Archive | November, 2011
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Get Your Knots On!

To quote Andy “if you’ve earned Scouting ranks or awards or received recognitions that are symbolized by square knots, wear them.”  (Fruit Salad, Christmas Trees, & Generals)  As leaders, we set the example by wearing the awards that we’ve earned and encourage our Scouts to earn and wear awards – simple as that!  So if you have ’em, don’t be shy – wear ’em.

On the subject of knots, one question that comes up frequently for new adult leaders is “what Square Knots are available for adult leaders?”   There is a great listing of these knots at (a U.S. Scouting Service Project, Inc. web site).  Here’s a snapshot of just some of the knots available to adults:

Scouting's Square Knots - Leadership and Training Awards

For more information visit (click to see full sized graphic)

For even more information about Scouting’s Knots, you may want to visit Mike Walton’s web site at

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Add a Scouting Touch to Gifts and Cards

With the Christmas holiday season approaching, many of us are thinking about gifts and cards. Why not add a bit of a Scouting touch to gift giving and greeting cards? There are some great places to start:

1. Your local Scout Shops

Many Scout Shops are making an extra effort this year. You may find they are wiling to do gift wrapping and that they may have special deals. Check you Council’s Twitter feed to see what they are doing or just drop in and see what they have.

2. Philmont’s Tooth of Time Traders

They are running a special called “The 12 days of Philmont” with special offers daily. Check out the deals at Tuesday’s deals have been posted and you’ll find the deal sweetened with a free Tablerone candy bar for each order on November 29 along with free shipping on orders over $150.

3. BSA’s Licensed Products at Zazzle

You can find wonderful Scouting themed Christmas Cards and Scouting holiday postage stamps at


Through December 1, is offering free shipping on orders of $75 or more. Check them out at

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A Scouter’s Thanksgiving Prayer



With reverance in our hearts,

We, Your many children of many beliefs,

United in common purpose,

Gather to offer this our humble prayer,

In Thanksgiving:

As Scouters we are thankful for:

The many gifts and talents given to our fellow Scouters, and to ourselves;

The freedom we have to join together and as a team accomplish more than any of us could alone;

The opportunity to be of service to young people, parents, other Scouters and our community;

Our joy at seeing so many young people become excited as they grow and are able to meet challenges;

Being reminded by their ceremonies and legends that he who serves his fellows, is of his fellows greatest;

And most importantly we are thankful for the gift of knowing that our prayers are heard.

We each in own way take this moment to silently add our own thanksgivings . . . (pause)

With thanks in our hearts we offer our prayers and ask that You, the Great Scoutmaster of All Scouts, be with each of us until we meet again. AMEN

By Michael F. Bowman

Copyright 1991, All Rights Reserved

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Ask Andy Turns 10 on November 23

Andy will have been at it for a full decade come November 23. That means almost 290 columns and over 1.65 million words of advice to fellow Scouters. Now matter how you stack it, that is a pretty impressive record – hat’s off to Andy for a job well done and for his continued dedication to Scouting.

Back in 2001 when Andy started, our site looked like this (click on image to see a larger version):

NetCommish in 2001

As you can see, we plan to keep changing and adapting to better serve Scouting. We hope that you’ll like and enjoy the new format we are using and that you’ll take advantage of the social media features to recommend and share the site with your friends. We also know from readers that sometimes it helps to have the text a little bigger. So we’ve added a feature at the top right of each page to allow you to adjust the font size to suit your own preferences. And if you ever need a print version, just click on the orange RSS icon and you will see a page that can be easily printed off.

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Advancement Guide Scoop in Next Ask Andy

Want to get the inside scoop on how the new Advancement Guide came to be. You’ll find out in the next edition of Ask Andy. We plan to have that edition of AskAndy available on our site tomorrow. Just click on the AskAndy button to the right and you’ll see the latest column.

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I Will Remember

Veterans Day

Click on Image To See Full Sized Version. Members of the Texas National Guard on duty in Iraq.

I will remember!

Armistice Day was the name we used for Novemeber 11 when we were growing up in the Midwest.  Every school child knew that it celebrated the signing of the Armistice ending the fighting in the horrific conflict we call World War I on the eleventh day of the eleventh month at the eleventh minute of the eleventh hour.  Long since, it has become known as Veterans Day and is “a celebration to honor America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.”

On this day in 2011, I will remember our veterans by proudly displaying the American flag at our home and taking a moment of silence at 11:11 AM to reflect on the sacrifices the men and women of the United States Armed Forces have made to ensure that we have the freedoms we hold so dear.  And in this way, I am also saying thank you to each and every veteran.

And there is more we can do – and every day too!  Please take a moment to watch this inspiring video about volunteers helping veterans:

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Internet Scout Patch Program

The U.S. Scouting Service Project, Inc. has just received the new patches for the revised Internet Scout Patch Program.

Internet Scout Patch Program

Click on the image to see a larger version.

Visit to learn more about the Internet Scout Patch Program.

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Commissioners Are In The HAPPY Business

NetCommish thought of the day – Commissioners are in the HAPPY Business.


Hear – Listen – Understand the people you serve


Assist the front-line Scouters and make their lives easier


Provide program support – this help makes you a valued team member


Promote Scouting opportunities for youth and adults


Youth oriented – If it isn’t for the Scouts, Its for the Birds

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Philmont Documentary Collection

The Philmont Documentary Collection promo from Larry McLaughlin on Vimeo is definitely worth a look. (Click the expand button next to HD to watch the full screen version!) After you watch you’ll want to go to and maybe snag yourself a copy of the three hour movie. Could make a great Christmas present for a fellow Trekker.

I stumbled onto this great short video via a Facebook story:

It’s the one year anniversary for The Philmont Documentary Collection! I am very thankful to all those who have taken the time to share their positive comments with me! I am the sole person who made the movie, handles the website and personally ships out orders. I don’t have the means for big advertising, so any help with getting the word out is greatly appreciated. Thanks for a great first year. It means the world to me that this collection has been received so well by those who love Philmont. I am very honored. –Larry McLaughlin

Well Larry, you have something extraordinary and I am only too happy to help get the word out by posting here. If you haven’t been to Philmont or are wondering what all the fuss is about, the full three-hour movie may be just what you need to answer your question(s). Check it out.

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