Archive for March, 2013


scouttoys1950I subscribe to the eBay Scouting Hot Finds Newsletter that is done by Jason Spangler. While most of the eBay auctions featured are for various patches once in awhile he lists something new that catches my eye. Today was one of those days. There is an auction that ends today for a 1950s MARX TIN LITHO CABIN, WITH SCOUTS AND ACCESSORIES. It is like a toy soldier action playset except that it features Boy Scouts figures at a summer camp setting. It features a scoutmasters cabin with 16 scouts, 29 different pieces of accessories and 14 North American wildlife figures. I never knew something like this existed. At the time I write this the bid is at $222 with six and a half hours left to go. The picture shown here is an overall view of the playset but more pictures are posted to the action that show more details. Check it out at http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=261187177809

While I would love to have this as a part of my Scouting collection but it is already out of my price range. (My scoutmaster pension was not as much as I had hoped for. jk) Of course, you never know. Maybe I have a reader of this blog who would like to purchase this set and give it to me as a present.

It could happen.

UPDATE: The playset sold for $255.00.

Thanks for Sharing!

    2013 Spring Fundraiser PosterBoy Scout Troop 68 held its spring fundraiser last Friday, a Dad’s Belgium Waffle Supper. This was the fourth year we held a spring waffle supper. The troop use to hold a Palm Sunday pancake and sausage breakfast but when the troop membership became less than a dozen Scouts we switched to the Dad’s Belgium Waffle meals because we no longer had enough Scouts and parents to work our own breakfast. Melrose is a predominately Catholic community so we hold our spring waffle suppers on the Friday before Good Friday to give folks an option other than fish for supper. It has worked out fairly well.

    The troop members began pre-selling tickets for the supper five weeks before the meal. We took the third February troop meeting and used it as a ticket selling kickoff event. I was a little disappointed when only three of the eight Scouts showed up that night. It was a cold evening but the boys went out and sold nearly $180.00 worth of tickets during that hour of sales. That was only a third of the tickets we sold last spring on the first night of sales. It was not a great start for this year’s fundraiser.

    During the coming weeks the Scouts were on their own to pre-sell tickets. When the event arrived I discovered that only six of nine Scouts actually went out and sold any tickets, including our newest Scout who joined the troop after the sales began. While three Scouts did not sell any tickets two sold nearly $200 worth, one sold over $350 worth, and one sold over $900 worth of tickets. The troop pre-sold a over $2000 in tickets for the supper. Now it was up to the door sales to see how well we would finish this spring.

    The supper began at 4:30 and lasted until 7:30 on March 22. People had already arrived at the opening time and for the next 90 minutes there was a steady stream of people coming to the church basement to eat all the waffles their stomach could handle. We also served fruit cups and cheese curds, along with coffee and milk to wash it down. Most people were satisfied with one of the huge waffles, but many went back for seconds, and a few even tried thirds.

    This morning I, as the troop’s treasurer, sat down to see how the bills compared to our income. While things are not quite finalized it looks like we made a profit of over $1200. Of this, approximately $440 will go into the Scouts’ individual credit accounts which they will use to offset the cost of camp. About $850 will go into the troop’s general fund. While it was a good fundraiser it was down about $300 from last year.

    This is the only spring fundraiser the troop conducts. In the fall the Scouts will have a choice to participate in the council’s popcorn sales. And, depending on what the committee decides at their April meeting, we may have a fall waffle breakfast.

    Thanks for Sharing!
      Central Minnesota Council Friends of Scouting 2013 shoulder patch.

      Central Minnesota Council Friends of Scouting 2013 shoulder patch.

      I don’t know about your council but ours, the Central Minnesota Council B.S.A., is in full swing for its 2013 Friends of Scouting (FOS) drive. Representatives from the council or district will visit each of the troops, packs, and crews to talk to families about the Scout program, and ask for donations to help the council provide a great program for thousands of youth. In Melrose Troop 68, this visit usually takes place at the March court of honor which will happen on Monday, the 25th.

      The council will accept any donation but does have a couple of “levels” at which the person or family who donates enough financial support will receive a special token of appreciation. At the lowest of these level points the donator will receive a patch. At the next levels he/she will receive a Norman Rockwell unframed print or framed print.

      I visited with Bob, my district executive, for awhile yesterday and found out the design of this year’s patch. This will be the sixth year that the council continues a theme based on the Scout Law. Each year has featured a point of the Law. This year has Kind as its theme. Is it a sharp looking patch, in my opinion. It is also nice to see that the council has returned to a stitched patch, instead of the cheaper looking print patches it used during the past three years. As you can see from the picture, this year’s FOS council patch is one you could proudly wear on your uniform.

      What does your council do to show its appreciation during its Friends of Scouting drive?

      Thanks for Sharing!

        scout dvd movie collectionLike many Scout leaders and families I have collected a few Scouting-themed movies over the years. I know my collection is far from complete but it does contain some of what we could call “classics”.

        Scouts To The Rescue, starring a young Jackie Cooper, is the only VHS tape I own for this collection. It is a twelve part series from many decades ago, 1938. Cooper plays an Eagle Scout of a troop which finds a buried treasure which turns out to be a stash of counterfeit money. Unfortunately, It is the only movie of my collection I have not watched yet since I bought it after I got rid of my VHS player for my television. Some day I will have to transfer it to dvd.

        Mr. Scoutmaster is a 1953 comedy featuring Clifton Webb as a television personality who becomes a scoutmaster to learn more about teenage boys when his tv show begins to lose ratings. I saw this on tv a couple decades ago and found someone on eBay who was selling DVD copies. Today there are several online stores which sell this movie.

        Follow Me Boys is probably the most well known movie about Scouting. It was released by Disney in 1966 and features Fred MacMurray as he serves as a scoutmaster for twenty years with the same troop. A young Kurt Russell is a member of that Boy Scout Troop. I first saw this movie in 1984 when I attended scoutmaster training at Philmont Scout Ranch. I quickly picked up a copy when it came out on DVD. This movie belongs in everyone’s Scouting collection.

        The Wrong Guys is a 1988 movie which features popular comedians of the time, including Louie Anderson, Richard Lewis, and Richard Belzer. The plot follows a group of men who where members of a Cub Scout den in their youth as they gather for a camping reunion. Of course, none of them know much about camping. And to top it off, a couple of escaped convicts get mixed up in the story. Not a strong plot but still fun to watch.

        Down And Derby is a comedy with a Cub Scout Pinewood Derby at the core of its story. Or I should say how some fathers take a Pinewood Derby too far and try to win no matter what the cost. This 2005 movie features Greg German and Pat Morita. This family film is a great one for this time of year as packs across the country prepare for their own Pinewood Derby. One of my favorite lines from the movie is when one of the Cub Scouts says that he cannot wait to grow up so he can race his own car.

        Pixar’s Up really is not a movie about Scouting but has a main charater that is 100 percent Boy Scout, or should I say Wilderness Scout? Some of Russell’s (the Scout) Scouting knowledge comes in handy as he and the old man Carl have an adventure that takes them to South America. The movie pokes fun of Scouting but does it gently and with respect. This movie is a must for a Scout collection.

        Scout Camp, The Movie came out in 2009. It follows the adventures of one Boy Scout troop during their week at summer camp. While some people did not feel that this was a very good movie about Scouting, after all, the Scouts do not always follow the Scout Oath and Law (sound familiar?), I enjoyed it as a fun story. I was surprised to see a wide number of Scouts-types in the film who I could identify as members of my own troop over the years. There was also one or two scenes that struck home a little too closely.

        759: Boy Scouts Of Harlem is a 2009 documentary filmed by Justin Szlasa and Jake Boritt as they follow four Boy Scouts from Harlem troop when they attended summer camp. The newest Scout, eleven-year-old Keith, spends his first week at camp and faces the challenges of the woods: the dock test in the deep lake, creatures of the night, and the climbing tower. The film is well done and you really get to know the boys and their leaders during the film.

        The last film of my collection is the Philmont Documentary Collection. If you have been to Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico you need to have this DVD in your collection. I feel it really captures the sense of what it is like being at the ranch. It not only gives the viewer an in-depth history of Philmont but also follows a Venture co-ed crew and they partake in a twelve day trek. I call this dvd the best thing next to being there. Be sure to purchase the blu-ray version of the film for your HiDef television.

        Which of these movies do you have in your collection? Which ones am I missing?

        Thanks for Sharing!

          melrosebeaconad2013Our local newspaper, the Melrose Beacon, showed their support of the Scouting program last month by printing a full page ad to celebrate the Boy Scouts of America’s anniversary. The ad featured photos of Cub Scout Pack 68 and Boy Scout Troop 68. It also featured the Boy Scout Oath and a short description of the goals of the program. (Click on the picture for a larger view.) The newspaper has done a full page Scouting ad for anniversary week for a number of years now.

          The Melrose Beacon has been a supporter of Scouting since the troop began in late 1979 when it published a note about organizing a Boy Scout troop in town. I became involved with the troop in May 1980 and soon began writing stories about troop events and submitting pictures from troop activities to the Beacon. The newspaper has always been great about printing these stories. In fact, I must have done a pretty good job of writing them because only once do I remember them editing a story.

          The pack and troop would like to thank the following businesses and organizations for picking up the cost of this year’s ad: VFW post 7050 (the troop’s charter sponsor). Coborn’s Grocery Store, Spaeth Sodding and Landscaping, Heartland Security, Freeport State Bank, Kraemer Lumber Company, Melrose Dental Office, and Hennen Lumber Company. This ad would not have been possible without their financial support.

          Does your local newspaper support your local Scouting program? Do they print articles and photos of your troop activities?

          Thanks for Sharing!