Blog Post List

Spring Camping 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Monday, December 6, 2021 9:51:00 AM

Just as young people grow, learn and mature in a continuing progression of experience so, too, do the camping and outdoor programs of the BSA. The BSA offers a continuum of experiences based on the age, interest and ability level of youth, and also offers recognition awards for all levels of Scouting outdoor AdventuresThe Adventure Plan (TAP) is a tool to guide unit leaders through all stages of adventure planning. 

Registration is open for spring camping events. Camp Strake summer camp registration is also open.

Cub Scout Overnight Camping

Cub Scouting offers overnight camping opportunities for Cub Scouts through long-term camps, Webelos den overnight campouts, council-organized short-term or family camps, and pack overnighters. Learn more about Cub Scout camping guidelines. Packs and Webelos dens can conduct camp overnighters at Camp Brosig and Bovay Scout Ranch.

Cub Scout Overnight Camping

Cub Scout Adventure Camp

Adventure Camp is weekend campout at Bovay Scout Ranch. Lions, Tigers, Wolves, Bears and Webelos Scouts and their families will enjoy an exciting variety of activities at several program areas. Meals are eaten in the air-conditioned dining hall. A camp staff team member in each area will provide program supplies and support the parents who will be invited to assist in leading the activities.

Conducted at the McNair Cub Scout Adventure Camp area of Bovay Scout Ranch, activities may include: seeking treasure in the lost mine, archeological quest at the dinosaur dig, a high-speed pedal feat at the BMX bike track, Robin Hood-style adventure at the archery range, marksmanship at the BB gun range, action at the Bud Adams sports field, exploring the camp at the nature center, and splashing in the water at the David Weekley Family Water Park (weather permitting).

Cub Scout Adventure Camp

Scouts BSA Weekend Camping

Outdoor adventure is the promise made to Scouts when they join Scouting. Youth yearn for outdoor programs that stir their imagination and interest.

Troops, crews, and ships can camp at Camp BrosigCamp Strake and Tellepsen Scout Camp

Troop Weekend Camping

Scouts BSA Full Throttle

Full Throttle is a weekend event for Scouts BSA and Venturing crews. Troops and crews who are camping at Camp Strake on April 29 - May 1, 2022, or May 7-8, 2022, can sign up their Scouts to participate in activities such as shooting sports (rifle, shotgun, archery), climbing, COPE (high-ropes course), zipline, swimming, canoeing, kayaking, paddleboarding or ATV riding. The camp staff provides the program leadership. Registration is now open for spring.

Full Throttle

Scouts BSA Summer Camp

It's time to sign up for summer camp. Summer camp is a week-long council-organized overnight camp for Scouts BSA that operates under council-retained leadership. The program provides opportunities for Scouts to earn merit badges along their advancement trail.

Summer camp is held at Camp Strake, a first-class and state-of-the-art facility for Scouts and their leaders. Program areas include shooting sports (rifle, shotgun, archery, sporting arrows), climbing, rappelling, boating (canoeing, kayaking, paddle boarding), swimming, ATV riding, ziplining, merit badge classes and more.

Summer Camp


Spring of Service 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Tuesday, November 30, 2021 10:20:00 PM

January 15 - April 30, 2022

Scouting's Spring of Service is a new program and is an opportunity for Scouting families across the 16 counties served by the Sam Houston Area Council to participate in unit-developed service projects to benefit the local community.  

As throughout Scouting's history, families are answering the call to work together in service. From caring for the environment to assisting neighbors in need, Scouts have always been a force for positivity and goodness in our communities. Together, Scouts can answer the call to make a positive impact in the community.

Scouts who participate will receive a patch.

The unit leader or their designee should register by January 15, 2022, to let the council know if the unit is participating.

Learn More     Register     Plan     Safety / Resources     Advancement Opportunities     Contacts

 

 

 

New Eagle Required Merit Badge 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Monday, November 1, 2021 8:00:00 AM

Citizenship in Society Merit Badge

On November 1, the Boy Scouts of America launched the Citizenship in Society merit badge, its newest merit badge for youth in the Scouts BSA program (ages 11-17). The Boy Scouts of America has a commitment – both to developing a culture where every youth, volunteer, and employee feels a sense of belonging, and to building communities where every person feels respected and valued. The Citizenship in Society merit badge is an important initiative within that larger commitment. All key facts and information about this merit badge can be found at www.scouting.org/dei.

  Citizenship in Society Requirements         Counselor Information 

Introducing Citizenship in Society, the BSA’s newest merit badge

(Source) The first new merit badge for youth in the Scouts BSA program since 2017 officially launches today. Called Citizenship in Society, it provides Scouts with opportunities to learn more about our world by encouraging them to explore information on diversity, equity, inclusion and ethical leadership — and to learn why these qualities are important in society and in Scouting.

To earn the merit badge, Scouts must conduct research; explore resources; have conversations with merit badge counselors, peers, parents and community members; and identify actions they can take to ensure inclusivity and belonging in Scouting and society in general.

The full requirements for the merit badge and materials for merit badge counselors can be found at scouting.org/dei.

How it works

One of the unique features of Citizenship in Society is that there is no merit badge pamphlet with prescribed approaches or ideologies. There also are no requirements meant to drive a particular response or lead a Scout down a path toward a predetermined conclusion.

Instead, Citizenship in Society encourages Scouts to embark on a journey of discovery. In this case, it’s a journey of self-discovery as they explore a variety of topics around diversity, equity and inclusion and belonging, and then discuss how they apply their findings to life as a Scout and as a good citizen in society.

Scouts are encouraged to explore the topics as deeply and broadly as they see fit for their personal learning and growth. While a merit badge counselor may ask the Scout to identify their sources of information, the counselor will not be providing Scouts with answers. Instead, they will help facilitate discussions that aid Scouts in their understanding.

The merit badge will become Eagle required on July 1, 2022.  Additional details will be provided by the National Youth Program team in coming weeks.

“The Eagle Scout rank represents the highest achievement in Scouting and embodies a commitment to leadership and service,” says Roger Mosby, Chief Scout Executive / President and Chief Executive Officer. “Learning to respect and understand people with different identities and perspectives is foundational to becoming a good citizen and leader, which is why we have decided to make this merit badge required for our future Eagle Scouts.”

Already Scout approved

Citizenship in Society was developed carefully and thoughtfully by the BSA’s Office of Diversity and Youth Program Development Office with input from a dedicated group of Scouting volunteers, BSA youth and professional staff — including 31 Scout Executives and more than 60 troops across different regions who participated in a pilot program to test out the new merit badge.

Overwhelmingly, Scouts in the pilot say the merit badge is a positive experience. Scouts were open to having conversations around their research and the answers, and they shared personal examples of encountering the concepts and ideals covered in the requirements.

Here’s some of what they had to say:

“This is the most important work I have done in Scouting. The requirements were difficult and satisfying at the same time.” 

“I have never felt excluded — now that I hear others’ stories, I feel angry and want to do something about it!” 

“It’s important to stand up for one another and ensure everyone’s opinions are heard.”

Part of a broader commitment

“As we have always strived to do in the BSA, we hope to prepare Scouts for life,” says Elizabeth Ramirez-Washka, Chief Diversity Officer and Vice President of Diversity & Inclusion. “As our world evolves, we want to help our Scouts evolve with it in understanding, appreciating and respecting the differences that make us unique.”

A legacy of empathy and respect is already built into the DNA of the BSA as seen in the Scout Oath and Scout Law and other existing merit badges, such as the Citizenship in the Community, Disability Awareness and American Heritage merit badges, which require Scouts to not only learn and grow their understanding of diverse perspectives, but also to take positive action.

More information about the merit badge and the BSA’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion can be found at scouting.org/dei, including the press release.

2021 Silver Beaver Award Recipients 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Thursday, October 21, 2021 7:00:00 PM

The Silver Beaver Award is the highest form of recognition that a local council can bestow on a volunteer. In 1931, BSA President Mortimer L. Schiff recommended to the national board that an award be devised for recognition of distinguished service to youth in the area of a local council, and the concept of the Silver Beaver Award recognition was established.

The Sam Houston Area Council has participated in this recognition program since its inception, presenting Silver Beaver Awards in 1931 to W. A. Childress and to E. A. Hudson. Beginning with those first two awards, more than 1,500 adult leaders in our council have been recognized in this manner.

Congratulations to the 2021 Silver Beaver Recipients. The awards will be presented at the Council Recognition Reception

2021 Silver Beaver Recipients

The Silver Beaver is an award given to those who implement the Scouting program and perform community service through hard work, self-sacrifice, dedication, and many years of service. Members of this year’s class are:

Brian Boling  
Jose Chapela
Doug Dailey
Alyssa Hightower
 
Jim Jolly
Troy Meinen
Junior Raimond
Melissa Spears
Gidget Swift
Merrie Thomas
Bruce Tough
Clay Williams
Ronny Zapata

   Complete list of Silver Beaver Recipients


Council Recognition Reception

January 8, 2022  |  10:00 am

Cockrell Scout Center  2225 North Loop West Houston, TX 77008

The Council Recognition Reception is held annually to honor the recipients of the Silver Beaver Award and Heroism Awards. Join your fellow Scouters in recognizing the recipients of the Silver Beaver Award, the highest award a council can bestow on a volunteer Scouter. 

Contact

For more information, contact the council recognition committee

Register for Summer Camp 2022 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Thursday, August 19, 2021 12:31:00 PM

Summer camp is a week-long council-organized overnight camp for Scouts BSA that operates under council-retained leadership. The program provides opportunities for Scouts to earn merit badges along their advancement trail.

Summer camp is held at Camp Strake, a first-class and state-of-the-art facility for Scouts and their leaders. Program areas include shooting sports (rifle, shotgun, archery, sporting arrows), climbing, rappelling, boating (canoeing, kayaking, paddle boarding), swimming, ATV riding, ziplining, merit badge classes and more.

Sign up now for summer 2022!

Learn More and Register

About Camp Strake

Camp Strake has 20 campsites with pavilions and an air-conditioned dining hall, a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) center, a 28-acre lake, an aquatics center with a swimming pool and pool house, extensive trail system, basketball court, sports fields, chapel and more. The camp has been designed and built to meet both ADA and Boy Scouts of America requirements. The program will be offered to both girl and boy units concurrently. 

Facilities and Program Areas

All facilities at Camp Strake are ADA compliant. Many of these facilities, including the dining hall, are air-conditioned.

Check-in Building

At the entrance to Camp Strake is the check-in building. This facility is used to greet visitors, provide directions, and issue parking permits. All visitors should be prepared to stop at this building to sign-in.

Camp Headquarters

Camp headquarters houses the camp phone, lost and found, mail, offices, quartermaster, trading post, health lodge, and a training room.

Dining Hall

The dining hall seats 460 people. High quality and nutritious meals are provided by a professional service. The parade field on the west side of the dining hall is used for flag ceremonies.

Campsites

Campsites are nestled in shaded areas throughout the camp. Every campsite has picnic tables, a covered pavilion with electricity. Shower houses are located along the main campsite road and are shared by three or four campsites. Individual stalls are ADA compliant and have a toilet, shower, and sink.



  


STEM

The STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) building is in the program area just south of the administration building. The building is outfitted with equipment and materials to support a robust STEM and conservation program.


 

Aquatics

The aquatics area contains a pool, fishing area, beachfront with lake swimming area, and boating area to support the full range of aquatics related merit badges. The 28-acre lake provides a venue for canoeing, kayaking, and paddleboarding. A portion of the lake is reserved for conservation and fishing activities.



 


Shooting Sports

The shooting sports area contains a rifle range with 16 firing positions and a maximum range of 100 yards, a shotgun range, archery range, sporting arrows range, and 3D archery range.

Climbing / High Ropes Course

The 32-foot-tall climbing tower and training pavilion is located at the west end of the lake. The top of the tower has a great vantage point overlooking the entire camp. The tower is designed to allow beginner and experienced climbers to test and improve their skills. The high adventure program will also include a zipline and ATV program.



Staff Area

The staff area is west of the check-in building and contains a main staff building that includes office, storage, laundry, and meeting facilities. Adjacent to this building is 40 two-person huts and a shower/latrine facility.

 


Bridge to the Integrity Institute


Merit Badge Pavilion


Grand Pavilion

BSA Brand Standards 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Friday, June 25, 2021 4:30:00 AM

Help Ensure Everyone Follows BSA Brand Standards as They Create Materials for Recruiting Season

To ensure that we promote our programs in a clear and Scout-like manner, it important to remind units to follow BSA Brand Guidelines and use approved materials from the BSA Brand Center in developing their recruiting materials. This includes following the requirements included in the Scouts BSA Branding Dos and Don’ts Guide and the associated Brand Training Guide.  

The Scouts BSA Brand Guidance Training is one of the efforts underway to be sure Scouters have a clear understanding of what they can do. This training should be shared with all volunteers to bring this understanding to all parts of our community.

BSA Brand Guidelines     BSA Brand Center    Scouts BSA Branding Dos and Don’ts Guide    Brand Training Guide

While our goal is to encourage youth to join our program, we must always be clear in our communications about the program they are joining.

  • We are The Boy Scouts of America.
  • The Boy Scouts of America and Girl Scouts of the USA are different organizations.
  • We support all other youth organizations and do not disparage them.
  • We encourage parents to enroll all youth in a character development program that meets their needs – and the BSA is certainly ready to welcome them.

#15 SHAC Communication for COVID-19 Response  

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Tuesday, May 18, 2021 3:00:00 PM

Dear Scouting Family of the Sam Houston Area Council,

The leadership of the Sam Houston Area Council would like to present this, our fifteenth update, on our response to the COVID-19 outbreak and protocols for Scouting operations going forward. We appreciate your continued patience as we navigate this situation.

  • Unit programming should be conducted under current guidelines from the State of Texas and the CDC with the approval of the unit’s chartered organization and subject to the current COVID-19 protocols of any meeting or activity facility.
  • Effective immediately, all visitors and staff that are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 will be exempted from wearing a face-covering at all council-owned facilities, including the Cockrell Scout Center and all council camps. The council recommends that those individuals that are not fully vaccinated should continue to wear a face-covering where social distancing is not possible, except while eating, drinking, or participating in an activity where face coverings are not feasible, such as aquatics.
  • District and Council meetings and events may be conducted in person and will utilize the same face-covering policy, unless held at a facility that is not council-owned, as those facilities may have additional restrictions that should be followed.
  • Council camps will continue to utilize the COVID-19 Pre-Screening Form.
  • Social Distancing should be followed in all situations where it is feasible.
  • Overnight district and council activities and trainings are allowed for all Scouting programs. All district activities should have an event plan reviewed and approved by the District ERM Committee, and all council activities should have an event plan reviewed and approved by the Council ERM Committee.
  • Effective May 24th, the Cockrell Scout Center will resume normal office hours and operations on Monday through Friday, 8:00-4:30 p.m.

Our Enterprise Risk Management Team is working regularly and diligently to determine our plans going forward. If you have any questions regarding the COVID-19 response for the Sam Houston Area Council, please contact Thomas Franklin, Deputy Scout Executive, at thomas.franklin@scouting.org. The council remains committed to keeping our constituents updated regularly with new information as we have it. We will continue to communicate through three main mechanisms – FacebookEmail, and Council Website. Please consult these regularly for updates.

Thank you for all you do for Scouting

Debbie Rollinson
Council Commissioner

Clay Williams
Chair of the Board

Marvin Smith
Scout Executive / CEO

Contact

If you have any further questions or concerns, please contact Thomas Franklin, Deputy Scout Executive, at thomas.franklin@scouting.org

As this is a constantly evolving situation, please regularly monitor our standard means of communication (FacebookEmail, and Council Website) for updates. 

 

BSA National Statement on COVID-19     Rank Advancement Update  

Keeping the Cub Scout Adventure Program Relevant for Today's Families 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Tuesday, May 11, 2021 6:57:00 PM

Source. Every year, Cub Scout Adventures are reviewed to identify trends and determine interests of our youth, den leaders and Cub Scout families. In our ongoing efforts to keep the Cub Scouting Adventure program relevant to today’s families, Cub Scout elective Adventures are reviewed for both content and popularity. The most recent review has identified 19 elective Adventures that do not meet the standards of youth and den leader engagement, with the lowermost being earned by less than 3% of eligible youth. They will be retired effective May 31, 2022. The retiring of these adventures allows Cub Scouting to be more agile as the BSA makes continuous improvements to the program.

Some families may want one last chance to earn these Adventures, and some den leaders may have already made plans for the upcoming program year.  To help with that transition, these Adventures will be available until the end of the 2021-2022 program year.

The affected elective Adventures, which will be retired effective May 31, 2022, are as follows:

  • Family Stories, Rank: Tiger, SKU: 619922
  • Earning Your Stripes, Rank: Tiger, SKU: 619925
  • Tiger Tales, Rank: Tiger, SKU: 619930
  • Tiger Theater, Rank: Tiger, SKU: 619931
  • Collections and Hobbies, Rank: Wolf, SKU: 619940
  • Grow Something, Rank: Wolf, SKU: 619944
  • Hometown Heroes, Rank: Wolf, SKU: 619947
  • Motor Away, Rank: Wolf, SKU: 619950
  • Beat of the Drum, Rank: Bear, SKU: 619958
  • World of Sound, Rank: Bear, SKU: 619960
  • Make it Move, Rank: Bear, SKU: 619963
  • Robotics, Rank: Bear, SKU: 619968
  • Looking Back Looking Forward, Rank: Webelos/AOL, SKU: 619978
  • Maestro, Rank: Webelos/AOL, SKU: 619979
  • Project Family, Rank: Webelos/AOL, SKU: 619997
  • Build My Hero, Rank: Webelos/AOL, SKU: 619992
  • Adventures in Science, Rank: Webelos/AOL, SKU: 619989
  • Fix It, Rank: Webelos/AOL, SKU: 619975
  • Movie Making, Rank: Webelos/AOL, SKU: 619982

The listed elective Adventures are still part of the Cub Scouting program until May 31, 2022. After that date, these Adventures will be retired, and the Adventure loops and pins will no longer be available. Earned Adventures will be archived in Scoutbook and Internet Advancement. The Adventure will appear as earned but will no longer be able to be marked as completed after May 31, 2022.

First Aid & Shooting Sports Training 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Saturday, February 13, 2021 3:17:00 PM

In Scouting events and activities, the BSA’s primary consideration is the safety of its youth and adult members.

Shooting Sports Training

The BSA, in consultation with other organizations, has created specific guidelines for shooting sports. The shooting sports committee is providing rifle training and instructor certification to prepare those individuals who will serve in a leadership or supervisory role in the various shooting sports activities. 

NRA Basic Instructor Training (BIT) is held on Friday night and the discipline-specific basic training and instructor training (rifle, shotgun or pistol) are held on Saturday. These training courses allow leaders to run a shooting sports event at a troop, crew, ship, district, or council event and to teach the Rifle and Shotgun Shooting Merit Badge.

Cub Scouts can shoot BB-gun rifles, slingshots, and archery in a council or district event only and is not approved as a unit event. BSA requires all Cub Scout shooting sports to be supervised by a BSA certified range master.

Register        Learn More about Shooting Sports


First Aid Training

The council offers are a variety of first aid training courses throughout the year including First Aid/CPR/AEDFirst Aid/CPR/AED Instructor Course, and Wilderness First Aid.

Register

Youth Safety | Ongoing Commitment 

Posted by Darlene Scheffler Tuesday, November 17, 2020 10:46:00 AM

The safety of children in our programs is the most important priority of the Boy Scouts of America. 

The BSA’s safeguards highlighted below are key parts of our multilayered approach to help keep kids safe.

These measures were informed by respected experts in the fields of child safety, law enforcement, and child psychologyand are among the strongest safeguards found in any youth-serving organization. 

 

Learn More