Re: BSA Court of Honor
Bob Myers (rmyers@ONE.NET)
Thu, 16 Mar 1995 14:25:31 -0500
We just held our first COH since reorganizing the troop. Everyone felt it was
very successful. I'll try to outline it a bit and you can judge for yourself.
We planned it in 5 days so I know you have time. Programs were printed and
OPENING CEREMONY - Flags carried in, pledge, Scout oath, candle lighting,
Candle details - Two banquet tables were set up in front on either side of the
podium. On each table were displayed the BSA rank posters (3 or 4 per table)
that were purchased from BSA (about 10x18 inches each). Each poster was held
in a 6 inch slice of a 4 inch log with a slot cut in the end of it. In front
of the row of posters were small candle holders made from a split (cut) 4 inch
section of a 3 inch log. A hole held the candle and a slot in front held a
name card of a Scout. Each Scout had his own candle that was located in front
of his rank going into the COH. After a Scout received a rank advancement
during the COH and before he and his parents took their seats, he was asked to
move the candle up to his new rank. During the closing ceremony, each Scout
was asked to move his candle to the rank that he hoped to receive during the
next COH (3-4 months off) and then to blow out the candle. The effect of all
of this was that the audience could actually SEE the troop advancing during
the meeting as the candles marched up the table. Most of ours started at the
end before the Scout rank, but that accurately reflected the troop's status.
WELCOME AND INTRODUCTIONS - Introduce committee members, SM, ASM, benefactors
CHARTER PRESENTATION - framed charter presented by CC to the Captain
(institutional head of The Salvation Army Corps) This probably should be done
by council or district person.
JUNIOR LEADERS - Awarded thank you presents (fieldbooks, etc) to outgoing
junior leaders (elections were the week before). Incoming leaders were
presented with patches and certificates for each office.
ADVANCEMENTS - We called each Scouts receiving their Scout rank up to the
front WITH THEIR PARENT(S). We sorta cheated here with very few words being
said. Many more words can be found in Woods Wisdom. However, we purchased
metal rank pins for the parent to pin on their Scout, parent pins for the
Scout to pin on the parent, and cards that were signed and handed to the
Scout. The cloth patch had been award previously at the first meeting after
the board of review. This gave the parents something to do, a reason for
getting up in front, and a reason to come to the COH. Yes, many of the Scouts
had both their patch and pin on simultaneously for the evening, but who cares?
Each rank was done like this as a group. Since our troop has only been
active for 3 months and we only have a few transferrees, most rank advancement
was to Scout and NO merit badges were awarded.
TROOP ACTIVITIES - Recent activities were briefly reviewed (1 or 2 sentences)
and Totin' Chip Cards were presented to some Scouts. Future activities were
then discussed (referring to a calendar handout). This ended in a discussion
of summer camp and the showing of a brief video provided by the camp
SCOUTMASTER'S MINUTE - I awarded a few patches as tokens of appreciation to
the ASM and committee members that were most active in support the outdoor
program. I then relayed the story about the hound that was following the
trail of a mountain lion but kept getting side tracked until he finally
cornered a field mouse (see Woods Wisdom).
CLOSING - Scouts moved their candles one final time - one from Scout to Eagle.
:) The entire troop then huddled up in our traditional troop meeting ending -
right hand in, "May the Great Master of all Scouts be with us until we meet
again. BE PREPARED! WE ARE PREPARED!" (response). This was a little over an
hour after we started.
REFRESHMENTS - The Scouts and siblings were then dismissed to another room for
TALK WITH PARENTS - I spent 10 minutes going over many subjects including
summer camp, fund raising, etc. The main thrust was what the parents could
expect from the troop and what the troop needed from the parents - namely
I know this was a long post but I hope there were a few ideas in there that
you could adapt. It was a lot of work for a small troop (12 Scouts) to do in
a few days, but it set a standard that we hope to maintain in the future when
we're a larger troop.
Bob Myers, SM Troop 575, Dan Beard Council, Cincinnati, Ohio
One of these days I'll get around to my intro....
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City