TROOP 4 PROPOSAL FROM WEBMASTER MATTHEW LYLES HORNBOSTEL, CIRCA 2016 [REVISED - 2018]
The event - one huge four-hour extravaganza - I had proposed was shot down by Ed and Scott because it would involve gathering boys on a Saturday and thus adding to the number of scheduled meeting days, plus the added issue of the number of visitors involved - how could our troop handle an influx of 30+ people if that occurred? They're exhausted and they don't want to commit to a large additional four-hour extra event, though (intriguingly) they're okay with me taking the lead on some Monday meetings.
So I am modifying my plans to fit into a string of Mondays. Mondays will be fun days at Troop 4, and what the Monday strategy means is less emphasis on one spectacularly big event and more focus on numerous small ones every so often. Similarly, I'm aiming for a plan that would involve gradual growth in the troop, not a single huge event.
I had a second idea which involved a rewards program to encourage the scouts in Troop 4 to reach certain recruiting goals.
But that too, seems risky insofar as the boys might not meet said goals.
So now I'm looking at simply setting up a string of modestly sized fun events, one every six weeks or so, and asking the scouts to attend them.
All told, I intend to pour a reasonable amount of time and cash into making the meetings more fun.
There'll be Ed-led meetings too, of course, focused on scout skills and advancement, but every so often something really fun will occur like a board game night, pizza, cake & ice cream, etc.
Recent such events included the T4 video screening, some board game nights, and the T4 Christmas party last year. All of that went well. Plus right now (as of early July 2017) the troop is heading off to a summer camp. 2018 update: The troop was rechartered for 2018 but only barely as we were one scout short of the baseline, which resulted in Ed Cedillo filing for an exemption, which we got. Bigger issues are the fact that Scott and I are heading to Pittsburgh later this year and our involvement in Troop 4 will essentially cease after that time. We had screenings of the final T4 videos and a big centennial bash - all of that stuff that felt less like a celebration and more like a 'winding down' of the troop. One scout left to join the military recently, another turned 18... and with no new scouts or leaders showing up it's likely T4 will shut down in 2019. The troop did get official recognition of the fact that it's been running since 1916, not 1919, which was not certain but the BSA says it's true regardless of some 1917-1918 paperwork gone missing / lost in a fire. As far as they're concerned, then, we're over a hundred years old. But, with the troop, as with most hundred-year-old people, not much time is left. T4 is dying, I'm leaving Houston, the old Redeemer church building's finally being demolished. All of this is sad end of an era stuff, especially with my uncle Kent passing away recently as well, which pretty much drives the point home - everything and everyone dies eventually. Cherish the good things while they still exist, and when they don't, try to move on.