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New Scout Crossover Primer!

posted Jan 20, 2021, 3:01 PM by Dan Walton   [ updated Jan 21, 2021, 12:23 PM ]

Here's some information to help there be a smooth transition into Troop 337!

All of this information can be found IN DETAIL in the Troop Program Guide, which was printed and added to your Troop Notebook.  Every scout/parent is asked to read it in detail.  Below is a summary of some of the information in the Troop Program Guide for quick reference:

  • Date - We have about 3 meetings/month.  Every Monday, but NOT right after campouts.  Also NOT on most School Holidays.
  • Time - The specific times will be on the agenda, but generally:
    • 6:00 - Setup - Scouts who want to help Setup or who are assigned to do so
    • 6:15 - Gathering Game / Fun
    • 6:30 - Meeting Opening
    • 8:00 - Meeting Dismissal & Cleanup
    • 8:10 - Parent Pickup
  • Calendar - You will find a Troop Calendar on the website.  You there are instructions on how to add the calendar to your device as well!
  • Print Agenda - The Senior Patrol Leader will send out an Agenda by email each week by Thursday night.   Scouts should print the agenda, put it in their Troop Notebook, and bring it to the meeting.  (shhh... there is often a secret word in the agenda or email, if you find it... and don't tell anyone else... you might land a small prize)
  • Wear - Scouts must wear a Class-A uniform:
    • Dress Shirt
    • Scout/Troop T-Shirt
    • Scout shorts or pants
    • Scout socks or black socks  
    • Earth-toned Close-toed Shoes (no bright tennis shoes)
  • Bring - Scouts should bring the following:
    • Troop Notebook with Pen (and Printed Agenda in it) - Bring to meetings, NOT campouts.
    • Scout Handbook - May be purchased HERE
  • Attendance - Scouts are expected to attend all Troop meetings (we keep them short, and only have 3 per month average).   These meetings are for teams to plan campouts, not being there messes it up.   If you can't make it, and have a direct pre-existing conflict, you are asked to email the Scoutmaster (  and the Senior Patrol Leader ( with the reason.
Campouts are the focus of the Troop.  Our 3 meeting per month are centered around preparing for the campout (and having fun of course).  Here's some info about campouts:
  • How Often?  We have a campout all months but not during the summer (since we have summer camp).  We shoot for having it at the end of the month.
  • How Long? Typically campouts go from after School on Friday until Sunday early afternoon.  But the can vary.
  • Cost - The cost of the campout depends on many factors, but is the actual cost - LESS what the Troop kicks in (and the Troop always kicks in).  Costs consist of:
    • Food - Generally adds up to ($2 Friday Snacks, $3.50 breakfasts, $4.50 lunches, $6.50 dinners)
    • Camping Fees (depends on location)
    • Gas (depends on location)
    • Supplies/Insurance/Tolls/Consumables - Troop Covers
    • (again the troop always kicks in)
  • Campout Information Page - With each campout, a campout information Page will be put up on the website.   All scouts and parents are asked to thoroughly explore this website.  The scout is to print out what is noted to be printed out, and put in their notebook.
  • Registration/Permission - Parents and Scouts are asked to sit together to register using the online form.
  • Payment -  The online form to pay with credit card, debit card, or paypal.  or, you can send in a check payable to "Troop 337" and earmarked "Campout".
  • Medication - ALL medication (even non-prescription) must be noted in the registration form.   On the day of departure, medication is turned in to the adult leader in charge.  Medications (both prescription and non-prescriptions) must be in original bottles.  No baggies are allowed.
  • Phones - Phones are allowed travelling to/from the campout location but cannot be brought out of the vehicle.  If a boy needs to call home, he can ask the leader.  Here are the restrictions on phone use.
    • Appropriate Games & Music Only
    • No Movies unless pre-approved by leader in vehicle
    • No Social Connecting at all - No texting, messaging, instagram, snapchat, etc.  Even to home.  If you need to connect with home, ask a leader
  • Packing - Boys are asked to Pack themselves.  Since they are new and young, parents should verify they brought everything in the packing list.  The packing list is in their notebook, but an electronic one can be found under Scouts->Documents and Links - HERE, and will also be supplied on the Campout Page.  We suggest downloading the MsWord version and editing it yourself.
  • Tents / Hammocks - On most campouts, we will be using only Troop Tents (no personal tents).  This keeps our campsite uniform, allows all boys to know how to raise/take-down the Troop tents together (and be inspected), and allows boys to sleep in groups for added safety.    Individual hammocks are allowed, the boys will hammock near each other.   On hiking Trips and some remote campouts, individual tents will be allowed.
  • Departure / Arrival - Departure and pickup times will be clearly listed on the Campout Information Sheet.   Scouts must not be late or the whole group is delayed, same with pickup.   Scouts will always call 1 hour prior to parent pickup time to confirm we are on-time (or early/late).
  • Attendance - Just like campouts, scouts are expected to attend unless there's a direct pre-existing conflict.  Just like with meetings both Scoutmaster and SPL must be notified if not attending, with reason.

Monthly dues are $15/month.  This includes the Summer Months.   Dues are used for:
  • Troop T-Shirts - $15->$20
  • BSA Registration (we pay out) - $127->$150
  • Advancements
  • Courts of Honor
  • Meeting Expenses
  • Campout Consumables & Supplies (paper towels, charcoal, propane, patrol box equipment, etc)
  • Trailer/Van Expenses
  • Facility Expenses
  • Supplementing Campouts and paying for other Activities throughout the year.

In reality, dues do NOT cover the expenses.  This trick is pulled off by having Troop Fundraisers.

When to Pay - You may pay ahead, but we ask that at least by the first troop meeting of each month.

How to Pay - To pay, go to the Troop Website Home, and click on the "Click Here for Monthly Dues Payments" link in Red at top.  Fill out the form, and you can pay 1 month or multiple months using Credit Card, Bank Card, or Paypal.  You can also send in a check made payable to "Troop 337" and marked as "Dues for John Doe".  It can be handed to a leader. 

The main form of Troop communication is via email.  Here are some of the email lists:
  • - Scouts & Parents
  • - Parents Only - NOT MODERATED
  • - Individual Patrol Email Lists - Scouts & Parents - NOT MODERATED
Be careful, because the parent and patrol email lists are not moderated, which means if you do a reply/all it goes out to the whole group (which is a bummer).

If you need an email added or removed, send an email to the Scoutmaster or

SCOUTS - Are REQURED to have their own email address.   If you don't have one, we suggest getting a gmail.   All communication from adult leaders to scouts will have parents or leader CC'd.  If you want to set up your scouts gmail to forward you all messages in/out, that is very easy to do.

Phone Voicemails & Texts - We have a voicemail & text service as well, but don't use it very often.  Normally for last minute important reminders or changes.  If you want to get on/off phone lists, contact the scoutmaster.

Achievements for advancements are not done by group, they are self-paced.  Here's some tips:
  • Read - Scouts are expected to read all of the pages in the book relating to their achievements.  To find the pages relating to an advancement, look at the Heading Section which contains the achievement.  Then, turn your book sideways and you'll see index tabs where you can find the section.  Read the whole section.
  • Practice - At home learn/practice the achievement.  Be Prepared (scout motto)
  • Sign-Off - Come into the meeting and ask the Senior Patrol Leader or his Staff about sign-off.  They may re-direct you to an adult leader, or may be able to work with you themselves.  Depends on the achievement.  No sign-off can take place at home with parents, unless the scoutmaster specifically writes it in your book and talks to you about it.
  • Need Help? - Not all achievements can be done at home.  If you need help with one, ask your Patrol Leader.   Or, if they're not sure, you can ask the Scoutmaster.
  • What Order? - You can work on any achievement for any Rank at any time, and get it signed off.  However you must earn one rank before being issued the next.
  • Scoutmaster Conferences - When you're done with all achievements (but the last 3), ask the Scoutmaster for a conference, and he'll meet with you to sign off the others.
  • Board of Review - Once the Scoutmaster has signed you off, you go before a Board of Review (2-3 adults who review your work, give and get feedback, etc.).  The scoutmaster will assist in scheduling.
  • Merit Badges - See Program Guide for details, and go to our Merit Badge Page.

There are two types of leadership positions Troop (serving the whole troop) or Patrol (serving the patrol).  As a new scout, you likely will not take on a Troop Leadership Position, but you can ask the Senior Patrol leader if you're interested in a position.  HERE is a list of Troop and Patrol Positions with details.  Here is a summary:
  • Troop;
    • Senior Patrol Leader (SPL) - The leader of the whole Troop
    • Assistant Senior Patrol Leader (ASPL) - Assists the SPL
    • Scribe - Takes Notes and Does communication / paperwork for the Senior Staff
    • Quartermaster - Tends to Troop Equipment
    • Librarian - Tends to Merit Badge Books and Troop Notebook Information
    • Historian - Takes Photos and Posts them to the Troop
    • Troop Guide - Helps the younger Scouts
    • Troop Instructor - Troop Teacher
    • Chaplain's Aid - Helps the adult Chaplain do Sunday "Scouts Own" Services and lead prayers
    • Webmaster - Keeps up the Troop Website
  • Patrol
    • Patrol Leader (PL) - Responsible for Patrol meetings/organization/leading
    • Assistant Patrol Leader (PL) - Assists the PL
    • Patrol Scribe - Keeps notes and helps communication of the Patrol
    • Chief Cook - Oversees menus and assignments of Grubmasters

All of our adult leaders are long-time good friends of long-term leadership, and are well-vetted, and trusted.   Every leaders has been trained and tested in a (very long) youth protection training, and has agreed to follow the BSA youth protection policies.   Please see our Meet the Leaders Page to see who our leaders are, what they do, and to see their contact information.


One of the main purposes of scouting is to develop skilled, capable, independent, responsible young men of good character.   Part of this process is to allow scouts to do things themselves, and to learn from their small/safe mistakes.   Parents are asked to help this process by:
  • Encourage Scouts to Read their communication from the Troop & fellow Scouts, but don't do it for them.
  • Let Scouts pack themselves (if young, verify after they pack).
  • Encourage self-paced advancement, but don't hound them, and allow them so succeed themselves.
  • Generally, try to not do things for them, but encourage and guide lightly

Again... everyone is asked to read in-detail the  Troop Program Guide, which was printed and added to your Troop Notebook.