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Submit your ‘Urban Forest’ photos to win U.S. Forest Service Contest

16 Apr

Submit your ‘urban forest’ photos to win U.S. Forest Service contest.

as posted to BRYAN on SCOUTING>>

While you may dream of a picturesque backyard—dotted with mountain peaks, green trees, and acres of land for you to explore—more than 80 percent of the U.S. population resides in urban areas.

And, as our cities grow, it’s more important than ever to appreciate, conserve, and cultivate urban forests in our neighborhoods… read more


Pinewood PIZZAZZ! How to have an AWESOME RACE!

31 Jan

Greetings Scouts!

Well Race Fans, it is that time of year again and the Pine is out of the box for most of us… now I’m sure we’ve got some Scouts already cutting, sanding and painting, and maybe some who’re about to get underway with RACING! Here’s some tips to a successful, FUN, and safe event…

Daniel’s Rules (unofficial ones anyway):

1. Number 1, It’s gotta be FUN! We all want to win trophies when they are available, but remember that Pinewood Derby is all about the fun of creating, designing and building YOUR OWN CAR with DAD (or MOM) and SON… the Trophy is just icing on the cake.

2. If making cars is a den activity and you realize you’ve run out of stuff to do in the time allotted, KEEP SANDING. My dad did this with our Den 5 back in the day. I couldn’t figure out why at first (I was 7 or 8 at the time), which tells me that my younger contemporaries won’t know any different anyway… and not only that, you’re car comes out looking SOOOOO much smoother than others. Sand it by hand, don’t use machines for this or you’ll kill the war story for later (“We just sanded and sanded and sanded!”).

3. Don’t try to figure out the loop-holes. That’s just a big waste of time and it kills the true spirit of why we have Pinewood Derby… again, it’s about spending time with Mom (or Dad). It is really silly when I encounter a parent at the judges table at check-in for the District Race that has obviously thought out his campaign and speech for why he’s aloud to use a different wheel than everybody else… dumb.

4. If you win at the PACK level, GO TO THE DISTRICT RACE! If you don’t win at the PACK level, GO TO THE DISTRICT RACE! You always have the option of entering your car in the OPEN class (sometimes called contenders and pretenders). This class of racers is open to Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, sisters, Dad’s, your church pastor… whomever! AND you don’t have to be a PACK level winner, that’s why it is OPEN!

5. If you haven’t watched the famous Hollywood Film, Down and Derby, DO THIS NOW!!! Go rent it on Netflix or Apple TV or buy it on Amazon… whatever. WATCH IT with your kids! This will help TEMPER a little bit of the “Silly Dad” in all of you out there. Besides that, this is one of the best major motion pictures about Cub Scouts, It is family friendly, VERY FUNNY and it is also one of the last films in which Pat Morita (of Karate Kid fame) starred. So, anyway… this rule’s important!

6. If your pack didn’t give out PWD cars as Christmas presents at the December Pack meeting, you should change that for next year!… Oh and don’t forget, for the larger packs out there… you can buy cars by the CASE at a HUGE discount when you go to University of Scouting. Put that on your calendar for next year! Oh, and don’t forget to line up a good Santa, those guys are hard to book at the last minute!

7. If you have a smaller Pack or a close Den or group of Dens, you might plan a “Cutting” day at the Dad’s house who has a table saw… don’t be like my dad and go out and buy a brand new table saw and then only use it for annual PWD cutting days and have your daughters grow up being totally jealous of their baby brothers. Someone’s already got one of these, go to their house and save yourself some grief later on. OR visit a local Home Depot or Ace Hardware… these guys love Den visits!

8. Remember, It’s about having FUN. If you’re not… you’re not doing it right.

HEY… you need the official RULES. These one’s won’t work at the Pack or District Race! In fact, these aren’t even “OFFICIAL”… they’re just my personal opinion. I hope you all have LOT’s of fun at your Pack and District Race!

ALSO… if you plan to attend the District/Council Race, you’ll need to register, so you gotta use this form: DOWNLOAD PWD REGISTRATION


OKAY! See you out there!


Should parents withhold meetings to punish Scouts for bad grades or misbehavior?

9 Dec

A new feature on Bryan on Scouting that many parents will be interested in reading… be sure to leave Bryan a comment…

Should parents withhold meetings to punish Scouts for bad grades or misbehavior?.


How to measure your progress for JTE

29 Aug

Greetings Scouts!

I wanted to write and give you some important info on how to measure your progress for Journey to Excellence (JTE)… some of you will soon be eligible for the bronze, silver or GOLD level and you’ll want to report your Scouting year soon!

Here’s a link to a tool (spreadsheet) you can use to track your status on several key benchmarks. Assign a leader in your unit to help track and update this at each Unit Committee meeting which you should be having every month…

Cub Scout Packs spreadsheet tool –

Troops spreadsheet –

Teams, Crews, Ships, Posts… get your spreasheets here (they are different):

A couple of cool things about these useful spreadsheets is that 1) it will help you track your status very simply, 2) you will be able to share this by email with your unit on a monthly basis BEFORE your Committee meetings, 3) it contains a GREAT budget tool to help your unit plan for re-charter, program budgets, summer camp, and unit advancements so that you can PROPERLY set a unit fee, instead of just guessing and then setting it too high. In other words, budgeting will help you keep Scouting affordable and it will also help you set a goal for things like Popcorn and Camp Card sales…

If you have other questions, I encourage you to call your commissioner or visit with your fellow leaders at the next Roundtable. The JTE website has LOTS of great information including a webinar for each unit designation, a powerpoint to share with your Unit Committee and leaders, and some FAQ’s that will help you further.

Take some time to share this with your committee this month… this is the time to get started so that you can ensure your Unit’s achievement this year.

Now back to camping! See you out there!


Twilight at Pine Valley

3 Jun

CSI – Cub Scout Investigation sign up NOW for upcoming Day Camps in Forsyth and Dawson!

Today’s report from Twilight Camp at Pine Valley in Lumpkin County:

We started the week with record high temperatures that typically cooled off about half way through the night and it probably helped a bunch that our campsite at Pine Valley Recreation area is deep in the shade of the tall pines that surround the banks of the beautiful Etowah River (our namesake)…

Twilight Camp this year was a big adventure with lot’s of cool stuff going on… we played kickball, soccer, volley ball, and even tried our hand at badminton, which, if you’ve ever tried playing a game like badmintion with 7 and 8 year olds, this one takes some patience!

On Monday we discovered what Owl’s eat by dissecting owl pellets… by the way, if you are attending any of the other camps, this is not a spoiler alert because i won’t tell you what all we found! But we are going to give every boy a chance to dissect Owl pellets at the remaining 4 Day Camps in Forsyth and Dawson! The investigation went well and all the boys had fun trying to figure out how to dissect these owl leavings without touching it (and then we handed them some rubber gloves and some bamboo skewers). It was still quite a treat and lot’s of fun to watch the boys discover nature in such a unique way.

On Tuesday night the Lumpkin County Fire/EMS trucks rolled in for the boys to give a quick inspection of both trucks, equipment, turn-out gear and of course, lights and sirens! They didn’t have enough time to shoot the water hoses, but come to Dawson Day Camp and you’ll be getting wet there for sure… We also played a game called “YOU CAN’T SEE ME!” where Mr. Ray dressed in a full gilly suit and hid in the woods until we found him. The Cubs got him right away, but the Webelos had a little trouble with this one (mostly because they weren’t paying much attention to finding Mr. Ray and instead were just trying to run as far down the trail as they possibly could! haha!)

Wednesday night brought a visit from two Lumpkin County Sheriff’s detectives who showed us fingerprinting, investigation tools, and how to make a mold of your foot print using clay and plaster, and everyone got to take home a plaster footprint that they made…. this was a big highlight for everyone! (well, except me… I don’t get to do ALL of the fun stuff). Mr. Jason helped us make our own fishing poles out of bamboo and then we went fishing in the pond… we didn’t catch anything, but it was still fun playing with the minnows and night crawlers!

Thursday night was some more sports, leather crafts and we worked on our skits and songs for the barbecue… oh yeah, and more sports like flag football and basketball and then Mr. Ray took us across the bridge on a BUG HUNT!

Friday night was the big cookout with burgers and Mrs. Renee’s famous potato salad (awesome!) and Mrs. Debbie’s famous mac ‘n cheese (which was so popular we didn’t even get seconds:{ )We did our skits and songs for the parents and then we all got patches and certificates before playing an EPIC battle of kickball with all the boys versus Drew, Daniel, Mr. Ray, and Mr. Jason! The Cubs creamed the big kids like 20 to 7… but we had fun any way!

Here’s some pics –

Have you signed up for Day Camp!? don’t wait… go here:

HELP us “deliver the promise of Scouting” by sending ALL of your boys to Camp this summer! See you out there!

The Summit will host the 2019 World Scout Jamboree

29 Mar

Here’s a cool article from Bryan on Scouting… who’s interested in going to this?


The Summit will host the 2019 World Scout Jamboree.

News from the Scout Association of Japan / 2011 / News / Information & Events / Home – World Organization of the Scout Movement

21 Mar

News from the Scout Association of Japan / 2011 / News / Information & Events / Home – World Organization of the Scout Movement.

Who is your light of hope?

9 Mar

The deadline is approaching, please send your nominations in right away!
You know them….
We want to honor them!
She may be the Girl Scout leader in your neighborhood. Your son’s soccer coach. The Sunday school teacher. They are each a “Light of Hope” in Forsyth County.

Perhaps he’s the coach who takes time to extend a compliment, an encouraging word, or a high five to a withdrawn child. While winning a game is nice, his real goal is to build self esteem and a sense of accomplishment in a child who might not receive it at home.

Or maybe she is the school counselor who knows that the pink cupcake with colored sprinkles will be just the thing to celebrate a perfect spelling test score.

Or the mentor who goes out of his way to visit the struggling third grader at school every week. He shows interest in the child’s life, genuinely smiling about the stories the child shares.

These remarkable people are a “Light of Hope” for children who may be living in chaos and turmoil or who may be experiencing abuse or neglect at home. They may be the bright spots in a child’s life – the ones who listen, who care, who encourage.

April is National Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month and CASA of Forsyth County, Inc. is calling for nominations to honor those who have been a “Light of Hope” for children in our community.

CASA of Forsyth believes that we are blessed to have many “Lights of Hope” in our community. Nominations will be accepted in the following categories:

Religious Organizations
Youth Organizations
School Personnel
Athletic Organizations
Child Welfare Organizations
Youth Working with Your Volunteer
Public Service Agencies

Please take a moment to nominate the “Light of Hope” you know. Complete the Light of Hope Nomination Form and submit it to CASA of Forsyth County by March 12, 2011.

CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) of Forsyth County, Inc. is a private, nonprofit 501(c3) organization, serving abused and neglected children by advocating for each to have a safe, loving and permanent home. These highly trained volunteer advocates serve as the child’s lay guardian ad litem and work to ensure the child’s physical, medical, emotional and educational needs are met during Juvenile Court deprivation proceedings. Last year 74 CASA volunteers advocated for 179 children in Forsyth County.

“Light of Hope” recipients will be honored during a celebration at the Forsyth Conference Center on Thursday evening, April 14, 2011. For more information about our “Light of Hope” Celebration, please call us at 770-886-4082 or visit our website at

Georgia HB 385

5 Mar

Take a moment to write your Georgia State Congressmen to let them know your opinion of HB 385, a bill that revises the revenue structure of Georgia under the recommendations of the 2010 Special Council on Tax Reform and Fairness for Georgians.

Proposed Georgia legislation would require a sales tax on Popcorn sold by Cub – Boy Scouts and on Cookies sold by Girl Scouts. This significant financial impact would take money directly from each boy’s efforts to go to camp and pay for their Scouting activities.

This issue is being considered RIGHT NOW, so please contact your State House Representative and State Senator TODAY and express your concern in a Scout-like manner about our Scouts being taxed. Please reference House Bill 385.

House Bill 385 is a part of the 2010 Special Council on Tax Reform eliminating various nonprofit sales and use tax exemptions,including sales of food by members of councils of the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts.

The consequences of this legislation:

  • A portion of the funds earned by our Scouts for their camping experience would need to be diverted to pay a sales tax.
  • Hundreds of children especially in hard to serve areas will not be able to participate in Scouting due to reduction of services that will result from the need to fund sales taxes.
  • Camps are likely to be stressed with less ability to fund the costs to be maintained.

Please voice your opinion on this issue. Contact your State Representative and State Senators TODAY in a Scout-like manner regarding House Bill 385. See below for a link to find your elected officials. Thank you for your support of Scouting.

EXERPT from HB 385 lines 1902 to 1905:

view the entire bill here:

To find your State Representative or Senator go here:

Okay… now back to camping. Thanks.

Parts of this blog taken from information on the Georgia State legislature web pages and These comments should in no way reflect a particular political platform or position except to help you make an informed decision.