1/10/17 Meeting Minutes

The third meeting of THE EAGLE CLUB convened at 6:00pm on Tuesday, January 10, 2017 with moderator Jack Habit at the 1929 Boy Scout Cabin on Broad Street in Edenton, NC.  Eagles present (21) were Meader Harriss, Ted Haigler, Adam Evans, Matt Jones, John McArthur, Brian Ward, T.J. Quate, Cabe Speary, Mike Ervin, Win Dale, Brian White, Oscar White, Reggie Ponder, Jerry Harrell, Elder Carson Davis, Elder Nate Medsketz, John Morehead, Burton Jones, Jack Habit, David McCall, and Mike McArthur.  Also present were BSA Troop 164 Scoutmaster Skip Perkins, and BSA Tidewater Council District Commissioner Frances Creel.

Preceding the meeting, preparations for our meal began about 5:30 with gas grill acquisition (which has been donated to the Troop by Adam Evans), lighting from Chowan County Sheriff’s Office by John McArthur, and food delivery by Adam Evans, John McArthur, Jack Habit, and Mike McArthur.

After great hot dogs and hamburgers, fellowship, and informal discussions, our meeting began.  Jack Habit called the meeting to order, and opened the floor for discussion of topics relating to our group’s mission.  We were fortunate to have with us our District Commissioner Frances Creel who provided us with a snapshot of progress within Cub Scout Pack 164 toward chartering.  She let us know that the Pack has not met since May of 2016, and that we would need to “start from scratch” toward rebuilding the Pack.  She and former Cubmaster Brian Ward shared that in order to build the Pack back to viable strength, a new Cubmaster, a Cub Scout Committee of five adults, and ten boys (Tigers, Wolves, and Bears) would be needed to sign up and activate the re-chartering process with Tidewater Council.  Three of our Eagles, Mike Ervin, Brian Ward, and John McArthur volunteered to serve on a committee to explore some options for getting the Pack chartered and active once again, acknowledging that the Pack feeds the Troop with memberships.  Cabe Speary suggested asking Reggie Ponder, the Editor of the Chowan Herald for advertising help from the weekly paper.

Meader Harriss suggested mounting a school based campaign to attract both Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts.  Brian Ward offered that a “core group” of parents would be needed to make joining the Pack attractive to parents who would consider encouraging their sons to enroll.  As always, leadership responsibilities seem to intimidate parents from “stepping forward.”

Funding for the Pack was discussed, and it was acknowledged that American Legion Post 40 has in the past paid the charter fees for the Troop and Cubs, but that that had not happened for about 5 years.  Charter fee is $31, Boy’s Life is $12, and paper fees are $10, making it cost a Cub Scout $53 per year.   An additional $40 is charged to the Pack and the Troop for outing/activity insurance.  Expenses for membership would require a full uniform: shirt, scarf, hat, belt.    Weekly dues would pay for patches, belt loops, and awards.

Cabe Speary informed us that NESA, the National Eagle Scout Association was willing for us to charter our Eagle Scout Group as an affiliated member.  He made a motion, and it was seconded and passed, that our group of Eagles provide to all new Eagles a $75,five year membership in NESA.  The membership enhances the Scout’s knowledge of continued activities in Scouting, and encourages him through interesting articles and newsworthy opportunities for his continued service.  Eagle Matt Jones displayed his Scout Axe, presented to him from The Advance Ruritan Club and the Chowan Edenton Optimist Club.  Jack Habit informed the group that Eagle Applicant Renzo Benavides would sit for his Eagle Scout Board of Review on January 28, 2017.  Good news:  He passed with flying colors, and is now our community’s newest Eagle Scout.

As a matter of time frame guidelines, Cabe Speary said that in today’s Scouting world, it usually takes about 4 years for a Scout to advance through the ranks from Tenderfoot to Eagle.  Summer camps plus Camporees, plus week-end camping trips provide ample opportunities for earning the Merit Badges required and sought by Scouts.  He said that 95% of Scouts who reach the rank of Life go on to earn Eagle.  He recommended that our group serve in a mentoring capacity to “fan the flames” of boys who sometimes falter along the way.   He also stressed how very important it is for parents to stay engaged with their sons   AND  the Troop.  Brian Ward notified us that there is a website at www.bsa164.com available for our input and to help us maintain contact with our local Troop and Pack.

BSA Troop 164 Scoutmaster Skip Perkins gave us an update that currently there are between 16 and 22 boys actively engaged in Troop activities.  SEVEN will soon earn the rank of Eagle.   That is a huge accomplishment for our Troop, its leaders, and the boys themselves.  He and Brian Ward again stressed the importance of having active participation from parents to keep the external wheels turning so that the boys can learn the leadership and managerial skills to make the Troop function as it is.

All present enjoyed the encouraging news, the fellowship, the meal, and the prospect that our efforts will have a positive impact on ensuring that Scouting continues to prosper in Chowan County.  Jack Habit has brought to our attention that during our next meeting on April 25, 2017 at the Scout Cabin at 6pm, that we entertain the process of selecting a name for our group (perhaps an affiliation with NESA), that we select a Chairman to replace Jack, and that we select a support staff for facilitating our efforts.

A motion to adjourn passed at 7:45pm.