New orientation videos for parents
The article in the September issue on the BSA national annual meeting mentioned an orientation video for new Cub Scout parents. Is there a similar video for new Boy Scout parents? If so, I'd like to show it to the parents of Webelos Scouts who are about to move up to Boy Scouting.
The Boy Scout Division has released the video "Webelos-to-Scout Transition" (AV-02V012) and accompanying "Webelos Transition" brochure (BSA Bin No. 18-086). Both this video and the "Cub Scout Orientation" video (AV-01V012) are available through local council service centers.
Young American Award nominations
The September article on the BSA national annual meeting showed the winners of the annual Young American Awards. Where can I get an application to nominate a young person for next year's awards?
Ask your local council service center about the nomination procedure and requirements. Nominations for local awards can be made by Boy Scout troops, Explorer posts, Venturing crews, individuals, or other community youth-serving organizations that share the same program objectives as Scouting. The council then selects the young people to be honored with council awards and submits one nominee for a national award. Fully completed local council nominations should be received no later than Dec. 1. National nominee applications must arrive at the national office by Jan. 2, 2001.
'Wonderful times' as Scouts
My oldest son spent five years in Cub Scouts and is now in his first year as a Boy Scout. Keith is autistic, and Scouting has been one of the best things in his life. It has given him the opportunity to interact with a small group of boys his own age and provided him with lots of fun things to do with his parents.
His first den leader was an absolute jewel, and the staff at Camp T. L. James has always been very helpful at parent-and-son weekends and resident camp.
My younger son is now in his third year as a Cub Scout, and he also loves Scouting. (Parents who don't get involved in their kids' activities don't know what they are missing.)
Thank you for providing us with so many happy memories. My sons will never forget all the wonderful times they have had in Scouts.
Anna Keith Foy
A tribute to a Scoutmaster
There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold. ...
Robert Service's "The Cremation of Sam McGee" was the perfect campfire entertainment for Scouts in Atlanta's Troop 23 in the mid-1950s. Standing erect in front of an ember-filled campfire, our Scoutmaster recited the tale of prospectors in the frozen Alaska wilderness with a deep, animated voice while Scouts acted out the parts of the two characters portrayed.
Our troop held monthly camp-outs, and the Saturday night campfires with the evening dew covering the ground are as clear to me today as they were over 40 years ago.
Our Scoutmaster was the late Paul Hughes, a unique individual who could easily qualify as a Renaissance Man. To me, a boy growing up in a home with no father present, Mr. Hughes was a male figure who exemplified what was good and right.
He did not talk a lot, particularly about himself, but when he did, we all listened. He had served as a Marine Corps drill instructor during World War II, and he wore a drill instructor's campaign hat as part of his Scout uniform.
To me, he was bigger than life and twice as strong, but he also had a gentler side. He took great pride in the rose gardens in his yard and carved neckerchief slides of great detail and beauty. He readily expressed a love of poetry and could recite numerous passages. He also wrote poetry, composed music, and was an accomplished cellist.
On cold Sunday mornings during our camp-outs, we would sit on pine logs and Mr. Hughes, beneath a backdrop of a stone-faced mountainside, would deliver a message of hope and encouragement.
He made the lessons of Scouting relevant and real. For example, he told how a boat capsized in the Niagara River and ropes were thrown to the survivors. But because the would-be rescuers hadn't tied loops in the rope ends, the exhausted swimmers were unable to hold on before being swept over the falls.
With that account in mind, we learned to tie bowline knots for rescue and practiced pulling each other up to a balcony 10 feet above a gym floor.
I am a proponent of character education and have seen a demise of it during my 34 years as an educator. I received much of my own character education from my Scoutmaster, who lived and practiced the tenets of the Scout Oath and Law and was also my mentor.
Perhaps my proudest moment came on a cold November night in 1957 in the Fulton County Courthouse when my mother pinned the Eagle Scout Award on my uniform, with Mr. Paul Hughes standing by my side.
Principal, Griffin High School
Square knot is upside down
I noticed that the embroidered square-knot insignia for the James E. West Fellowship Award is shown on page 22 in the September issue with the yellow ends to the right of the wearer. In all Scout publications, including the Insignia Guide, the lighter color is always to the wearer's left.
I would appreciate a clarification, as I am the "uniform police" in my district and I have been telling Scouters to wear the knot with the yellow ends to the left.
The correct positioning of the James E. West Award knot is shown to the right. According to the Insignia Guide (BSA Supply No. 33066B), the basic rule for positioning all square knot insigniawhich represent awards ranging from Arrow of Light and Eagle Scout to Heroism and Silver Buffalois to always have the the loop of the embroidered square knot that comes in front of the standing part to the wearer's right.
November-December 2000 Table of Contents
Copyright © 2000 by the Boy Scouts of America. All rights thereunder reserved; anything appearing in Scouting magazine or on its Web site may not be reprinted either wholly or in part without written permission. Because of freedom given authors, opinions may not reflect official concurrence.
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