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:

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:

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.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

BoyPower event was a success

Wonderful evening last night at the BoyPower Dinner. "Thank you" to everyone who made it a smashing success and congratulations again to our honorees. Here's the Daily News' report:

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Shotgun range campaign close to goal

We are VERY close to reaching our fundraising goal of $12,000 for the new shotgun range. People have been very generous. Between the donations website and direct checks, we're at $10,500! Encourage your friends to help us get there by giving either through the donations website or by sending a check to Iroquois Trail Council 201 East Main Street, Batavia, NY, 14020

Friday, February 24, 2017

Silver Beaver honoree: Nathan Pace

Nathan Pace’s Scouting history includes decades of service in several Boy Scout councils. On the local level he has served in a variety of roles, including Crew Advisor, Scoutmaster, Committee Chair, Charter Organization Representative, District Committee Member. An experienced camper, he has served on camp staff at 2 camps as a National Camp School Certified staff member.

An Eagle Scout himself, Nathan is both son to an Eagle Scout and father of 2 Eagles. His 2 younger sons are working toward Eagle.

An attorney in private practice, his community service includes former terms as a City Council Member in Kaysville, Utah, and membership on the Utah State Board of Bar Examiners, as well as ongoing current service as Assistant Public Defender in Orleans County.

In his practice he has worked as a law guardian in Family Court in multiple counties representing the needs of children whose parents’ behavior has brought court action. In his practice he offers dispute resolution, mediation, and family advisement.

In addition to Scouting and community service, he is deeply devoted to his faith, and has served his church in various leadership roles. Most recently he served as Bishop of the Lockport Ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and his currently calling is to serve as President of the Buffalo Stake of the LDS Church.

President Pace’s leadership role in the Church and as an active member of the Iroquois Trail Council Executive Board helped him to facilitate a long-desired coming together of the Council’s mission with that of the church, which is to offer Scouts an amazing summer camp experience while also offering formal training to their adult leaders modeled on the training offered at the Philmont Training Center.

His inspirational leadership has helped to bring together a dedicated group of local volunteers who have poured heart and soul into launching the Zion’s Camp program at Camp Dittmer. Chief among the camp’s objectives is to teach troop leaders how better to help lead the Scouts to become better young men, better husbands, fathers, and leaders.

The Nationally-recognized Zion’s Camp program has had a transformative effect on the boys and men who attended, and has also helped to improve the overall program and infrastructure at Camp Dittmer, improving the outcomes for all of our local Scouts.

For his long service to youth and his community, and for his guidance, vision, and leadership, the Iroquois Trail Council is pleased to recognize Nathan Daniel Pace with the Silver Beaver Award.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Silver Beaver Honoree: Lisa Brown

Lisa Brown has been a Scouting volunteer for more than 10 years. She has served in various roles in her local pack, including Tiger Leader, Den Leader, Webelos Leader, and Committee Member. Recently she has also taken on the role of Crew Advisor and lends a hand with her local Troop.

Beyond service to her local Scouting units, Lisa is an indispensable part of the Seneca District volunteer team. As an instructor for Basic Cub Leader Training and Den Chief Training since 2009, she has helped to teach hundreds of other leaders how to be successful at delivering an excellent Scouting program. A dynamic and creative instructor, she has carried over her enthusiasm for training by leading the district’s Cub Scout Leader Roundtable for the past several years. She has also shared her knowledge with others as part of the Area 3 Commissioner College training staff.

A perennial volunteer staffer for Day Camp and the Cub Scout Spookoree, Lisa has also stepped forward to take the lead on the district’s fund raising team, heading up the annual Popcorn Sale campaign and inspiring others to share in her love and support of Scouting as chair of the annual Family Friends of Scouting donation campaign. Her love and enthusiasm for the Scouting program inspires all of us at the District and Council level.

Her most recent project is the development of a local Scouters’ Cookbook, a fund raising project that will feature all of our favorite recipes.

Her hard work, support, and tireless dedication for Seneca District was recognized with the 2011 District Award of Merit.

This former resident of Colorado also keeps pretty busy outside of Scouting. She has sung in her church choir, been active as a Girl Scout and 4H leader, and served as a Class Advisor at Batavia High School.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Spring camporee

The 2017 Spring Camporee will be held at Camp Sam Wood from April 28th to 30th. It will have a special focus on map and compass skills which are Scouting super powers that you must have to properly tackle wilderness adventures in the Adirondacks, Canada or Philmont. The info packet can be downloaded here:

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Bob Confer's speech from our annual dinner

If you were unable to attend our annual dinner this past weekend, here's the transcript of Council President Bob Confer's speech...

If you’re a sports fan, you know that the sports world was full of improbable comebacks over the past year.

Down 3 games to 1 in the NBA Championships against the best team in history, Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers came back to win it all.

Then, in the Major League Baseball playoffs, the Chicago Cubs also came back from a 3-1 deficit to eliminate more than a century of misery.

And, last week….we got to see one of the most exhilarating Super Bowls ever when Tom Brady willed the Patriots to a win after being 25 points down.

Those were all awesome wins.

But they’re sports.

They're fun to watch, but do they really impact our day to day lives?


But we were all involved in a comeback that did matter.

Everyone in this room contributed to a team effort that saw us win our own championship of sorts.

To understand that comeback, let’s go back in time to 2015.

2015 was not a good year for us. The Council’s finances were in the red. Camp attendance was down. Membership was down by more than 6%.

A lot of Councils would have a hard time coming back from that. Some never do.

But, like LeBron James and Tom Brady, everyone in this room, and all of our teammates not with us tonight, had a commitment to excellence…a sense of urgency…a desire to win our game ---- which is the game of Scouting.

2016 was one of those magical comebacks.

We went from being down in the dumps, to reaching the pinnacle --- in 2016 we became a Gold Council, something that less than 25% of all councils achieve in a given year.

That’s means we are the best of the best.

Fall recruitment was more than 20% higher than 2015 despite significant and immediate drops in the population of available youth in the area that surpassed 20% over the past 4 years.

Now, 1 in 4 boys who are of Cub Scout age across our 5 counties are Cub Scouts.

Camp attendance exploded, not only because of Zion’s camp but because of our scouts having a renewed interest, a new love affair, with our wonderful camps.

For the 10th year in a row we led all of NY in camping.

And, the Council made money.

We all came back.

The Council succeeded because YOU succeeded.

YOU are the Council.

It’s a team effort ---  from our packs, troops and posts….to our district and council committees…to our executives and office staff…to our camp staffs and rangers.

It takes a lot of people with special talents to make a sports team win….it takes a lot more people with more special talents to make a Council win.

And how do we measure our wins?

Being a Gold Council is nice…as a matter of fact, it’s pretty darn awesome.

But that’s not our Super Bowl trophy or World Series ring.

What’s our trophy?

It’s the smile on the cub scout having fun at the Pinewood Derby.

It’s the young man becoming having that Eagle Scout medal pinned to his uniform.

It’s the pride we take when one of our scouts goes on to become a great husband, father and citizen.

Our trophies don’t sit on a shelf.

Our trophies are real.

So, thank you for engineering that comeback in 2016 and for being at the top of your game.

You do things that really matter.

And, America can’t thank you enough for that.

Thank you!