Michigan Crossroads Council Receives National Charter

The Michigan Crossroads Council received it National Charter today from the Boy Scouts of America.

Pictured (left to right):
Al Lambert, Dick Northup, Raymond Davis, Mike Melinn, Brad Arbuckle,  Mike Yost, Don Shepard, and Fred Wallace.

Summit 2020 High Adventure

Looking for High Adventure Opportunities for your Scouts?  Then check out the Summit 2020 Council Contingent information here.

Theme and logo for 2021 National Jamboree Revealed

Scouting instills confidence, helping young people discover they can achieve more than they thought possible.

That’s the uplifting message behind the logo and theme for the 2021 National Jamboree, which the BSA announced today.

Using Scouting’s highest-profile gathering to deliver a distinct thematic message signals a bold new approach for National Jamborees. It ensures that the theme, “Face the Challenge,” will leave a lasting impression on Jamboree participants and our entire movement.

Jamboree organizers will weave the theme throughout the event. They’ll reinforce it before, during and after the Jamboree. They’ll showcase it at stadium shows, deliver it using wearable technology and highlight it at special flash challenges that pop up wherever participants congregate.

Smartphone integration and a pre-Jamboree survey will ensure that each participant embarks on their own Jamboree journey. Even with tens of thousands of participants, no two Jamboree experiences will be the same.

“From an overall programmatic design, we want to customize the Jamboree to an individual’s area for growth,” says Ed Lynes, the volunteer serving as Jamboree Thematics Lead.

‘Face the Challenge’

So what does “Face the Challenge” mean? Here’s how Jamboree organizers explain it in a document summarizing the vision for the 2021 National Jamboree:

  • The truth is that young people can achieve more than they believe is possible. Scouting uniquely prepares its members to redefine their boundaries, push past them and emerge from the experience with the confidence that no matter the challenge, they can meet it.
  • Nothing is impossible for the prepared young person — no future is out of reach for a group of committed people who care.
  • It’s important to signal that the limits people perceive are self-imposed, and that with an embrace and application of the 12 points of the Scout Law and three points of the Scout Oath, there is a bright and positive future.
  • Participants in the 2021 National Scout Jamboree will learn that character is created when you achieve more than you thought possible.

A new Jamboree vision

The inspiration for this exciting new approach comes from a desire to make the National Jamboree about more than a collection of awesome activities and a few words on a patch.

A Jamboree should inspire a Scout or Venturer to be more. It should show them how to use their Scouting skills to transform the world. And it should engage them in a way that makes their Jamboree experience transformational — not just for its memories but for how it shapes their life.

To be clear, the National Jamboree model has worked well for decades. Each instance of the quadrennial event offered fun, fellowship and unforgettable adventures.

But with the 2021 event, organizers plan to more deliberately embrace and celebrate the impact Scouting has on each of us. As a Jamboree veteran who has attended or served on staff at every National Jamboree since 1997, let me say this: I’m fully on board.

The reinvented approach means transforming a theme into a call to action — sparking an energy that Scouts and Venturers will take back to their troops, crews, schools and communities.

This approach is not unlike the one used at the National Order of the Arrow Conference, or NOAC.

NOAC events, like the one I covered for Scouting magazine in 2015, expertly carry a single theme throughout the week.

The 2021 National Jamboree will feature a similarly bold call to action, inspiring young people to identify, confront and overcome whatever challenges life has thrown into their path.

Unit leaders have an important role

True, unit leaders always have a critical role at a Jamboree. But this time, unit leaders will spark meaningful discussions before the event begins.

“It starts at the unit level,” Busby says. “We’re going to make an effort to really arm unit leaders.”

Scoutmasters, working with their youth leaders, will lead group discussions during their Scoutmaster’s minute and at Jamboree shakedown events.

This will get Scouts and Venturers in the proper mindset before they even arrive at the Summit Bechtel Reserve in 2021.

By the time the Jamboree begins, young people will be thinking about ways to overcome negativity and push past adversity. At the Jamboree, they’ll get the tools to help them do so.

What else we know about the 2021 National Jamboree

Lynes shared with me some more details about the 2021 National Jamboree, which I’ll summarize in a bulleted list:

  • The official patch design will be unveiled this summer. What you see above is the 2021 National Jamboree logo — not the design for the patch.
  • 2021 National Jamboree staff registration is scheduled to go live in August. Participant registration will open in December.
  • The Jamboree will feature TED-style talks where young people can share how Scouting helped them overcome challenges. Those talks will be recorded so others can watch them later.
  • As part of a unique leadership experience, ticketed for each participant, Scouts will spend 90 minutes better understanding their own leadership style, and then applying it alongside different groups of leaders.
  • The Jamboree smartphone app and wearable technology will encourage Scouts and Venturers to participate in slightly different activities that match with the results of their survey prior to the Jamboree.

The Adventure Plan (TAP) Resource

The Adventure Plan (TAP) is a tool to guide unit leaders—Cubs, Scouts, Venturers, and Sea Scouts— through all stages of Adventure planning.

Outdoor adventure is a key element of youth development in the Boy Scouts of America programs. Just as young people grow, learn and mature in a continuing progression of experience so, too, do the camping and outdoor programs of the BSA. The BSA offers a continuum of experiences based on the age, interest and ability level of youth, and also offers recognition awards for all levels of Scouting outdoor Adventures.

Internet Advancement 2.0 is Here

The new tool to quickly input advancement data, Internet Advancement 2.0 (previously known as Scoutbook Lite) is now live. This free solution replaces the previous Internet Advancement platform, which will be retired (for all programs except Exploring) on June 10, 2019.

Internet Advancement 2.0 will feature a clean, new user interface and will be optimized to whatever device you use: desktop, tablet or smartphone.

Internet Advancement 2.0 will offer optimized functions for everything found in the current Internet Advancement platform and can be accessed by Unit Key 3 users, Unit Key 3 delegate users and Unit Advancement Chairs.

End users will access Internet Advancement 2.0 via one of the following locations using their my.Scouting credentials:

After initial release, the BSA IT team will continue to add additional features on a regular basis. Updates and new features will be communicated with the field as they are delivered.

Visit http://help.scoutbook.com for answers to commonly asked questions. As we are learning this as you do, we don’t yet have any information on our council website about this. But we’ll work to add some as soon as possible.

New Cub Scout Facilitator Led Training

This training is designed to deliver training for all position trained Cub Scout positions and matches the online content. The training is intended to help leaders begin a “path of learning”. The goal is to encourage and incentivize leaders to become continuous learners providing the basic information and skills necessary to get them started on their journey and then providing them with access to and knowledge of additional resources and training opportunities available to them.

The link below is to the syllabus that is to be used by trainers in presenting a group and/or the stand-alone position-specific course. This course is intended to provide the following positions with the information and tools they need to conduct a successful program:

  • Lion, Tiger, Wolf, Bear, and Webelos Den Leaders
  • Cubmasters and Assistant Cubmasters
  • Pack Committee and Committee Chair

Leaders who complete the training are considered trained for their position.

The new syllabus is located on Scouting.org on the https://www.scouting.org/training/adult/ page. The direct link to the new syllabus is https://i9peu1ikn3a16vg4e45rqi17-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Cub-Scout-Leader-Training-Facilitator-Guide.pdf

This new syllabus supersedes all previous versions.

BSA Parents: Sharing our Stories and Experiences about the Boy Scouts of America

We all know how truly amazing our Scouting parents are. They go above and beyond, and they constantly ask what they can do and how they can help.

In many ways, they are our best asset to help demonstrate the value of the Boy Scouts of America and to talk about what this great organization means to American communities.

So, we want to make you all aware of a newly-formed group called “BSA Parents” that is forming and will launch on digital and social media this week.

The group was formed by and is run by parents of Scouts. The group came together so parents can use the Internet and social media to talk about what Scouting means to them. As I’m sure you can imagine, this is powerful stuff — I’m excited to share their launch video and site here https://www.bsaparents.com and on social media (please see bottom of this email).

They are not affiliated with BSA and they formed to help parents tell their stories. It has no dues, it offers no programs, and is not competitive in any way with our Councils. Their mission and stories are ones we want to support!

We are excited to see so many people taking up the message of Scouting.  We hope that you will share this site and these videos with parents in your area. More people need to see and hear from the parents who are so involved with — and so passionate about — Scouting. The BSA’s character building programs are essential for our youth and we are excited for parents to help propel that message forward.

BSA Parents on social media:

Twitter: @BSAparents
Facebook: www.facebook.com/BSAparents
Instagram: @bsaparents
Youtube: www.youtube.com/BSAParents

Put Your Scout Unit on Google Search

Do you know that the highest Google Search term is “Find ______[BLANK]_____ near me?” If someone was looking for a Cub Scout Pack, Scouts BSA Troop or Venturing Crew near them, would they find you and would your unit appear in the Google Search? Check out this video tutorial to help your unit appear in Google Search so parents can find you easily and join Scouting all year round.

Safety Moments – Hiking

As summer approaches, packs, troops and crews are gearing up for outdoor adventures big and small. One of the most common activities is hiking. Whether the trek is a few hundred feet or many miles, all hikes all can pose potential hazards if not carefully considered. Take a moment to review and share the two safety moments below and make sure your units are ready for their adventures this summer.  Download PDF


Two essential Scouts BSA resources for new and longtime leaders

Better make room on your bookmarks bar.  The BSA has refreshed and retooled a pair of online resources for Scouts BSA volunteers.

The first is the Program Resources page. Think of it as your quick-start guide to Scouts BSA. Here, you’ll find a collection of links for starting a Scouts BSA troop, helping Scouts earn merit badges, guiding youth leaders toward more effective troop meetings and more.

The second is the Program Updates page. This one’s for both newcomers and veterans, and it’s where the National Scouts BSA Committee posts the latest information on any changes to the program. If there’s a new program initiative, updated requirement or any change to Scouts BSA printed material, you’ll find it there first.