April 27, 2010

The meeting was called to order at 7:05 pm.

1. Welcome
There was one correction to the minutes from the last meeting.  Bill Johnson had mentioned that we should reinforce the idea that grocery bagging is intended as a high adventure fundraiser unless spots allow for other Scouts to sign up.  We will monitor the signup sheets for each grocery bagging opportunity going forward.

The correction, which was approved, is: "One parent mentioned that her son was not able to sign up for the April bagging since the list was full. It was noted that some of the Scouts signed up are not on the roster for this summer's high adventure trip to SeaBase.  Bill Johnson felt that the sign up should be limited to high adventure Scout participants and their parents as first choice as this fundraiser originally intended. Other Scouts can then work this fundraiser if space permits."

2. Joe S. Eagle Project Review
Postponed until the Heritage Park cleanup next week.

3. Report from PLC
Jay R. reported on the planning being done for Star Camp.  He noted that the Scouts may need to get more supplies together for the trip.  He also noted that designs for the Manitou 15K t-shirts are being worked on by several Scouts.  Jim Letourneau will forward to Jay a copy of the Star Camp leader’s guide, which includes an overview of the activities planned for the weekend.

4. Scoutmaster Report
Jim Letourneau reported that Allen C. and Andrew S. successfully completed their Eagle Boards of Review last Thursday. They have now become our 42nd and 43rd Eagle Scouts.

We have finished recruiting Webelos from Pack 437 for this year.  Jim and Jay both confirmed that only one of our Scouts has become a Den Chiefs for a Pack.  Jim and Jeff Abel will get together to discuss recruiting plans for next year, including recruiting some Den Cheifs in September or inviting Webelos to more of our activities.  We may also present the boys who join us with their free gifts at crossover. 

Jim will get copies of the requirements necessary to earn the Quality Unit award for 2010.  He will also review the 4 historic merit badges to see if we can find counselors to offer them.

Jim also reported that we have not heard back on the two nominations for Grey Wolf.

Jim also submitted five names for the Star of the Future award, and two of our boys were selected.

Finally, Jim reported on the use of the “Tech Chip.”  Jim is working on parent approval sheets for parents to sign in order to give consent to the Scouts to bring electronics on campouts.  The overall objective of this Chip is to allow Scouts to use technology on campouts, but only as it warrants.

5. Camping Subcommittee
Mary Sue Abel reported that we have 25 Scouts signed up for Star Camp as well as several adults.  There are health forms that need to be filled out specifically for the event.

We are still figuring out whether to do a three-day or four-day bike trip in June.  Mary Sue is currently working with Rick Rausch to decide whether the Cycling merit badge can be incorporated.  The Committee decided that if we do not get at least four adults to go four days, the trip will be cut back to three days.

Tomahawk is planned for July.  Four Scouts signed up for the T2 program this year.  The Committee decided to hold the parent meeting for Tomahawk on June 1.  Merit badge signups will start on May 11 and end on June 15. The swim test will be held on June 29 during the Committee meeting.  Physicals will also be due on June 29.   An alternate swim test date is tentatively scheduled for July 13.

We received information on how Scouts could get free physicals for Tomahawk if cost is an issue for their families.  This information is currently posted on the troop website.  The free physical dates are in May.

The March Planning Weekend will be held at Phillippo next year on March 25-27, 2011.  Basic Skills next year presents scheduling problems as events are scheduled already at Fred C., and Easter weekend falls halfway through April.  Finally, next year’s flower sales pickup also could conflict.  We will push out the flower pickup to May 7, 2011 and schedule Basic Skills for April 29 to May 1, 2011 at Fred C.  Mary Sue will book this date for next year’s Basic Skills campout.

Mary Sue has also scheduled a Northern Tier parent meeting and distribution of commitment agreements for June 1 after the troop meeting.  She will begin collecting the commitment letters the following week.

June 6 is scheduled as a Sea Base team building session.  We may decide crew chiefs for Sea Base on that date.  Tour permits are due this Monday; Roger is following up on them.  Jeff Abel is currently working on ground transportation.

Mary Sue will also send out an email looking for volunteers for food preparation at Tomahawk this year.  Tomahawk Parents’ Night will be June 1 during the troop meeting.

Jeff Abel reported that the surplus store has allowed us to order items outside from where we normally get supplies.  We can then get access to things that are not available to us in the Twin Cities but might be available in other places.

Mark Beckers is waiting to hear back on the first responder training class.  Pat Mahoney and Curt Monson may also be interested.

No quartermaster report.

6. Advancement Subcommittee
Shelly Jokinen noted that the Subcommittee is continuing talks with the Scouts who are approaching Eagle.  She noted that the Scouts are more aware of where they are in terms of their own advancement now than in the past.  The next Court of Honor is scheduled for June 22. 

Roger announced that Christy Bartlett has agreed to become our new Advancement Subcommittee Chair, as Tim Willard has decided to step down.  Shelly Jokinen will be taking over the Record Keeper role.


7. Fundraising Subcommittee
The next date for grocery bagging is July 3.

Flower pickup is Saturday morning between 8:00 and 11:00.

Bridget Newman reported that she has received two shirt designs as of this week.  Donations are ending this week, but she is thinking on extending them through next week.  She also noted that we are starting to receive registrations already.

8. Community Service Subcommittee
Deb Clarke reported that we gathered approximately 1,100 pounds of food this year from Scouting for Food.  This is down a little from last year, but the weather was as a factor.  We may have been the largest contributor of food this year.  Our troop had 22 Scouts and 10 adults attend Scouting for Food this year.

This Tuesday is the Heritage Park cleanup.  We will meet at the park at 6:00 pm and go to Christy’s for dinner.  We will also remind the Scouts to bring rakes and gloves as well as tree-trimming tools as needed.

Jim Hering noted that Relay for Life is scheduled for July 30 at White Bear South Campus.  We are looking for an adult to spearhead the event.  This was a good event last year, and we are looking forward to doing this event again.

We also are booked for Feed My Starving Children on Tuesday, October 12.

9. Website Subcommittee
Steve Anastasi worked with Roger Scherping to come up with written responsibilities for both the adult-level Webmaster and the new Scout-level Webmaster.  This information was included in this month’s Committee meeting agenda and was proposed as a revision to our Troop Guidelines.  In general, the adult Webmaster will oversee the overall structure of the site and assist us on how best to use the site.  The Scout Webmaster will be able to take control of the website to make changes to it as needed and will contact the adult leaders about what they want to see on their respective sections of the website.  The following modification to the Troop Guidelines was approved by the Committee:


Adult Webmaster

  • Manage and maintain the overall structure of the site.
  • Control security and assign authority for access to the site.
  • Assist and advise adults and Scouts on proper and best use of the site.
  • Maintain a web page and style guideline for adults and Scouts to follow to ensure consistency.

Scout Webmaster

  • Coordinate the ongoing maintenance and updating of the site to ensure that it is kept current and is a useful resource for all troop members.
  • Assign responsibility for every page on the site and follow up with the responsible person to keep their pages updated.
  • Make changes to web pages as requested by appropriate adults who do not have access.
  • Proactively approach adult and Scout leadership to see what information or resources they would like to see on the site, or what improvements they want.

Steve also presented an overview of how much traffic is being generated on the troop website through Google Analytics.  We are currently receiving about 25 views on the site per day.  Many of our views are actually coming from outside sources, for example, when people search for and find our Court of Honor script.

Remaining work to be done on the website includes pictures, Committee minutes, and memorabilia.  The Scout Webmaster will be responsible for driving that work.

10. Treasurer’s Report
Ken Rowe distributed a troop Balance Sheet, which reflects many activities currently in process, including Sea Base expenses, flower money, and Northern Tier.

Ken also noted that the number of overdrawn Scout Bucks accounts is not unreasonable.  He last handed out statements about 6 weeks ago and is still looking to collect from people who owe money.

Ken has a completed inventory of trailer contents to obtain insurance quotes on the two troop trailers.

11. Old Business
Roger Scherping received one more check for FOS to bring us up to 73% of our goal. This will be delivered to the Scout office this week.

Roger tabled the special needs awareness class until the fall.

12. New Business
Roger Scherping announced that Jeff and MarySue Abel earned the Star of the North award. The Committee congratulated them on their achievement.

Roger will contact Mark Sather to schedule a date for our annual troop presentation to the Rotary.

13. Comments/Closing
The meeting was adjourned at 9:25 pm.