How to Plan a Court of Honor


WHAT: A Court of Honor is held several times per year to recognize the boys for the awards that they have earned during the year. Recognition is a great motivator, so it is important that we hold courts of honor that the boys feel are fun and meaningful to them. When they receive their awards in front of a large group of family and friends they should feel proud of what they've accomplished and motivated to keep advancing. 


WHEN: We hold courts of honor in January, June and September. At our January court we recognize the boys and the adults for the leadership that they gave to the troop the prior year, as well as give a Year in Review presentation and have a potluck dinner. We also hold a court at Tomahawk at the conclusion of the week.  


EVENT: The court is based around a pre-written script, and as with all of our events, the court is boy run. Using the script, our senior patrol leader opens the court with a flags ceremony. We then hand out awards to the boys, and the Scoutmaster says a few words. Then we close with another flag ceremony. We usually have cake and kool aid afterwards.  





Location: We need to hold the court at a location that can hold 100-120 guests.


Boy Leaders:  Usually there are 2 boys who are working on Communications merit badge who will plan and MC the court. They should do as much of the planning and preparation work as possible. 


Script: The script is standard and does not change, except for improvements. 


Awards: The advancement coordinator arranges for all of the awards that need to be handed out. 


Decorations: We can decorate the location with some of our Scouting decorations. The boys who are planning the court should do this. 


Food: A cake needs to be ordered for every event. Our quartermaster will provide the plates and forks. He will also bring a cooler and mix to make kool aid. Also, in January we typically have a potluck dinner.  Scouts should be divided by letters of the alphabet and told to bring either a main dish or a side dish.  Someone will need to arrange for coffee and milk.


January Recognition: For the January court, certificates need to be printed for the following: Scouts who held leadership positions during the prior year, adults who held leadership positions during the prior year, and boys who earned special recognition (the top sellers of flowers, wreaths and popcorn, the boys who earned the most merit badges, who had the most rank advancements, etc.).  The Treasurer will provide the top sellers, and the Advancement Recordkeeper will provide the names of the boys who deserve recognition for their advancements.


Program Handout: A simple program should be prepared for the event. It will show the order of events. Plus it should list every award that every boy is to receive at that court. The advancement coordinator will provide a list of who has earned what. 


Ceremony: For the ceremony we need our US and troop flags, plus the two candleholders (advancement, Scout Oath/Law).