New River Bugle


February 12, 2018


Email [email protected] if you know of someone who would like to receive the Bugle!

  at #NewRiverScouts




 9-10 – Science Museum Camp-in

13 -  Moneton Chapter Meeting

13 -  District Roundtable

13 – District Re-charter Turn-in (At Roundtable Meeting)

15-  Eagle Club Dinner

16-18- Klondike Derby (Joint Event with Mountain Empire in Atkins, VA)

19- Council Service Center Closed



4 – Scouts on Skis

5-9 – VT Spring Break

13 – District Roundtable

13 – OA Chapter Meeting (Moneton).

16-18 – Wilderness First Aid – Ottari

23-25 – OA Spring Ordeal – Claytor Lake Aquatics Base



New River Unit Re-charters

Almost all unit charters in New River expire at the end of February. It is time to renew your charter, and several units have not started! Don’t be late with your charter paperwork, it is much easier to knock it out NOW than to re-do all of the applications for every adult and Scout. If you are part of the Unit Key 3 and have not received your code please let us know so that we can get it to you!

As a reminder – every year you have to initially “create a new account” for the internet re-charter system.  The link to access your online charter can be found here:  Our District re-charter turn in will be on Feb 13th at our Roundtable meeting at Central United Methodist Church in Radford.  The meeting will be from 7pm-9pm.  As you work to complete your paperwork this year, please note the 2018 training requirement, the attached TAR form and the free-rank badge form.  If you have any questions whatsoever as you go through the process.  You can reach out to Rick Groesbeck at [email protected] or 540-449-6916.  Please also make sure to make copies of all the forms you are turning in for your records (Adult and Youth applications, CBC forms, Free Rank Badge Forms, your charter roster, etc.).  This will help provide a layer of accountability, problem solving and support as it is turned into the office for processing.  


2018 Training Requirement – As your unit re-charters, please remember that it is now required for all leaders registered prior to August 1st 2017 to complete their online leader specific training in order to re-charter in their unit for 2018.  This means that in addition to Youth Protection Training (which each registered leader must be current and have an expiration date after 2/28/19), leaders must also have taken their online leader specific training for their currently held position.  This training is taken online (just as with YPT training) at, is good for the tenure of the leader and will not have to be taken again.  So…if you are a unit leader in charge of your unit’s charter paperwork this year, please request that each untrained leader in your unit take their leader specific training online and provide you with their training certificate to submit with your charter paperwork.  If you know they completed this training online and it does not reflect in the system, Please see the Training Attendance Form attached, which you can use to update us with anyone in your unit that has completed this training either online, at university of Scouting, or with one of our District trainers or DVD’s (YPT).


New YPT Training for 2018:

Please also note that as of 10/1/2018, National is moving to a single YPT training to replace Y01 (traditional Scouting) and Y02 (Venturing) Youth Protection.  For this reason, we encourage each of our adult leaders, between now and October, to go online to take the new Youth Protection training.  With this new training, National is moving to an annual YPT standard, requiring adult leaders to update their certification once each year.  If you would like to go online and see this new training, please logon with and click on the training link.  We are told that each year, the training module will be slightly different, focusing on a specific area of emphasis with Youth Protection. We will relay more information on this as it becomes available.  


District Social Media

If you are receiving this newsletter and have not yet seen or are following our District Facebook page, please go Facebook and look up “New River District Boy Scouts” and then “like” our page :   Also make sure to follow our Instagram page as well (  We are working to do more marketing through our page and having your help to gain a larger following will hopefully result in everyone receiving better information about upcoming events, activities, trainings, updates from National BSA, as well as the ability to see highlights and activities of our star units here in the NRV. 

Unit Facebook Pages -  in the same vein, if your unit doesn’t yet have a Facebook page, consider getting one and use it to market your unit and all the wonderful things it is doing in our area.  When you post special activities and events, make sure to tag our District page and use the hashtag #NewRiverScouts when posting.  If we all work together, we can grow the awareness about Scouting in our community. Scouting is such a wonderful opportunity, we need it to be as visible as possible.  Hopefully as we all begin to connect our collective experiences, all our “friends of friends” will see the incredible things we are doing and how we are making a difference here in the NRV.  Thanks!     


Camp Cards 2018

Believe it or not….CAMP CARDS ARE IN!!!  Thank you to all who have ordered.  These will be available out our Roundtable Tomorrow night (2/13/18 @ 7pm at Central United Methodist Church in Radford).  And then I will have a follow-up distribution at my house on Tues Feb 20th at my house from 4:30-6pm.  Below is the same info I provided last month to help inform your sale: 



Our Break-off tab vendors are McDonalds, Tractor Supply and Food Lion and our Multi-use vendors are Hardees, Waffle House, Dairy Queen, Pulaski Yankees, Backcountry Ski and Sport, Bull & Bones, Domino’s Pizza and Sonic. 


2018 Camp Card Sales Plan- So if you want your unit to have success in 2018 with your sale, then here are some key things you need to do.  If you have not been successful with Camp cards in the past (yes, some of you have taken 500+ cards and sold less than 10 in 3 months), then it’s likely because one or more of the following items were not implemented with your sale. One of the biggest needs is for our boys and parents to know the WHY behind the sale (what is in it for them).  Communicating this, and having a plan makes all the difference.  Telling your boys and parents that it’s “Camp Card time of year again” is the worst possible thing you can do.  For the love…who needs one more thing to do? Who on earth wants to sell anything they don’t have to?  Not me!...that is, unless a sale with minimal effort will produce real results in areas I need it most.  Want to know how easy these guys are to sell?  Ask our Pulaski units.  So….here’s the top 5 things to do as you prepare for and execute your units sale:


  1. Recruit someone in your unit to be the head of your Camp Card Sale. -  Let’s be honest, this isn’t popcorn.  It’s not nearly as time consuming or difficult to manage.  You relay the basics of the sale, set expectations, issue the cards, communicate to your boys/parents via email/facebook, follow-up with your boys/parents throughout the sale, coordinate card/$ turn-ins and relay the money and cards to District.  Without a person to oversee this for the unit, it is very unlikely anyone will want to participate or will stay engaged throughout the sale. You’ll issue the cards, they will sit on them until May… and that golden egg…well no hatchie, sorry. 


  1. Communicate the WHY – People who sell things only for the sake of selling need professional help in my opinion…and are usually untrustworthy.  HOWEVER if a little effort with sales can make a big impact in my life or the life of others…well then, that’s completely different.   With these cards, Scouts can go to camp, buy important (and really cool) gear they need, or go to that huge event your unit is planning free of cost.  If boys and parents realize this, then that’s usually all they need to understand the “why” and how it’s completely different from selling magazines at school. 


  1. Have a boy sales goal.  Ok, so I realize it’s hard for you to make your Scouts reach goals.  It’s hard enough for me to make my daughter to do her homework.  BUT…you CAN ask them to tell you what goal they are shooting for before you issue them the cards.  What is it you want to earn?  How much will this cost in real dollars? And based on the cost, you will know how many cards they need to sell to get there.  If Scouts or parents don’t have a goal to shoot towards, I’m telling you, it ain’t gonna happen. These questions really should be asked before a unit places its order with Council, but for 2018 it just it is what it is.  You’ll know better for next year after you apply this principal and sell out of all your cards by April.  You’re welcome.


  1. Weekly card sale check-in’s.  At each meeting, set the expectation that boys will check in to relay the # of cards they sold, how much money they have secured, and how many cards they have left to sell to reach their goal. It’s just good to keep track of the money and cards in one place.  AND, just as “iron sharpens iron”, the boys will sharpen each other with their sale at these check-in’s.  When Billy sees what Johnny sold, all of a sudden he’s like, “Man, if Johnny sold that many, then I can beat that”.  Without weekly check-ins, the cards go to one place: in a drawer until the end of the sale.  Who buys them you ask? The parents when they decide to order a Domino’s pizza for the family meal on Friday night, or when they hit Food Lion for groceries that week. I know all about this.  As a kid, my Troop sold M&M’s.  Who bought them?…me…everyday afterschool.  It was a sick and twisted plan, but it worked…for the Troop that is.


  1. Clearly communicate sales deadlines, expectations and District sale updates -  Organization is key so that everyone knows the plan and what is expected of them in regard to Camp Cards.  If your families have to guess what to do at your next meeting, you can bet that many of them will forget what it is you need them to do. For this reason, consistent follow-up is essential.  Just put out email reminders of what is expected before each meeting to ensure everyone attending knows what to do.  At the same time, relaying any District sales info I put out there for your families will help as well.  This year, I’m hoping to put together a mid-sale District incentive or prize for a top seller. Having you immediately forward this email to those it is intended to impact will be extremely helpful. You or your Camp Card person is the gatekeeper.   


So, these are the main ones.  Notice I didn’t say coordinate a “Show-n-Sell” card sale in front of a store or business.  While units that do this are absolutely successful, it’s most likely because these units are also doing most of the 5 things above.  Therefore, if you are a unit doing a Show n Sell, please don’t stop!…but if you are not doing one, at the very least, have a plan to do the above items and then see if it makes a difference.  I believe I will have roughly 1000 more cards this year to issue out to any units that want to sell (and did not order) or those who sell out of their initial order.  Remember, with Camp Cards, these can go quickly, so any extra cards are “First come first served”.   For those of you selling, I would say “good luck” with your sale…but then Luck benefits the prepared.  So “Be Prepared” J …Seems I’ve heard that somewhere before.


Family Friends of Scouting

It’s again time to look at your Family’s benefit from Scouting and make an investment in the program. If you haven’t participated in Family Friends of Scouting before, please consider it! While the goal of Family Friends of Scouting is to help fund our District support, activities and assistance to our Scouts in need (Camperships and Registration) it also is an opportunity to educate our families about what the District and Council even is and how we support their experience in Scouting.  We don’t pressure anyone to give.  We simply educate on who we are and provide an opportunity for those who would like to support.  Therefore, if your event is not yet scheduled for us to do a presentation, please let Mike Holcomb ([email protected]) and Chris Dempsey ([email protected]) to schedule your presentation today!  You can just send us the date, time and location of your next Court of Honor or Blue and Gold and we’ll make sure to have someone there.


Spring Cub Scout Family Camp-Out!

Our 2018 Cub Scout Family Camp Out is planned for the First weekend of May (4th-6th) at Camp Powhatan.  While details are still being planned, we are expecting this event to be bigger and better than any of our previously planned Cub Scout Camping events (Fall or Spring).  We will be providing meals for Saturday and Sunday as well as several activity stations.  While the New River and Mountain Empire Districts will be primarily camping the first weekend…the other weekend that is available to register for is May 18-20th.  We hope our Packs will put May 4th-6th on their calendars and come out and join us for lots of fun!!!  More details are to come very soon!


2018 Klondike Derby – “Capture the YETI”

So this weekend, February 16th-18th, the Mountain Empire and New River Districts will combine forces to pull off a jammin’ Klondike event at Freedom Tabernacle Baptist Church in Atkins, VA.  The cost will be $12.50 per Scout and $5 per leader.  Attached you will find the supply list for the sleds of the Troops/Patrols attending as well as a schedule for the event and a registration form.  You can submit your registration by completing the attached registration form and sending to Susan McKimmy at [email protected] or call her at 540-265-0656.  If you have any questions about the event please contact Mr. Dan Grubb at [email protected] or [email protected].  You can also call him at 320-9224.  If you are a Troop that has not yet verbalized your commitment to attend, please contact Dan Grubb ASAP!



Woodbadge – Training for ALL Leaders

In 1911, Baden-Powell started training Scouting’s adult leaders by organizing a series of lectures for Scouters.  In 1919, these lectures culminated into the establishment of Wood Badge.  Wood Badge is leadership training intended for all adult leaders in Scouting - Cub Scout, Boy Scout, and Venturing, as well as council and district leaders. This great training is conducted over two, three-day weekends.


Paid-in-full registration $175 required by March 20, 2018. Submit a $50 non-refundable deposit with your application to the Council.

Cost includes training materials and most meals (participants will share responsibility for providing six campsite meals on the second weekend).

Partial scholarships are available.


The dates for the 2018 course are April 20-22 and May 18-20.  Leaders can register with this link,  We hope to see your name on the registration list.



Free Rank Patches

The Blue Ridge Mountains Council will provide free badges of rank during the 2018 Charter year to units which have met three of the four criteria listed below and whose unit is submitting advancement to the Council using internet advancement.


1.         Unit must have qualified as a 2017 Journey to Excellence

2.         Participate in the Popcorn sale program or participate in the Camp Card Sale

3.         Participate in Family Friends of Scouting (Winter/Spring 2017-18)

4.         Submit advancement on line during the 2017 year.


Unit Leaders - Please return the attached form to apply for your Unit’s Free Rank.


Recruitment 365 – It’s NEVER too late!

Many Scouts have already joined, but there are even more youth available and missing out on all the great programming you’re doing! Did you know that we only serve about 10% of the Scout-age youth in the NRV? That means that for every single member of your Pack, Troop, or Crew there are 9 more that are missing out!


If you’ve got members coming to your unit that have not registered, or if you haven’t turned in their application, please do so with your February charter paperwork! Did you know that after only three meetings, any youth who are still “trying out” your unit are your responsibility and NOT covered under BSA insurance? Help us help you and get those applications turned in to the Council Office!


Success Stories 

As we roll into 2018, we know that many of you have success stories in your units that represent the real impact of Scouting in our community.  If you would be willing, please relay these to Chris Dempsey.  He will be glad to change the names and identifying information for those who would wish to be kept anonymous.  Knowing where Scouting is making an impact in our communities is extremely important so we can emulate this success in other areas and also so we can communicate these successes to those in the NRV who help support our efforts to make Scouting available to those who need it the most.  Therefore, if you have a story you can share in your unit, please email Chris Dempsey at [email protected] .


News and Marketing

We welcome your input and support by providing us with anything that you feel will promote your unit and/or Scouting in the NRV.   Therefore, if you have an article to share about your unit, an activity to promote or just general information you feel will be beneficial to the District as a whole, Please contact Tom Booth at his email: [email protected]. Tom will get with the rest of us and if appropriate, we will share with the greater district through our various media outlets.  Whatever you do, never stop promoting your unit and your impact! 



DE Minute


Thanks guys!  Let me know if you have any questions.  If you are a unit and have not yet planed your Family FOS event dates with me, please let me know when we can schedule these.  Also, let me know if you have any feedback on other Scouting items.  As we make transitions with many of our programs in the fall of 2018, knowing where our units (charter organizations) stand will be a tremendous help as we continue planning.  Remember, if you intend to maintain a gender specific program moving forward, you are encouraged to do so.  Just let us know where your organization stands and help me support you by relaying information that will


Blessings, and Thanks for all that you do for Scouting!




Chris Dempsey

District Director | West Service Area

Blue Ridge Mountains Council

1195 Cambria St. N.E.

Christiansburg, VA 24073
C 540.558.8834  |  F 540.381.6471
[email protected]