Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Wood Badge 2019

Wood Badge is a Scouting leadership program for adult leaders. Wood Badge courses aim to make Scouters better leaders by teaching advanced leadership skills and by creating a bond and commitment to the Scout movement. Our Council will be offering Wood Badge in 2019, for the first time in years. We are very excited about the opportunities that Wood Badge brings!

Download the flier here:


Thursday, September 13, 2018

Save the date: Town hall meeting about older girls

Earlier this year we held a town hall meeting to discuss the nuances of adding girls to the Cub Scout program. We will be holding a similar town hall for those who have interest in adding older girls to the Boy Scout age program. The meeting will be held on Saturday, December 8th from 10:00 AM till 11:30 AM at Room T119 in the Technology Center at GCC.

Towpath Roundtable is September 20th

On Thursday, September 20th, the Towpath District will hold their first Roundtable of the new season.
WE ARE IN A DIFFERENT LOCATION AT DESALES!! We will be in the old library on the second floor. This is a much more comfortable room and out of the traffic flow. Please enter through the door at the TOP of the driveway ABOVE the cafeteria parking lot. Follow the CUB SCOUT signs.

We’ve got lots to cover at Roundtable, things like:

Webelos Woods
Taste of Scouting
Camp Kickoff
Camporee and Klondike Derby
Position Specific Training

The Scouting BSA Breakout session will introduce you to our new Advancement Chair, Ray Kline, who will explain procedures for Eagle projects, Boards of Review, etc. There have been some changes to the process, so Scoutmasters and Advancement Chairs should plan on attending. If you’re doing “double duty”, representing both Pack and Troop, PLEASE arrange to have someone attend this session, but also have someone attend the

CUB SCOUT Breakout – which will begin addressing the AOL to Scout transition. This is an important time for your AOL Cubs as they get ready to cross over to Scouting BSA and their new Troops! BOTH PACKS AND TROOPS SHOULD PLAN ON SENDING PEOPLE TO THIS SESSION! Packs need to develop relationships with Troops that will fit their Cubs’ schedules and personalities and Troops need to be ready to “show off” for visiting Cubs. Learn some secrets to a successful transition by attending this session!

Roundtable begins at 7PM and will end before 9.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

A summer camp success story: Tyler Calmes

Here's a summer camp success story!

At Camp Sam Wood 2017 (Session 2), Tyler Calmes picked up a bow and arrow for the first time and needed assistance on how to shoot it.

When he came home from camp he told his parents that he wanted a real bow and arrow for Christmas, which he received.

His dad started taking him up to a cousin's archery shop to learn how to shoot. He was getting quite good and they recommended that his parents take him to a shooting event so he could shoot at 3D targets. He truly enjoyed it, so they took him to more.

He qualified for the IBO State Championships and came in second place for his age group this year!

Way to go, Tyler! To go from being a beginner to a major player in archery in less than one year is really impressive!

Friday, May 4, 2018

BSA changes its name

Adventure Has a New Name: Scouts BSA

Only the name of the troop-level program will be updated. Cub Scouts will continue to be Cub Scouts; likewise with the Venturing and Exploring programs.

The organization name will remain Boy Scouts of America.

As we enter a new era for our organization, it is important that all youth can see themselves in Scouting in every way possible. That is why the BSA is proud to announce that Scouts BSA is the new name for the Boy Scout program. Scouts BSA perfectly represents the new, inclusive program for older Scouts that the Boy Scouts of America is proud to offer. The name change will be effective in February 2019, when Scouts BSA will begin welcoming girls and boys.

Why Scouts BSA? Because it builds on the legacy of the Scout name. The Scout meetings, Scout camp, the Scout handbook, Scouts themselves - we have more than 108 years of heritage and tradition built on the Scout name. The organization name will continue to be ‘Boy Scouts of America.’ The BSA will continue to build the future of Scouting with Scouts BSA, as we deliver character and leadership and offer a path to the rank of Eagle Scout for boys and girls.

“Scout. It’s not just what I do, it’s who I am.”

How Was the New Name Determined?

In February 2018, the BSA began working with an outside agency to develop naming options for the Older Girl/Youth Program. Guidelines included:

• The organization name ‘Boy Scouts of America’ will not change
• The name must be relevant to today’s youth and families
• Explore two scenarios:

(1) Two names – keep the name ‘Boy Scout’ and come up with a name for the older girl program, or
(2) One name – develop one name that would be used for the program that would serve both boys and girls.

After reviewing and refining a list of potential names, the BSA shared the naming options with key stakeholders, including volunteer panels, professional panels, district operations basic classes, panels of commissioners, the Boy Scout Support Committee, the Marketing Committee and the Scout Executive Marketing Advisory panel.


Each group independently concluded that a separate name for the Boy Scout program and another name for the girl program was confusing and risked communicating an incorrect assumption that the girl program was perhaps watered down or somehow different.

One Name is the Best Choice

Each of the groups independently decided that the one-name scenario was the best choice. They also agreed that the best name choice was ‘Scouts’.
They agreed that the name ‘Scouts’ best preserved the brand equity of the program and provided the easiest transition.

As we enter a new era for our organization, Scouts BSA perfectly represents the new, inclusive program for older Scouts. Scouts BSA

Questions and Answers

Q: Are you changing the name of the organization?
A: No, our iconic organization name will continue to be Boy Scouts of America

Q: When will the name change be effective?
A: The scheduled launch date for Scouts BSA is February 1, 2019.

Q: What will the members of the program be called?
A: Just as today, they will be called Scouts. For example, “I’m in Scouts BSA, so I am a Scout.”

Q: Will The Boy Scout Handbook be updated to reflect the new name?
A: Yes.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Local scout is a hero

Praises to Leroy Cub Scout Steven Sanders, whose quick actions saved his brother from choking. Check out the report from WHAM13:


Scouts needed for Air Base drill

Stephen Stouter from GNFC sent along an invitation for Boy Scouts, Venture Crews, and Explorers. They are looking for volunteers for a large scale drill at the Niagara Falls Air Base on May 19th. It is a great opportunity for any scout working on the Emergency Preparedness Merit Badge. If you'd like the files in their original Word format (rather than the images shown below), email bob@conferplastics.com

Monday, April 30, 2018

STEM Nova Award

On March 27, 2018, Cub Scout Pack 3006 in Lockport, NY became the first unit ever in Iroquois Trail Council to present Nova patches to 8 of its Cub Scouts.  The Nova patch is the first part of a new, four-part initiative focusing on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). After receiving their Nova patch, scouts will earn a pin for each of the remaining 3 modules. The pin is a Pi shape, the mathematical symbol for a never ending number (3.1415…).

Council dignitaries present for the patch presentation included John Beiter, Council Training Chair, Dave Ebersole, Council STEM Coordinator and Bob Pugh, District Commissioner for the Towpath District, one of three Districts in the Iroquois Trail Council.

Cubmaster Steve Allore, who received his STEM Counselor/Mentor training last November, worked superbly with his scouts on their first module and made the patch presentation to 7 scouts. (One was absent and will be given the award at the next Pack meeting).

When Allore first heard about the NOVA program, he was curious as to how it worked, but had no idea what he was in for.  Very quickly he realized there was an opportunity to expand the program for the boys and then took charge.  Working alongside some of the requirements, Allore was able to work with Iroquois Trail Council Training Chair John Beiter and STEM Coordinator Dave Ebersole to expand the program to give a richer experience.  We gave the boys a little homework, took a field trip to a local diner, and tried to make it fun for each boy.  Allore highly recommend this program and can't wait to do even more next year.

Beiter offered a congratulatory message on behalf of the Council and expressed how wonderful it was to see such a historic moment and shared in the pride of the Pack's accomplishment in achieving their first step. Ebersole praised the unit for their accomplishment and did a presentation showing a rock with ugliness on one side while the underside displayed gem-like lattices – a scientific evolution.   Next was a demonstration of a smoke ring cannon, made from a 55 gallon garbage filled with smoke from a smoke generator, produces smoke rings as a practical application of science and technology.  The Cub Scouts got a thrill out seeing ring smokes flying at a Boy Scout with a plastic cup on his head, some of the smoke rings even came their way! Pugh echoed similar sentiments and wished the scouts success on the path to full completion of their STEM Nova patch.

Allore would be happy to share insights and answer questions any Cub Scout leaders might have.  He can be reached at steve.allore@gmail.com.

For anyone working in one of the STEM disciplines with an interest in becoming STEM Counselors or Mentors, please contact Beiter, jrbeiter@rochester.rr.com, for more information.  Upcoming training dates are Saturday October 27, 2018 and 2019 University of Scouting March 9, 2019, both at Genesee Community College in Batavia, NY.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

April is a crucial month for Family Scouting designation

If your chartered organization has not yet submitted their "yea", "nay" or "later" letter about Family Scouting to the Council office, please encourage them to do so by the end of this month. We need to know so we can line up the appropriate resources for everyone (training, marketing materials, support, etc) and post unit designations on Be a Scout and other places. For cub leaders who did not attend the Family Scouting town hall or University of Scouting earlier this year, we will have it as a discussion item at this month's roundtables. At those meetings we will also be handing out extra copies of the charter approval documents so you can nudge the charter reps into making a decision.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Monday, January 22, 2018

Our roll-out of Family Scouting

On January 20th, Scout Executive Jim McMullen and Council President Bob Confer hosted a town hall meeting at GCC about the Family Scouting program that will welcome girls into the Cub Scout program in 2018 while creating an older scout program for girls in 2019.

If you missed the presentation you can watch the full 1.25-hour video on our Facebook page:


You can also download the PowerPoint slideshow here:


Tuesday, January 16, 2018

University of Scouting 2018

Join us for a full day of learning that will give you the confidence and skills to develop an exciting program that will thrive and grow! The University of Scouting is for all pack, troop, crew and post leaders, parents, and youth.

It will be held Saturday, March 10th at Genesee Community College from 8:00 till 4:30.

The schedule consists of eight periods with tracks for all aspects of Scouting. Course selections are designed around specific leadership roles and you'll also find helpful sessions on program planning, recruitment, retention, and a variety of other valuable topics. You can decide to take the entire leadership track for your Scouting role or you can mix and match sessions to best meet your needs.

Please review the course selections and use the registration form included in the information packet to pre-register by March 5th to ensure that we have adequate materials for all sessions.

You can download the packet here: http://www.itcbsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/2018-ITC-UofS-Registration-Packet.pdf

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Town hall meeting about the Family Scouting program

This past fall, the Boy Scouts of America announced that over 2018 and 2019 the Family Scouting program will be launched. This will allow the creation of Cub Scout and Boy Scout units that will serve girls. On Saturday, January 20th, Scout Executive Jim McMullen and Council President Bob Confer will hold a town hall meeting at which we will discuss the nuances of the program as we know it and how the program will be rolled out within our council. The meeting will run from 10:00 AM until 11:30 AM and will be held in room T119 at Genesee Community College in Batavia. This presentation is open to everyone -- unit leaders, chartered organization reps, parents, scouts, and those who would be interested in starting such a unit. If you plan to attend, please RSVP to Bob Confer via email: bob@conferplastics.com

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

2017 Membership Fee Increase

The mission of the Boy Scouts of America is to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law.

To do this — while delivering the nation’s foremost youth development program — the BSA must remain vigilant in controlling costs. Although we have been successful in reducing our expenditures in many areas, it has become necessary to evaluate our annual membership fees.

Based on feedback from both volunteers and employees, the BSA membership fee will increase to $33 for all registered youth and adult leaders, effective December 1, 2017.
Membership fees support the services that are necessary to provide Scouting to youth from 7 to 21 years of age. From education to high-adventure experiences you can’t get anyplace else, the BSA provides unique growth opportunities at a great value.

Services include primary liability coverage for all volunteer leaders and chartered organizations, ongoing advances in technology, fundraising support, new program development and membership recruiting strategies, and support materials. In 2016 alone, the BSA served 2.3 million youth members through approximately 270 local councils across the United States and its territories.

With the help of all of our volunteers and Scouting parents, we will continue accomplishing incredible things for young people and the communities we serve.

Questions and Answers:

1. Why are you increasing the membership fee? What is the additional money from the fees going to be used for?

To deliver the Scouting program to our 2.3 million youth members, it is occasionally necessary for the organization to increase membership fees to offset rising costs. As a result, the BSA is increasing our membership fee to $33 for all registered Scouts and adult members effective December 1, 2017.

Membership fees support the services that are necessary to provide Scouting programs to a growing number of youth. Services include ongoing advances in technology, council visits to assist in fundraising, program development and membership campaigns, liability insurance costs, and administrative costs. It is important that we continue to maintain a strong financial position in the future to support and grow Scouting.

2. What is directly contributing to the need for this increase?

There are a variety of factors taken into consideration, all of which have led to an increased cost of doing business.

3. When will the increase go into effect?

The membership fee change for all registered youth and adult leaders will go into effect December 1, 2017. This change will affect Cub Scout packs, Boy Scout troops, Venturing crews, Sea Scout ships, and Exploring posts/clubs. However, it will NOT apply to LDS-sponsored units, nor to those units with council-paid memberships. Note: All November and December 2017 recharters will have to renew at this new rate (since November recharter renewal actually spans from December 1, 2017, to November 30, 2018).

4. Does the BSA increase membership fees often?

There have been 10 fee increases in the organization’s history. Since 1969, the BSA has increased our fee, on average, every five years. The last membership increase took effect on January 1, 2014, and, prior to that, in 2010.

5. How much does it cost to be a Boy Scout?

All youth and adults who wish to become a member or leader of the Boy Scouts of America must pay the annual membership fee. Beyond that, families incur additional costs related to uniforms and the activities of their individual units.

6. Will the fee for Cub Scouts, Exploring, and Venturing/Sea Scouts increase as well?

Yes. This change will affect Cub Scout packs, Boy Scout troops, Venturing crews, Sea Scout ships, and Exploring posts/clubs. However, it will NOT apply to LDS-sponsored units, nor to those units with council-paid memberships.
7. Who gets the membership fee?

Local councils collect — and forward to the National Council — membership fees from each youth and adult who wishes to become a member of the Boy Scouts of America.

8. How is the National Council funded?

The National Council is funded through membership and service fees, investments, Boys’ Life magazine subscriptions, sales of uniforms and equipment, fees from national high-adventure bases, and contributions from individuals.