Troop 225 Overview
Troop 225 is chartered through the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), the Heart of America Council (covers parts of Missouri and Kansas), and the Red-Tailed Hawk District (East side of Olathe). Our chartered organization is College Church of the Nazarene in Olathe, KS. The Troop is privileged and proud to have strong support from our chartered organization that is supportive of the aims and objectives of Boy Scouting. The Church provides a dedicated area for the Troop which includes meeting and storage spaces and provides many resources including access to the church vans and buses and other facilities for meetings and events.
Troop 225 was started in 1997 with only five boys. We advanced our first two Eagle Scouts in 2002 and have added to that list steadily (see our Eagle Scout List). Our Troop uses the patrol method. A patrol is the key unit in scouting and typically consists of 6 to 8 scouts who normally camp together, plan together, and work together as a team on their activities and advancements. Working in patrols gives young scouts the chance to learn to work with and learn from others and to form fast friendships and relationships. We have both age-similar and mixed-age patrols. Generally the new boys form a new-boy patrol(s) for several months under the instruction of our New Scout Leader and then join a mixed-age patrol after that. Boys typically tent with others of similar age on campouts.
Our troop also has a Venture Patrol, which is a special high adventure patrol for our older and more experienced Scouts. This group has gone to BSA camps such as Philmont in New Mexico, Okpik in Minnesota, and Sea Base in Florida. Membership in the Venture Patrol is limited based upon defined requirements.
We meet at College Church of the Nazarene (2020 E. Sheridan, Olathe, KS 66062) in basement of Uphaus Hall right off of the Vanderpool lobby. We meet every Monday night from 7 to 8:30 PM even if there is no school with the exception of major holidays. Our meetings are open and parents are welcome to attend. The meetings are developed around a monthly theme that leads to a campout where we practice the skills we've been learning that month. Our meetings typically start with announcements followed by skills instructional time and patrol time that includes campout planning and preparation. About four times a year there will be a Court of Honor instead of the regular Troop meeting. Parents and other family are encouraged to come see our boys receive their rank advancements, merit badges, and other recognitions.
As a boy-run Troop, our scouts elect their own leadership, starting with the Senior Patrol Leader (SPL), Assistant Senior Patrol Leaders (ASPL), Patrol Leaders (PL’s), and other key positions including the Chaplain, Quartermaster, Scribe, Historian, Webmaster, etc. The SPL, ASPL’s, and PL’s make up the Patrol Leaders Council (PLC) which meets weekly before the Troop meeting to plan our monthly themes, outings, and events. One of the great things about a smaller troop is that there are ample opportunities for Scouts to develop and show their abilities as leaders that would simply not occur in a larger Troop. New Scouts first learn to lead by learning to follow and in time take on leadership positions.
Adult leaders function as advisors and ensure the safety and appropriateness of activities planned for the Troop. Accordingly, the troop has several adult leadership positions (see the Adult Leaders list). For our troop to be successful, it takes several adults to be involved with the troop. This not only includes filling leadership positions but also includes going on campouts and participating in troop events. Parental involvement is essential to the scouts’ and Troop’s success. Please let the Scoutmaster or Committee Chair know if you would like to be involved.
Scouts are to come to Troop meetings in Class A uniform except between Memorial Day and Labor Day (summer) or the Troop meeting after a campout (if the Scout attended the campout) in which Class B can be worn. Additionally, the Troop travels to campouts in Class A uniform.
Scout Behavior Expectations
We expect a Scout to conduct himself according to the Scout Motto, Slogan, Oath, Law, and the Outdoor Code, during Scout events and other public outings. Being a Scout puts a boy in a certain light and entails expectations. The term “On my honor…” says that the boy puts his honor on the line as people evaluate his behavior, dependability, and responsibility.
Camping & Other Programs
We maintain a 12-month camping program as planned by our boy lead Patrol Leaders’ Council. We camp once a month at Troop campouts, at district activities, or at long term summer camp. We also try to combine camping with other fun outdoor activities. Campouts are one to two nights. We typically leave College Church of the Nazarene early Friday evening and return either on Saturday afternoon/evening or Sunday afternoon. The Patrol Leaders’ Council also may plan some more “high adventure” campouts that may involve longer distance travel. The Troop provides tents, patrol boxes, cooking and other camping equipment. Scouts are expected to provide their own sleeping bag, ground pad, water bottle, mess kit, toiletries, and appropriate clothing.
Our Troop attends a 10-day long term summer camp at the H. Roe Bartle Scout Reservation near Iconium, MO (south of Clinton, MO near the Truman Lake) every summer normally in July. This 7,000 acre facility is one of the premier long term camps in the U.S. and offers unparalleled opportunities for Scout advancement through many merit badge classes and rank requirements. Snorkeling, sailing, archery, astronomy, geology, and rifle shooting are some of the offerings. Hiking opportunities also abound.
The Troop also has an extensive bead and Knotmaster (knot skills) programs. Our Knotmaster program encourages Scouts to advance through a series of levels of knot mastery, each marked by a differently colored rope. We periodically take a few minutes of meeting time to learn a new knot, to practice the old ones, and to allow Scouts to test for a higher level.
Health & Safety
The leadership of the Troop is trained and will follow BSA guidelines for events as documented in The Guide to Safe Scouting. The BSA clearly defines what activities are acceptable for Boy Scouts, and what procedures must be followed for participating in these events. Health forms are required of all participants (Scouts and adults) on any outing. The Emergency Contact Form for all Scouts will be used by the Troop to aid in contacting you and taking action in emergency circumstances. The Troop also requires completion of the Authorization for Administration of Medications Form for all Scouts. These forms must be updated annually. Our Health and Safety Coordinator maintains these forms and carries them on outings. Finally, for the health and safety of our Scouts, adults attending outings will be required to have completed certain levels of training.
Our Troop functions under a well-defined Troop structure. Our Troop Committee develops policy for the Troop and oversees the program. Our Scoutmaster Team helps our boy leadership plan the program and with the help of the Patrol Coaches, helps ensure the safety and effectiveness of its implementation. But the success of the Troop does not hinge solely on these two groups. There are many roles that must be filled by parent volunteers such as fundraising, outing arrangements and transportation, food, and lots more. The Troop needs parents who are willing to get involved and make the Scouting program a family program. Especially important is parents’ attendance at all Courts of Honor. This allows the Troop leaders to get to know the parents and establishes good communication as well as provides the opportunity to show the parents’ encouragement and support for the Scouts in our Troop.
That said, we also ask that parents give their Scout some room to grow. We’ve found that to encourage independence and responsibility, Scouts must be given leadership challenges, opportunities to learn from mistakes and grow from them, and time to develop a sense of team with his peers in the Troop, away from constant parental supervision. Generally a Scout will not experience his maximum potential for personal growth if the parents are there constantly supervising his every move.
Membership in the Troop is open to all appropriate-aged boys (11 year old or completed 5th grade or who have received their Arrow of Light) who are willing to subscribe to the aims and objectives of Scouting including its Declaration of Religious Principles and are willing to abide by the Scout Oath and Scout Law. Prior participation in Cub Scouts is not required. Prospective recruits and their parents as well as Webelos Den Leaders are welcome to come to a meeting to check out the troop and to meet scout and adult leaders and are welcome to join us on designated campouts to try out the troop. Please contact our Scoutmaster or Webelos Transition Coordinator to arrange your visit (see the Contact Our Troop page). Additionally, see the New Scouts Joining Troop page for additional information about our troop and about transitioning to Boy Scouting.
The Troop also conducts fundraisers to support the Troop’s operations (camping equipment, gas, propane, etc.). We have two primary annual fundraisers. In February, we have a chili supper and silent auction at College Church of the Nazarene. In September, we have a booth at Old Settlers in downtown Olathe. Scouts and parents are expected to prepare for and work at these fundraisers.
We want scouting to be affordable, but there are some costs that cannot be escaped. Registration fees are set annually by our Troop Committee. These fees currently are $65 annually for each scout and cover BSA registration and insurance fees, Boys’ Life subscription costs, and other expected expenses such as rank awards, merit badges, beads, and other recognition items for the year. Some outings may have other costs, primarily food or fees imposed by the facility and will depend upon the length and nature of the outing as well as the menu selected by each patrol. These costs are deducted from the each scout’s scout account maintained by the troop Treasurer. Scouts can put money in their scout account and will have opportunities to participate in fundraisers to earn money for their scout account (e.g., rib sales) to earn their own way in our Troop. A scout can use money in their scout account for registration fees and personal camping equipment in addition to these camping costs.