The link to register our scouts for their summer camp activities (Merit Badges and Trail to First Class) will become available to me on April 22nd. Therefore, I need you to email me your scout’s merit badge choices by SUNDAY, APRIL 19th. This gives me time to verify and organize them and fix any discrepancies prior to registration. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org. My cell is 719.648.6798.
You can find the merit badge selection in the 2015 Leader Book on Page 48-50. Please long onto the Troop 287 Website (www.bsatroop287.org) and click on the 2015 Summer Camp Link at the top of the page. A link to the leader’s guide is posted there. The leader’s guide also has descriptions of the Merit Badges earlier in the book so you can make sure its the one for you.
So here’s some guidance for merit badge and Trail to First Class selection:
New Scouts: These are the scouts that recently joined that have never done a summer camp and have very little accomplished towards rank advancement to first class…i.e, the Webelos that just transitioned from Pack 6. You guys will want to sign up for Trail to First Class (TFC). This is a four block instruction that will help you accomplish most of your rank advancements to First Class. TFC is available during the morning blocks or afternoon blocks of Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday. I recommend scouts sign up for the afternoon TFC, allowing the scouts to sign up for two additional merit badges in the morning block. Thunderstorms tend to come in the afternoons and might cancel a afternoon merit badge but they will not cancel TFC due to thunderstorm so better to take your favorite merit badges in the mornings. Most merit badges take two blocks (this will make sense once you see the merit badge spread sheet on page 48-50).
Other Scouts: If you have already taken Trail to First Class at a Summer Camp, or if you have been in scouts a while and are comfortable with your rank advancement progress then you do not need to take Trail to First Class at Summer Camp. You scouts are free to sign up for whatever Merit badges that will make summer camp fun for you. Some scouts like to knock out the Eagle Required ones, some like to do ones that are fun and some like to do a mix…your choice!
Some Merit Badges or activities will have an age requirement and or cost additional money. For example, Rifle Shooting requires a $5.00 additional charge for ammunition. Shotgun Shooting has an additional fee of $20.00 and its only recommend for boys 13 and older. Leather work merit badge requires you buy a kit for $10. Fishing requires a $2.00 fishing permit. This is all laid out in the Leader’s Book so please look at the descriptions of the merit badges so avoid any surprises.
Some merit badges fill up pretty fast…like the shooting sports, C.O.P.E., climbing, etc. Many of us scout masters will be attempting to register our scouts at the same time. There is a chance that scouts may have to re-arrange their desired schedule to get the merit badge of their choice. The earlier I am prepared to register merit badges, the better the chances of scouts getting their first choice. I plan on registering the second the site becomes active.
Again, Please take a look at the Leader’s Guide and email me you scout’s selection by 5pm on the 19th. I will start calling people if I haven’t received them. Feel free to call if you have any questions.