Roundtable Staff Objectives

Roundtables are a form of commissioner service and supplemental training for volunteers at all levels. The objective of roundtables is to give leaders program ideas; information on policy, events, and training opportunities; and an opportunity to share experiences and enjoy fun and fellowship with other Scouting leaders. The roundtable commissioner and staff demonstrate elements of a model meeting that leaders may use as a pattern for their own meetings. The roundtable experience will inspire, motivate, and enable unit leaders to provide a stronger program for their Tiger Cubs, Cub Scouts, Webelos and Boy Scouts.

Meeting Times:

Monthly from September to May

The First Thursday night of the month

7 PM - 8 PM

Saint Luke’s United Methodist Church, Danville VA

Follow by Email

If you are a Scouting Unit in the Dan River/Halifax Area and would like to add an event to the calendar, please send details to me in an email. You can email me by clicking HERE

Dan River District Calendar (There is more stuff below calendar)

Click event for more details

Click Here for Larger Calendar Page

Commissioners Corner Pages

Summit Shakedown 2012

Friday, December 19, 2008

New ‘Annual Health and Medical Record’ to Replace Class 1, 2, & 3 Health Forms

The Boy Scouts of America has released a new Annual Health and Medical Record, a new one stop medical record for your use. This new form will replace the former Class 1, 2, and 3 forms, which will be phased out during 2009. The new form, No. 34605, will be required effective January 1, 2010, and for the 2010 National Scout Jamboree.

Links to download the new form are below.

The form consists of three parts:
Parts A and C are to be completed annually by all BSA unit members. Both parts are required for all events that do not exceed 72 consecutive hours, where the level of activity is similar to that normally expended at home or at school, such as day camp, day hikes, swimming parties, or an overnight camp, and where medical care is readily available. Medical information required includes a current health history and list of medications. Part C also includes the parental informed consent and hold harmless/release agreement (with an area for notarization if required by your state) as well as a talent release statement. Adult unit leaders should review participants' health histories and become knowledgeable about the medical needs of the youth members in their unit. This form is to
be filled out by participants and parents or guardians and kept on file for easy reference.

Part B is required with parts A and C for any event that exceeds 72 consecutive hours, a resident camp setting, or when the nature of the activity is strenuous and demanding, such as service projects, work weekends, or high-adventure treks. It is to be completed and signed by a certified and licensed health-care provider—physician (MD, DO), nurse practitioner, or physician's assistant as appropriate for your state. The level of activity ranges from what is normally expended at home or at school to strenuous activity such as hiking and backpacking. Other examples include tour camping, jamborees, and Wood Badge training courses. It is important to note that the height/weight chart must be strictly adhered to if the event will take the unit beyond a radius wherein emergency evacuation is more than 30 minutes by ground transportation, such as backpacking trips, high-adventure activities, and conservation projects in remote areas.

The new pdf version of the form can be filled out on your computer and saved for future updates. It comes with warnings against units emailing or saving electronically the forms.

A few snippets from the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Q. What are the major changes?
A. A health history is still sufficient for typical activities lasting less than 72 hours (Parts A and C of the new form—similar to the old Class 1 form). For activities lasting longer than 72 hours, a medical evaluation by a health-care provider is now required annually (Part B). For high-adventure activities for which medical care may be delayed, restrictions based on standardized height/weight ratios are now mandatory.

Q. When does the Annual Health and Medical Record go into effect?
A. Everyone should begin using the Annual Health and Medical Record immediately. The existing stock of Class 1, 2, and 3 forms can continue to be used while supplies last in 2009. The only supported form effective January 1, 2010, is the Annual Health and Medical Record. Its use will be mandatory for the 2010 National Scout Jamboree.

Q. How often will I need to renew/update my Annual Health and Medical Record?
A. This form will need to be updated annually, just as many schools or sporting leagues require an annual update. Many changes can happen throughout a year, including changes in disease processes, medication, address, and insurance.

Q. Why do I need to put my child's or my own social security number on the record?
A. It is your choice as to whether you fill in this number; however, in many states, medical care cannot be rendered without it.

Read the rest of the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

The new forms come in two printing styles:
- Annual Health and Medical Record (Prints on four 8.5 x 11 sheets)
- Annual Health and Medical Record spread (Prints on two 8.5 x 11 sheets)

The new Annual Health and Medical Record cites two additional forms:
- Immunization Exemption Request - Request for exemption from tetanus immunization requirement.
- Medical Care Exemption Request - Request for exemption from medical care.

Both of which, according to the Scouting Safely section of the National Council website, will be coming soon.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Guide to Safe... Winter camping from The Scoutmaster Minute by (Jerry)

The Guide to Safe Scouting Section 13 outlines Winter Camping Safety.
I have posted it here in it's entirety:

There is magic to camping in winter. It is one of the most advanced and challenging of outdoor adventures. Special considerations for winter camping include the following:
1. Leadership.
In no other camp is the type of leadership as important as in the winter camp. It is vital that a leader be an experienced camper with a strong character.
2. Equipment.
Do not attempt to camp unless completely outfitted. Even if equipment for winter camp is more expensive than for summer camp, Scouts must be adequately clothed, and leaders should ensure that blankets and other equipment are of suitable quality and weight.
3. Physical Condition.
A physician's certificate as to physical ability must be obtained by each Scout before preliminary training begins.

Tips for your next winter camping trip:
1. Use the buddy system for winter outings. Buddies can check each other for frostbite, make sure no one becomes lost, and boost the morale of the entire group.
2. Plan to cover no more than five miles per day on a winter trek on snowshoes. An experienced group can cover 10 to 12 miles on cross-country skis.
3. Always allow ample time to make camp in winter, especially if you plan to build snow shelters. 4. Fatigue encourages accidents. Rest occasionally when building a snow shelter; taking part in cross-country skiing or snowshoeing; or participating in other active winter sports. Periodic rests also help avoid overheating.
5. Pulling a load over the snow on a sled or toboggan is generally easier than carrying it in a backpack.
6. Snow is a terrific insulator. Snow shelters are much warmer than tents because they retain heat and keep out the cold wind. If you have adequate time for building snow shelters, you will spend a much more comfortable night sleeping in them than in a tent.
7. Snow is the greatest thief in winter, swallowing up small dropped items. Tie or tape a piece of brightly colored cord to small items so they can be seen in snow. Some items, such as mittens, can be tied to larger items, such as a parka, to prevent them from being dropped and lost.
8. Melting snow in a pot to get water may cause the pot to burn through or may scorch the snow, giving the water a disagreeable taste. Prevent this by adding a cup or two of water in the bottom of the pot before putting in the snow to melt.
9. Punch a hole in the top of your ice chisel and string a stout cord through it. Before trying to chisel a hole in ice, anchor the cord to something large or too heavy to be pulled through the hole so you will not lose your chisel in freezing water when the ice is penetrated.
10. Always test the thickness of ice before venturing any distance from the shore. Ice should be at least 3 inches thick for a small group; 4 inches of ice is safe for a crowd. Since ice thickness can vary considerably, it is best to stay near the shoreline of large lakes.
11. Use alkaline batteries in flashlights. Standard batteries deteriorate quickly in cold weather. Tape the switch of your flashlight in the "off" position until you are ready to use it. This will prevent it from being turned on accidentally while in your pack or on your sled.
12. Encourage everyone in your group to wear brightly colored outer clothing so that each person will be more visible, especially during severe weather.
13. Small liquid-fuel stoves are much better for cooking in winter than fires, which are difficult to build with wet wood. Gathering wood that is frozen to the ground also can be difficult, if not impossible. A pressure/pump-type stove is essential in winter.
14. Always use a funnel to refuel a stove so you won't frostbite your fingers by accidentally pouring fuel on them. Fuel evaporates at a high rate of speed and quickly removes heat from anything it touches.
15. Place a stove or fire on a platform of logs or rocks so it will not melt through the snow.
16. Never light or use a stove inside a tent or snow shelter. A tent may catch fire, and vapors in a snow shelter may lead to carbon monoxide poisoning. Neither of these potential mishaps is worth the risk.
17. A windscreen is essential for using a stove in the winter. Even a slight breeze will direct the heat away from its intended mark.

References: Okpik: Cold Weather Camping, Boy Scout Handbook, Scoutmaster Handbook, and Camping Sparklers

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Teaching Scout about the COLD from The Scoutmaster Minute by (Jerry)

COLD is a tool that makes learning about cold weather camping lasting. It is an easy tool that the boys can remember and it is simple enough to retain.

C- Clean.
You need to stay clean in a cold weather environment Dirt on clothing acts like a wick for wet and cold. Keeping your clothing clean will keep you dry and warm.
Keeping your body clean is a great way to stay warm also.
Oily skins gets your sleeping bag dirty. As you sweat in your sleeping bag you can start to break down the warming qualities of your bag. Opening the pours of your bag.
You need to maintain a clean body. A simple wipe down before heading into the bag for the night will keep you snug and warm.

O- Overheating.
KEEP from overheating. Control your temperature by watching what you do and what you wear. As activities increase, loose clothing. Use zippers and hats to regulate heat/cold. If your get cold, put more on, as you warm up, unzip arm pits and take off the hat.
Reduce the amount of sweat sitting on your skin. Sweat freezes and as it evaporates it takes away your body heat. A real fast way to loose heat and lower your core temp is to sweat. Keep from sweating.

L- Loose in Layers.
Dress for Success.. Loose and in layers.
Loose creates air pockets. Those air pockets heat you up as they fill with the body heat. Keeping the heat in those layers will keep you warm. Layers are key. Start with your base layer, the clothing on your skin. Sweat wicking and NO COTTON. Then throw on your mid layers. The clothing that keeps you warm. Outer layers that keep you away from the elements. And all of this layered. Remove or add layers as needed.

D- Dry.
Staying Dry is the key to warmth. Weather that is dry from wet conditions or sweat. Staying dry with keep you warm. Staying warm will ensure a great time in the winter camping.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Thursday December 4th meeting.

Good morning.  I just wanted to confirm that I will be there this Thursday to quickly present to you guys on everything we have to offer for the Boy Scouts of this region.  Thanks for opportunity!

Adam Goebel

Danville Science Center

434-791-5160 x200



Roundtable Help

This weeks subject will be on Community Service. If you know of any organization that scouts can call or visit for community service, please reply back with the contact information. I will make a sheet to hand out Thursday night. Please reply as soon as possible, thanks.

David Hyler

If you really want to do something, You will make a way. If you don't, You will make an excuse.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thoughts from a Thankful Scoutmaster

Thoughts from a Thankful Scoutmaster

Last night the Troop held it's monthly fun night after the PLC meeting. This month the Scouts elected to play Basketball over at the Church gym as the darkness is falling earlier and its getting cold outside.
So they held their PLC meeting focusing on the January Camp out and discussing the events of December that the Troop will be involved in. I gave my two and half cents were needed and pretty much let them be.
Then off to the gym. It didn't take long to pick teams and the game began. We had a young Webelos Scout and his parents visiting last night, it was actually good for them to see the Troop at play. They got to see the camaraderie and cheerful spirit of the Troop as well as good sportsmanship.
At the end of the game, I gathered the Scouts at center court for some comments and a Scoutmaster minute to wrap up the night. I had something prepared, but then I looked at the boys sitting there on the floor and it hit me.

I am so blessed.

So I just talked to the Scouts about that.

I am so blessed that I have been chosen to be their Scoutmaster. To be a Scoutmaster at all is a blessing. To have the opportunity to impact these young men and watch them grow in character and skills that will last a life time. I thought about an email I received yesterday in which we had gone back and forth about Scoutmastership. The emailer reminded me of a quote from the book Legacy of Honor (which I have written about earlier). The quote was about the impact that a Scoutmaster has on the young men he serves. In the book the author was interviewing a man named Jim Breedlove. Mr. Breedlove said; "Scoutmaster is the most distinguished title a man can have....When I think of those people who have the opportunity to shape the lives of individuals to produce an outcome that is relevant, the role of Scoutmaster does that better than any one position I can think of."

So of course this got me thinking about my report card as a Scoutmaster. Is what I am doing that important? Do I really have that kind of impact? And if so... How am I doing?
My Dad used to always say that the "Proof is in the pudding". So I looked at the pudding.. the Scouts. Now we are far from seeing the results of the boys progress in life, but I suppose we can call it a quarterly report. I looked at pictures of our Troops first year. Man were those guys small. The looks on their faces as they braced for adventures to come, their willingness to learn and develop skills. The fun they had.
I remember a camp out, oh way back in our first year. We went to Ft. Stevens State Park and we were working on Map and Compass. We took the boys on a 5 mile hike and as we got closer to camp, I realized we were burning daylight and we still had dinner to cook. We challenged the Scouts, that if they beat us back to camp that we would do all the dishes. They took off like there was a blue light special on candy. They beat us back to camp, which allowed the ASMs and I to drop back and have a moment to talk about the next months camp out. So eager they were.
And today, well today they still are. Now the older guys are dropping back and making that challenge, teaching and sharing their experience with those new bright eyed Scouts that are eager and willing to step on to the trail of new adventure.
I am worthy of such a distinguished title... Scoutmaster. Maybe, but I love it. Looking back at the 5 boys that we started Troop 664 with, I can say with a some certainty that Scouting has made an impact on them so far. I see it in their attitudes, their skills, and the way they act.
Last night I talked with one of the original boys. He is a leader in his High School, gets good grades, plays sports, is helpful around the house, and a genuinely caring kid, I really appreciate him. I have seen him grow as a young man tremendously.
And then there was one of our younger guys, that after the Scoutmaster minute took the time to tell me his list of things he would saying at the dinner table on Thursday when it was his turn to give Thanks. He said that he was thankful that I was his Scoutmaster. I almost teared up.
Impact? Yes. Blessed? Yes. Thankful? Yes.
So I am truly humbled by the experience of being a Scoutmaster. As I told the boys last night, I will not leave until the Knights (our CO) asks me to.
Looking at the young faces at center court last night was all I needed to understand the impact, and the huge responsibility that comes with it. Last night was all it took to snap things in perspective and realize how thankful and blessed I am.
I told the Scouts of 664 that this Thursday as they sit at the table and gave thanks that they need to remember how blessed they are. How blessed to have the opportunities they have, to wake up in the Greatest Nation, to have freedom, to have parents and know what love feels like. To be able to enjoy a meal with family and friends, to have warmth and safety.
We have so much to be thankful for. I am thankful for so much, a list too long to share, but near the top, definitely in the Top 5 is the word Scoutmaster and all that comes with it..namely the Scouts.

Have a Great Scouting Day!

Have a Happy Thanksgiving.

David Hyler

If you really want to do something, You will make a way. If you don't, You will make an excuse.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Eagle Perspective

Mike Rowe (host of Discovery Channels Dirty Jobs) recently responded to a dad's request for help in convincing his 13 year old son to finish scouting with only a year and half left to go. Thought you'd be interested in his reply and be sure to check out the special offer at the end.


Your Dad asked me to drop you a line and say something inspirational that might persuade you to dig down deep and find the determination to make the rank of Eagle Scout. It's a reasonable request, from a father who obviously wants to see his son succeed. But here's the thing - The Eagle Award is not really meant for people who need to be dragged across the finish line. It's meant for a select few, and I have no idea if you have the guts to see it through.

Statistically, I suspect you do not. Only one out of a hundred Scouts make Eagle, so if you fail, there will be lots of other people with whom you can share excuses. Quitting now might disappoint your Dad, but I doubt that he or anyone else will be overly surprised. Anytime 99 out of 100 people do the same thing, it's not exactly a shock.

I'm not trying to be cute with a bunch of reverse psychology. When I was 15, there was nothing that anyone could have said to me that would have inspired me to do something I didn't want to do, especially a stranger with a TV show. So I'm not going to assume you're any different, or pretend that I have some influence or insight that you haven't already heard from a dozen other people who actually know and care about you. I'll just tell you straight up, that doing something extraordinary can be very lonely, and most people simply aren't cut out for it. Being an Eagle Scout requires you to be different than most everyone around you, and being different is really, really hard. That's why the award is called "an accomplishment."

Personally, and for whatever it's worth, the best decisions I've made in my own life, are those decisions that put me on the outside of being cool. Singing in the Opera, working in home shopping, staring in the school play when the entire football team laughed at me, and especially earning my Eagle, were all choices that required sacrifice, hard work, and delayed gratification. I have no idea if you possess those qualities, or even envy them. But I can tell you for certain, that NOT getting your Eagle, will be one of the easiest things you've ever done.

Anyway, I have no idea if you would prefer an easy life of predictability and mediocrity, or if have the passion to follow the road less traveled. Only you get to decide that.

Good Luck,

Mike has written a letter and will personalize and sign it for any Eagle Scout out there who requests it. All you have to do is mail a self-addressed, stamped envelope to: Eagle Scout Letter, Pilgrim Films and Television, 6180 Laurel Canyon Blvd., #350, No. Hollywood, CA 91606. Please allow 12+ weeks for Mike to fill it out, sign it and get it in the mail to you.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Backpacking Tip of the Week

Backpacking Tip of the Week

Backpacking puts you out into the wilderness, away from the hustle and bustle of every day life.. away from cars and phones and immediate care.

It is important that we enter the wilderness area with a solid foundation of camping skills.
First Aid, Fire building, Orienteering and most important Common sense.

As we entering the winter months it is always worth revisiting common first aid issues.

So this weeks Backpack tip is about Common signs of Cold weather injuries.

Common cold weather injuries when backpacking are Hypothermia, Frost Bite, and Frost Nip.

Symptoms of hypothermia are:
Signs and symptoms include: Shivering, Slurred speech, Abnormally slow breathing, Cold, pale skin, Loss of coordination, Fatigue, lethargy or apathy, Confusion or memory loss.

To treat a Scout with hypothermia, first move the person out of the cold. If going indoors isn't possible, protect the person from the wind, cover his head, and insulate his body from the cold ground.
Remove wet clothing. Replace wet things with a warm, dry covering.
Don't apply direct heat. Don't use hot water, a heating pad or a heating lamp to warm the victim. Instead, apply warm compresses to the neck, chest wall and groin. Don't attempt to warm the arms and legs. Heat applied to the arms and legs forces cold blood back toward the heart, lungs and brain, causing the core body temperature to drop. This can be fatal.
Offer warm drinks like hot chocolate or even just warm water, unless the person is vomiting.
Don't massage or rub the person. Handle people with hypothermia gently, because they're at risk of cardiac arrest. Monitor breathing, be prepared to administer CPR.

The key is prevention. Stay dry, change your socks often and when you do get wet, change right away.

When exposed to very cold temperatures, skin and underlying tissues may freeze, resulting in frostbite. The areas most likely to be affected by frostbite are your hands, feet, nose and ears.
You can identify frostbite by the hard, pale and cold quality of skin that has been exposed to the cold. As the area thaws, the flesh becomes red and painful.
If your fingers, ears or other areas suffer frostbite:
Get out of the cold.
Warm your hands by tucking them under your arms. If your nose, ears or face is frostbitten, warm the area by covering it with dry, gloved hands.
Don't rub the affected area. Never rub snow on frostbitten skin.
If there's any chance of refreezing, don't thaw out the affected areas. If they're already thawed out, wrap them up so they don't refreeze.
Get emergency medical help if numbness remains during warming. If you can't get help immediately, warm severely frostbitten hands or feet in warm — not hot — water. You can warm other frostbitten areas, such as your nose, cheeks or ears, by covering them with your warm hands or by applying warm cloths.

Recognizing the symptoms of Hypothermia and Frost bite will keep you and your buddies safe. Cold weather injuries are painful and can result in loss of limbs, fingers, and death. Prevention of these symptoms, knowing how to prevent falling victim to the cold can save your life.

Your experiences camping in the winter can fun and enjoyable.. as long as you are watchful for cold weather injuries. Don't let the cold scare you off.


Have a Great Scouting Day!

Age and Guile Wins Most of the Time


Sent to you by David via Google Reader:


via Scoutmaster by Clarke Green on 11/12/08

Beetle bailey
I cannot outrun my Scouts. They are faster, more agile and a few of the older ones are bigger and stronger. However I will always be older and wiser.

Thankfully I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I have had any significant behavioral difficulties with my Scouts in the past several years (knock on wood).


Things you can do from here:


Thursday, November 6, 2008

Meeting Reminder

This is just a reminder that there is a Roundtable meeting tonight at St. Lukes at 7pm.
Please drive around to the side of the building because there is a church
meeting going on in the fellowship hall.
If you have a hobby or collection you would like to share with the group, 
be prepared to 'show and tell.'  Also there will be cupcakes and coffee and 
please don't forget your $1 dues (this helps pay for copies and food).

David Hyler
Roundtable Commissioner

If you really want to do something, You will make a way. If you don't, You will make an excuse.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Jamboree Advice

Jamboree question

I opened the door.. so here it is:
JC, a reader of the Blog posted a comment it reads;
"Any advise for those of us facing the Jambo interview process? "

Well JC, yeah I have some advise... now take it as advise, I can only tell you from my experience.
Our Council did interviews a while back and we are completely staffed already and in the process of training sessions and meetings.

First of all... Be in FULL Uniform. Head to toe. Make sure all of your patches are properly placed and you are not wearing anything "Unauthorized".
If you are in the "Old Goat or rocking chair Patrol" of your home troop... while that is cute, take it off. The National Jamboree folks are not amused. (at least the folks at our Council weren't.)
Run a hot iron over the shirt and get a hair cut.

Second. Be early. There was some activity before the actual interview. They took our pictures and had a small meet and greet.

Third. Know what the mission of the National Jamboree is.
"The mission of the jamboree is to provide a diverse group of Scouts and Scouters a meaningful and memorable experience that will instill the lasting values and traditions of Scouting in America, and our highest priority will be to conduct the jamboree in a safe and secure environment. " - 2005 National Jamboree mission statement.
That will get you in the ball park.

Also know what the mission of the Boy Scouts of America is:
"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 Law."

The committee asked us to talk about our role in Scouting. Remember that is all for the boys.
They also asked us scenario questions such as;
What would you do if you are in DC and the bus is getting ready to leave and you are missing a Scout?
That type of stuff. Go over in your head the different situations that you think you may find yourself in.
I used the following list of situations:
1. Hotels
2. Airplanes
3. Museums
4. Camp
5. Tours (The Washington Mall)
6. Amusement park
7. Buses

Now take that and make a list of anything that can happen (go wrong) in those situations.
That prepared me for some of the scenarios.

Finally- If you really want to go to Jamboree as a Adult leader.. Then act like it. Demonstrate the confidence that you are ready to get on the plane tomorrow.
Show them you are Cheerful and ready, smile a lot and talk with confidence.

You will do great!
Hope that helps. Look me up at Jambo!

Have a Great Scouting Day!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Novembers Meeting

The theme we will be covering in Novembers roundtable will be Hobbies. I was wondering if any of you have a hobby or collection you would like to share? If so, please reply to this email with your hobby or collection, contact information and I will get in contact with you.

David Hyler
Roundtable Commissioner

If you really want to do something, You will make a way. If you don't, You will make an excuse.

Saturday, October 4, 2008


You will be able to view the list of contact information here in this online spreadsheet. If you have a list of contacts you would like to share with the District, please share. You can send them to me in an email, in Excel Format. Or you can give them to me at the next roundtable and I will type them in. Let's get this list full of information that will be useful to other scout leaders. 

David Hyler
Roundtable Commissioner

If you really want to do something, You will make a way. If you don't, You will make an excuse.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Reminder from Commissioner

Tonight is Roundtable and I hope to see you there. If you are a part of the Boy Scout Roundtable, we are scheduled to have a special guest with us from the VDGIF. Refreshments tonight include coffee, water, blueberry cake and banana nut cake. Check out the blog for more information at

See you tonight.

David Hyler

If you really want to do something, You will make a way. If you don't, You will make an excuse.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Merit Badge College - Fall 2008

Dear Scouters,

Attached are the forms you need to sign up your Scouts for V-Da-Li
District Merit Badge College 2008.
Please disregard any dates you see on the Council or V-Da-Li activities
calendar THEY ARE WRONG! MBC 2008 will be held at The Gereau Center on
October 25th and November 15th.

Please make copies of the course offerings and MBC information as
appropriate to give to and sign up your Scouts. We do not anticipate
Council support in providing these documents in a timely manner. Please
EDITION which may impact your Scouts' selections. Please have your
Scouts pay attention to prerequisites. Doing so will increase the
probability of merit badge completion during the two MBC sessions.

If you are downloading the forms and typing Scout names directly onto
the registration form on your computer, please e-mail a copy to:  This e-mail address is a CHANGE TO THE ADDRESS
working part time to input Scout names and preferences (this is not done
by Council)from the information you provide to us.  If you are unable to
e-mail registration sheets to , please be aware
that we will have to obtain copies of your registration forms from
Council after they process them along with your payment. This will
increase the time needed to process your Scouts and decrease the
likelihood we will be able to fit Scouts with their first choices.

To recap, please fill out the forms (1st, 2nd, 3rd, choices for Scout
merit badges), e-mail a copy of the registration forms (if possible)to , and mail or take registration forms and payment
to the Council office.

We apologize for the short notice and turn-around times. Please address
questions regarding MBC 2008 to

Yours in Scouting,
Randy Conklin

Thursday, September 18, 2008


Please contact Eddie Parham if you are interested in any Trainings offered in the next couple of weeks. New Leader Essentials is now offered on-line at Leader Specific Training for Cub Leaders will be offered next week at the Potters house, 1107 Westover Drive in Danville at 6:30. Another session will be offered during the October RT, and more during October. There will be a training for all Boy Scout Leaders on the 3rd weekend in October. Look for Eddie to announce some more details regarding that training later. To be on Eddies contact list or to register for a training, send an e-mail to: or


ITS NOT TOO LATE!! The US armed forces had promised to have an actual Black-hawk Helicopter on the grounds of the Camporee at Hargrave Military academy. There will also be other aircraft in the area and with the proper documentation; you or any of your scouts can take a ride in the sky aboard one of the aircraft. A release form produced by the National BSA regarding flying is required before the event. So please mark it on your calendars for September 19th-21st and point the truck towards Hargrave Military Academy because the largest Troop in the District, Troop 68, will be hosting with the help of Police Academy Post 911.


Bring your own water, Bring long pants if your scouts plan on doing the obstacle course, and please do not enter Hargrave from the main entrance - you must go down Hodnett's Mill Road, Only one vehicle may come down to the camping area and should be a 4-wheel drive vehicle (preferable if trailers could be left up at the parking area, but scout masters definitely would want to assess possibility of bringing their trailers down the road to the campsite before they actually do it...particularly if it rains much between now and then.)


A new added measure has been included on the adult application regarding back-ground checks. New applications are being sent soon that have the changes written on the form. All of the old applications are still good; however, they need an extra piece included when submitting the application. I will send the extra piece as an attachment and a link. This will directly effect the Join Scouting nights in collecting applications. 

From Shirley at Council about Popcorn:

This information about was sent to each unit that has
turned in a Commitment form.  If you have units that change their unit
coach or if you receive information for new unit coaches, you must sent
me that information so that I can set them up in the system.  All
commitment forms that I have received are entered.  Everyone should have
received an email from Trails End by now with their password in it.  If
not, let me know and we will get it to them.  Please advise each unit to
try to use their password to get into the system now so that they are
not in a panic at the last second when they are trying to place their

Please note that our council will be using any order to
that is placed between 9/26/08 and 10/31/08 towards the Scout's prizes.

Shirley Neiderhiser
Camp and Popcorn Registrar
Blue Ridge Mountains Council
: 540-777-7963
Fax: 540-265-0659


The BLUE RIDGE MOUNTAINS council has once again provided the opportunity
for you to earn additional profit at Your Consumers
now can purchase popcorn at with your Unit and Scout
Order Keys. More information about how your Unit and Scouts can earn
additional profit through this program is available

Please remember that should NOT be used to place your
regular Unit Popcorn Orders. Your Unit Popcorn Order should be submitted
to your BLUE RIDGE MOUNTAINS Council through the Popcorn System with
your unique username and password at

A very important message from Brenda hardy at Council:


Beginning with back to school youth applications this fall any adult that registers a youth and is not the legal guardian/parent must complete a separate adult application. Per membership services, the adult application must be signed by the CR/CC for the unit.  

There is no fee. We do not register the person I have to keep these applications for 3 years in the unit file.  To help me keep track of who is who, PLEASE mark these applications somewhere across the top "NON-CUSTODIAL PARTNER".

I realize we need to get youth applications processed asap; therefore, I would suggest pulling those Non-Custodial Partner applications out separate and getting signatures asap, then getting them to me.

Any questions, please let me know.


Brenda  Hardy, Registrar

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

BSA Rifle


Sent to you by David via Google Reader:


via ScoutMaster Musings on 9/16/08

BSA Rifle

Got $900 to blow and love rifles? Henry Repeating Arms has designed a BSA 100th Anniversary Commemorative rifle that will fulfill your needs.

It's a .22 so maybe we'll see some at summer camp next year. :-)

I guess this is really what you'd call a niche market - a $900 .22 rifle.

Scout On


Things you can do from here:



Trail Designs “Caldera Keg” - Initial test

I’m one of the “heat water only to re-hydrate food on the trail” kind of guys and I’m happy with Ramen noodles and the like for a long time. Having said that I was always searching for a lightweight and compact combo for solo usage which just does that. You already find kits like the Sputnik and Grammwenies kitchen but I could find nothing which included all parts in one set plus having the efficiency of the cone system. Until now…

Trail Designs released their new Caldera Keg system a short while ago and I couldn’t resist to order one right away adding one more item to my cooking equipment range…But what a worthwhile purchase it was! The Caldera Cone system has already been proven being the most efficient alcohol stove system currently out there tested by various hikers and magazines.
What impressed me about the Keg was that the guys from Trail Designs put really everything what you need into one box. Obviously the stove, the special windshield and the alcohol bottle but also a pot cosy, the pot itself (a modified beer keg from Foster), a lip guard which fits on top of the pot allowing you to grab the pot without burning your fingers and a storage container for everything which doubles as a mug and a bowl.
The Foster beer keg/pot has been modified with a flatter bottom and a “ridge” which holds the keg/pot in place within the cone and it’s height also represents the water amount of two cups or 425ml (0.45qt). Total capacity of the pot is 750ml (0.79qt). I put all items separately on my digital kitchen scale and those are the results:

Total weight, with everything: 194g (6.9 oz)

  • Stove: 16g (0.56oz)
  • Windscreen/Cone : 29g (1.02oz)
  • Fuel bottle + measuring cup: 22g (0.77oz)
  • Pot with lip guard: 30g (1.06oz)
  • Pot lid: 6g (0.21oz)
  • Pot cozy: 5g (0.25oz)
  • Carry case bottom-bowl: 45g (1.59oz)
  • Carry case top-mug:41g (1.45oz)

This all packs into an impressively small and compact unit as shown below and you also have a secure dent-free solution to transport your cone in the future.

How does it perform? I used my usual setup and tested the stove with no wind inside the kitchen letting him heat up two cups (425ml) of 7 °C (44.6 °F) cold water until it reached 95 °C (203 °F). The video below shows the whole test:

The time needed was 360 seconds and fuel consumption in this scenario was almost 15ml (0.01qt). You might need something extra if it is cold/windy outside but you can calculate on your own how long you will have a weight benefit with a alcohol vs. canister vs. white gas cooking system setup using this calculator.
Anything I would change after a few boils? I would add some fiberglass wick underneath the lip guard (or simply exchange the current lip guard with a wider version or add a second one) allowing me to grab the keg more comfortable/secure. I would also knot a little fiberglass wick loop in order to hold the keg lid better or exchange the metal one with one these wood knobs shown below:

And finally I will add two heat resistant/isolating pieces (either made from this material if it works or two silicon ring pieces like the one used for the lip guard) and glue them onto opposite sides of the cone so I can hold the cone while getting the keg out when both are still hot.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Pack Packing from Scoutmaster Musings on

The training for high adventures or weekend hike-in campouts should include proper pack weight distribution skills.

It makes sense to most people to pack the heaviest things in the bottom of the pack, but that isn't correct. A quick demonstration is all it takes to convince them that high and close to the hiker's back is best. It's all about center of gravity.

When standing normally, your body has a center of gravity running from your feet up through your head. There is the same amount of weight in front and behind and side to side of this imaginary vertical line. If you bend your head backwards, your hips move forward to counter the weight. If you lean to the left, your hips move to the right. Pretty simple.

When you plop a pack on your back that weighs 1/4 to 1/3 your body weight, you naturally need to lean forward to counter it. But, packed correctly, the amount of lean can be reduced resulting in more comfortable, upright posture while backpacking.

Pack a BackpackPlace a heavy tent or dense food at the top, close to your back. When you lean forward a little, this weight crosses the center of gravity, helping to offset the rest of the pack weight. 
Place that same tent low on the pack and you need to lean forward further to offset the weight. 
The further out from your body a heavy item is placed, the more lean is required to offset it.
A heavy item to one side will require lean to the other side to offset.

So, high and close centered side to side is key for the heaviest, most dense items. Sleeping bag and pad should be low. Lightweight items like an empty water jug can be furthest out.

Here is a scout at Philmont. See how far back the sleeping bag and pot are? If he moved that sleeping bag and pad to the top of his pack, he wouldn't feel like someone was trying to pull him over backwards.

Any item, such as the cooking pot, that is free to swing will cause problems. Things like sleeping bags thumping against the backs of legs drive hikers insane and the weight motion causes them to use extra energy. They will also eventually swing their way loose and fall in the dust. Be sure to strap everything down well.

Even though I don't personally like camelbacks, their design is cool for this weight distribution concern - heavy water close to your back and centered. If you have two 1-litre bottles like me, one on each side of your pack, that is 2.5lbs on each side. If you drink all of one, you're lopsided. Drinking some from each side keeps the load even.

Philmont Backpacking

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Roundtable News

Scout Leaders,

Just a note to say thanks for attending the Boy Scout Roundtable this past Thursday night. If you did not write down the website address given out here it is: I have also attached the survey handed out at the RT to this email, if you did not fill one out, please do so and send it back to me. Don't forget your $1 at the next meeting to continue the 'Cracker Barrel' that I think everyone enjoyed. If you have any ideas or suggestions please email them to me. If you enjoyed the new format, please let your fellow Scoutmasters know and invite them to the next Roundtable. Look forward to seeing you all next month.

Are you prepared for Winter Emergencies?
Are you ready for Thunderstorms?
Build a catapult.
Engineering merit badge worksheet.
Build a suspension bridge
Winter Camp Checklist
Pig Story
Google Sketch Up (Free 3D software)
The Outdoor Code

David Hyler
Boy Scout Roundtable Commissioner

If you really want to do something, You will make a way. If you don't, You will make an excuse.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

New Roundtable Starts Tonight

This site is for Scoutmasters to leave comments, recipes, suggestions, game ideas, experiences, or advice. Please feel free to posts to this blog, keeping in mind this is a Scouting Site. All posts will be moderated by Commissioner. Thanks.

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