Re: Seabase or Other Long Term Plans
Calvin H. Gray (405geezer@IGG-TX.NET)
Mon, 13 Jul 1998 11:51:40 -0500
Kevin Woods wrote:
> One of the ASM's and I are considering approaching the Troop Committee and
> scouts with the idea of a long term planning for a trip to seabase. Say
> 2-3 years. He has prior experience with planning a trip there in 96.
> I would like to hear from other scouters, their ideas and experiences
> regarding this type of long term planning.
Our high adventure activities are planned at least 2 years in advance.
We've found that by doing this, the Scouts and adults are better able to
save the money associated with trips of this type. It also gives our
committee an opportunity to plan fundraisers to help with the special
Our PLC narrows our proposed adventures to 3 or 4 trips and then we let
the boys (who will be eligible to attend) vote on the adventure. For
example, we selected our primiary high adventure trip for 2000 last
fall. The PLC selected 4 possibilities (a Bahamas Sailing trip, a trip
to Hawaii, a canoeing trip in Canada and a trip to England). I did some
preliminary work on cost estimates (we've done all of these in the past
except the trip to England) and provided information on the time
required and the estimated cost. Then, the boys voted the following
week. The trip to Canada was the first choice so this is will be our
primary trip in 2000. We may offer another trip closer to home but we
haven't selected this as yet and probably won't until late '98 or early
> How did you approach it with parents?
We've offered at least one annual high adventure trip each year since
1989. See the "About Us" information on our troop web page referenced
below for a description of the various trips. At first, we had problems
getting enough adults to take part in these trips. Now this isn't a
problem as adults know about the trips well in advance and are able to
plan on attending.
> How did you deal with scouts that left during the time?
It really isn't a problem as we have a large troop. Sometimes a boy
will lose his deposit ($25 to $50) but we try and replace boys who have
to drop out for one reason or another. Usually, no money is due (except
a deposit) until 6-9 months prior to a trip. And most high adventure
bases will refund money if a boy moves away. We have had boys who moved
away to actually come back and take part in trips with our troop.
> How did you deal with new scouts that came in?
We've always been able to add new boys to most of our trips. We did
this with one of our trips this year when a new boy moved in from
Houston. As long as a crew isn't at the maximun number, this usually
isn't a problem.
> I know about the 1 day signup/call in thing and am not looking forward to
> that. Any advice?
For the Sea Base, get a "team" of callers together and keep trying. Our
troop has found a nice alternative to the Sea Base called the Laguna
Station which is in south Texas on the tip of South Padre Island. In
fact, we have a group of 32 Scouts and 14 adults there right now. You
might find that the cost of transportation from New Hampshire to
Harlingen, Texas, compares favorably to a trip to the Sea Base when all
costs are considered. Remember that you have to rent vehicles when
travelling from Miami to the Sea Base and back. The Laguna folks will
pick a crew up in Harlingen at no additional cost. For additinal
information, check out http://members.aol.com/lagunabs/index.html
> I believe that teaching scouts about "long term" planning is important.
> Too often I hear "we can't do that, we don't have the money" or 'That's
> tooooooo expensive". I think this will help them learn that they CAN plan,
> They can go after the bigger piece of pie.
I've found out that you can do anything you want to do with proper
planning. We've arranged some very nice trips for our Scouts and one of
the results is that we have a high retention rate. Long term planning
is the key!
Calvin H. Gray
Scoutmaster, Troop 405
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City