A Message From Our Scout Executive

A Message From Our Scout Executive

I’m writing this less than 24 hours since the BSA issued its recent statement below:

As one of America’s largest youth-serving organizations, the Boy Scouts of America continues to work to bring the benefits of our programs to as many children, families and communities as possible.

“While we offer a number of programs that serve all youth, Cub Scouting and Boy Scouting are specifically designed to meet the needs of boys. For more than 100 years, the Boy Scouts of America, along with schools, youth sports and other youth organizations, have ultimately deferred to the information on an individual’s birth certificate to determine eligibility for our single-gender programs. However, that approach is no longer sufficient as communities and state laws are interpreting gender identity differently, and these laws vary widely from state to state.

“Starting today, we will accept and register youth in the Cub and Boy Scout programs based on the gender identity indicated on the application. Our organization’s local councils will help find units that can provide for the best interest of the child.

“The BSA is committed to identifying program options that will help us truly serve the whole family, and this is an area that we will continue to thoughtfully evaluate to bring the benefits of Scouting to the greatest number of youth possible – all while remaining true to our core values, outlined in the Scout Oath and Law.”

We posted it on our social media site as soon as it was announced, and so far, the Mason-Dixon Service Center is still standing, the world is still turning, and we’re all doing today what we were doing yesterday: attempting to provide the best possible Scouting experience for the youths and families of the Mason-Dixon Council. So what’s changed since yesterday?

Here's what hasn’t changed:

1. “The Mission of the Boy Scouts of America is to prepare young people to make moral and ethical decisions over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law.”

2. Scout Oath: “On My Honor, I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country and to obey the Scout Law; to help other people at all times; to keep myself physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight.”

3. Scout Law: “A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent.”

So those things didn’t change, and in fact, haven’t changed during my entire tenure in Scouting, which began in the late 1960’s.

So what did change? The statement above simply says that we will accept the information that families provide on the youth application regarding gender identity, rather than ultimately deferring to the birth certificate. Frankly, I don’t remember ever personally asking to see someone’s birth certificate to verify anything during my professional Scouting tenure, so this isn’t a world-changer for me.

What about privacy issues? Respect for individual privacy has been a key element of Youth Protection Training and a key part of the Scouting program for my entire 23 years as a Scouting professional. The need to respect a youth’s (or adult’s) privacy at all times, in all circumstances, doesn’t change as a result of last night’s announcement. We will continue to do our best to find practical, common-sense solutions to any potential issues arising from the need to protect the right for privacy as we always do.

How does this impact religious organizations who sponsor Scouting? While religious partners will continue to have the right to make decisions based on religious beliefs, we will work with families to find local Scouting units that are the best fit for their children.

The bottom line is simple: We in the Mason-Dixon Council will continue to do our best to provide the best quality Scouting experience to as many youths and families as we can within our service area. That hasn’t changed as a result of yesterday’s announcement and will not change during my tenure as your
Scout Executive.

Those wanting more specific information about the recent BSA announcement can contact BSA directly at PR@scouting.org.

Thanks, and thanks for what each of you do for Scouting!!!

Rob Stone
Scout Executive

January 2017 Chatter: Council News

Mason-Dixon Council News

Christmas Trees Wrapped Up

The Council would like to thank everyone that helped make the Christmas tree sale a big success again this year. The Christmas tree sale does more for the council than just generate a modest revenue. It help the public see scouts in action, it gives Scouting a month long public presence, it gives Scouts and Scouter a chance to live out the Scout Oath and Law and it has generated many articles in our local media. For many of the customers that purchase their trees from us, this is a family tradition or they like to support Scouting. If you have worked the Christmas tree sale you know how Christmas tree shopping warms the hearts of those fathers, mothers, grandparents, children and families as they gaze at each tree till they find just the right one.

For the joy and Christmas spirit we help nurture this past month, keep Christmas in your hearts all year long and we will see you next year!

Eagle Scout’s Host Breakfast with Santa

Breakfast With Santa was held on December 3, 2016 at the Otterbein United Methodist Church in Hagerstown. 10 Eagle Scouts that came out to help along with countless volunteers. There were a total of 26 volunteers that were eager to help out in any way. One's service does not stop once they become an Eagle Scout.

Breakfast with Santa Volunteers

Breakfast with Santa Volunteers

Kade Melton with his Supernova Award

Kade Melton with his Supernova Award

STEM Awards

Many scouts have been busy this year working on their Nova and SuperNova awards. Let’s all congratulate Kade Melton of Pack 23 Funkstown for earning the Luis W. Alvarez SuperNova award in April 2016. Due to a snafu Kade did not actually receive his award until October. Kade put in a great deal of hard work to earn this award. Next time you see Kade, congratulate him. If anyone is interested on how YOUR scout can earn either the NOVA or SuperNova Award. Please contact Karen Dickie at kdickie@washco-md.net 0

Scout Night with the Hawks and Lock-In

On Saturday January 14, 2017 join us for “Scout Night with the Hawks” basketball game at Hagerstown Community College in the Athletic, recreation and Community Center Building (ARCC). The woman’s game starts at 2 PM and the men’s starts at 4 PM. HCC is providing both games at no cost for Scout families if the Scout wears his uniform. The Lock-in begins immediately after the men’s game and run until 6 AM on Saturday. Cost to participate in the lock in is only $10.00 per registered Boy Scout or Cub Scout which includes all activities, pizza and snacks. Adults are free but will be required to sign up for a two hour time slot at one of the events/activities to help with the overall organization.

You must be preregistered to participate! As this is a unit event, each unit is responsible to collect permission slips from the parents for their own records. The unit will submit a unit roster of those attending with payment to the Council office. Roster and payment must be received no later than January 12th, 2016. You will receive a Lock-in ticket for each youth AND adult participating. Each person must have a lock-in ticket at registration. The unit leadership/parents are responsible for the youth. No youth will be permitted to leave the premises prior to 6 AM without unit leader signature at that time. Due to the nature of this activity, this is a Scout/parent/leader function only and we are not able to have non-Scout siblings attend.

What to bring: A water bottle with your name on it, you are welcome to bring a sleeping bag/pillow/mat in case you want to call it an early evening. We will have quiet areas available. Soft sole shoes must be worn on the gym surface at all times. Dress comfortably for an evening of activity and fun!

If you want to participate in the county’s largest indoor snowball fight….bring a new pair of white socks (adult or youth) that will become a snowball! After the event, the socks will be cleaned and donated to a local homeless shelter.

Questions? Please contact Don Harriman at donald.harriman@scouting.org or call the council at 301-739-1211.

Lock-In 2017 Flyer

Lock-In 2017 Registration Form

Award Deadlines Fast Approaching

Glenn A. and Melinda W. Adams National Eagle Scout Service Project of the Year Award

YOUTH AWARD: The Glenn A. and Melinda W. Adams National Eagle Scout Service Project of the Year Award is given to recognize valuable service of an exceptional nature by a Scout to a religious institution, a school, a community, or another entity while doing his Eagle Scout service project. Any Eagle Scout that received their Board of Review during 2016 is eligible for this award. An Eagle Scout, his parents, or any registered BSA volunteer (with the Eagle Scout’s permission) may submit his Eagle Scout service project for consideration by filling out the nomination form found at NESA.org.

The application is due to the Scout Service Center by Friday, January 20, 2017.

Conservation Committee

The Conservation Committee need volunteers, and is also looking for two units to help develop two educational trails at Sinoquipe Scout Reservation.

Info & questions: Nate Bacon - Conservation Comm Chair, 717-762-0964 or Email.

Derby Days 2017

Derby Days 2017

Skate Club 2017

Skate Club 2017

Upcoming Events

Mar
30
Thu
6:00 pm OA Lodge Banquet @ Maugansville Ruritan Center
OA Lodge Banquet @ Maugansville Ruritan Center
Mar 30 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
OA Lodge Banquet @ Maugansville Ruritan Center
Doors: 6:00 Dinner: 7:00 Door Prizes, Great Food, Brotherhood, and Service
Apr
13
Thu
6:30 pm Tuscarora District Roundtable @ Shady Grove Community Center
Tuscarora District Roundtable @ Shady Grove Community Center
Apr 13 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Tuscarora District Roundtable @ Shady Grove Community Center
6:00 p.m. – Doors Open / Gathering / Snacks 6:30 p.m. – Open session highlights introductions 6:45 p.m. – Split Sessions (40 minutes) Your Troop Kitchen Duty to God Training Available: NRA (may run longer) 7:25 p.m. – Commissioner Minute / Photo Op Selfie! (10 minutes) 7:35 p.m. – Dinner – Shepherds Pie 7:57 p.m. –[...]
Apr
19
Wed
7:30 am NESA Breakfast @ Bob Evans
NESA Breakfast @ Bob Evans
Apr 19 @ 7:30 am – 9:00 am
 
Apr
23
Sun
2:00 pm Cub Hike Club @ Renfrew Park
Cub Hike Club @ Renfrew Park
Apr 23 @ 2:00 pm
Cub Hike Club @ Renfrew Park
No registration necessary. We will hike rain, shine, cold or hot. If you already having a walking stick, please bring it with you. If you do not have one, don’t fret! You will still earn your beads. Things to Bring:  A small day pack, Back Pack or fanny pack  Sturdy shoes for walking[...]

November 2016 Chatter: Council News

Mason-Dixon Council News

New Scout Executive To Begin December 1st

The Mason-Dixon Council Executive Board created a Scout Executive Selection Committee after the departure of our previous Scout Executive Mark Barbernitz, who left in September. The committee went through a selection process with the guidance of our Area Director Chuck Dobbins and members of the National Support Staff to review and select qualified candidates to interview. The committee selected five candidates to interview on October 20th in Hagerstown and made a decision that day. We are excited to announce Rob Stone as our next Scout Executive of the Mason-Dixon Council. Rob will bring a wealth of knowledge, experience and new ideas to help us further improve our program to serve the youth in our community.

Find out more about Rob: Introducing Our Next Scout Executive

Halloween Parades

It was a wonderful sight to see such a Scouting presence, from marching units to inventive floats and themes, at the local Halloween parades at the end of October! This year the Mason-Dixon Council Marketing Committee created a "Race To Adventure" float pulled by D. M. Bowman Inc., which was offered to all units within the council to ride on in the Greencastle, Hagerstown and Mercersburg parades. Other units elected to also create their own floats, especially for the 91st Annual Alsatia Mummers Parade in Hagerstown.

The council would like to thank members of Pack 13 and Pack 95 for riding along with the float during the Greencastle parade, Troop 103 and Pack 15 at the Hagerstown parade, and Pack 143 at the Mercersburg parade.

Congratulations to Pack 66 for earning second place at the 91st Annual Alsatia Mummers Parade in Hagerstown in the Amateur Float category with their Elvis inspired float. Also a congratulations goes out to Troop 28 for their first place ranking, and Pack 28 for their second place ranking, in the Boy or Girl Scouts category at the Mercersburg Halloween Parade.

Check out the submitted photos of the council's float.

D. M. Bowman Inc.'s breast cancer awareness truck ready to haul the council's "Race to Adventure" float through the Greencastle parade on Oct. 28, 2016.

Scouters ready the Scouts of Pack 13 and Pack 95 on the council's "Race to Adventure" float during the Greencastle parade on Oct. 28, 2016. Scouts and Scouters from the council also represented the Boy Scouts and Venturers on the float as well.

University of Scouting

Held at Greencastle-Antrim High School, the University of Scouting is a great opportunity for new leaders and seasoned veterans to learn new things to improve your unit.

There will be 35 different courses offered featuring subjects related to Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Venturing Scouts, High Adventure, Religious Relationships, STEM, Marketing, Risk Management and General Studies.  Some of the courses overlap and cover more than one category.  Below is a listing of the courses that are being offered.

Cost is $15 and includes a patch, coffee and donuts in the morning and lunch. Sign up TODAY to learn how to make Scouting better for our youth!

Award Deadlines Fast Approaching

Silver Beaver

ADULT AWARD: The Silver Beaver Award is given to honor noteworthy individuals of exceptional character for their service not only to the Boy Scouts of America but also to all youth through their involvement in community activities such as civic, business, professional, religious, fraternal, veteran, etc.  This award is based on exemplary service at the Council level, which clearly surpasses the individual’s unit or district.  Only registered, volunteer Scouters, over 21 years of age are eligible for nomination. The Silver Beaver Award is presented annually to deserving individuals, after careful consideration by the Silver Beaver Selection committee.  Nominations are not kept for nominees not selected.  An application must be resubmitted for individuals to be considered for this award. The application for a Silver Beaver Award can be found on Scouting.org

Applications are due to the Scout Service Center by Friday, December 2, 2016.

District Award of Merit

ADULT AWARD: Available to registered Scouters who render service of an outstanding nature at the district level. Presented to registered adult volunteers by districts in the same manner that the Silver Beaver is, as a national award presented by councils; it is not appropriate to nominate a Scouter who has already received this award. The application can be found here.

Applications are due to the Scout Service Center by Friday, December 2, 2016.

Veteran Scouter Award

ADULT AWARD: This award recognizes an individual's tenure in the Scouting program, and can be earned by all registered members. Although this is an adult award, tenure earned as a youth in the program can also be included towards the total years of recognition. Years for 5, 10, 15, and 20 years in the program are awarded by the council, while awards for 25 years or more can only be awarded by the National office. The application can be found here.

Applications are due to the Scout Service Center by Friday, December 2, 2016.

Whitney M. Young Jr. Service Award

ADULT AWARD: Recognizes outstanding service by an adult individual or by an organization for demonstrated involvement in the development and implementation of Scouting opportunities for youth from rural or low-income urban backgrounds.

The application can be found here.

Applications are due to the Scout Service Center by Friday, December 2, 2016.

Pop Stoner Award (Tuscarora District ONLY)

Applications are due to the Scout Service Center by Friday, December 2, 2016.

Glenn A. and Melinda W. Adams National Eagle Scout Service Project of the Year Award

YOUTH AWARD: The Glenn A. and Melinda W. Adams National Eagle Scout Service Project of the Year Award is given to recognize valuable service of an exceptional nature by a Scout to a religious institution, a school, a community, or another entity while doing his Eagle Scout service project. Any Eagle Scout that received their Board of Review during 2016 is eligible for this award. An Eagle Scout, his parents, or any registered BSA volunteer (with the Eagle Scout’s permission) may submit his Eagle Scout service project for consideration by filling out the nomination form found at NESA.org.

The application is due to the Scout Service Center by Friday, January 20, 2017.

Venturing Leadership Award

YOUTH & ADULT AWARD: To earn the award, one must (1) be registered and involved as a Venturer or Venturing leader for at least one year; (2) hold a leadership position or an office at the unit, district, council, area, region, or national level (as appropriate for the level of the award presented); and (3) show exceptional dedication and give outstanding leadership and service to Venturing and to Venturers (on the level appropriate for the award).

The application can be found here.

Applications are due to the Scout Service Center by Friday, December 2, 2016.

Scouter’s Training Award

ADULT AWARD: Earned by roundtable commissioner staff, Cub Scout leaders, Webelos Scout leaders, Boy Scout leaders, Varsity Scout leaders, Venturing leaders, Sea Scout leaders, commissioners, and district committee members to encourage training, tenure in a position, participation, and performance of adult leaders.

The Boy Scout progress record can be found here.

The Cub Scout progress record can be found here.

Applications are due to the Scout Service Center by Friday, December 2, 2016.

Scouter’s Key Award

ADULT AWARD: Earned by Cubmasters, Scoutmasters, Varsity Scout Coaches, Venturing Crew Advisors, district and assistant district commissioners, district committee members to encourage training, performance, and tenure.

The Scoutmaster's Key progress record can be found here.

The Cubmaster's Key progress record can be found here.

Applications are due to the Scout Service Center by Friday, December 2, 2016.

Fresh Cut Christmas Trees

It’s Christmas Tree time! (almost). Every year for the past 20 or so years the Mason-Dixon Council has held a Christmas tree sale starting the Saturday after Black Friday to support the council's program budget. Every unit in the council is encouraged to participate in manning the tree lots.

We have two sales locations, Wal-Mart in Hagerstown and Hardees in Waynesboro. We still have a few opening in the sales schedule so if your unit would like to participate in a fun evening and help build Christmas excitement, please call the Scout Service Center to get the available dates and did I mention that for every shift you work, you are rewarded for your time.

Christmas just isn’t Christmas without the smell of a fresh cut tree, so plan on purchasing your real Christmas Tree from the Boy Scouts. All of our trees are fresh cut from local suppliers so no need to worry that your tree was cut in October, treated with chemicals and store in a refrigerated truck until the sale. Also we do not cut spruce trees until the weather stays cold so you are guaranteed not to loose needles before the big day.

Underlying reasons to sell trees:

1.) This activity puts Scouting in front of thousands of people. What a better way to say we are relevant. You cannot buy this type of exposure.

2.) A community outdoor experience. Scouts interacting with tree shoppers in the outdoors, answering questions. Then helping them load up or tie their tree to the top of their care. This probably the main reason buy their tree from the Scouts, Service.

3.) Christmas spirit. I happens in many ways. The smells, the smiles, the excitement of a fresh cut tree on Christmas morning, helping someone find or put a little joy back into their life.

4.) Don’t forget the reason for the season!

Call the office and sign up to sell trees!! Thanks in advance for your help and support!

Conservation Committee

The Conservation Committee need volunteers, and is also looking for two units to help develop two educational trails at Sinoquipe Scout Reservation.

Info & questions: Nate Bacon - Conservation Comm Chair, 717-762-0964 or Email.

NYLT Staff Application

NYLT Staff Applications are due to the Scout Service Center by November 18th.

Find out more about NYLT.

Upcoming Events

Mar
30
Thu
6:00 pm OA Lodge Banquet @ Maugansville Ruritan Center
OA Lodge Banquet @ Maugansville Ruritan Center
Mar 30 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
OA Lodge Banquet @ Maugansville Ruritan Center
Doors: 6:00 Dinner: 7:00 Door Prizes, Great Food, Brotherhood, and Service
Apr
13
Thu
6:30 pm Tuscarora District Roundtable @ Shady Grove Community Center
Tuscarora District Roundtable @ Shady Grove Community Center
Apr 13 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Tuscarora District Roundtable @ Shady Grove Community Center
6:00 p.m. – Doors Open / Gathering / Snacks 6:30 p.m. – Open session highlights introductions 6:45 p.m. – Split Sessions (40 minutes) Your Troop Kitchen Duty to God Training Available: NRA (may run longer) 7:25 p.m. – Commissioner Minute / Photo Op Selfie! (10 minutes) 7:35 p.m. – Dinner – Shepherds Pie 7:57 p.m. –[...]
Apr
19
Wed
7:30 am NESA Breakfast @ Bob Evans
NESA Breakfast @ Bob Evans
Apr 19 @ 7:30 am – 9:00 am
 
Apr
23
Sun
2:00 pm Cub Hike Club @ Renfrew Park
Cub Hike Club @ Renfrew Park
Apr 23 @ 2:00 pm
Cub Hike Club @ Renfrew Park
No registration necessary. We will hike rain, shine, cold or hot. If you already having a walking stick, please bring it with you. If you do not have one, don’t fret! You will still earn your beads. Things to Bring:  A small day pack, Back Pack or fanny pack  Sturdy shoes for walking[...]

Introducing Our Next Scout Executive

Introducing Our Next Scout Executive Rob Stone

The Mason-Dixon Council Executive Board created a Scout Executive Selection Committee after the departure of our previous Scout Executive Mark Barbernitz, who left in September. The committee went through a selection process with the guidance of our Area Director Chuck Dobbins and members of the National Support Staff to review and select qualified candidates to interview. The committee selected five candidates to interview on October 20th in Hagerstown and made a decision that day. We are excited to introduce Rob Stone as our next Scout Executive of the Mason-Dixon Council. Rob will bring a wealth of knowledge, experience and new ideas to help us further improve our program to serve the youth in our community. We asked Rob a few questions to help introduce himself to our scouting community. Here is what he had to say:

Q. What is your current position in the Northwest Georgia Council?
A. Assistant Scout Executive/COO

Q. What is your Scouting background?
A. I’m a 36 year Scouting veteran. I was a Cub Scout and Boy Scout as a youth, involved briefly as an adult volunteer while in college, then after a gap of a few years, got involved again as an adult leader in the Alapaha Area Council in south Georgia when we moved there in 1989. It was a small council like ours (Mason-Dixon), so it didn’t take long before I had numerous volunteer “hats”, including Assistant Scoutmaster, Council Training Team member, Council Commissioner Staff, OA Lodge Advisor, and Camp Ranger. During my volunteer years, I was teaching American History and Economics at Lanier County High School and coaching baseball and basketball. Eventually, Scouting was taking so much time, my wife Layne asked me to drop something, so I stopped coaching. To her credit, she never said a word about us losing that coaching supplement, but a year later she said it was time to drop something else. I ended up joining the Scouting profession and soon we were moving to our first assignment as a District Executive for the Audubon Council in Madisonville, KY in April 1994. The council merged to become the Shawnee Trails council within a few months. After three years, my father in Georgia became ill and eventually needed a liver transplant. I wanted to be closer to be able to help my parents, so I accepted a position as Senior District Executive in the Northwest Georgia Council in July 1997. I was promoted to District Director, then Field Director, then Assistant Scout Executive/COO during my 19 ½ years there.

I’ve had many wonderful experiences during my time as a volunteer and professional Scouter, including serving as a Camp Ranger, Program Director and Camp Director; serving on several Wood Badge staffs, NOAC staffs, National Camp School staffs, and National Jamboree staffs; and, of course, working with a lot of great Scouts and Scouters at the unit, district, council, regional and national level. I feel truly blessed to have had these opportunities and experiences, and only hope that I have given back a fraction of what I’ve received from my involvement over the last three decades.

Q. Why are you so passionate about the Scouting program?
A. There is no better youth organization in the world than Scouting, and no other group that does what we do to prepare for a better future for our world. I’ve spent my entire adult life working with young people and Scouting has never been more important or more needed than it is today. The mission of Scouting, to help prepare young people to make moral and ethical decisions over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law, is one of the most noble causes anyone could be involved in. After my God, my wife and my family, nothing could be more worthwhile for me than to dedicate my time, talents and energy to this great Movement.

Q. What excites you about coming to the Mason-Dixon Council?
A. I’ve spent almost my entire Scouting career in small councils, and feel that my years as a volunteer and the last 22+ years as a professional have been preparing me to serve as your Scout Executive. The Mason-Dixon Council already feels like home for this Southern boy, thanks to the wonderful volunteers and employees I’ve already met and the striking similarities between our two councils. I’m also greatly impressed with the commitment this council has made to its program, including recent significant financial investments and risks, and am thrilled to have the opportunity to help this Council make those investments and risks pay off, so that we’re serving even more youths with the best quality Scouting program possible. Layne and I are truly looking forward to being part of the great Mason-Dixon Scouting family and working with you to “Deliver the Promise” of Scouting to the youth and families we serve!

Q. What is your fondest Scouting memory?
A. There are so many, it’s difficult to pick one. I’d have to say that one of my fondest is getting to work on National Jamboree 2010 Staff with my wife and son Jonathan.

Q. What is your favorite part about being a professional Scouter?
A. Working with and spending time with some of the greatest people in the world, both youth and adult!

Q. What hobbies do you have outside of Scouting?
A. I don’t seem to end up with much time after work and family, but I do enjoy fishing, hunting, playing golf, camping, and sitting around a campfire or cooking out with friends. I also greatly enjoy reading, and usually have at least 1-2 books going at any given time.

Q. Anything else you want to share or tell the Scouts of our council?
A. The young people we serve through Scouting are the reason our council exists. Everything we do at the unit, district and council level is designed to provide the best possible Scouting experience we can to as many young people as we can. If we’re not doing that for you, call us to task and challenge us to improve. Never settle for mediocrity, and never do less than your best!!!

Rob will be starting on December 1st and looks forward to meeting all of our great volunteers that make this program happen; so, if you're in the Scout Service Center after December 1st, please introduce yourself to our new Scout Executive. Welcome aboard Rob!