Friday, September 03, 2004

“The Scouter” – Simon Kenton Council Oct. 2004

Licking District Trailmarkers

Looking through my e-mail box (, it must be time to run these little reminders again: “The Scouter” is a great tool for promoting long-range planning and sharing an overview of events past and upcoming. But production and mailing realities mean that information you send me – by the first Thursday of each month, when lovely Editor Bobbi awaits it in Columbus at the council office – must be about events that are 30 to 45 days down the line.

Send me an article about an event on Sept. 1, and I put it in the pipeline Sept. 2; the print/send process goes to work the last week of the month, and should be into the hands of the USPS by Oct. 1, which means many in our district won’t see it until as late as the week of Oct. 11-15. If the event you’re wanting to see in print happens Oct. 23 (just as a for instance), the Scout or Scouter reading about it has less than two weeks to respond.

Add to that the fact that if an error has crept in by my mistake, your error, or a production slip-up: I won’t see it until the next month’s copy has been e-mailed, meaning that corrections are on a two month or more turnaround, by which time folks aren’t always sure what we’re even talking about!

The bottom line is that this page is a great place for announcing plans and registration info two to four months ahead, which means getting your info to me three to five months ahead. It kind of forces you to plan ahead, doesn’t it? But if we want Scouting units in Licking County to participate in what we do as a district, we have to respect that most of them have a year-round plan already in place, and we owe it to them to stay out ahead of their hard work for the youth in their unit.

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Fall Camporee – Apple Butter Days

[Repeat info from last “Scouter”]

Nov. 5-7 is our Fall Camporee weekend, where with your registrations turned in, your popcorn sold, and your leaders trained, you and your Scouts can come and enjoy the real heart of Scouting, which is “Outing” out at Camp Falling Rock.

Saturday, Nov. 6 will offer a number of special Cub activities, and Friday through Sunday is open to Scouts and Venturers. Mike Dalton will be in touch as the District Activities Committee continues to offer great experiences for your unit program.

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[insert Bill’s articles on Popcorn and Cub Scout Leader Basic Training]

Down the Trail -- A Closing Word

“Scouting For Boys – the Original 1908 Edition” is now in print from Oxford World’s Classics. Approaching the centenary of the writing of the book that began our Movement, it seems that someone has noticed that the effects of what Robert Baden-Powell put down on paper still live and breathe all around them.

Since the 1948 Scout Field Book was written by “Green Bar Bill” Hillcourt, most Scout publications have been written by committees – and read like it. But the original Scout Handbook was, well, here’s what the book description starts with:

“A startling amalgam of Zulu war-cry and Sherlock Holmes, of practical tips on health and hygiene and object lessons in woodcraft, Scouting for Boys (1908) is the original blueprint and inspiration for the Boy Scout Movement. An all-time bestseller in the English-speaking world, second in its heyday only to the Bible, it is one of the most influential manuals for youth ever published, known and loved around the world. Including all of Baden-Powell's original illustrations, this new critical edition of Scouting for Boys serves up a wonderful hodge-podge of true crime stories, stern moralizing, stock adventure tales, natural history, first-aid tips, advice on observation and tracking, and much more. Readers will find . . . lengthy quotations from adventure fiction--from Rudyard Kipling and James Fenimore Cooper, to Alexander Dumas and Arthur Conan Doyle.”

If you have never read the narrative that was B-P’s match to the kindling of youth organizations, you might want to spend the $20 it’ll cost you to read where it all began. There are snarky comments in a “scholarly” introduction, but even those who intend to critique the roots of a Movement that wears a uniform and rewards achievement, find themselves saluting the spirit within this Scouting program:

“Indeed, the book brims with Baden-Powell's philosophy of life, one that replaces self with service, puts country before the individual, and duty above all. . . Though almost a century old, Scouting for Boys continues to fascinate, surprise, and motivate readers today. It will delight anyone interested in popular culture, Victorian history, and literature for children.”

And I invite you to share your Scouting news with me at, or call 928-4066 and leave your info or call back contact numbers.

Jeff Gill, District PR guy and Chaplain

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