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Service Hours and Journey to Excellence 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Sunday, November 23, 2014 5:02:00 AM

All Scouting groups are encouraged to participate in service projects. A service project is a special Good Turn that puts Scout spirit into action. Some Good Turns are big—saving a life, helping out after floods or other disasters, recycling community trash, working on conservation projects. But Good Turns are often small, thoughtful acts—helping a child cross a busy street, going to the store for an elderly neighbor, cutting back brush that is blocking a sign, doing something special for a brother or sister, or welcoming a new student to your school. Anyone can get involved in a Good Turn.

Did you know that your unit can earn points towards the Journey to Excellence program just for logging your units community service hours online? That’s right your unit can earn up to 200 extra points if you log your service hours online. All types of service projects can be entered into this system including the Good Turn for America projects such as the shelter drive, food drive, and blood drive. Units may also enter their service hours for community projects that they took on as a unit. Please log all service hours. Journey to Excellence is the BSA's council performance recognition program designed to encourage and reward success and measure the performance of our units, districts, and councils. It is meant to encourage excellence in providing a quality program at all levels of the BSA.

All service hours for 2014 should be logged no later than December 31, 2014.

What hours should be logged?

  • Any service hours performed by your unit for individuals or organizations in the community
  • Service hours performed by your unit to support your chartered organization
  • Scouting for Food hours
  • Volunteering on Community Service Day or similar events
  • Eagle Scout project hours

"Scouting's Journey to Excellence" is the BSA's council performance recognition program designed to encourage and reward success and measure the performance of our units, districts, and councils. It is meant to encourage excellence in providing a quality program at all levels of the BSA. Check out your scorecard

Internet advancement allows units to enter youth advancements, awards, and merit badges. Units should make sure all advancements are submitted by December 31, 2014, so proper Journey to Excellence (JTE) advancement statistics will be accurate for your unit and district.

Powder Horn Registration is Live 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Saturday, November 15, 2014 9:32:00 AM

Unveil Tomorrow's Odyssey

April 10-12 and April 24-26, 2015

Powder Horn is an action-packed, hands-on, six-day course on high adventure resources to help Scouts and Scouters learn how to implement high adventure activities into their troop, crew or ship. Adult leaders from all Scouting programs and young adults age 14 and older are eligible to attend; and there are no restrictions on attending the course a second time. The course will span two 3-day weekends: weekend #1 will be held on April 10-12, 2015 and weekend #2 will be April 24-26, 2015

Powder Horn is designed to introduce and expose Venturing, Sea Scout and Boy Scout adult and youth leaders to the activities and resources necessary to manage a successful outdoor or high adventure unit-level program. It is based on the eight core requirements and eighteen electives found in the Venturing Ranger program. It is intended to help leaders get out of the box in finding and using resources, and in the way they lead their unit-level outdoor and high adventure programs.

This course is a fun introduction to skills. Powder Horn does not train you to be an expert, or even to be self-sufficient in any aspect of outdoor skills. Units will most likely still need to find knowledgeable, trained, and certified individuals to provide a safe and exciting outdoor high adventure program.  Flyer


Powder Horn is designed to:

  1. Expose participants to high adventure activities for older youth in troops, crews, ships and teams.
  2. Provide an introduction to the resources and consultants available to successfully lead Scouting units through a program of high adventure.
  3. Help Venturing and Scouting leaders feel comfortable offering challenging outdoor activities, while balancing fun with safety, health and responsibility.

Participant Qualifications

  • Be a registered adult or a registered Boy Scout, Varsity Scout, Venturing Scout or Sea Scout who is at least 14 years old. For young adults between the ages of 14 and 17, the Course Director requests that the applicant, their parent, and a unit leader have a conversation around maturity, expectations, and the Powder Horn experience.
  • Youth must have completed the required leadership training for the unit in which they are registered (Introduction to Leadership Skills or National Youth Leadership Training).
  • Adults must be trained for their position.
  • Submit a copy of BSA Annual Health & Medical Record (Part A, B, C, D). Participants meets meet the requirements in Part D physical in a backcountry environment.
  • All participants must complete the following trainings online:
    • Venturing Youth Protection
    • Hazardous Weather
    • Safety Afloat
    • Safe Swim Defense
    • Climb on Safely

Frequently Asked Questions About Powder Horn

Why Powder Horn?

Many Scouting leaders face the dilemma of having a strong desire to provide challenging and fun outdoor programs to meet the needs of their older youth members, but lack the knowledge and/or resources to do so. Powder Horn responds to the quandary with an exciting new training opportunity that exposes Venturing, Varsity Scout, Boy Scout leaders, and youth leaders ages 14 and up to a wide range of outdoor/high adventure activities. More importantly, Powder Horn provides its participants with valuable resource and contacts to assist them in delivering the promise of Scouting’s high adventure to youth.

What is the approach for this training?

Experts or "consultants" teach the courses and introduce participants to a variety of high adventure activities in our area. Participants do not become experts in an activity; participants will learn how to help their unit’s youth leaders find and recruit experts in activities that the Scouts may enjoy.

Participants will experience activities such as climbing or shooting sports or shoot a skeet course, and will learn where to go to find those who can teach these skills to Boy Scouts and Venturers. Under no circumstances is any Powder Horn participant required to participate in an activity they are uncomfortable with.  Participants may choose to just observe and learn - "Challenge by Choice."

What activities are presented at Powder Horn?

Participants will experience at least ten activities from the following list:

Astronomy, ATV, aquatics, backpacking, camping, canoeing, cave exploring, challenge events (COPE), climbing/rappelling, conservation, cycling - road/mountain, ecology, emergency preparedness, equestrian, expedition planning, extreme sports, fishing, first aid, geocaching, historical reenactment / living history, hunting, kayaking, Leave No Trace (LNT), lifesaving, motor boating, mountain biking, orienteering, outdoor living history, personal water craft, plants and wildlife, sailing, sailboarding, search and rescue, SCUBA, shooting sports, snorkeling, space exploration, wilderness first aid, wilderness survival, and winter sports.
What are the learning objectives?

1. Learn what resources are available to support a high adventure program.
2. Learn where to find the resources.
3. Learn how to use the resources.
4. Learn how to safely do a high adventure program.
5. Learn what is involved with different high adventure disciplines.

What is the history of Powder Horn?

In 1983 Louise, a 37 year old very shy woman read in Boy’s Life about an Outdoor Exploring High Adventure training in Lubbock Texas. It was in the spring and if you have ever been in the Texas Panhandle in the spring you know that it can be hot, sunny, rainy, windy, tornado or snowing.  Louise packed her camping gear (bits and pieces borrowed from her 2 scout sons along with a new tent) into her car and headed for Lubbock (2 hours away).  She knew only what she had learned at Wood badge in 1978 about “high Adventure” in the outdoors but had never experienced real high adventure in person.

The course material said it would cover climbing & rappelling, small boat sailing, camping, backpacking, snow skiing, canoe and much more.  After getting lost on the Loop around Lubbock, she finally arrived at the “camp” (a park).  About 8 people showed up from around the country. (They probably came to see what snow skiing in Lubbock was like).

Louise promptly lost her car keys.  Thinking she had locked them in the trunk of the car, a state trooper tried to pick the lock.  He succeeded in screwing up the electronic system and finally getting the trunk open.  About that time Louise found her keys in her pocket!

After a supper (of sorts) the group pitched their tents and settled in for the night.  It rained and rained and rained and the wind blew, lightning struck and Louise got wet and cold.  The next day was somewhat better.  Small boat sailing, canoe and yes snow skiing (cross country skiing on the grass).  A wall and ladder was used for climbing and rappelling.  Backpacking and other outdoor skills were covered.  Then everyone loaded up and went for showers at a local high school (oops!! Someone forgot to turn on the hot water heater). The showers felt really good even if they were so cold!!  The crew then moved to a Scout camp (Camp Haynes) where they pitched their tents at 2:00 A.M.  Cold, hungry and tired Louise settled in for the night.  Like a good Scout Louise had 10 essentials for survival including tea bags and a little camp stove and water.  Louise began to shake—shake like she had never shaken before.  She had read about hypothermia and was afraid that was what she had because of the cold showers and long day.  She knew that she had to get warm, but Louise could not light the fire that could save her life because she was shaking too much.  Desperate, she crawled out of her tent and went to the first tent.  Wayne, a man in his 70’s was sound asleep. Louise woke him and told him her problem.  He soon realized the danger and made her some tea.  Louise was soon sound asleep. Wayne knew that he had saved her life and felt very good as he dozed off.  The short night was soon over.  Wayne and Louise never forgot that night.

The next day was better.  250 foot cliffs and slow rappels made the day great.  Soon the shy Louise was enjoying herself, but was unaware of what she was learning would help hundreds and possibly thousands of youth in Exploring and now Venturing.

Shy Louise went to one small outdoor training event in Lubbock Texas 18 years ago.  That event changed her life and the life of her husband and their 2 sons.  It will impact the lives of their 7 grandchildren.  She went home and started a High Adventure Explorer Post.  The post had as many as 250 youth.  They went SCUBA diving, snow skiing, water skiing, climbing & rappelling, camping, and much more.  The post was in Boy’s Life 3 times and participated in a training video.  Louise was the chairperson of the outdoor cluster of the National Exploring committee.  She is a dive master, Red Cross instructor, EMT, boat captain, NRA instructor in rifle, shotgun, pistol and black powder and COPE Director.  She will be the first female Course Director in her council for Wood Badge.

You should realize what a really small training program in Lubbock Texas has done for Louise.  It changed her life.  Much like the new Powder Horn course can change the life of the Venturing crew advisor.  It gives that advisor the opportunity to “taste” high adventure.  It gives them confidence they need to find experts and resources to help them provide experiences for their youth.  

Incidentally, Louise is Donna Louise Cunningham, one of the authors of the Ranger Guidebook and the first Course Director for Powder Horn.  She currently serves on the Venturing Outdoor Committee. 

The first adult training done to see if there was a possibility to do Explorer adult outdoor training was done in Amarillo Texas in September 1997. Participants came from Amarillo, Wichita Falls Texas Oklahoma and Wisconsin.  It was such a success that the outdoor committee decided to pursue the syllabus.  Larry & Donna Cunningham were given the responsibility of developing the syllabus.  Then in March of 1998 we were told that Exploring was moving to Learning for Life and we would be in a new Division. Venturing was born.  We were hard pressed to develop literature to have ready by August 1, 1998 when Venturing was officially announced at the All Hands Conference in Nashville.  

The first National Powder Horn course was conducted in September 1999, 50 people attended the first course in the Philmont backcountry at Hunting Lodge.  Cimarroncito was used as a program area,  as well as Webster Parks, and Aspen Springs for the overnights. 

It's recharter time! 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Saturday, November 8, 2014 12:00:00 PM

Every December, all units (packs, troops, teams, crews, posts) are required to renew their affiliation with Scouting no later than December 15, 2014. Through the process, chartered (sponsoring) organizations, youth member and adult leader information is updated as well as registration fees and Boy's Life subscriptions are collected/paid.

A representative of each unit completes the paperwork for renewing a charter online. With Internet Rechartering (IR), units can indicate returning members, add new members, and update information for an individual or the chartered organization. If you do not have your unit recharter packet contact your district executive or your district commissioner

Cockrell Scout Center registration hours are 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday. Please arrive before 4:00 p.m. as the office closes at 4:30 p.m. We encourage you to use recharter turn-in opportunities provided by your district to save yourself a trip to the council office.  For information on rechartering and to view the, re-chartering schedule, please click here.

New for 2014: The top unit leader (i.e., Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, Venturing Advisor, Varsity Coach) must have completed BSA training for his or her position before the recharter is submitted.  Top Leader Basic Training is being offer on December 13, 2014.


Unit Top Leader Basic Training Day 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Saturday, November 8, 2014 9:10:00 AM

December 13, 2014

Top Leader Basic Training Day is an opportunity to train the top unit leaders before recharter. 

All top leaders must be trained before December recharter. Top leaders are Cubmasters, Scoutmasters, Advisors, Skippers, and Coaches. 

There is no charge for the training, but registration is highly encouraged so room assignments and handouts can be made based on registration numbers. Lunch can be purchased for $8, or you can bring your own lunch.  Flyer

Cub Scout Leader Specific Training for Cubmasters 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Scoutmaster and Assistant Scoutmaster Basic Training* 7:30 am - 5:00 pm
Venturing Advisor Training 8:00 am - 2:00 pm
Varsity Leader Basic Training 8:00 am - 2:00 pm

*Scoutmasters also need Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills


Cub Scout Leader Specific Training for Cubmasters

Leader Specific Training provides the specialized knowledge a new leader needs to assume a leadership role. Cubmasters are provided with information and tools needed to successfully plan a successful pack program. This training can also be taken online.

Scoutmasters and Assistant Scoutmasters Basic Leader Training

Scoutmasters and Assistant Scoutmasters Basic Leader Training is intended to provide troop leadership with the information and tools they need to lead successful Boy Scout troops. Scoutmasters and assistants who complete this training, Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills, and Youth Protection training are considered "trained."

Venturing Advisor Training

Venturing Advisor Training provide an introduction to the responsibilities, opportunities, and resources that will ensure a successful Venturing crew leadership experience.


Varsity Leader Basic Training

Varsity Leader Basic Training provides an introduction to the Boy Scouts of America and to the responsibilities, opportunities, and resources that will ensure a successful Varsity team leadership experience.

Sign up for College of Commissioners Science 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Saturday, November 8, 2014 6:23:00 AM

December 6, 2014

The College of Commissioner Science is a day of training for commissioners from Commissioner Basic Training through advanced learning experiences in unit service. The objectives are to help commissioners expand their skills and unit service philosophy. The goal of this experience is  to promote the increased effectiveness of the individual commissioner.

This ongoing training opportunity will benefit new commissioners and experienced unit commissioners. Any adult leader that is interested about the numerous resources available in the Scouting movement is also invited to attend.

Online Registration

Degrees and Learning Opportunities

  1. Associate's Degree (includes Commissioner Basic Training) — The beginning of the commissioner experience.
  2. Continuing Education (CEd) — Continues the educational, expanding knowledge to increase the effectiveness of unit service.
  3. Bachelor (BCS) — An entry-level program for commissioners who have completed basic commissioner training.
  4. Master (MCS) — Offers advanced problem solving and administrative skill instruction.
  5. Doctorate — A two year program (DCS) — Challenges candidates to identify, develop, and present a project or service concept to a panel of their peers.
  6. Bachelor of Roundtable Service — For Cub Scout, Boy Scout, and Venturing Roundtable commissioners and their staffs to design new approaches to make Roundtables "can't miss events."
  7. Master of Roundtable Service — This course involves advanced practices on how the Roundtable Commissioner effectively fills his/her role.
  8. Doctorate of Roundtable Service — The two year doctorate program with a Roundtable emphasis.


For More Information

Bob Dodd
College of Commissioner Science 2014 Dean

Only 20 spots left for NYLT 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Thursday, October 30, 2014 6:21:00 AM

National Youth Leadership Training (NYLT) is an exciting, action-packed six-day council-level program designed to provide Boy Scouts and Venturers who are 13 years and older with leadership skills and experience they can use in their home units and in other situations demanding leadership of self and others. The first step in the BSA Youth Leadership Training continuum is conducted in the home unit. Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts and Venturers who have 1) completed this training and 2) reached the age of thirteen but are not yet eighteen (for Venturers not yet twenty one), may participate.

Unit leaders have the primary responsibility for training their youth leaders. The purpose of NYLT is not to assume that role, but rather support it. The NYLT week is filled with activities, presentations, challenges, discussions, and camping in a team and model unit environment. Participants learn and practice skills that are valuable at home, church, school, work and the Scouting unit.

The course is designed for youth members 14 years of age. However, at a unit leader's discretion, they may approve a Scout at 13 years of age to attend NYLT. Since a Scout only takes this course once, we want them to get the maximum benefit from this experience; therefore, it is essential that they be able to handle the demands of this advanced course, which requires maturity, experience, and proficiency in basic camping skills.

At NYLT, a temporary training unit is formed consisting of youth from Venturing crews, Boy Scout troops and Varsity teams across the council. This training unit is instructed and led by a highly qualified group of outstanding youth and adult trainers. At the end of this conference the Scout returns to their home unit with advanced knowledge of leadership skills and patrol/troop/team/crew operation. Check out the Scouting Magazine article on NYLT featuring the Sam Houston Area Council and video made during a winter course held at Bovay Scout Ranch.  Note that some program elements which have changed since the video was produced.

Requirements and Expectations:

  1. Be at least 13 years of age, but not yet 18 by day one of the course. For Ventures, be at least 13, but not yet 21 by the end of the course)
  2. Live by the Scout Oath and the Scout Law at all times.
  3. Be able to attend the entire course: day one begins at 1:00 PM (check-in starts at noon) and Day Six ends around 4:00 PM
  4. Attend the mandatory orientation meeting.

Orientation Meeting

There is a mandatory orientation for all participants and person's on the wait list. The Orientation meeting is held at the Cockrell Service Center (2225 North Loop West at TC Jester).  Please arrive at least 30 minutes before your chosen session to check in. Please have all fees and paperwork finalized before the orientation meeting in order to ensure a speedy check-in. If you have questions about the orientation meeting, contact Cesiah at 713-756-3398.

Click on one of the session below to register for the mandatory orientation meeting: 

2014 NYLT Winter Course Orientation - Session 1 November 30, 2014 1:00 - 2:30 pm
2014 NYLT Winter Course Orientation - Session 2 November 30, 2014 4:00 - 5:30 pm

NYLT Registration

The fee for NYLT training is $225. Payments of cash or check may be submitted, but must be received at the Cockrell Service Center (P.O. Box 924528, Houston, Texas 77292) within seven business days of online registration.

Registration is complete and the youth's name is placed on the permanent roster when the following have been completed:
  1. online registration is submitted
  2. fees paid in full
  3. participant attends orientation meeting
Please read the FAQs below before registering for NYLT on December 26 - 31, 2014 at Bovay Scout Ranch.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the NYLT policies?
Fee Refunds – Refunds are in accordance with the Council Refund Policy available at   
Equipment Damage – Should council equipment or property be damaged by participants during the course, where damage occurs from other than normal or expected use, it shall be the responsibility of the participant (s) involved (and their guardians) to pay for the cost of the damage.
Course Completion – To successfully complete the course and receive the certificate and patch, a participant must attend the full course including closing ceremony.  Anyone arriving late or leaving the course early will not be eligible for completion.
Medication – All medication containers must be labeled with participant’s name, medication name, dosage & schedule for the medication.  Send only enough medication for the course duration.  Most pharmacies will prepare a second container for you with the prescription label so only the required medication can be sent with the Scout. In addition, please complete the Medication Form above.  Each participant may keep inhalers and sting kits.
Rescheduling - Your placement in a course if for that course and week only. If a scheduling conflict develops, and you wish to move to another course and week, we will make every effort to accommodate that request. However, if the other course has a wait list, you will be placed at the bottom of that wait list as a new registrant. We will not remove a confirmed registrant from a course to replace them with a transfer request. All requests must be in writing. You may send an email request to
What should be brought to NYLT?

Required Personal Items:

  • Complete BSA Field Uniform: Boy Scout: khaki/ Venturing: green shirt, gray pant; Sea Scouts: chambray
    • Uniform shirt with proper patches (1 to 2)
    • Uniform pants or shorts (1 to 2)
    • Uniform socks (3 pair)
    • Uniform BSA belt and buckle
  • Shoes: 2 pair (1 pair suitable for hiking and 1 extra pair; no open-toed or sandals except shower shoes)
  • Rain suit or poncho
  • Light jacket in summer, heavy jacket in winter
  • Change of clothing: pants, shirts, underwear, socks
  • Backpack for all gear (no footlockers/suitcases)
  • Sleeping bag
  • Ground cloth
  • Lightweight tent for camping (10'x10' or smaller)
  • Water bottle or canteen (2)
  • Mess kit: plate, bowl, cup, knife, spoon
  • Flashlight (spare batteries & bulb)
  • Compass
  • Boy Scout knife (no sheath knives)
  • Chapstick, sun screen, insect repellent (no aerosol)
  • Prescribed or required medication in ziplock bag with name on bag (only enough for the 6 days) – left with adult staff member
  • Pens or pencils/notepad
  • Winter courses:  warm jacket and sweatshirt or sweater
  • Annual Medical and Medical Record, Parts A, B, C

Each participant will receive two NYLT t-shirts during check-in

Recommended Personal Gear:

  • Foam sleeping pad
  • Bathing - 2 towels, soap/container (a ziplock works)
  • Hygiene products:  toothpaste, toothbrush, soap, deodorant, comb, etc.
  • Powder to prevent chaffing (e.g. Gold Bond)
  • Personal first aid kit – basic – band aids, etc.
  • Watch/alarm clock

Optional Personal Gear:

  • Small rug or mat for tent floor
  • Pillow
  • Sewing/repair kit
  • Clothesline/clothespins
  • Sunglasses
  • Camera ( no cell phones)
  • Musical instrument (no electronics)
  • Shower shoes (don't have to be closed toed)
  • Religious book(s)

Please do not bring food, electronics (cell phone, game devices), hiking staves or poles, matches, lighters or any item that results in fire. Merit badge and OA sashes are not needed.  Mark  all personal gear and equipment with youth’s name. Count the number of large items left with the youth and be sure you have the same number of items on pickup day.

All clothing must be "Scout appropriate" meaning t-shirts and caps with Scouting themes from activities such as summer camp, Camporees, high adventure outings and also troop-specific wear are appropriate. Clothing which promotes businesses, entertainment groups/individuals, sports or teams, or schools and etc. are not appropriate for this course.

Remember: “Dress for the weather, Pack for the season”

What are the NYLT course objectives?
NYLT Objectives:
1. Give participants the confidence and knowledge to conduct the troop program.
2. Provide participants with a clear understanding of team and personal development and how those elements relate to being a leader.
3. Guide the participants through the stages of team development.
4. Create an environment of Scouting fellowship and fun guided by the Scout Oath and the Scout Law.
5. Give participants the opportunity to share ideas and experiences with Scouts from other troops and teams.
6. Have fun and experience Scouting at its best.
What is the course overview?
The course models a month in the life of a unit – three meetings (one each day for the first three days) leading to a big outdoor experience (an overnight outpost camp). The course uses the patrol method and presents model Leader Council meetings.

The training unit challenges the youth early in the week to present their "Quest for the Meaning of Leadership" at the end of the week. The challenge is designed to have them go through the four stages of team development. This gives teams and individual Scouts hands on, practical application of the leadership skills and concepts presented to them during the course.

Throughout the course, the staff models the concepts and skills that are the core content of the course. The focus of the course is to fill the Scout's “Toolbox of Leadership Skills” with knowledge, practice and understanding of when and how to use these skills.

The course begins with the teams finding their team vision and ends with the individuals refining a personal vision of how to put the skills learned into action at their home unit.
What does the course fee cover?

The fee provides for all meals (dinner day one through lunch on day 6), program material, facility expenses, program equipment, insurance, two NYLT T-shirts, patrol cap, and NYLT notebook.

Do I have to attend the orientation session?
Yes.  If there is a wait list for a course, then Scouts who are registered for a course but do not attend the orientation will lose their place on that course. This creates an open position, which will be filled by a Scout on the wait list who has attended orientation
What type of tents will be used during the course?

The participants will bring their own lightweight tent (10'x10' or smaller)  This may be the same tent used for the outpost hike.

Why does each Scout have to bring a backpacking tent? Can’t several Scouts from the same troop share?

The tent is used for one night of the program called the ”outpost camp”. This outpost camp is by patrol. Patrol assignments are made to enhance learning during the course.  Consequently, in most cases participants will not be in patrols with anyone from their home.

What merit badges will be offered?

The purpose of NYLT is leadership training in the context of a model troop and patrol. No merit badges will be offered.

When is parent’s night?

The five and a half day schedule of NYLT is very full, from early morning until bed time each night. There are no scheduled times for parental visits.

Can Venturers and Sea Scouts attend NYLT?

Venturers and Sea Scouts, both male and female, meeting the age requirements (13-20) may apply for the course. To ensure privacy and high Scouting standards, strict coed camping rules will be enforced.

Are scholarships available?
A limited number of partial fee scholarships are available.  Scholarships are granted based on need.

The participant needs to register online and choosing the mail box option when checking out.  Then, a participant should complete a request for a NYLT Scholarship Application and email the application to or fax to 713-865-9199, Attn: Cesiah Molina.    Scholarships must be applied for and approved prior to the registration becoming final.

Summer Camp Registration is Open 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Wednesday, October 29, 2014 9:39:00 AM

Cub Scout Resident Camp is a three-night campout at Bovay Scout Ranch for Cub Scouts entering the first through fifth grade the following school year.  From Cub Scout skills to rank advancements, these camps are full of fun and learning. 


El Rancho Cima, located 15 miles west of San Marcos, TX has a variety of summer programs for Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts, Venturers and Sea Scouts. The camp is 2,680 acres of mountainous terrain covered by an umbrella of cedars and hardwoods. Boy Scouts can earn merit badges, learn and practice their Scouting skills, follow the patrol method and work towards advancement, while having a fun in the Texas Hill Country.  Activities include swimming, climbing and even a high adventure program to challenge older Scouts.

  • Cockrell River Summer Camp is located on the banks of the Blanco River among native pecan and cypress trees. During summer camp, aquatics are the biggest draw to Cockrell River Camp, including swimming, canoeing, kayaking, and fishing, just to name a few.
  • Horseshoe Bend Summer Camp is held in the shadows of Sentinel Peak and Fortress Mountain. During summer camp, Horseshoe Bend is the hub of the western program. Activities include horseback riding, backpacking, climbing, swimming, and much more.
  • Rough Riders is a high adventure summer camp experience. Senior Boy Scouts, Venturers and adults will experience zip lining, a horseback trek, whitewater adventure, rock climbing, rappelling and much more.
  • Super Troop is an opportunity for Boy Scouts to attend an extra week of Boy Scout summer camp, or to attend camp individually if a Boy Scout can’t attend camp with his unit. Limited spots are available.

Cockrell River Camp

Cockrell River Camp has 14 campsites shaded by 75-year old native pecan and black walnut trees. The Blanco River provides campers with 1.5 miles of unique swimming, canoeing, rowing, and fishing opportunities. A state-of-the-art .22 rifle and five-stand shotgun range, and 40 foot climbing and rappelling tower, make for an unforgettable experience.

Cockrell River Camp is located in El Rancho Cima, just two miles from the main gate. The breath-taking views are endless, as you make your way down towards your campsite on the Blanco River. Each campsite has its own spectacular view of the river. The Blanco River provides unique swimming, canoeing, rowing, and kayaking opportunities. On a hot summer's day, relief is just steps in the 68 degree year-round Blanco River.

The rifle, shotgun, and archery range will provide any novice shooter a chance to learn and become an expert marksman and gives experienced shooters a new challenge. 

Register for 2015 Summer Camp
Cockrell River Camp 

Week 1 6/14 - 6/20/2015 Register
Week 2 6/21 - 6/27/2015 Register
Week 3 6/28 - 7/4/2015 Register
Week 4 7/5 - 7/11/2015 Register
Week 5 7/12 - 7/18/2015 Register
Week 6 7/19 - 7/25/2015 Register
Year Round Weekend Camping Register


Horseshoe Bend

Walter Scout Camp at Horseshoe Bend has a variety of programs including a range with eight rifle shooting stations and two shotgun shooting stations, horse riding, and numerous hiking trails. Horseshoe Bend has an exciting program that Scouts and leaders won't forget.

Walter Scout Camp at Horseshoe Bend is located a half mile inside the main gate of El Rancho Cima. At Walter Scout Camp at Horseshoe Bend, life is a little more laid back, as in the days of the Old West. Transportation is a little different from city life, with over 40 horses from which to choose. Scouts may encounter may cowboys who will always greet you with a friendly "Howdy."

During summer camp, Walter Scout Camp at Horseshoe Bend has a variety of unique programs that include horseback riding, rodeo, trips to the meadow, and of course, the spectacular hike to Sentinel Peak. The merit badge program includes shooting sports, ecology, conservation, aquatics (pool only), handicrafts and much more. 

Register for 2015 Summer Camp
Walter Scout Camp at Horseshoe Bend

Week 1 6/14 - 6/20/2015 Register
Week 2 (LDS Week) 6/22 - 6/27/2015 Register
Week 3 6/28 - 7/4/2015 Register
Week 4 7/5 - 7/11/2015 Register
Year Round Weekend Camping Register


Rough Riders

Rough Riders is a high adventure summer camp experience for older Scouts with activities such as zip lining, horseback riding, water adventures, rock climbing, rappelling and much more. Older Scouts can attend Rough Riders while their unit is attending summer camp. Participants can also sign up individually. 

Discover some of the forgotten land of El Rancho Cima during the Rough Rider program, and spend a week of summer on the historic Devil's Backbone. Rough Riders is an experience designed to challenge the senior members of your troop and crew and prepare them for other high adventure base camps. At the Hamman High Adventure Base at Iron Wheel Mesa, troops, teams and crews will have the advantage of going through the ever growing COPE course which includes:

  • Calamity Jane - a 65 foot climbing tower with a 1,500 foot zip-line
  • Little Sure Shot - a 2,000 foot zip-line ride over the Blanco River
  • 4 high elements
  • 6 low elements
  • Work on leadership and teamwork skills

From base camp on the mesa, participants will take a horseback trek down custom trails to and from three back country sites and cookout and camp overnight and:

  • Shoot black power rifles at Rocky Gulch
  • Experience the heritage of El Rancho Cima's early inhabitants through activities such as tomahawk throwing at Homestead Meadows
  • Learn about metal working at the forge, located right on the Blanco River

Register for 2015 Rough Riders

Week 1 6/14/15 - 6/20/2015 Register
Week 2 6/21/15 - 6/27/2015 Register
Week 3 6/28/15 - 7/4/2015 Register
Week 4 7/5/15 - 7/11/2015 Register

Cub Scout Resident Camp

Resident Camp is a three-night campout at Bovay Scout Ranch for Cub Scouts entering the first through fifth grade the following school year.  From Cub Scout skills to rank advancements, these camps are full of fun and learning. Cub Scouts attending resident camp are also encouraged to register for day camp, as the advancements offered at Resident Camp add to those offered at Day / Twilight Camp.

Resident Camp includes activities such as: seeking treasure in the Lost Mine, archeological quest at the dinosaur dig, high speed pedal action at the BMX bike track, Robin Hood style adventure at the archery range, marksmanship at Fort Bluebell’s BB gun range, action at the K.S. “Bud” Adams Sports Field, pow wow at the Indian Village, exploring camp at the Nature Center, and splashing in the water at the David Weekley Family Water Park.

Resident Camp Registration

Register Session Date Session Time
Session 1 July 8 - 11, 2015 Wed at 2 pm - Sat at 11 am
Session 2 July 12 - 15, 2015 Sun at 2 pm - Wed at 11 am
Session 3 July 15 - 18, 2015 Wed at 2 pm - Sat at 11 am
Session 4 July 19 - 22, 2015 Sun at 2 pm - Wed at 11 am
Session 5 July 22 - 25, 2015 Wed at 2 pm - Sat at 11 am
Session 6 July 26 - 29, 2015 Sun at 2 pm - Wed at 11 am
Session 7 July 29 - August 1, 2015 Wed at 2 pm - Sat at 11 am

Camp Strake Closing Ceremony 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Friday, October 24, 2014 6:00:00 AM

On December 31, 2014, the current location of Camp Strake will be closing. The Sam Houston Area Council is hosting a Camp Strake closing ceremony on December 13, 2014 for all Scouts and Scouters.

From 3:00 - 6:00 pm, Scouts and Scouters can tour the property on their own and take pictures of this historic camp. At 6:30 pm, a closing ceremony for Camp Strake will be held at Eagle Summit.

Note: This is last opportunity for Scouts and Scouters to visit Camp Strake. Visitors will not be allowed to visit Camp Strake or Cub World during Winter Camp.

About Camp Strake

Nestled in the Piney Woods of East Texas, Camp Strake is located 40 miles north of Houston and just south of Conroe, Texas in Montgomery County.  Camp Strake was acquired in 1942, and covers 2,175 acres.  In March 1944, the camp was dedicated and named in honor of George and Susan Strake, who paid off the note for the purchase of the land. This property has many sections and is used for multiple purposes. 

Camp Strake is moving to a rural site in the Sam Houston National Forest, between New Waverly and Coldspring near the community of Evergreen in order to create a 21st century Scouting experience for Scouts and their leaders.

Camp Strake Garage Sale 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Friday, October 24, 2014 6:00:00 AM

Camp Strake Garage Sale

December 6, 2014

Camp Strake will be hosting a garage sale at the Camp Strake maintenance yard from 9:00 am - 12:00 pm. The sale is open to the public. There will be tools, equipment, Boy Scout camping items and much more. 

Upcoming Scout Days 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Monday, October 6, 2014 12:18:00 PM

Boy Scout Safety Merit Badge

November 15, 2014

Boy Scouts can work on the Safety Merit Badge at the Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital on July 19, September 20, and November 15 from 9 am - 12 pm. The cost is FREE.  For more information, contact Cary.   

Geology at Houston Gem, Jewelry, Mineral, & Fossil Show

November 8 and 9

The Houston Gem, Jewelry, Mineral & Fossil Show at Humble Civic Center (8233 Will Clayton Parkway, Humble, TX) will host sessions to meet requirements for:

  • Webelos Geologist pin
  • Partial requirements for Boy Scouts Geology Merit Badge

Classes last about 2-3 hours; allow extra time for visiting the show. Program consists of eight stations, many with different options for various badge types. Instruction includes presentations, activities, and access to materials and experts at show. Saturday sessions will be every hour, from 10am-4pm, Sunday sessions will be every hour from 11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Admission tickets available at the door: $7 adults, $6 students with ID, children under 12 free. Scout badge program free with show admission. RSVP required- first come, first served (limited to 50 Scouts per session). RESERVATIONS TAKEN ONLY BY E-MAIL at Please include: Date/time, pack/troop number, the number and level of Scouts attending, contact person's name, e-mail and phone number. All reservations will be confirmed by reply email.

Houston Rockets Basketball Skills Camp and Game

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Work on your basketball skills with members of the Houston Rockets staff and attend a Houston Rockets game!!!  The Houston Rockets Basketball Skills camp will be from 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 6, 2014 and then attend the game that night!!!  Ticket pricing for this event are $22, $29, and $44.   For more information, Contact Melissa at 713-758-7231.  Flyer

Scout Night at Monster Jam

Saturday, January 17, 2015 at NRG Stadium

Monster Jam, starring the biggest performers on four wheels: Monster Jam monster trucks. These twelve-feet-tall, ten-thousand-pound machines will bring you to your feet, racing and ripping up a custom-designed track full of obstacles to soar over - OR smash through. Monster Jam provides a massive night's entertainment tailored perfectly for your family's budget, and these colorful, larger-than-life beasts are sure to capture the hearts of both young and old.

The Pit Party is your opportunity to get an up close look at the amazing trucks of Monster Jam and receive autographs from your favorite Monster Jam drivers. The Monster Jam Pit Party will take place from 2:30 pm-5:30 pm. No Pit Party admission after 5:00 pm.

Tickets are $11 tickets and include a FREE Monster Jam Scout patch and pre-event Pit Party! Purchase tickets online (use the password BOYSCT under “offer code”). Note that service and handling fees will apply for online purchases.  After purchasing online, contact Christina (281-367-9717) to receive your patches. For more information, or to order groups of ten or more, contact Christina (281-367-9717). The special Scout offer is valid on super value seats and not available with any other offer. The deadline to order tickets is Friday, January 9, 2015.

Scout Day at The Harlem Globetrotters

Sunday, January 25 at 2:00pm at NRG Arena

The Original Harlem Globetrotters are celebrating more than eight thrilling decades of ball handling wizardry, basketball artistry, and one-of-a-kind family entertainment that continues to thrill fans of all ages. Having played more than 24,000 games in 120 countries and territories over the past 87 years, the Harlem Globetrotters have seen and accomplished almost everything in their illustrious history. Throughout their history, the Globetrotters have showcased their iconic talents in 120 countries and territories on six continents, often breaking down cultural and societal barriers while providing fans with their first-ever basketball experience. Proud inductees of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, the Globetrotters have entertained hundreds of millions of fans among them popes, kings, queens, and presidents.

Tickets are $16-$28 and includes an official Harlem Globetrotters Scout patch! An exclusive pre-game meet and greet is available for the first 100 Scout tickets purchased for Scout Day! Purchase tickets online (use the password SCOUT).  Note that service and handling fees will apply for online purchases.  After purchasing online, contact Christina (281-367-9717) to receive your patches and get information on opportunity to participate in the meet and greet, For more information, or to order groups of ten or more, contact Christina (281-367-9717). The Scout discount is valid on seats regularly priced $41/$32/$20, and is not available with any other offer. Deadline to order tickets is Friday, January 16, 2015.

Can’t come on Scout Day? Get your discounted tickets and patch for one of their other games!  Choose from Friday, January 23 at 7:00pm or Saturday, January 24 at 2:00pm or 7:00pm. For more information, or to order groups of ten or more, contact Christina (281-367-9717).

Scout Day at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo

March 18, 2015

The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo is dedicated to benefiting youth, supporting education, and facilitates better agricultural practices through exhibitions and presentation, and was organized for charitable, educational and scientific purposes to encourage and promote the breeding, raising and marketing of better livestock and farm products at public fairs and to promote and maintain research and educational functions within the livestock industry.

Save the Date: March 18, 2015 is Scout Day. Tickets typically include admission to the carnival, livestock and horse shows, shopping food, educational exhibits and the rodeo. Scouts can attend a special presentation to fulfill some of the requirements for the "Horsemanship" Merit Badge for Boy Scouts, and the "Horseback Riding Sports Belt Loop and Pin" for Cub Scouts.

Houston Museum of Natural Science

The Houston Museum of Natural Science offers a variety of classes of Scouts.

  • Tigers, Wolves, Bears, and Webelos can spend the night at the museum during the Scout Adventure Night!  Scouts can all have an exclusive adventure through the Museum exhibit halls, with activities and late-night flashlight super safari through our giant new paleontology hall. Also included are special programs in the Burke Baker Planetarium, where Scouts have a clear night adventure under the stars!
  • Tigers, Wolves and Bears can work on belt loops and pins during two-hour classes.
  • Webelos can work on the Engineering, Forester, Geologist, Naturalist and Scientist during two-hour classes.
  • Boy Scouts can attend the museum's Summer Scout Academy will offer 31 different merit badge- including 4 eagle-required badges - during week-long summer scout classes at HMNS!

The Health Museum

The Health Museum offers a variety of classes for Scouts. Private classes can also be scheduled for groups of 10 or more Scouts on a first-come, first-served basis.

  • Webelos can work on the Forester, Geologist, Traveler, Citizen, Readyman, Scientist, Fitness, and Aquanaut badges.
  • Boy Scouts can work on 21 different merit badges.


Houston Arboretum & Nature Center

The Houston Arboretum & Nature Center offers a variety of classes for Scouts. Scouts investigate the nature sanctuary with a naturalist and learn about the fascinating ecology of the forest. All of our Scout programs are conducted by staff naturalists and use our nature sanctuary as a field laboratory for hands-on explorations!

  • Tigers, Wolves and Bears can work on some outdoor advancements during their Cub Scout Workshops.
  • Webelos can work on the Naturalist and Forester badges
  • Boy Scouts can work on the Bird Study merit badge and conduct Eagle Scout projects.

Houston Zoo

The Houston Zoo offers a spend the night at the zoo for a unique, after-hours experience which includes interactive activities, touchable animals, pizza dinner, Scout advancements on certain nights, and a continental breakfast!  

Weather Center Houston

The Weather Center Houston offers the Boy Scout Weather merit badge.

Armand Bayou Nature Center

The Armand Bayou Nature Center offers a variety of classes for Scouts. 

  • Tigers, Wolves and Bears can work on several outdoor advancements.
  • Webelos can work on the Naturalist and Forester badge.

Watch for additional Scout Days to be announced soon:

  • Scout Day at the Astros
  • Scout Day at Schlitterbahn
  • Boy Scout Aviation Merit Badge at the 1940 Air Terminal Museum
  • Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus

For more information, contact:

Shane Burks
Marketing/Communications Director
(713) 756-3301