Re: 1993 National Jamboree
(no name) ((no email))
Mon, 16 Dec 1991 10:05:00 EDT
Good morning John!
I have participated in only one Jamboree as a participant; the other ones as
a national or subcamp staffer. I do have lots of suggestions about the
Jamboree, and please take the advice of others that have participated as
participants because their comments would be, in my opinion, closer to EXACTLY
what you are wanting to know about. I will try to keep it brief and as
general as possible.
The National Jamboree is only eleven days in lenght, but count on however you
plan to go, that it will be two weeks in lenght or more. That does present
a large problem with your employer, and I believe that the Council can help in
that regard. They can explain--boss to boss-- that the Jamboree only occurs
once every four years; that it is the premiere showcase of Scouting today;
that it is an excellent way for your employer to demostrate support of the
Scouting movement; and that rather to take the time off with pay, perhaps you
could take the time off without pay or someother (half pay) way, since in
essence, you would STILL be working...just not at your job site. Don't expect
this to work in all situations, but if your Council has someone (and chances
are that they do) from your company/school on the Executive Board or on the
Advisory Committee, that the chances are pretty good that they could work out
the time factor.
If you decide that you want to go as part of the seventeen staff areas, or
on your Region's staff, count on being there for another week (or 20 days).
The staff (which has to pay the same Jamboree fee as the participants...$425
is what I think it is this year, but I am not sure!) is required to be there
five days beforehand and two or three afterwards, to help set up and tear
down everything, unpack/pack everything and to participate in some really neat
prejamboree training and fun. Depending on where you wanted to work at, you
could work something out to arrive a couple of days beforehand and to leave
a couple of days afterwards. Being a staff member can take up a lot of time;
fortunately, the Jamboree is NOT a 24 hour operation (as far as the program is
--the OFFICIAL PROGRAM--is concerned!), so you will have lots of time during
the day and the evening to see the Jamboree.
Try to get Eric to the mboree this year...I believe that he will barely be
First Class by then, but Jamborees have a way of spuring lots of youth to do
better than they would if all they knew was coming up was summer camp. But
don't push him...he will be sadly disappointed if after the pushing and
prodding he gets there and his expectations are lowered somewhat. He may return
from the Jambo glad that he went but there will be no motivation for hime
to continue past First Class (remember that this is every four years??).
A good alternative, and something that worked for me personally, was to
go to the Jamboree as a visitor and stopping by Jamboree Operations and asking
for one of the "open" Jamboree slots. In 81, I returned from ROTC Training and
took five of the Explorers from the Post here at EKU to the Jamboree. We
intended on just walking around, do the patch trading thing and to see our
"home Councils's" contingents. When we arrived at Jamboree Operations to
find out where those units were, we were all offered staff positions (which
four of the five took..one of the girls was not registered as a Explorer, so
she went on up to Silver Springs, Maryland to see her parents for the five
days left and picked us up a week later (because we stuck around for the
close-up and sales!). We still had to pay a pro-rated Jamboree fee (for food)
but that only came to $55 a person...and we were going to use that to stay
in a hotel room in Fredricksburg!).
Count on your $1000 figure to be really close. Unfortunately, even with the
hundreds of suggestions that poured into the National offices after the 89
Jamboree (in the minds of many, not as high-caliber as the 85 and earlier
ones!) to regionalize it in order to have more Scouts to attend one (remember
73?? In that year, TWO Jamborees were held...Jambo East in PA; Jambo West in
ID. It was a huge success but a logistical nightmare for a small national
staff!!), the BSA still plans on having ONE Jamboree in ONE place. That cost
IS rather high, when one thinks of the equipment to outfit one Troop, the
food on the way and back, the side trips to see various locations on the way
up and back, and the insurance. The costs of uniforms and equipment. Spending
money. John, here is what I told my participants from the Transatlantic Council
when I took their Council's contingent to the 85 Jamboree:
Spending money: Take $100 in TRAVELLERS CHECKS and $25 in personal (paper)
moeny. Spend it ONLY on the food and stuff that DOES NOT have the Jamboree
logo on it. Why?? Because you will get a special price sheet after the
Jamboree is over with the costs of ALL of the trading post articles in it.
You can order it from home and save money.
Uniforms: Buy ONE new uniform. You will see that you will only wear it at
TWO times of the day...reville and retreat (and maybe three times..the
arena shows or church services). The Jamboree uniform for youth is the
Jamboree tee-shirt and shorts for the most part...that is what you will be
wearing. Buying four uniforms and only wearing two (the one from home and the
one you bought for the Jamboree) is enough..just keep them clean (one of the
things we taught our Scouts at the Pre-Jamboree training is how to wash and
dry their clothes!). If your Council is insistant on the multiple uniform
parts, look for used uniforms (we talked about this a while back: BSA wants
Goodwill and such to go out of the used BSA uniform business, but you will
still find them there!) or borrow them from Scouts that are not going
(and offer to bring them "something back from the Jamboree!").
Equipment: The Jamboree is a STATIC event...you are not going to trek up the
Tooth of Time or go deep into the woods...so there is NO NEED for the
"backpacking" stuff I have seen Scouts bring to this event. On the other hand,
you are NOT going to the Holiday Inn or Motel 6, so leave those suitcases
at home. So, what to bring?? Bring a small pack and frame for your personal
articles. Everything you need for a ten-day trip can go into your backpack.
Bring a foolocker that CAN BE LOCKED. Don't go expensive..you are going to use
this thing only once in four years, so the K-Mart special will do there. What
goes in there?? Your cot, your washing powder, bag for dirty clothes, Scout
Handbook, sleeping bag, trading items. DO NOT PACK THIS TO THE TOP!!!!!!!
This will be very useful because you will return with the thing brimming at the
top from all of the "handouts", "gimmies" and other things that your son and
you will collect (trade, barter, can we even say
"steal" (one Scout took the signpost showing the "street address" of his Troop
and got him Commissioner's signature and the Subcamp Director's signature on
it!) from this once in a lifetime event. This footlocker will also be used
as a stool and footrest.
DO NOT BRING:electronic devices (they not just detract from the fun; they can
also interfere with the radio communications and the telephone set-ups the
Army provides!); large knifes (they are not needed, see comment about
STATIC event), axes (yeah, there are lots of trees there, but your'e not
going to cut them down...the Jambo relies on charcoal cooking for the most
part..lots safer when done right!), militaristic clothing (there are some 100
nations that send contingents to this event, and some may be in your subcamp.
Leave the RAMBO look at home!) and cussing (yeah, it sounds great to call
someone a "mf" on the block...but this is THE premerie Scouting event of many
lifetimes...people literally stay alive long enough to see one. Don't mess it
up by your mouth. This is Scouting in action and one of the rules of the game
is that "a Scout is Clean". So leave it and the teeshirts with the "stick
it" or similar expressions at home!). Also please don't bring things that
you DON'T want taken....especially patches or pins from your Council that are
considered "one per lifetime" or whatever. I have had Scouts come crying to me
because their grandfather's 1969 Jambo patch which he entrusted to you and
you brought to the Jamboree because "I don't know...I just wanted to show
people this.." was taken (remember the LOCKED Footlocker??). Also remember
that no matter what we try to portray Scouts and Scouters as, that there are
a few that want to take advange of the situation.
OTHER: Bring NON-Scouting things from your home town or state. Pins, patches,
flyers, whatever. Jamborees are there so that you can exchange what it is
that makes your hometown so unique and what makes Scouting there special.
One Council was really unique and sent Scouts and Scouters out looking for
Scouts from that Council. They had a special certificate good for a one-nights
stay in ANY hotel or motel in that particular Sunbelt city (I think it was
a city that has nice beaches and close to DisneyWorld). The city council thought
that since the Jamboree is a promotion of sorts (it is), that they would
underwrite part of the cost of the contingent if they could get Scouts to hand
out this "free nights stay" certificate (which did not include food, drinks
or other things...they just had to show proof of Jamboree attendance and
the certificate) for up to a year after the Jamboree was over!
Scouts enjoy getting things that may have NOTHING to do with Scouting! One
enterprising young man bought a stack of Bon-Jovi cards (like the ones you
get from gum) and traded them for patches. He got a lot..including some
"special" patches and pins from staff members. So expect to see a lot of
Turtles memorbilia, Hammer and Poison stuff, and even Travis Tritt stuff
traded out there...also expect to see summer camp staff stuff and lots of
local Council stuff traded too!
I guess that its too much what I wrote. Again, those are based on one
contigent leader's experience and a staff person for the previous four
(73, 77, 81 and 85)...89 I went as a visitor for two days.
"lets go to the 93 Jambo!"
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City