Boy Scouts of America, Sam Houston Area Council
Escouter Newsletter                                             Dec. 2013      
In This Issue
Leader's News
Program News
Community Scout Events
Order of the Arrow
Quick Links
Come visit the Scout Shop this Saturday, December 7th from 10am-5pm. We will have crafts, activities, refreshments, letters to Santa & more! children attendng will receive a FREE patch, FREE candy cane and a chance to win a 4ft stocking stuffed with tons of Cub Scout or Boy Scout goodies! A certain jolly man in a red suit will join us...!
Donate your car or boat to Scouting

Houston Arboretum offers Cub Scout courses on forestry, nature, conservation
HMNS advancement courses for fall 
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Popcorn orders due December 2nd!

Selling gourmet Trail's End popcorn allows units to earn funds to support their entire year of Scouting.
Please visit the popcorn page to find details regarding popcorn distribution, frequently asked questions, how to order prizes and pending items. Congratulations to all participating Scouts, families and
 units in our council territory; your efforts help make this year's campaign a success. More specific details about our top sellers will be announced in a future E-Scouter


Key Dates/Reminders

December 2:
Unit Popcorn Orders due by 11.59PM
December 14: Unit Popcorn Pick Up, Unit Payment due to council; December 21: Overall Top Sellers Celebration.


Need help? 



Celebrating a Century of Service

Four major events will highlight the celebration of the 100th birthday of the Sam Houston Area Council. Participate in each event and earn the segment to complete this 2014 limited edition Segment Patch. Participants will purchase the initial star patch, and then receive additional segments at no charge upon participation in each event:

* Scouting for Food, January  25 and February 1, 2014
* Scout Fair, April 12, 2014
* SHAC Camp participation: Day Camps, Summer Camp, Winter Camp
* Community Service/Land Stewardship, November 15, 2014


Council Strip patches available soon
at the Cockrell Scout Center...
    Leader's News      

Scouting for Food, Jan. 26 & Feb. 1

A Cub Scout promises to "give goodwill" and a Boy Scout promises "to help other people at all times." There is no better way to show our Scouting Spirit than by participating in the annual Scouting for Food drive in conjunction with the Souper Bowl of Caring. Now is the time to show our community the Scouting values of being loyal, helpful, kind and cheerful. Scouting for Food is scheduled for January 25 and February 1, 2014, when Scouts throughout the Sam Houston Area Council help make a difference to fight hunger. Scouting for Food is the leading service program for Boy Scouts of America and is a part of the national BSA program - Good Turn for America. More


 Leader Training Requirement
Through the implementation of required training for leaders, Councils all over the nation experienced an increase in youth retention, camp attendance, advancement, and overall membership.  These results show how much training affects the health of your Pack, Troop, Crew, Ship, Team or Post. Our goal is training for all of our unit leaders. For the upcoming re-charter in December, 2013, make sure all top unit leaders are trained.  Top leaders are Cubmasters, Scoutmasters, Advisors, Skippers, and Coaches. For information on what is required to be a trained leader, click here  SHAC training schedule  submit training records
 Friends of Scouting
Friends of Scouting provides the resources necessary to make sure every youth can benefit from Scouting's fun, exciting, adventure-filled activities that foster character, honesty, respect and life-long values. The money raised through Friends of Scouting helps offset the cost of recruiting, training and providing programming to youth and adults in the Council.  Sign up for your 2014  Friends of Scouting presentation at your unit's biggest gathering (typically the Blue and Gold Banquet or a Troop Court of Honor).  The presentation informs parents and leaders of all Council services, and gives an opportunity to help support the Council in expanding the Scouting program to more youth. To sign up for your unit's FOS presentation, please contact your District Executive at

books-apple-icon2.jpgCollege of Commissioner Science, Dec. 7

Commissioners and Adult Scouters who are interested in pursuing Commissioner of Science degrees at the Bachelors, Masters, or even the Doctoral level are encouraged to begin or continue their studies at this year's college. You may view your College of Commissioner Science Transcript online through the link on College of Commissioners Science page   Register here
Alll units and districts are now on the same schedule with recharters due no later than December 15, 2013. See SCHEDULE for key dates for unit rechartering.
Recharter Turn-In
12/5/13 -  District #1 Turn-In - Roundtable / District Committee Meeting.
12/12/13 -District #2 Turn-In - Roundtable / District Committee Meeting.            12/14/13 -Council #2 Turn-In - Council Office - Saturday - 9:00am - Noon.         
Over half of our new Scouts that join each year come from outside of the first school-based rally. Make sure you update with the current troop leadership information.This is the best time of the year to get the word out about our Troop/Team and Crew Scouting units:
* Have a unit high adventure event.  Invite friends to a troop/crew/team sponsored events to see what things we do in Scouting, that are beyond the normal Camping and Knots. 
* Capitalize on your best recruitment aid... the Scouts themselves with Peer-to-Peer recruitment. 
* Send in articles for recognition in community newspapers, blogs, online post for events and service projects to increase the visibility of your unit. 
* The Crews and Teams should be talking to the troops to see if they had any members age out that would like to continue on in Scouting as a youth. 

* Each unit should be checking their page for leads from parents that are looking to join.


BSA membership fee increased to $24
The Boy Scouts of America will increase its annual membership fee for youth and adults to $24 from $15, beginning January 1, 2014.  This fee will be prorated at $2 per month for all new members starting after January 1st. This does include all Sam Houston Council units with a December 31, 2013, Unit Charter expiration date. 



Scout Fair 2014 "Celebrating a Century of Service"

Join us in "Celebrating a Century of Service" for the Sam Houston Area Council's 100th Birthday at the 2014 Scout Fair which will be held on Saturday, April 12, 2014 from 10 am - 3 pm.. Scout Fair offers units the opportunity for Council-wide fellowship and a forum to showcase their many Scouting skills. The planning and teamwork used to create booth displays provides Scouts many program and learning opportunities. Scout Fair is FREE and a fun event for the entire family. View Flyer for leaders   Register your unit booth now! Scout Fair Coupon Pack District Kickoff/Distribution held January 23, 2014 within each district.



Placemats for Blue & Gold Banquets

These place mats are perfect for Packs to use during your Blue & Gold banquets to promote Day Camp and Resident Camp.  Customize them with your District's Day Camp information.  Click for Printable PDF 

Messengers of Peace Projects
Messengers of Peace is a global initiative designed to inspire millions of young men and women to work toward peace. This initiative lets Scouts from around the world share what they've done and inspire fellow Scouts to undertake similar efforts in their own communities. The initiative is inspired by the World Scout Committee, administered by the World Scout Bureau, and driven by youth volunteers worldwide.
Any Scout or Scouter who participates in a project that has had a significant impact on the community in any one of these three areas can qualify as a Messenger of Peace.
1. Personal: harmony, justice, and equality
2. Community: peace as opposed to hostility or violent conflict
3. Relationships between humankind and its environment: security, social and economic welfare, and relationship with the environment
Submitting MOP-related projects is easy. Just check the Messengers of Peace box when entering a service project through the Journey to Excellence website ( This will add the project to the map on the Messengers of Peace website ( and will generate a unit certificate. To purchase these ring patches, a unit representative should take the unit certificate to the local Scout shop or Cockrell Scout Center. 
Tour Plans 

The new online tour and activity plan has been developed and is active. Please go to You do not need a tour plan for Council sponsored activities or camping at Council camps. For the Council's Guidelines on when to file a tour plan, Click Here.


Enterprise Risk Mgmt Guide for Units 

a. Energy Drinks


STEM- Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics

STEM is part of an initiative the Boy Scouts of America has developed to encourage the natural curiosity of youth members and their sense of wonder about these fields through existing programs. From archery to welding, Scouts enjoy the wide range of STEM-related activities. Nova Awards program provides youth recognition for their efforts.  We are seeking experts in these fields to support our Scouting programs and help create STEM programs for 2013-2014. If you would like to share your expertise and join the new SHAC STEM committee, please contact  Michelle     more


Youth Protection Training
 Youth Protection Training is required for all leaders to be registered with the BSA every two years. The classroom version (per Texas law) is required within the past 2 years for all adults participating in along-term camping experience in the state of Texas. This includes day camp scheduled over consecutive days, Cub Scout/Webelos Scout resident camp, summer camp, and winter camp. Adults must complete the test with a score of 70% or higher to be considered trained and will receive a training card. A copy of each test will be on file for two years. Classroom Facilitated Youth Protection Training will be available in Districts leading up to summer camp and Day Camp. You may also check web sites of neighboring districts. Check here for more info.

Save the date...University of Scouting 2014

University of Scouting is designed for ALL adult leaders in the Boy Scouts of America regardless of function or program area. Learn from these sessions and add quality to your program - GUARANTEED! Discover the opportunities available for meetings and outings. Learn about Council activities to support your program. Visit the Scout Shop for your supplies. Learn more about Scouting's origins and the legacy of learning. Saturday, February 8, 2014, location TBD


Ten Commandment Hike, Feb. 22 

Come enjoy a suburban hike with your church class, scout group or family and tour 10 different churches, find out about their teachings, and have a brief presentation of one of the Ten Commandments at each of the churches. The Downtown Hike will visit some of the Historic Churches Downtown. The Museum Hike will feature some of the beautiful older churches of the Museum District.  The North Hike will meander through wooded Kingwood and view newer sanctuaries.  The Southwest Hike will tour beautiful Sugar Land and will include newer sanctuaries. Each hike will be at least 5 miles long. Space is limited. For more information email George Etier;

  Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Venturing, Exploring
You are invited to explore and enjoy all the wonder and beauty of the east Texas rolling hills and lakes at Bovay Scout Ranch. There is a variety of camping opportunities for everyone from Cub Scouts to Boy Scout Troops and Venture Crews. Bovay Scout Ranch has year-round camping program opportunities for all levels of Cub Scouts.  Bovay Scout Ranch has a great swimming pool and an air-conditioned dining hall (closed on Weekend Camping dates).
Bovay Scout Ranch
Bovay Scout Ranch

Adventure Camp at Bovay

Join a weekend camp out for Cub Scouts and their families. Admission covers three meals in the air conditioned dining hall, the Scout's activity supplies and a camp patch for the Scouts. register
Weekend Unit Camping at Bovay

Troops, Teams, Crews, Packs or Webelos Dens can enjoy the amazing beauty of Bovay Scout Ranch rolling hills, trails and vast open spaces. Clean campsites, restrooms and showers are available; units may design their own program activities

and provide their own meals during these weekends. register   


Bovay Scout Ranch Summer Resident Camp

Celebrate 100 years of Service in 2014. When you attend Bovay Scout Ranch Summer Resident Camp, you'll receive a centennial patch segment for camp (one of five to complete the star). If you are a newly chartered Cub Scout Pack in the Sam Houston Area Council, sign up to attend the 2014 Bovay Scout Ranch Summer Resident Camp and receive 25% discount if you register by Friday June 6th. Please contact Geno Aguilar (713-756-3304) for more information or questions. ATTENTION UNIT LEADERS...If 50% of the youth that your unit Re-charters attends the 2014 Resident Camp, receive one Bovay Scout Ranch Back Pack with the 100th Anniversary logo.  


Bovay Scout Ranch Needs Seasonal Camp Staff

Bovay Scout Ranch has a great working environment. This weekend job consists of working closely with youth and parents at different program areas we call outposts. The Camp will furnish food and lodging. You will be responsible to the staff leader to which you are assigned. Ages: 15 and older. For more information contact Geno Aguilar at 713-756-3304 or


Winter Camp, Register NOW

Winter Camp at Camp Strake is December 26-31, 2013.  Reservations are very limited. See merit badge list. $250.00 per Scout. visit webpage 



Weekend Camp El Rancho Cima

 Experience El Rancho Cima year around.  Your Unit Can:
 * Ride the longest zip line in Texas
 * Enjoy a Horseback Ride, Canoe in the Blanco River, Shoot...Kayak...and Hike  More information   Register Cockrell River Camp   Walter Scout Camp at Horseshoe Bend  or contact Tami Kinn at 713-756-3309



Register for Summer Camp at El Rancho Cima

In 2014, we have two camp anniversaries to celebrate...60 years of camping at Cockrell River Camp and 40 years at Walter Scout Camp at Horseshoe Bend.  Join the celebration during your week of camp. Don't wait, secure your week at El Rancho Cima NOW!!!  If you sign up and follow the payment plan, each Scout and adult will receive an El Rancho Cima T-shirt.   If 50% of the youth that your unit recharters  come to camp,  the unit leader will receive a Fishing Shirt with the 100th anniversary logo.  OR If 75% of the youth that your unit recharters come to camp, the unit leader will receive a satchel with the 100th anniversary logo  (must follow the payment plan for these offers)   More


Limited Openings for Summer 2014 at Northern Tier, Bissett, Manitoba - Canada

Northern Tier provides epic wilderness canoeing trips in remote

Manitoba Canada. Trips feature a float plane ride, unsurpassed
freshwater fishing and hundreds of thousands of acres of virgin
wilderness to explore. This is one trip that will change your life. More


 23rd World Scout Jamboree - Kirara-hama, Yamaguchi, Japan (July 28-Aug 8, 2015)

Eligible participants must be registered with the Boy Scouts of America as a Boy Scout or Venturer and have been born between July 27, 1997 and July 28, 2001.  These age ranges are set by the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM) and are not negotiable. For more information including Staff, Registration and Payment, click here



Apply for a National Award for your Eagle Scout project 

After all of the planning, sweat, and effort involved in your Eagle Scout's service project, what do you do next?  How would you like to have your Eagle Scout's project recognized nationally?  Is his service project the "best of the best of the best"? The Sam Houston Area Council Eagle Scout Association is looking for Eagle Scouts to submit their service project documentation for the Glenn A. and Melinda W. Adams National Eagle Scout Service Project of the Year Award.  This prestigious award is given annually.
The Adams National Eagle Scout Service Project of the Year Award program of the National Council is designed to recognize the valuable service of an exceptional nature by an Eagle Scout to a religious institution, a school, community, or other entity. The award recognizes the Scout for his Eagle Scout leadership service project, which is part of the requirements for earning the Eagle Scout Award.
Each year, the SHAC Eagle Scout Association Selection Committee selects a council winner, and from the pool of council winners, each region selects a region-level winner. A national winner is then selected from the four regional finalists. The selection committee's goal is to select a service project that can withstand the scrutiny of the region and national reviews so a Sam Houston Area Council Eagle Scout service project is selected as the national winner. We need your help in meeting this goal.
The first step in this process is to complete the online submission form at Deadline is Jan. Parents, mentors, or leaders of the Eagle Scout can complete the form on behalf of the Eagle Scout.  Each 2013 Eagle should complete their application for the Adams Award which recognizes the top Eagle Scout Leadership Projects for this year.  



First Aid Meet, Feb. 15
The 36th Council First Aid Meet is Saturday, February 15, 2014 at St. Luke's United Methodist Church, 3471 Westheimer at Edloe St. Each district is allowed TWO (There can be no ties) representative teams from Boy Scout Troops. (This is a Boy Scout program only). Winning teams representing the district must be from regular existing (natural) patrols. . Each team should be composed of five members.  For each problem, there will be four performers and one victim and any other patrol members must "sit out". The Patrols will compete for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place. The cost for the 2014 Council First Aid Meet is $25.00 per patrol. more



 New Eagle Scout Reception, May 18

The 2013 Eagle Recognition Event will be held May 18th, 2014. All Scouts, Scout Leaders, and Parents are welcome to attend.  It is time to mark your calendars.
  • Are your Eagles ready? Have they all been notified??
  • Have they submitted their Eagle Project to be considered for the Melinda & Glen Adams Project Leadership Award? If not please submit their project online.

The event will be held at the Crown Plaza Hotel at Loop 610 and Kirby by Reliant Stadium. The doors open at 2:00pm for a reception in the Eagle Scout's honor and a photo opportunity for a fee taken by Eagle Scout professional photographers.  Additional photo booths will be located in the reception area where family and friends can take pictures with their cameras to capture this honorary moment. Each 2013 Eagle can have their picture taken with a special presentation of the Council Eagle recognition ribbon medal for his achievement.  Register now 

Scout Days, Scout Nights


Houston Rockets vs Orlando Magic, Dec. 8
Game starts at 6:00 p.m. Tickets $15 and up. No service charges or handling fees either online or by 713.758.7321.  Log on  and use code SCOUTNIGHT.. more info
Texas Bowl
December 27 at 5:00 p.m. Tickets start at $25 an include a pre-game Athletics Merit Badge session to fulfill some of the requirements (subject to your Merit Badge Counselor's approval).  More
The Harlem Globetrotters
Sunday, January 26 at 2:00pm
at Reliant Arena. Special Scout Offer
$16-$25 tickets PLUS Exclusive Pre-show Meet & Greet for the first 100 Scout ticket holders.  All Scout ticket holders receive an Official Harlem Globetrotters Scout Patch!  More
Advance Autoparts Monster Jam, Feb. 1
Show starts at 7:00pm at Reliant Stadium. Exclusive Scout Offer: $11 tickets plus FREE Monster Jam Scout Patch and Pit Party! Online tickets, use code BSCOUT    For information or to order groups of ten or more, contact Christina at 281-367-9717 or email More
Support Scouting      


Endow NOW by Dec. 15 - Help the Council "Be Prepared" for the next Century of Scouting
From now until December 15, all individual gifts made to Endowment in the amount of $500 - $25,000 with a lifetime cumulative maximum of $25,000 will be matched dollar for dollar by The Cockrell Foundation. more  Gifts to the Sam Houston Area Council's permanent endowment ensure that our Council will continue to offer the outstanding programs we currently have and allow for growth to meet the future needs of our youth and communities.Endowment gifts allow individuals to make a financial commitment with a long term view on the work of the Council. Check out the Mobile App  Thank you for your support and commitment to the youth of the Sam Houston Area Council.  All gifts to Endowment through 2016 will be included in the Leaders of Tomorrow Campaign providing essential resources for future needs in Capital and Endowment. 


It's a Match Gift!
Many corporations match employee contributions made to the Boy Scouts - these gifts are known as "Matching Gifts".  Additionally, some companies will make contributions on behalf of volunteer time given to Scouting. MORE


Do you work with Exxon Mobil?
ExxonMobil foundation allows districts and sub-districts in the council to establish accounts.  If you are employed by Exon Mobil and would like to apply for VIP grants please call 713-756-3318 on how to proceed.  Volunteer grants help districts achieve their Friends of Scouting goal 

Order of the Arrow
Did you know that you are not yet a full member of the Order of the Arrow (OA) until you obtain Brotherhood?  It is time to seal your full membership in the OA by becoming a Brotherhood member.
Brotherhood membership is easy to obtain.   All you need to do is participate in a "Brotherhood Walk" event that reviews the OA traditions, purpose and meaning, as laid out in the Ordeal Ceremony.   Brotherhood Sash Following the Brotherhood Walk, you will attend an inspirational and meaningful Brotherhood ceremony that marks the completion of your induction into the Order of the Arrow.  You do not need to go through another Ordeal to become a Brotherhood member; plus it's FREE!  So do not delay, obtain your bars today!

Here are the remaining 2013 Brotherhood opportunities:

December 14th - Camp Strake
Brotherhood Walk: 3pm (Grand Lake Dining Hall)
Brotherhood Ceremony: 4pm

December 28th - Camp Strake
Brotherhood Walk: 8pm (Seton Pavilion)
Brotherhood Ceremony: 9pm