Michael F. Bowman (mfbowman@CAPACCESS.ORG)
Sat, 8 Jun 1996 21:39:04 -0400
Here are a few ideas:
Consider the theme "Bringing Scouting to the Community." Sounds hard or
whacky? Certainly it would be challenging, but consider:
Try to have the Scoutarama in an area accessable to the largest population
areas of your Council or District and advertise like mad for visitors.
Go for broke with posters in libraries, grocery stores, schools,
churches, meeting halls, or anywhere people go. Use radio, Public TV
spots, Cable TV spots/announcements, newspaper special interest stories, etc.
Ask every Scouter to advertise via e-mail links. Get the word out. Now
comes the show part.
Arrange a very large demonstration service project - something to benefit
the community that is really visable for Saturday Morning - could be as
simple as cleaning up the park you are using and planting several hundred
trees, or a giant litter campaign in all directions from the camporee
with special patches to participants and awards for recycling contributions.
Show off your best fun activities on Saturday Afternoon. Pull out the
stops to do whatever the facility will allow.
Have a show and do mall or display area and encourage displays, exhibits,
etc. form each unit about their activities that is in an area where any
visitor has to pass by to see anything else.
Invite media people to a special pancake breakfast and lunch steak
cook-out with a very strange admission fee - microphone or camera. :-)
Combine the Scoutarama with a membership drive and advertise everywhere that
this is where youth and parents can come sign up to join. Of course
you'll have to have the commissioners mobilized to link new Scouts to
units and a place to do this, but why not.
You get the idea - sell the program, invite the community to see, invite
new members, etc. Above all else, though, make sure that the
activities are fun and engaging to maximum extent practicable.
Every Scout gathering is an opportunity to make the game of Scouting fun
and help the Scouts grow and this still has to take precedence. But why
not also see each gathering as an opportunity to sell the program to the
community it serves and to other youth that might benefit?
Speaking Only for Myself in the Scouting Spirit, Michael F. Bowman
a/k/a Professor Beaver (WB), ASTA #2566, OA Vigil Honor '71, Eagle
Scout '67, Serving as Deputy District Commissioner for Training,
G.W.Dist., Nat. Capital Area Council, BSA - firstname.lastname@example.org
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City