Our council recently held it first 2010 National Jamboree committee meeting. (Yeah, I know, some councils have a lot of work done for the Jamboree already and ours is just getting started.) I attended the meeting because I have five Boy Scouts in my troop that would like to attend the event, so I was thinking about being a scoutmaster for one of the three council troops.
When I arrived home from that meeting, 35 miles later, I was beginning to have second thoughts about going on the trip. The 2010 Jamboree is going to cost a lot more then the 2001 Jamboree did.
First, there is the fee for the Jamboree itself which will be $795.oo. That is a $200 increase over the 2005 fee, and $300 more then the 2001 Jamboree fee of $495.00. That is quite an increase in eight years. And yes, I do realize the cost of things have increased, but I do not think they have increased sixty percent since 2000. Have they? My salary surely has not increased that much.
Second, there is the cost of touring. What sites will the troop see on the way to the Jamboree? We will probably spend a couple of days in Washington D.C. How about a tour of Mount Vernon, or some of the other nearby sites?
Third, there is that nasty thing called transportation. This one is the biggest unknown at the moment. Fuel prices are so unstable that bus companies and airlines are not able to predict what the cost will be in 2010. It is too early to make any sort of reservations, not that any company would be taking them anyway. With record fuel prices being made almost daily I am fearful of what the transportation costs will become.
Fourth are the miscellaneous costs that include uniforms, t-shirts, patches, pictures, and equipment.
Our council’s Jamboree chairman played around with estimating the cost of all these items and came up with a total of somewhere between $2000 and $2500 per participant. That is nearly double the cost of the 2001 Jamboree for the Boy Scouts and leaders of my council.
I drove by a few filling stations on my way home from that meeting and starting thinking about the price of gasoline. Then I began thinking about the 2, 3, or 4 meetings each month that I would have to attend if I was chosen to be one of the scoutmasters. I did a little quick math and realized it could easily cost me over $750 in gas (at today’s prices) to attend all those meetings!
I enjoyed attending the 2001 National Jamboree, but I am beginning to think I did not enjoy it enough to pay over $3250 to attend another one. I am going to have to give this some serious thought during the next two months.
By the way, if any of you who read this blog has one, two, or three thousand dollars burning a hole in your pocket, and you do not know what to do with it, drop me an email. I might be able to help you find a great way to spend it.