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TOP CLOUDS: 1-4-15


Please don’t keep us a secret.

With all the new parents coming into our scouting family, please don’t keep Smoke Signals, and the Apache District Webpage a secret.  We welcome new subscribers and it is easy to do.  Also please share our Apache District Website.


New Happy New Year


On behalf of the entire Apache District Committee, we wish our scouting family a happy, healthy, and safe New Year.   Please join us as we celebrate Mecklenburg County Council’s 100th Anniversary.  Look for postings on the Mecklenburg County Council’s webpage.



New District Awards Banquet A Tremendous Success


The Apache District Awards Banquet was a tremendous success.  More than 125 scouters attended, and the food (catered by Scouter Doug Bell’s restaurant, The Roasting Company) was absolutely delicious. In addition to remarks by Dr. Stuart Tucker, our District Chairman on the state of our district, which is excellent, Mark Turner, our Council Executive gave a few brief comments on the state of our council:  “Thanks to a lot of hard work and so many great volunteers and staff, Mecklenburg County Council leads BSA’s southern region.  However, our job is not over… Our job is to deliver the Promise of Scouting to our next generation”.    



New Congratulations to our 2014 Award Winners


District Award of Merit:  Tommy Anderson – Troop 167, Flint McNaughton - Troop 116, Bob Branan - Troop 11, and Tony Roux – Troop 24  

Cub Scout Leader of the Year:  Tim Hall – Pack 8

Boy Scout Leader of the Year:  Gene Gazda - Troop 165

Commissioner of the Year:  Joanne White

Distinguished Commissioner - John McLean

Special Unit Service Award:  James and Mary Smith - Troop and Pack 356



New Don’t wait, make your final plans now for Scouting for Food - Bag Pick Up at the January Roundtable


Don’t forget to send a representative of your unit to this month’s roundtable to pick up your Scouting For Food bags.  There is still time to choose a collection area.  If by chance you cannot pick your bags at roundtable, you can pick them up at the Loaves & Fishes Warehouse in Fordham Park, 648 B Griffith Rd.  Charlotte, NC 28217.

Mon-Fri 8:30 – 4:30


There have been some changes this year, be sure to review the Scouting For Food 2015 Leaders Guide.  You can download it the council webpage



New Merit Badge Opportunities

Discovery Place is offering Electricity, Chemistry, and Electronics Merit Badge Courses on Saturday and Sunday, January 17-18, 2015. For further details, please visit Apache District’s Merit Badge Event website For more information contact Stuart Tucker at  



New Scouting For Food Apache District

Unit Leaders and Committee Members our District Scouting for Food Chairman is Phil Adams.  Phil is looking forward to another outstanding Scouting for Food Drive. This is that one time of year where we can all make a difference in the quality of life for the people in need of food. Please make sure that your unit has made plans to be part of this very important Scouting Project that provides food for the Loaves and Fishes organization to help feed the hungry during the winter months in Mecklenburg County. So put on your calendar January 8, 2015 Apache District Roundtable Providence United Methodist Church 7:30PM. This is where Phil’s committee and the OA help distribute bags to units for the Scouting for Food Drive. All units should be prepared to pick up and transport their Scouting for Food bags (both for neighborhood delivery and enough for church distribution). The bags come in bundles of 300. (Additional bags will be available at the Loaves and Fishes warehouse). Also, the week of January 31 is Neighborhood distribution –Please distribute bags to your assigned neighborhoods (five to seven days before the Scouting for Food Pick up day.) The big day is Saturday February 7th, 2015 – All units collect food from assigned neighborhoods and deliver to one of the Scouting for Food collection sites for sorting. Sunday February 1- Distribute bags to members of your congregation. Scout Sunday February 8th Gather the congregational food donations and take to a designated site. We would like to extend a special thank you to Phil Adams and his committee Apache OA Chapter and Tim Morgan who served as our overall Council Scouting for Food chairman. Contact John Bittinger at for more information.



Story Ideas needed

Each year the media is looking for a new story angle. If you have any ideas, please contact Bill Kalbas at

Some ideas include:

Would your unit like to have a reporter follow you from bag distribution to collection?

A new unit that is doing Scouting for Food for the first time.

A scout whose family may have been helped by Loaves & Fishes.

We also would like to know if you are having any major events such as “stapling event.”


Urgent need for potential Eagle Projects

President James K. Polk Historic Site

With the renovation of the museum completed, now is a great opportunity to complete an Eagle Project at the birthplace of the 11th President of the United States. There are several projects that need to be done. For further details, please contact Robert Dreher (704) 889-7145. The site is located at

12031 Lancaster Hwy, Pineville, NC 28134.

Hemby Center-Siskey YMCA

The Siskey YMCA’s Hemby Program Center, located off Kuykendahl Road in south Charlotte has an urgent need to have Eagle Projects completed. The Hemby Program Center is located at 9760 Happy Valley Drive in Charlotte. It is a 21-acre site housing a Preschool, Afterschool Program and Eagle Rock Day Camp.

Looking for potential Eagle Service Projects? Check out this brand new one to help senior citizens and persons with disabilities, read more at “Around the Campfire”



Cold Weather Camping Training

On January 10, 2015, at 8:30 am, Catawba Lodge, Order of the Arrow will offer Cold Weather Camping training at CPCC’s Levine Campus. During this training Scouts, regardless of age and whether or not they are in the Order of the Arrow, can learn skills that will help them camp during cold weather. Classes being taught include Clothing, First Aid, Cooking, Shelter, Leave No Trace, and Sleeping and are being taught by some of the best Arrowmen the lodge has to offer. There is no pre-registration or fee for this training, but Scouts should arrive by 8:30 AM to register the morning of January 10th and classes will start promptly at 9:00 AM and end at Noon. For more information on the Order of the Arrow Catawba Lodge, please visit their website at

On the same date and at the same location, the Mecklenburg County Council Training Committee will provide several other training courses for Adult Leaders. For further details, please visit the Mecklenburg County Council’s training page.


Don’t know who is who on the Apache District Committee?

We have updated our District Committee website. You will also find several vacancies. Interested in helping? Contact our District Chairman, Dr. Stuart Tucker. Click here to view committee and openings.



Recharter Change to March


Apache District is encouraging all units move to a March recharter cycle.  Rechartering a January unit is still due in the Scout Office prior to the end of January.  You will just need to pay for 14 months registration and Boys’ Life.  Then moving forward your unit should always charter in March. Cost for your Scouts and Leaders will be $28 for registration and $14 for Boys’ Life.  Make sure your unit leadership goes on-line and takes care of updating things for the charter.  The charter fee is $40 for the unit.  The accidental and sickness insurance is still $1 per participant.  Once the on-line portion is complete, an approval from your organization’s executive officer must sign the charter agreement and the on-line charter paperwork.  If you have questions, your Unit Commissioner will be a great resource.  We will have a rechartering party at Roundtable on Thursday, January 8th from 7pm-8:30pm for you to turn in your final charter documents.  We will have pizza at the Cracker Barrel, too…yummy!!


World Scout Jamboree


Southern Region has 75 Scouts signed up. There is no maximum limit on the number of Scouts that can attend. Recruitment of youth is a high priority. There are also opportunities for youth and adults to attend as staff, officially, IST (International Service Team).

Limited BSA Scholarships may be available. For past World Jamborees, Scouts have helped to earn their own way with jobs at summer camp, fundraisers like pancake or spaghetti suppers, or sometimes grants from service clubs like the Lions Club, Rotary, Kiwanis, or Knights of Columbus.

USA troops will definitely be touring some in Japan, either before or after the Jamboree. The tour time will be 2 – 2.5 days. The tour agenda is pending. All tour sites will be youth friendly. Flights will be into Narita. Troops will take a bullet train from Tokyo to Kirara-hama, Yamaguchi City to get to the Jamboree.

Individual troop patches will be allowed this time, a change from 2011.

The BSA Southern Region is working to have a strong representation at the 23rd World Scout Jamboree (WSJ) in 2015. Early planning and preparation will be important for Scouts, families, and leaders to achieving that goal.

The recruitment of BSA youth participants has begun in earnest. All youth must be 14 to 17 years old. Youth birthdays must fall between July 27, 1997 and July 28, 2001 to be eligible. Boy Scouts and Venturers (male and female) may attend.

The cost for unit participants is $5,750. This includes airfare, duffel bag, day pack, and jamboree fees. The airfare is from the home airport of the participant.

More information about the WSJ is available at these sites:

The BSA registration web site is now open at

If you know of Scouts or Venturers who might be interested in learning more about a WSJ or attending the WSJ, please ask parents or leaders to check out the websites and/or contact Stuart Tucker, adult volunteer from Charlotte, by email at


New Cooking Merit Badge Requirement Changes


Scouts beginning work on the Cooking merit badge on or after January 1, 2015 must use the new requirements introduced in late 2013. Any Scout who began work on the Cooking merit badge prior to January 1 using the old requirements may continue to use those requirements until he finishes the badge. For questions, see Guide to Advancement, topic, “What To Do When Requirements Change.” For more information contact Joel Moser at




New 100 Years. A Century


In 2015, the Mecklenburg County Council will celebrate 100 years of scouting!  In recognition of our 100th Anniversary, we are providing a once in a lifetime program that we wish EVERY  Scout and Scouter in Mecklenburg County Council to take part.  We have a special “Star” pocket patch which can be completed by adding activity rockers by participating in Council and District events and activities.  Our 100th Anniversary celebration will highlight programs, events, camping, community service, leadership, and training that we offer throughout the year. Deadline to get your patches for $3 each is January 10, 2015. On January 11, 2015, the price goes to $5 plus tax.  Order your units’ patches NOW. Click here for more information.


This special year began with the Good Scout Breakfast (December 4, 2014) - and it will end with a special birthday recognition in November 2015. The original Mecklenburg County Council Charter was granted on November 20, 1915.

The celebration will highlight our community service, leadership and training Scouting offers throughout the year.

Special historical "DID YOU KNOW" facts will be distributed at our monthly district Roundtables which will be incorporated into the weekly unit meetings to help remind each Scout of this historical year.

The Steering Committee has adopted special new logos for 2015. You will see a 100th Anniversary 'star' patch which we hope EVERY Scout and Scouter will have, one which will be completed by adding activity rockers through Scouting events and activities throughout the year. Additionally, we have coordinated the Friends of Scouting campaign to highlight this anniversary year.

Contact Alan Keiger with questions:


Camp Card Fundraising Opportunity


Have a representative from your unit attend our Camp Card kickoff meeting on Wednesday, February 25th – 6:30pm at the Scout Office.  This is a great way for your boys to earn money to go to camp.  The discount cards sale for $5 each.  Everybody likes to save money and it teaches your youth salesmanship!  Units will qualify for 50% commission on sales if the guidelines are followed and Scouts can earn scholarship dollars to go to camp this summer.  Each unit wanting to participate should submit a camp card commitment form to letting him know how many cards you are wanting in sell.  The camp cards will be ready for pickup at our kickoff.  For more information go to; then click Funding; Camp Card


Scout Sunday


Unit leaders, please make an effort to participate in Scout Sunday.  The date is Sunday, February 8th.   This is a great opportunity to show your reverence.  Wear your Class “A” uniform and thank your charter organization for having Scouting.


New Questions about the new Cub Scout program changes?

On January 10th, our annual OA Winter Training and Scout Leader Training will take place at the CPCC-Levine Campus in Matthews.  We are excited to announce that Chuck Ezell, Department Manager Regional Operations for the BSA, will be with us to talk about changes that are coming to the Cub Scout Program in 2015 and the Boy Scout Program in 2016.  If you have any questions about these upcoming changes, here’s your chance to ask an expert involved in these changes. Contact Alan Keiger with questions:


The Cub Scout Angle New Adventure Program Implementation: Webelos Leaders, Start Planning Now

The biggest changes to Cub Scouting in a generation are scheduled to take place in June 2015. Although there will be changes in the way advancement is organized to simplify the program for leaders, the focus for boys will still be on fun, adventure, and learning by doing. For details, see

For most dens, the change will be simple—boys begin using a new handbook as they move to the next rank. For dens currently in their first year of the Webelos Scout program, however, there will be options as the boys move into the second year of the program.

Option 1. Boys who earn their Webelos rank by June 1, 2015 may continue using the current handbook and complete the Arrow of Light requirements as stated there. However, they must finish all requirements for the Arrow of Light by June 1, 2016. For elective activities beyond the Arrow of Light requirements, boys may choose to work on additional activity badges—or, after June 1, 2015, some of the new adventure pins. The new requirements are posted at

Option 2. Beginning June 1, 2015, boys may begin using the new Webelos Handbook with new Arrow of Light requirements. The new requirements call for boys to complete four specific “adventures” (Building a Better World, Camper, Faith in Action, and Scouting Adventure) plus three additional adventures of their choice. For the transition year only, current Webelos activity badges earned beyond the three counted for the Webelos rank (Fitness, Citizen, and one more) may substitute for the “three additional” adventure pins.



New Time to Recharter our District Committee and Commissioner's in Apache District for 2015


Now is the time to pay for your 2015 BSA membership registration.  Annual cost is $25 and can be paid at the front desk of the Scout Office.  You may want to check our hours the week of Christmas and the New Year’s before coming.  We have regular hours next week.  If you pay your registration with your unit, then you don’t have to pay now, just with your unit at recharter time.  Thanks for your service to Scouting!! For more information contact John Crapster at


Key Apache District Dates:


Adult Leader Roundtables

All adult leaders should attend Roundtable at Providence United Methodist Church starting at 7:30pm on the following dates: January 8, February 12, and March 12. Contact Al Nedrich, our District Roundtable Commissioner, if you have any questions or have an agenda item at


Apache District Spring Cuboree

The Apache District Spring Cuboree will be held at Camp Grimes, the weekend of April 17-19.  This Spring’s theme will be:  All About That Bass!  Fun with Music!  For further details visit the Apache Spring Cuboree page for flyer and registration information. For further information please contact Natalie Kosakowski our chairman at


Apache District Day Camp

Day Camp offers Cub Scouts and Webelos the opportunity to experience exciting camp activities including swimming, boating, crafts, hiking, fishing, archery and so much more!


Please mark your calendars! Camp is scheduled for June 22-26, 2015. Check the website for more information in January 2015


Please contact Monica Zeleznik, Day Camp director at if you are interested in volunteering at one of the program stations or if you have any questions at all.


For further details please visit the Apache District Day Camp page at


Apache Web Site Helps:


Click here to view more resources and news




Cold Weather Training, which will be held Saturday, January 10th @ CPCC Levine Campus needs Arrowmen for training classes.  Positions to be filled are as follows:

Leave No Trace:                     1 Youth

Sleeping in the Cold:                2 Youth, 1 Adult


Please contact Chapter Chief - Chalmers Middleton to volunteer.


Elections area starting in December 1!  Please anticipate scheduling calls from our Vice-Chapter Chief - Jon Unferth.  Those interested in helping with unit elections should contact Jon at


Next year, Catawba Lodge is hosting the Dixie Fellowship on the 100th Anniversary of the Order of the Arrow. The Planning committee would like all the help we can get, so if you would like to join a committee, please email the Chairman and he will give you all the information on how you can help. Click HERE for a list of available committees.


Click HERE for more Lodge information.


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