Frequently Asked Questions


My son got a patch at camp/Pack Meeting/etc. . Where should I put it?

What do I do with this pin that came with my son's award?

What are those neat colored ribbon thing the mothers are wearing around their necks?

What do I need to buy for my son?

What are less expensive options?

What meetings should I attend?

What is the Treat Bucket?

What do we do at Pack Meeting?

How does my son earn beads at Pack Meeting? What do they mean?

Why isn't my son advancing as fast as the others / Why isn't my son earning awards?

What are some ideas for scapbooks and other mementos?

How do you manage to combine 3 units (wards) together so well?


Q: My son got a patch at camp/Pack Meeting/etc.. Where should I put it?

A: Most of the award patch placement info can be found here. If it's not an award (example:  one brought home from Day Camp), you usually don't put it on a shirt. You can keep it on a patch blanket/vest, put in a scrapbook, etc. If it's a temporary patch, you may sew it on the shirt in the right place, or invest in a plastic badge holder from the Scout Store.


Q: What do I do with this pin that came with my son's award?

A: It's a pin for parents to display their son's achievement. You may wear it on any piece of clothing you want. But see the next question for a suggestion.


Q: What are those neat colored ribbon things that the mothers are wearing around their necks?

A: Those are lanyards that were sewn by our very own Lisa Owen. They are a great way to keep track of all those pins that you'll get with your son's awards. The Blue & Gold side is for putting the Cub Scout pins on, and the Olive & Red side is for when he becomes a Boy Scout. Feel free to wear them to any pack meeting, but especially one when your son gets a rank advancement! (It also takes some of the embarrassment of trying to pin it on mom's shirt modestly!) Click here for an explanation diagram. You'll receive one when your son gets his first rank advancement.


Q: What do I need to buy for my son?

A: All that you are required to do is to buy the official Cub Scout shirt and his handbook. Patches and just about everything else will be given to him at his first Pack Meeting. You may purchase other things (such as the socks, the hats, the official pants, etc.) if you wish, but do not feel obligated. For further uniform information, click here.


Q: What are less expensive options?

A: Remember that the only items you need to purchase are the uniform, handbooks, and cost of attending camp. Other things, such as official hats, t-shirts, belts, socks, and pants are not required. But here are some options to save money:

  • Purchase a used uniform shirt at DI, Savers, etc.
  • Recycle a used uniform shirt from a neighbor, friend, or family member
  • Use a previously used handbook
  • Print off the requirements and staple that together as a "handbook substitute"
  • Ask the bishop of your ward for assistance in paying for camp
  • Use a paint stick or yard stick to display beltloop awards at home instead of buying the official belt

Q: What meetings should I attend?

A: As the parent of a Cub Scout, we highly encourage you to attend every Pack Meeting with your son. Pack Meeting is for all members of the family. We sometimes even have extended family show up for special events. Also, as a parent, you are also entitled to attend any Committee Meeting and have some input on how things are done. See the Schedule page for times and places.


Q: What is the Treat Bucket?

A: After Pack Meetings, we like to have a little refreshment for everyone. The Treat Bucket is a way to let everyone participate in bringing the treats, just like the way you might if your son were on a little league baseball team. Sometime during the Pack Meeting, we usually ask for a volunteer to bring the next month's treat. We will usually include the monthly theme and a couple of ideas for you, but you can bring whatever you would like. With the number of boys we have, you will probably only get to do it about once a year or so.


Q: What do we do at Pack Meeting?

A: At Pack Meetings, we let the boys have fun by playing games and getting to show off their accomplishments. They also do jokes and skits, as well as participate in flag ceremonies. Pack Meeting is where the boys will get their various awards for passing off their requirements. We also have a totem that shows far the boys have gone in their achievements, and the boys get to add beads to their totems for things like attendance and having the proper uniform. 


Q: How does my son earn beads at Pack Meeting? What do they mean?

A: The beads and the Pack Doodle (the board they hang on) are to encourage the boys to come to Pack Meeting prepared. It's also a visual representation of how far along the Cub Scout trail they are. The beads hang from a hook labeled with the highest rank he has earned.  When he earns his Arrow of Light, the leather string will be attached to his arrow as an added decoration showing good attendance, etc. This is how they earn beads:

        Blue beads are for passing the monthly uniform inspection.
        Yellow beads are for being on time (i.e. present when the prayer is said).
        Green beads are for having a parent/grandparent/responsible family member present.
        White beads are for participating in the games that night.
        Orange Beads are for having a birthday.
        Purple Beads are for earning a new rank.
        The Pink and Sports beads are for special occasions.

Q: Why isn't my son advancing as fast as the others / Why isn't my son earning awards?

A: There are several reasons your son might not be advancing, but the most common one is that he is probably not attending Den Meetings as often as he should. The Den Leaders go to a lot of trouble to prepare the weekly activities for them that pass off requirements, but if your son doesn't go then he can't get credit for doing that activity. The answer to the next most common hindrance to advancement is to find out what requirements he needs to do at home. A requirement such as, "Cook your family breakfast" cannot be completed at Den Meeting for obvious reasons, and must be done at home. The other part to this question is that to get the awards, he must attend Pack Meeting, because that's where the awards are handed out.

To sum it up, attend Den Meetings, do some things at home, and go to Pack Meeting to receive the awards.

Q: What are some ideas for scrapbooks and other mementos?

A: One idea is to keep all of the little cards that most awards come attached to. It has the date he received it and the leaders' names on it. The best option for keeping these in good condition is to buy a couple sheets of baseball card pages. Also, you can save all of the extra and optional patches he earns and sew them onto a patch blanket. There are many creative ideas for what to do with his shirt, such as putting it in a display case, or putting all awards and patches earned on a large display board. A quick Google search will give you many more ideas than what we can include here. 


Q: How do you manage to combine 3 units (wards) together so well?

A: Even though we have 3 units, we pretend we are one unit and act as such, instead of taking turns with duties (like having Pack X run January's meetings and Pack Y runs February's). We feel the main reason combined units tend to fail is that when units take turns with duties it will almost certainly get to the point where one group thinks it's the other's turn and vice versa, so everyone shows up and nothing is planned/ready. If we pretend we're one unit and each of us has a duty each month then there's no dropping of the ball. The only part that is a little tricky is the money side of things. We have one unit (ward) act as the "agent" and reimburse the leaders for everything (awards, materials, other costs) while the other units pay $20 per quarter for every boy to the agent unit. This part takes someone who can remember to send the "bills" out and keep things straight.