank challenges or what merit badges are still be offered online as alternatives if they choose not to jump in right away with in-person meetings. You won’t understand everything going on in their household nor will they understand everything going on in your unit. Leave it at that and move on.

Camping Again As A Unit

Thinking about camping? Treating it like “normal” is definitely going to be a non-starter for a lot of parents. If your unit checklist for camping is completely met and all systems are go then like everything else, make sure your unit moves slowly ahead allowing some flexibility and understanding. Over time it will get more normal. Have patience and the fortitude of a saint. 🙂

 Here are some items to consider before you unit is camping again.

  • Traveling: Definitely not “social distancing friendly” as units did it before the pandemic. Our recommendation is to have the parents drive their scouts to and from the campground. Don’t make it too far so if something were to happen the parents can easily pick up their scout(s). Change this up only when social distancing recommendations have are changed.
  • Personal Gear: Tents, Mess Kits, Bottles, Clothes, Chairs, etc… Everyone must have their own stuff… no borrowing. This may put a strain on some scouting families that rely on some troop gear. If a scout needs to borrow something, properly identify it for that scout to use the entire campout. Properly clean and sanitize before it goes back into the troop trailer/room.
  • Eating: Our recommendation for the first couple campouts to have a dedicated cook team for all the meals and properly instruct the scouts to wear masks and perform necessary precautions to prevent cross contamination (stuff they should have been learning all along with cooking). Food should be purchased by 1 person. Snacks can’t be shared. Serving spoons are touched only by gloved, dedicated people per meal.
  • Cleaning: You could go the easy route and use paper products for all personal eating equipment so cleaning is minimum. Have dedicated pot scrubbers and perform all the sanitation precautions which we teach scouts to have like sterilization water, gloves, soap, rinse water, etc… If you have a wash stand, the dedicated, gloved people are dispensing the wash, rinse and sanitizing waters.
  • Interactions: Gathering around the campfire may be quite the circle and you may not smell the smoke as clear with a mask on (if that is what your unit has agreed to) but the idea is that you are out there and enjoying nature and learning with friends. Take it for what its worth. Fire tools such as saws, axes should be handled by gloved people.
  • Personal Space: People will be pretty skittish with personal space. Don’t take it personally. Adult leaders, you may need to remind your scouts that people do need their own personal space.
  • Sickness (non Covid-19): The first person to sneeze or cough on a campout will find themselves in an awkward position with everyone immediately treating them like they have the plague. 🙂 Obviously, if a scout has a cold or just getting over a cold it would be less stressful on everyone (including that scout/scouter) if that person waits till the next campout. A lot of people will be quite vulnerable to the common cold with having been isolated along with constant use of antibacterial solutions. Expect common colds to run through the community for a while.

We hope that this can help guide units to figure out when it’s best to slowly ramp back up to an in-person program. Again… regardless of anything else, your unit must follow federal, state, and local governance measures. This should include guidance from your charter organization. These above suggestions are a good starting point and I am sure after working with parents, adult leaders, and your charter organization you will find a path right for your unit. If your unit isn’t ready, then don’t push it. Allow some time to slowly walk forward out of the past couple months and for people to get more comfortable with the idea.

Good Luck Out There Scouters!


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Online Scouting is Here

Online Scouting Is Here

LearnScoutsBSA will be dedicating an entire section for online scouting which will include online merit badge day offerings by councils, online resources and ideas for troops, crews and packs. If you have online resources to share please email those to us and we will get it posted. 

**updated content** We now have a dedicated page to online scouting resources located here. 

We now have a dedicated section to preparing, considerations, and how units need to go digital here

To hear this article you can follow this link to our podcast which covers this content.

Practically overnight the scouting world has changed for everyone. With the global pandemic of COVID-19 and how everyone has had to adjust to accomodate for “social distancing” the scouting world could have taken a big hit in it’s programming… but it’s evolving right in front of everyone’s eyes. Some people who embrace change are stepping up and figuring out what kind of new opportunities could be found. Some people who embrace the typical traditions of scouting are understandably hesitant to see how things could erode away to what they feel is already too much change in the scouting world. When you ask just about anyone out there to give you the top 5 words associated with scouting you could hear words like “camping, first aid, knots, boating, cooking, summer camp, patrols, and troop meetings”.   

“Most scouting activities are face to face.”

“Scouting must accomodate for social distancing at the same time provide good quality, safe programming for scouts to build their confidence in accepting and conquering the next challenge.”

“We are going to need both change agents and traditionalists to make this work”

A lot of scouting is face to face, hands on, with a fun way to do things…. at least that is what adult leaders are striving for. Spring is when scouting starts taking off for the year. Troops are pulling in large amounts of Webelos who just transitioned out of cub programs and into the ‘big kids stuff’. Everyone is excite to go camping, try out that new fishing rod, start building fires and work on some advancement. Councils are ramping up programming with activities which have been planned since last year. All these activities generally are done in groups bigger than 10 people and social distancing usually meant making sure you brought soap and deodorant along with giving people some elbow room at the meal table. Scouting can’t lose momentum now in the midst of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Scouting must accomodate for social distancing/quarantines at the same time provide good quality, safe programming for scouts to build their confidence in accepting and conquering the next challenge. How is scouting evolving and where can you help and do your part? It’s going to take change agents, traditionalists, scout leaders and parents… in short everyone will need to chip in to make this work. At the heart of it we are going to need both change agents and traditionalists to make this work. Here’s an idea of where both camps can help each other out as well as what Scoutmasters, Councils and Parents can do to help scouting too. 

Change Agents Keep Doing: Keep dreaming up ideas which will engage youth for scouting in different ways. Don’t be harnessed by the “this is how we have always did things” right now because we can’t do things as we have always done it. 🙂 Your ideas like online merit badge classes,  online board of reviews, online meetings, 30 day plans, online campfires and using technology to bridge the gap is exactly what scouting needs to keep youth engaged and accelerating right now. Some of your ideas will stick and grow into programming which will help bring back scouting in the communities which hasn’t been seen for a long time. 

Change Agents Remember to: The one thing all change agents need to account for is ‘spirit of intent’ and who best to represent that than our traditionalist scouters. You can’t forget what we are trying to do and who we are as scouts. Not everything will be able to accommodated for with technology. You need traditionalists to help keep the sprit of intent of scouting strong. Give them a call. Ask them to participate and go in knowing that there may be some disagreements but you both are there for scouts. Above all else we need to make sure YPT (Youth Protection Training) standards are upheld so our scouts and scouters are safe in all our new ways of programming. Dreamers are usually big picture and fun drivers. YPT usually isn’t very fun to talk about but it is needed. Make sure you accomodate. 

Traditionalists Please Answer the Call: We need you more than ever now. Different programming is coming.  Some stuff just needs face to face, hands-on, social interaction and work together type of activities. By making sure you have a seat at the table here will go along way in providing a high quality program. “You can either be in front of the change or under it” is a favorite saying of mine. I believe this holds true now. Focus on “the why” certain things were done as they have been done. Make sure requirements are upheld and kept to standards and understand methods may need a tweak. We must not cheapen the scouting experience at this time. Making things easy doesn’t do any good for scouting. Show the dreamers how it’s still fun and work with them to make sure the fun never is dropped. The scouting traditions you hold dear will definitely get it’s moment to shine the very minute we are over this pandemic and you have a great opportunity in ensuring that this new wave of scouting experience keeps that spirit of intent.

Scoutmasters / Cubmasters / Crew Advisors: As a fellow scoutmaster, I feel your pain. Our units were just ramping up with great spring and summer plans. We are now adjusting the best way we know how and accommodating for social distancing and quarantines. We will now need to accommodate for technology and eagerness too. Some things are definitely scary.

  • Online merit badges: In my mind this is the biggest team of wild horses that can get a way from you in a hurry. Scouts are very excited to be taking all kinds of merit badges all at once. As per national standards all scouts must get approval through you before they take a merit badge. I would caution against a free for all as the logistics and paperwork will be an absolute nightmare when this all settles down. Be selective with criteria you are comfortable with. Make sure your Advancement Chair is inline with your thinking. Too many open merit badges never gets done but a focused effort on a select amount will keep the scouts engaged and motivated to keep going. 
  • YPT: Audit merit badge counselors by asking for a copy of their Youth Protection Certificate especially if they are providing online classes on their own or are out of council. Unfortunately there will be people out there taking advantage of this situation and it falls on you to make sure you approve merit badges with certified scouters with YPT. Online merit badge days provided by councils should be accommodating for this. Counselors should be contacting you when the scout is either finished with the merit badge or a partial is being issued to send you the official blue card so you need to be in communication with them anyways.
  • Pack Programming: What can you do now given that your season is wrapping up? This is a good time to get a lot of adult training out of the way. You may also find some online belt loop activities for those cubbies who may be running a bit behind on their advancement. 
  • Technology Chair: If you are not technically oriented then find someone in your troop who is to assist in getting your troop online. Opportunities will be coming out of everywhere now. More people have access and will take opportunities quick. Registrations will need to be decided on and reacted to quicker because more people outside of your council will be taking advantage of the opportunities and you don’t want your scouts left behind. Get your parents on an email list or get active engagement on a troop website. Get ready to do some online meetings. You don’t need to master technology but you will need someone in your troop ready to tame that technology beast ready to assist in how you want to get things done. 
  • Programming changes: Start rethinking the focus on what can be done online and what must be done on trips (camping and other activities). Try keeping the two easily distinguishable for parents and scouts. It will be a work in progress so please roll with the punches.
  • Troop Handbooks/Guides: You may need to revisit your troop handbooks with updated guidelines on technology use. Depending on your troop structure that may mean a proper vote by your Troop Committee. 
  • A Scout is Helpful: Do a good turn daily. Remind them to continue to serve others in this time by helping more around the house, doing what they can when they can. It can be a simple thing like taking a trash bag with them when they go out for a walk or write letters to their other family members. People will notice. Families will appreciate the extra help and motivation at home too. 
  • Making it Fun: Your scouts are restless, nervous and worried about how their lives are going to change. Make scouting fun. This is the best opportunity for them to have some normalcy to their lives by having online meetings and getting to see each other. If you are at a loss for ideas then ask your other adult leaders for ideas. LearnScoutsBSA is creating an entire new section just for online scouting resources to help with that. 

Councils: Make sure to give your scout leaders some time to accomodate for this new technology wave. Provide some resources to help them along and work with the leaders to agree upon a new level of expectations for communication and programming. The whole scouting world is literally at your doorstep and will take advantage of any online programming you will have to offer so making sure ‘how’ your local council leaders are made aware may need some rethinking and some partnerships reforged. Traditional ways of communication are now getting modernized and/or altered. 

Parents: There are a few things parents need to start thinking about from an online scouting program.

  • Scouting and public areas in the home: As a merit badge counselor I am begging parents and guardians to insist that your scouts are doing online scouting in the public areas of your house or dwellings. This helps merit badge counselors out greatly with youth protection precautions. It also provides you some awareness of what’s going on and you may pick up on some cool knowledge too. 🙂 Some of these merit badge counselors may depend on you being within earshot or in the same room while doing online classes. Email the merit badge counselor.
  • Get engaged in your troop communications: Read emails from your scoutmaster. All of it… not just the first couple sentences. 🙂 Get engaged on the troop website. Ask questions. Don’t wait for someone else to ask a question. Online programming will require faster responses. Your scout may miss out on opportunities that are only 48 hours old.  
  • More stuff to do at home: Your scout will be coming to you with more stuff to do at home. Have fun in doing it with them. 

What we are doing at LearnScoutsBSA: We are going to have an entire section devoted to online scouting for ideas, resources, online opportunities by councils and troops alike. We are building out the section now and it should be up by April 5th. We are still taking content so if you have content to share please email me with that and we will get it on the site. 

We are living in exciting times and we are about to see how scouting will evolve yet again. It will take all of us to make it work and grow. 

Good luck out there scouters! 


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Studying online

30 Day Rank Challenges – Scout through First Class

Given the current situation with everyone home, here are a great set of 30 day challenges you can have your scout work through to get to the next Rank (Scout through First Class). Obviously there will be some stuff that will need to wait until a campout and things like that… Please download it and have your scout work in the scout handbook as all the info is in it.

Author: LaToyia McKinnis-Sand : Thank you so much for allowing us to post this. 


These links do not require site membership. They are for everyone to use. Keep up scouting in your community by keeping your scouts engaged.

Scout Rank: Download here

Tenderfoot Rank: Download here

Second Class Rank: Download here

First Class Rank: Download here

Podcast #3 – Released

Hi! We are excited about our next podcast episode – The Importance of the Leadership Role Rank Requirements! In this 34 minute episode we break down the why, how and some thought provoking ideas of these super critical rank requirements. We will be transcribing the podcast shortly and will have it posted on this site.


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Key - life coaching concept

The Eagle Scout Project Proposal – How To Coach Your Scout

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Your scout just got awarded Life Scout Rank. It’s taken some blood, sweat and tears. On both sides 🙂  Lots of emotion…

The scout is tired but is ready to make the final ascent towards that Eagle Scout Rank. Surprisingly enough this is where a lot of scouts trip and fall and become a “Life Scout for Life” scout…. but not this one… s/he is ready. The first thing on the mind is that Eagle Project. The scout has been thinking on and off about what it’s going to entail but now its for real. S/He looks at the Eagle Project Proposal Workbook and freezes. Ok. No sweat! S/He has a Life to Eagle Coach… you! Your lucky day but it’s your first time at being an Eagle Coach. Well… here are some things you will need to get across to your Eagle candidate when getting that Eagle Project Proposal Workbook ready for approval.

Hi! ​My name is Josh Meadows and I am the Life to Eagle coach for Troop 264 of the Point Church out of Greenwood, Indiana. I would like to give a little “how to” and helpful hints on coaching your scout in completing the Eagle Scout Project Workbook.  Some of this may seem silly, but I have seen all this happen along the way.

First Point: Remember the Eagle project is your scout’s project and not your project. Eagle projects are meant to show the scout’s ability to lead others in the task at hand… With that being said, yes your scout has to figure out the project, plan the project, fund the project, and get the project approved… After all that planning it’s then your scout’s job to lead others in completing the project and not necessarily do the manual work in the project unless it’s to help or instruct.  These are very important items to make sure your scout can show in his/her workbook when going for approval.

Second Point: There are many ways to show leadership inside a project, but a way to make his/her leadership stand out to an Eagle approval board is to find a way to make the project a “legacy project” which means that after the project is complete there are ways for your unit to continue the project for years to come.  Example: One of our youth did flag disposal boxes for an Eagle project.  The unit now goes every 2 months and empties these boxes and takes them to be retired properly. The legacy of that project lives on.

Third Point: Make sure that all the paperwork is filled out completely and fully describes the project in full, all the way through.  Make sure your scout has all the appropriate signatures at the end of the workbook BEFORE your scout goes submits it. Yes! I have seen this missed! LOL! The best way to do this is to use the fillable PDF form, which is online. Writing it up with pencil or pen will make things messy. The scout will have several iterations before it’s ready for submission and If the scout has terrible handwriting it will be impossible for the approval board to read it. This ultimately will lead to not getting the project approved.

Fourth Point: “Be Prepared”…. seems like I’ve heard that somewhere? 🙂  Your scout will need to go into that meeting with as much information about the project as possible. S/He needs to be ready to talk about that project inside and out. Things like: How much estimated time, materials, permits needed, etc…   Once that workbook is filled out, your scout needs to study that thing!  When the board asks questions about the project, your scout should never have to look into that book to know it.  S/He needs to be confident about the project! You can coach a bit here by setting up a mock review. Ask the questions and let the scout answer. See how well s/he can talk to it without looking at the workbook making sure to hit the biggest points of how the plan calls for leadership, management, scheduling and backup plans.

Fifth Point: This may not account to all projects but most in my experience.  Most youth want to do a project for an organization that has influenced them, or done something for them, or is just really personal to them.  Your scout should share that story when s/he is sitting in front of a board for approval.  Show them why this is a great project, and why it means so much to your scout.  I worked with a boy that spent a lot of his youth at Riley Hospital.  When he was there someone came and gave “Tie Blankets”.  That stood out to him and he thought so highly of that, that is now going to be his project, and he is making it a legacy project by making serval hundred of them for future use beyond is original project.

Sixth Point: Although not required to get your project approved, your scout should show information and pictures of the project.  Your scout should show the board that s/he has met with the receiving organization, and has planned out with them exactly what the project is and where it will be going.  This is just a ‘cherry on top’ so to speak in making the project stand out that much more.

Seventh Point: The project book must be nice and neat.  Use a 3-ring binder with sleeves to put the workbook, pictures, information into.  By doing this the scout is showing the board that s/he is ready and organized.  There should be two copies of the entire book so if for some reason they ask a question your scout can reference it in the book… if needed… but s/he won’t because of the fourth point in this article… study the project!  🙂

Eighth and Final Point: Your scout must show up in a full class A uniform!  That is the class A shirt, scout pants, socks, belt, erit badge sash or OA sash, hat if preferred but not necessary and book in hand.  Be sure to have all the appropriate awards, ranks, badges earned on the uniform and sash (for my council that includes ranks, awards, and merit badges with all the appropriate council and troop insignia items). Be proud to be a Scout!  Your scout should be proud that s/he has made it to the finish line and is now going for Eagle Scout!  If your scout doesn’t have some of these items, please don’t have them go and spend tons of money but rather just borrow from a fellow scout if possible. A scout is Friendly, Helpful, Courteous, Kind…they will help out.  Remind the scout to remember those kindnesses when others come asking for favors….

I hope some of this helps you coach your scout across the finish line on getting that Eagle Project approved.  These are mostly 101 items, but sometimes having another eye, and a helpful reminder is the difference in getting a project approved or coming back next month to try again! Reach out to other coaches as well for lessons learned so you don’t fall in the traps they discovered.

Hand writing thank you note

2019 Was A BOOMING Year

Our First Year Stats!

30,000+ Page Visits

91 Countries

1035 Facebook Page Followers

987 Facebook Page Likes

178 Free Site Memberships

87 Youtube Channel Subscribers

12 Podcast Followers

Thank you everyone for an incredible year. I can’t say enough how appreciative I am of your continued support and contributions you have made on one of the many different methods of getting information out. 

We have transformed a lot. We began this journey as a purely educational site geared to share scouting experiences. I had a group of friends in scouting that helped me get some initial content up and away it went! We tried a few different approaches… some worked and some didn’t so naturally we have adjusted. 

We have now moved into the realm of being a scout news and information portal for many different communication methods while having laser focus on training and online classes. We have feeds from multiple scouting bloggers, we have free training videos that anyone can use via our YouTube channel and our cooking section has become a main avenue of content. 

What’s coming for 2020?

  • More YouTube Playlists: We will continue to build out very specific compilation videos based around specific scouting subjects on our channel. These will always be free and available to all scouts and scouters. We have had a huge response to what has already been added. Check out our what we have already.
  • National Camp Directory: We are developing a National Summer Camp / Scout Camp Directory. It will include the essentials adult leaders need to know about that particular summer camp as well as what these camps offer outside of summer camp. It will be searchable based on select criteria. This will be a free service to utilize.
  • Monthly Master Class Subscription: We will be starting up a monthly paid subscription for an exclusive “Masters Class on Scouting Topics”.  A small group of scouters will get together twice a month to discuss and dive deep into that month’s topic via an interactive video session/webinar. Those sessions will be recorded for future referral and accessed via this site. They will also have exclusive rights to some content built around those scouting topics on our site. We are currently finalizing monthly topics subjects and should have an official announcement / enrollment opportunity in the next couple weeks. Email me for more info / interest.
  • Podcasts: We are dipping our toes into the podcast scene and like what we see. Expect more podcasts to reflect our favorited articles, new content, interviews with other scouters and scouting bloggers. Click here to hear what we got so far.
  • Scouting Resource Co-Op: We are developing a scouting information resource sharing co-op. This will be for scouting bloggers that want to laser focus on their particular scouting passion while benefiting from a larger shared audience with other like minded scouting bloggers. Email me for more info / interest.

So there is a sneak peak into what we have cooking! We are so stoked that this passion of ours for scouting is like so many others. We love the feedback and look forward in making this a better resource for a lot of scouters in 2020! Good luck out there scouters!


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Feedback Is A Gift!

BSA Has a New CEO and President

Here is the link that was emailed out across the nation… Click here


Here is the text of it.


Dear BSA Volunteers and Scouting Ambassadors,

I am happy to let you know that earlier this evening, the National Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America named Roger C. Mosby as the organization’s CEO and President after a focused search, which was initiated when former CEO and President Michael B. Surbaugh retired after a tenure of more than four years.

As the BSA moves through an extraordinary time of both change and opportunity, we believe Roger’s experience as a seasoned executive, adept at guiding transformation and driving growth, will bring the right combination of strength and focus needed to steer our organization toward a promising future.

Roger Mosby most recently ran his own consulting firm focused on executive coaching, following his retirement from leading energy infrastructure company Kinder Morgan in 2015. During nearly two decades with the company, he served as HR lead and was one of the original six officers. During his tenure, Kinder Morgan grew from 175 to more than 11,000 employees, with Mosby leading extensive change management and cultural transformation efforts.

Roger was a Scout as a youth and served for more than 33 years as a volunteer in the Mid-America and Sam Houston Area councils, in addition to positions with the Southern Region and National Committees of the Boy Scouts of America, as well as the World Organization of the Scout Movement. He has received the Silver Antelope Award and the Silver Beaver Award and is a Vigil Honor member of the Order of the Arrow.

We thank Michael Surbaugh for his years of service and leadership to the Boy Scouts of America.

Now, as we enter the next stage, we welcome Roger and his well-suited expertise to guide us toward even more opportunities to bring the benefits of Scouting to more youth, families and communities.

Yours in Scouting,

Jim Turley
National Chair, Boy Scouts of America

Breakfast Casserole – Cooking Like a Rockstar!

You had a great night’s sleep. You lost the paper/rock/scissors match at the last troop meeting so you are cooking breakfast. The alarm clock goes off, you ask yourself why you chose scissors twice in a row… You get up.. get coffee on. Sun is just coming up… You can sit there and watch it because you are prepared with this great breakfast idea.

Here is something pretty easy and cheap to make on your next campout breakfast meal. This has it all! Lots of protein, dairy, carbs, fats and seasonings! This meal will feed 8 people very well and there is very little cleanup and not a lot to bring out with you either! All that for a little more than $1/person… Ready? Here we go…


If you follow all these hints your biggest concern will be to pre-heat the Dutch Oven to get it ready because all the ingredients will take about 5 minutes to bring together and get ready.  If not, anticipate a least another 30 minutes of work prior to you getting the charcoal ready for breakfast.

Here is a great list of tasks that can be done before arriving at camp:

  • Pre-cook sausage at home, draining it of the fat and placed in a container ready to add to the bowl.

  • Pre-crack your eggs and put them in a zip-loc bag. You can beat them and pour into the bag. (freeze it and you can use it like ice in your cooler for the ride out to camp and it will be ready Saturday morning.)
  • 2 cups of milk already poured out and placed in a smaller container next to those frozen eggs.
  • 1 cup of shredded cheese in a zip-loc bag as well. You can rubber-band all three things (frozen eggs, milk and cheese) together to keep them cool.

You can use a gas/propane stove to pre-heat the Dutch oven and get the charcoal ready with a charcoal chimney (google charcoal chimney). This meal will take 45-50 minutes to bake at 350 degrees on an average 50-80 degree day without a hard, cold wind blowing on it. That means the oven is at 350 when you pour in the ingredients and it’s kept out of the wind. If you are heating the Dutch Oven over a propane stove it could take as little as 5 minutes to get ready. You can place an all metal and glass meat thermometer in there to check on pre-heated temps.

The biggest concern you have to think about is the charcoal and the fact that 45 minutes is reaching near to or outside the maximum burn times/effectiveness of charcoal.

For a 10 inch Dutch Oven, it will take 21 briquettes ( 14 on top and 7 on the bottom) to bake at 350 degrees. (hint… google “Dutch Oven Briquette Temp Guide). If the temps outside are colder or if you don’t get the stove ready to go when the briquettes are ready, you may have to have add a second set of 21 briquettes to keep the temps consistent towards the end of the bake. You can use the first set to pre-heat for 15 minutes and then have the second 21 ready to add at the 30-minute mark. If you don’t have something like a propane stove to pre-heat your Dutch Oven.

You will put in all the ingredients into a 2 liter mixing bowl. All the contents should come up to about 1.5 liters. Mix everything together with a large spoon. Once that is ready. Have a can of spray oil ready, open the hot Dutch oven and spray that oil around the bottom of it ( I like olive oil here ) or use a parchment paper liner. I would recommend against a metal liner here because it will take much longer to bake and you will have more inconsistencies in the casserole due to air flow differences between the Dutch Oven and the metal liner. It will look like goo but it’s ready to bake. Put the lid back on and set your timer for 45 minutes to check on it. Now you can send all the dirty dishes to the washing stand and you can relax for about  minutes. At the 30 minute mark you will need to check on the briquettes. As they are burning, they will begin to disintegrate. If they are half the size of what they started off at the 30 minute mark, you will need to add more briquettes in a hurry and will probably need to let it bake for an extra 10 minutes. Have those charcoal briquettes on ready standby. 

To check if the casserole is ready, stick a clean knife, fork or stick in it till it hits bottom. Now pull straight out. If it comes out clean, its ready.

If there is any gooey matter on it, it still has some time to go. Once that knife comes out clean take it off the charcoal. Let it set while you tell your campers breakfast will be ready shortly and wash up.

Your Ingredient List: 

1 wristwatch or clock

6 Eggs

1 pound of crumbled breakfast already browned and drained of fat

2 cups of milk

1 box of StoveTop Dressing for Turkey

1 cup of shredded cheese

Your Equipment List:

1 oiled Dutch Oven (10 inch at the minimum)

1 Parchment Paper Liner (optional)

21 Charcoal Briquettes (14 top, 7 bottom) Second set of 21 briquettes for backup.

1 Charcoal Chimney with a propane stove to prepare the briquettes or lighter fluid

1 lighter

2 liter mixing bowl

1 wooden spoon

1 pair of insulated leather gloves to handle heat

1 pair of food safety gloves

1 pair of charcoal tongs

For more cooking recipes or tips and tricks on cooking in camp, visit www.learnscoutsbsa.com and check out our published articles.  


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Got a Question?


Grinch-Kabobs are incredibly easy to prep, make and serve. It’s a fun gathering activity for cub units and they are very good and refreshing after a heavy meal.