Applebee’s Flapjack Fundraiser

You’re invited to an Applebee’s Flapjack Fundraiser Breakfast
to support
Troop 582′s Jeff Sheidy who is paralyzed from a single car accident.

Sunday, February 22, 2015
8:00 AM to 10:00 AM

Applebee’s Neighborhood Bar and Grill
634 Baltimore Boulevard
Westminster, MD 21157

Adults – $7.00
Children under 10 – $4.50

Questions:  Contact Mike Arndt (T582 SM) – 443.791.5261

Wilderness First Aid

This class is required by the BSA for those leading trips to BSA High Adventure Bases.  The curriculum was developed by the BSA Health and Safety Committee.

Sponsored by Troop 381, First Presbyterian Church, Westminster

Location:  First Presbyterian Church, Westminster

Cost:  $85 for Wilderness First Aid

Instruction Dates:

  • CPR
    • To complete the WFA class, participants must possess a valid CPR completion card.  Bring a copy of your CPR to the class.
  • Wilderness First Aid 
    • March 21, 2015 from 8 AM until 8 PM

Registration, questions, and details:  David Rogers – 410.857.5372 or David Rogers\


National Youth Leadership Training (NYLT) – 2015

National Youth Leadership Training (NYLT) is an intense, but fun, 6-day outdoor learning experience conducted over two weekends.  It is designed to provide all youth members of the Boy Scouts of America with leadership skills, confidence, and experience they can use in their home Troops and Crews. NYLT will support the Scoutmaster, Coach, or Crew Advisor’s role in training youth leaders and will enhance leadership skills in a Scout or Venturer who already possesses the foundation through attendance at a Troop, District, or Crew-led leadership training course.

The course is conducted under the auspices of the Baltimore Area Council Training Committee using the latest national BSA-developed National Youth Leadership Training syllabus, and it parallels Wood Badge training.

Through activities, events, games, and adventures, NYLT participants will work and play together as they put into action the best that Scouting has to offer.  They will practice and experience leadership skills first hand!

We highly recommend this training for all Scouts who are considering a run for Senior Patrol Leader (SPL) or Assistant Senior Patrol Leader (ASPL) in the future.  Scoutmaster approval is required.  The Troop will pay for this training!

The course objectives are:

  1. To give participants a basic knowledge of the skills of leadership and to help them relate these skills to their Troop’s or Crew’s program.
  2. To have fun!
  3. To enhance the relationship between the participant and his/her leader.
  4. To give participants the opportunity to share ideas and experiences with others.
  5. To give participants the confidence and knowledge to run their Troop/Crew’s program.
  6. To create an atmosphere where Scouts will experience Scouting at its best!
  7. To have more fun!
  • Details:  Spring 2015
  • Details:  Fall 2015 (To Be Determined)

What is an Eagle Scout?

Asking “what is an Eagle Scout?” sparks interesting conversations among Scouters.

This question got me wrapped around my own axle for a few years; but not anymore.

Conversations about Eagle Scout commonly unfold like an operatic libretto. The curtain rises on the chorus singing about how once proud standards have fallen because now just anyone can be an Eagle Scout. Stories of overzealous parents, twelve year-old Eagles (good lord twelve!), and other “grave concerns and injustices” unfold dramatically to advance the theme.

In the finale the basso-profundo aria; “Well, we really make our Scouts earn Eagle, we aren’t an Eagle Factory (the chorus gasps in horror) like that troop across town.”

A standing ovation, and the curtain falls until the next performance.

As a new Scoutmaster  (mind you, this was thirty years ago) I was in the audience listening to old Scouters sing their aria of complaint. I certainly wasn’t going to be one of those pariahs, a Scoutmaster who just gave away Eagle. No sir, not me! I joined the cast and learned the songs; I built up my own idealized standard of what an Eagle Scout ought to be. Nobody, nobody was going to get Eagle unless they met my standards.

I hadn’t actually answered the question “what is an Eagle Scout?” I had been distracted by a very different question; “who deserves to be an Eagle Scout?”

The answer to the question “who deserves to be an Eagle Scout?” is easy; any Scout who completes the requirements.

That’s it.

No more and no less.

There’s no Eagle-plus, and no Eagle minus, only Eagle.

During my tenure as a Scoutmaster I presented somewhere north of 100 and south of 120 Eagle Scout badges.

So how did it go?

Not one of the boys who received an Eagle during my tenure ever completely measured up to my idealized, dramatically operatic, and totally unnecessary standard.

Some years ago, thank goodness, I learned that didn’t matter.

The important thing to realize is that once a Scout earns Eagle Rank he begins the lifelong process of becoming an Eagle Scout.

Not one of the 2.7 million or so boys who have earned the rank were an ideal, fully formed, “EAGLE SCOUT” when someone handed them the badge; they have a lifetime of opportunities ahead of them. We have recognized a measure of potential and character in those Scouts, the rest is up to them.

My first Eagles are well into their forties now, and I am privileged that many of them keep in touch with me. Each is busy becoming an Eagle Scout every day.

That’s what an Eagle Scout does.

Our job is not defending the holy sanctuary of Eagledom from the unworthy, quite to the contrary;

… we want to see that every Scout has a chance to complete the requirements for Eagle, that way they can spend rest of their lives becoming an Eagle Scout.

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January Ski Outing Posting by Troop Historian

Troop 883’s January Outing

For Troop 883’s January Outing, we went to Roundtop Mountain Resort near Lewisberry ,Pennsylvania to ski, and we slept at a Boy Scout camp called Camp Tuckahoe. Once we got to our cabin at the camp, we unpacked our things for going to bed and then began to eat Cracker Barrel and play some games. A little later, we got in our sleeping bags and attempted to go to bed.

We then all got up and out of the cabin the next morning to go to eat at McDonalds and then go to Roundtop to ski and snowboard. Once we got to Roundtop, we all split up to go our separate ways, some to lessons and some right to the slopes. Around 4:00, we met up and drove to a pizza parlor to watch the Ravens game. :-( Then we went back to the cabin where we played games and, shortly after, went to bed.

Then in the morning, we packed up our things and went to the adult’s cabin to eat bagels for breakfast. Finally, we hopped into the cars and drove back to the church.

Everyone loved the outing, and we all wanted to do something like it again!

Submitted by Nathan J, Troop Historian

Scouts Brave ‘Misery Campout’ in Subzero Weather for Coveted Clear Bead


Having just returned from our own Winter Wonderland outing (where the temperatures dropped “only” to 9 degrees), I thought you might find this interesting!


Posted on January 10, 2015 by 


Every year around this time, Troop 707 watches the weather report for news of an impending snowfall or cold snap.

But unlike others in their hometown of Columbia, Mo., who see a foreboding forecast as a reminder to head to the nearest Hy-Vee for snow shovels and salt, Troop 707 does the unthinkable.

They schedule a campout. It’s called, appropriately, the Misery Campout.

Sometimes Troop 707 Scouts get only a few hours notice before heading outside for what they anticipate will be the coldest weekend of the year. That typically means a January trip, but the troop’s coldest Misery Campout on record was in February 2004. Temps dropped to minus-12 degrees that weekend. Brr!

Last weekend, the forecast looked bad enough (or good enough?) for the emails and Facebook messages to go out: It was time to camp.

The Columbia Missourian wrote a fun story about the troop’s latest Misery Campout, where the temperature dipped to minus-3 degrees.

When the mercury reached below zero, the Scouts cheered. Why were they so excited?

It’s all about the bead.

Great Rivers Council’s awesomely innovative bead program


Scouts in Great Rivers Council, headquartered in Columbia, get specially colored beads every time they go camping.

They get a blue bead for a campout with good weather, black for a rainy campout and white for a campout with snow on the ground.

But the clear bead? That’s the one everybody wants.

Clear beads represent campouts where the temperature drops below zero. Clear, I assume, because not even colors can survive when it gets that cold.

None of the boys in Troop 707 had a clear bead, so when they saw below-zero temperatures in the forecast, the Scouts jumped at the chance to add a clear bead to their belt.

These camping beads aren’t an official part of the Scout uniform, but they’re officially awesome. And they’re a great way to encourage camping, no matter the weather.

What do the beads mean?

Here’s an overview:

  • Blue: Good weather
  • Black: Rain
  • White: Snow on the activity
  • Purple: Below freezing
  • Clear: Below zero
  • Red: Full week of summer camp
  • Yellow: Any district activity
  • Light blue: Any council activity, except summer camp (this would include conclaves)
  • Pink: Order of the Arrow ordeal weekend
  • Orange: National or regional event (except high adventure)
  • Green: Philmont
  • Brown: Any other high-adventure base
  • Green Marble: Council JLT

For a complete look, see this PDF.

Baltimore Area Council Philmont Contingent – 2016


Are you interested in going to Philmont?

The Baltimore Area Council will send two Council Contingents to Philmont during the summer of 2016 – July 12-25, 2016 and July 14-27, 2016.

If you are interested in learning more about this opportunity, email Mimi Hatch at (

If necessary (due to more interest than the number of spaces in each Contingent), a lottery will be held in March of 2015.

Maroon 5 Guitarist James Valentine is an Eagle Scout



Eagle Scouts are rock stars. Literally.

This week I learned James Valentine, guitarist for the Grammy-winning band Maroon 5, is an Eagle Scout.

Along with Imagine Dragons lead singer Dan Reynolds, this makes (at least) two Eagle Scouts in massively popular rock bands.

Valentine earned the Eagle Scout award in 1996 as a member of Troop 672 in the Cornhusker Council, based in Lincoln, Neb. He was a member of the LDS church, served as his high school’s student council president and played in the youth orchestra and jazz band. He was the guitarist for several bands before joining Maroon 5, which released its debut album, Songs About Jane, in 2002.

You probably know all about Maroon 5, the band behind No. 1 hits like “Moves Like Jagger,” “One More Night” and “Makes Me Wonder.” These days Valentine, lead singer Adam Levine and the rest of Maroon 5 are bigger than ever. They’re about to go on tour to support their latest album, V.

By the way, I’ve reached out to Maroon 5’s publicist to try to land an interview with Valentine. Expect more if I hear back.

In the meantime, watch this video of Valentine teaching fans how to play “She Will Be Loved” on the guitar. He’s giving back to others by sharing his musical gifts in a way that lets others benefit.

In other words: He’s still doing good turns, even as a rock star!

Some other famous Eagle Scouts I’ve blogged about

Hat tip: Thanks to Boston Minuteman Council Scout Executive Chuck Eaton for the tip.

University of Scouting

University of Scouting – March 14, 2015


The University of Scouting is the single best day of training in the Scouting program!   You can take up to seven (7) classes taught by leaders who have years (and even decades) of experience.

Register now through January 15 at $30, January 16 thru March 1 for $35, and (for you high rollers) March 2 thru 11, $50 and NO lunch.  Register now for the classes you want with lunch included.  Walk-ins will have limited selections from classes with limited seating.

Use the link below to register today and you’ll be amazed!

Sent on behalf of Marcie Forster