BSA Be Prepared Newsletter

August 10, 2010 4:34 pm

ScoutStuff.org’s  Be Prepared Newsletter provides news, tips, and other useful information about Scouting and the outdoors. Information is for all program ages, including Cub Scouting.

This newsletter is emailed every month.

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Baloo’s Bugle – June 2010 (Hoop-De-Doo!) Theme

May 8, 2010 2:59 pm

The new Baloo’s Bugle is available.  Baloo’s Bugle is a helpful monthly unofficial newsletter with games, activities, ceremonies, puzzles, crafts, and other ideas for den and pack meetings. This one covers the June 2010 “Hoop-De-Doo! theme.

This issue has another helpful Bill Smith article about annual planning and some of the changes coming up as Cub Scouts 2010 is implemented.

There also is a helpful article about pack and den newsletters.

Click here (link) to download Baloo’s Bugle in pdf format or here (link) to download it in Word format.


Reaching the Email-less

August 26, 2009 5:53 am

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Email lists (e.g., Yahoo Groups) are a great tool for keeping members of your pack informed about upcoming events and activities.

There is also a way you can make sure that your pack announcements go to those families who don’t have email but are set up to receive text messages (SMS messages) via their mobile phone.

Most wireless carriers have an SMS gateway which can be used to send a text message via email. For example, an AT&T wireless customer with the cell number of 555-555-5555 can receive emails to 5555555555@txt.att.net as text messages.

More carrier SMS gateway addresses are listed at the eHow link below.

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[Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net]


Free Web-Based Communication Tools

August 23, 2009 4:56 pm

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William Hooker is a KISMIF.org guest blogger from Concord, North Carolina.  He is a Wolf Den Leader in the Central North Carolina Council and is a first-year Cub Scouter.

A stumbling block of many Cub Scout packs is poor communication. It is hard for a pack to operate effectively without good communication among den and pack leaders and also with den and pack families.

Fortunately, there are several free web-based communication tools available that can be very helpful.   None of these requires any skill at HTML or web design.

For safety reasons, it is generally not recommended that you put very specific information regarding your pack or den’s upcoming activity times and locations on a publicly viewable web page.  All of the web-based products listed here permit your pack to restrict what information is made public.

Scoutlander is a free web-hosting service with features specially designed for BSA units permitting packs to be divided into dens, troops into patrols, etc. Scoutlander makes it simple to email the members of one den or the entire pack. Permissions and calendar entries are divided similarly.

MyScoutLink, by Synchronous Technologies, Inc., is web service marketed to scout organizations, but it appears to be based on a generic model that would be suitable for many types of organizations, from homeowners’ associations to yoga clubs. Although MyScoutLink has many of the same tools as Scoutlander such as the ability to share pictures, calendars, and email, it does not permit division into den subgroups as Scoutlander does.

Other free web-based communication systems that are available include Yahoo Groups and Google Sites.

Are there any web-based communication systems that have worked well for your unit? Let us know in the comments!

[Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net]


Baloo’s Bugle – July 2009 (Be a Sport) Theme

June 5, 2009 6:38 am

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Baloo’s Bugle is a cool monthly unofficial publication with games, activities, ceremonies, puzzles, crafts, and other ideas for den and pack meetings. This one covers the July “Be a Sport theme.

For Webelos Scout den meetings, this Bugle also has activities for the Aquanaut and Geologist Webelos activity badges.

This issue has lots of great game ideas and also features a thoughtful essay by Bill Smith on BSA intraorganizational communication and whether Roundtables are still needed today

Click here (link) to download it in pdf format or here (link) to download it in Word format.


Baloo’s Bugle – April 2009 (Jurassic Pack) Theme

February 26, 2009 5:49 am

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The March 2009 Baloo’s Bugle (by Commissioner Dave) is available for free download. Baloo’s Bugle is a monthly unofficial publication with games, activities, ceremonies, puzzles, crafts, and other ideas for den and pack meetings. This one covers the April “Jurassic Pack theme.

For Webelos Scout den meetings, this Bugle also has activities for the Family Member and Sportsman Webelos activity badges.

And this issue also has tips for den leaders, info about Pow-wow/University of Scouting, and suggestions for effective pack communication.

Click here (link) to download it in pdf format or here (link) to download it in Word format.


Pack 19 Spring 2009 Schedules

January 16, 2009 5:18 am

Our pack 2009 winter/spring schedules are now complete.

Here are a few things to note:

  • Our pack meets every Tuesday from 6-7 p.m.  In a typical month, two weeks will be den meetings, one week will be a joint pack field trip, and one week will be pack meeting or pack event.
  • We have a campout or a Saturday hike every month of the year.
  • Our 5th grade Webelos Scouts graduate into Boy Scouts at our March pack meeting.
  • The schedule flyer is distributed to our pack families and is also used whenever recruiting opportunities arise.
  • We also distribute a pack newsletter to our families each month.

1st-3rd Grader Schedule (pdf)

4th-5th Grader Schedule (pdf)