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"A Jamboree like no other"


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#1 Eliza

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Posted 25 July 2013 - 02:07 PM

I have heard the phrase, "a Jamboree like no other." For those of us who have followed this Jamboree, but don't know much (well, anything) about previous ones, would anyone care to comment? What does make this one different?
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#2 Basementdweller

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Posted 25 July 2013 - 02:40 PM

This is the first one at the newest high adventure base Lots of first. But seriously it is the first one at the Summit scout reservation. They offered lots of new activities like whitewater rafting, and mountain boarding.... It is situated on the new river gorge and my sons picture look fantastic. Think Xgames sort of stuff going on BMX track, Skateboard park, mountain bike course and trails. It is a huge effort to make scouting relevant to the xbox generation. I attended AP Hill as a youth....It was not much different than my summer camp at home. Sons biggest complaint was the lines to do everything but his curriculum day. Missed out on the zip lines because of lines, didn't get the magic ticket for the big one. As of arrival last night he was not sure he would go to another one.
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#3 qwazse

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Posted 25 July 2013 - 03:11 PM

Well, some of this is hype built on a simple formula: youth + one location + scouting = fun. So, what's different? - Youth. For the first time, co-ed BSA units (i.e. Venturers) were a part of this Jamboree. This is no big deal in the rest of the world, in fact, co-ed units from other countries have attended for decades. But, the general thinking was that Jambo was never meant for venturers, so the was a "there's nothing interesting for you here" attitude. Now for a lot of crews, there's still nothing interesting! (Lot's of venturers occupy their time organizing their own weekend summits for their area every year.) But for many, it was an opportunity to connect with the BSA at large and learn where they fit in! - Location. As nice as AP Hill was, it was designed for training young men and women for the machines of war. Once every four years it got re-purposed. But then it snapped back to its original purpose once the last scouter left. This new location is literally a "home" for scouting. It's setting is intended to provide wilderness training year 'round. Thus, this jambo was more of an "open house" as opposed to "convention." - Scouting. Certain aspects of scouting got short-shrift at AP Hill. Some examples were aquatics, and some Venturing-specific activities. Also, taking a play from the world jamboree's book, a Day of Service was instituted. Each day, 1/5 of the participants went to serve the West-Virginian community. Before, barring some emergency, you were stuck on base for 10 days. The other gee-wiz stuff (big ticket activities, flashy shows, speeches, patch-trading), that was kinda expected. (There's always a gimmick. And long lines for it, too.) But I think the three items above represent true "tweaks" in the core formula that most of us have been talking about.
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#4 BadenP

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Posted 25 July 2013 - 03:27 PM

Well, some of this is hype built on a simple formula: youth + one location + scouting = fun.
So, what's different?

- Youth. For the first time, co-ed BSA units (i.e. Venturers) were a part of this Jamboree. This is no big deal in the rest of the world, in fact, co-ed units from other countries have attended for decades. But, the general thinking was that Jambo was never meant for venturers, so the was a "there's nothing interesting for you here" attitude. Now for a lot of crews, there's still nothing interesting! (Lot's of venturers occupy their time organizing their own weekend summits for their area every year.) But for many, it was an opportunity to connect with the BSA at large and learn where they fit in!

- Location. As nice as AP Hill was, it was designed for training young men and women for the machines of war. Once every four years it got re-purposed. But then it snapped back to its original purpose once the last scouter left. This new location is literally a "home" for scouting. It's setting is intended to provide wilderness training year 'round. Thus, this jambo was more of an "open house" as opposed to "convention."

- Scouting. Certain aspects of scouting got short-shrift at AP Hill. Some examples were aquatics, and some Venturing-specific activities. Also, taking a play from the world jamboree's book, a Day of Service was instituted. Each day, 1/5 of the participants went to serve the West-Virginian community. Before, barring some emergency, you were stuck on base for 10 days.

The other gee-wiz stuff (big ticket activities, flashy shows, speeches, patch-trading), that was kinda expected. (There's always a gimmick. And long lines for it, too.) But I think the three items above represent true "tweaks" in the core formula that most of us have been talking about.

qwazse, Our crew after seeing the activities available at the Summit want to do a trip there next summer. From what I could see on BSA.org it looks like a fantastic facility with a lot of diverse outdoor activities. What always surprises me is just how little publicity the Jamboree gets on the National news, especially with the new site I guess they are too busy following Kim Kardassian and Snooky's new look. The Summit looks like fun and if our crew goes I am going to find a way to join them, especially for the whitewater kayaking and the big zipline.
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#5 Basementdweller

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Posted 25 July 2013 - 03:57 PM

Well, some of this is hype built on a simple formula: youth + one location + scouting = fun.
So, what's different?

- Youth. For the first time, co-ed BSA units (i.e. Venturers) were a part of this Jamboree. This is no big deal in the rest of the world, in fact, co-ed units from other countries have attended for decades. But, the general thinking was that Jambo was never meant for venturers, so the was a "there's nothing interesting for you here" attitude. Now for a lot of crews, there's still nothing interesting! (Lot's of venturers occupy their time organizing their own weekend summits for their area every year.) But for many, it was an opportunity to connect with the BSA at large and learn where they fit in!

- Location. As nice as AP Hill was, it was designed for training young men and women for the machines of war. Once every four years it got re-purposed. But then it snapped back to its original purpose once the last scouter left. This new location is literally a "home" for scouting. It's setting is intended to provide wilderness training year 'round. Thus, this jambo was more of an "open house" as opposed to "convention."

- Scouting. Certain aspects of scouting got short-shrift at AP Hill. Some examples were aquatics, and some Venturing-specific activities. Also, taking a play from the world jamboree's book, a Day of Service was instituted. Each day, 1/5 of the participants went to serve the West-Virginian community. Before, barring some emergency, you were stuck on base for 10 days.

The other gee-wiz stuff (big ticket activities, flashy shows, speeches, patch-trading), that was kinda expected. (There's always a gimmick. And long lines for it, too.) But I think the three items above represent true "tweaks" in the core formula that most of us have been talking about.

Cardio Cardio Cardio

The SM and ASM returning said the hiking was no joke so be warned.
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#6 Eliza

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Posted 25 July 2013 - 06:06 PM

Thank you! I realized that the girls were a new addition, but I had not known that it was the first Jambo for Venturers. And the pictures of the aquatic facilities looked wonderful. So, the Day of Service is new also -- knowing it comes from the World Jamboree puts it in a better light. I was surprised, too, not to see more in the news about the Jamboree; most mainstream articles I saw focussed on weight limits. Sad. Thanks again!
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#7 qwazse

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Posted 25 July 2013 - 09:13 PM

Well, some of this is hype built on a simple formula: youth + one location + scouting = fun.
So, what's different?

- Youth. For the first time, co-ed BSA units (i.e. Venturers) were a part of this Jamboree. This is no big deal in the rest of the world, in fact, co-ed units from other countries have attended for decades. But, the general thinking was that Jambo was never meant for venturers, so the was a "there's nothing interesting for you here" attitude. Now for a lot of crews, there's still nothing interesting! (Lot's of venturers occupy their time organizing their own weekend summits for their area every year.) But for many, it was an opportunity to connect with the BSA at large and learn where they fit in!

- Location. As nice as AP Hill was, it was designed for training young men and women for the machines of war. Once every four years it got re-purposed. But then it snapped back to its original purpose once the last scouter left. This new location is literally a "home" for scouting. It's setting is intended to provide wilderness training year 'round. Thus, this jambo was more of an "open house" as opposed to "convention."

- Scouting. Certain aspects of scouting got short-shrift at AP Hill. Some examples were aquatics, and some Venturing-specific activities. Also, taking a play from the world jamboree's book, a Day of Service was instituted. Each day, 1/5 of the participants went to serve the West-Virginian community. Before, barring some emergency, you were stuck on base for 10 days.

The other gee-wiz stuff (big ticket activities, flashy shows, speeches, patch-trading), that was kinda expected. (There's always a gimmick. And long lines for it, too.) But I think the three items above represent true "tweaks" in the core formula that most of us have been talking about.

New mountainous adventure base ... highest attendance of female BSA members ever ,,, boys pay to serve ...

Those aren't the stuff of headliness.

We hate fat kids ..., now that's the kinda news my in-laws will repeat.

BP and BD. A few of my buddies put their time and talent into this facility. I suspect we'll love it. Lot's of us around here don't know of any camp that isn't on a hillside, so we kind of take your heart pounding through your chest for granted. So yes, get in shape just like you would for Philmont.
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#8 Kahuna

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Posted 26 July 2013 - 10:42 AM

Yep! Everybody in the civilian world asked me about the weight issue. There's a reason it's an issue, but the media doesn't want to deal with that. Easier to say "discrimination again."
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#9 blw2

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Posted 26 July 2013 - 02:14 PM

This is the first one at the newest high adventure base
Sons biggest complaint was the lines to do everything but his curriculum day. Missed out on the zip lines because of lines, didn't get the magic ticket for the big one. As of arrival last night he was not sure he would go to another one.


I can imagine that stuff is a big disappointment. I know even on the cub level the boys are romanced by the idea of getting to shoot bb's and archery at cuboree.
They get there, and what do they do..... walk walk walk, wait wait wait, ushered through a bunch of stuff that doesn't overly interest them..... then they get to the range..... stand in line..... wait some more.... listen to some long winded safety briefing.... wait some more.... then after all of that..... they are lucky if the get 4 minutes of shooting with a bunch of broken down arrows that won't even nock in the bow!
Talk about a let down!

I know I would be bummed if I travelled all that way and didn't even get to do the "big zip line" even once!
You gotta score a magic ticket???!!! If that was billed as a highlight every boy there should have gotten at least several turns on that thing or more!



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#10 SSScout

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Posted 03 August 2013 - 02:51 PM

Oh, it was an experiment for sure, and one that went surprisingly well, I thought. It was meant to be more of a CAMP and less of a SHOW. Hence the duffles to carry ones gear to the Troop campsite, and the denial of BIG camp gateways. Made a real difference. A Troop could realistically unload their bus, hike to their assigned site, and with their Commissioners guidance be set up and cooking lunch (or dinner) in an hour or two. max. And it was aerobic, for sure. From A camp to the Barrels (shooting ranges)1.5 hours walk the first time. Uphill. Both ways. Garden Ground: from D camp, similar time, hiking THRU A camp. Canopy Tour, 30 minutes from A camp, thru B camp. Food: I just got the email staff survey to fill out, and it makes no mention of basecamp subcamp staff eating with troops, I had to insert that in my comments. Survey assumed (I think) all staff lived in Ecamp and ate in the BIIIIG mess tent. The food there was surprisingly good and hot and plentiful. In conversation with the messtent folks, the professionals worked well with all the foodie volunteers. It was the take along lunches that most folks found fault with. At breakfast, you made up a bag of "shelf stable" packets of gummy bears and trail mix granola, the banana chips and pineapple chips and "etc.". When they had the bumblebee tuna or BBQ chicken cans those were appreciated. Crystal lite mix to tasty up your water bottle. Any left over perishables were tossed. Back in A4 camp, I helped sort out the left overs for food pantry donations. Never saw so many big bags of cornflakes and "crispy rice". And surprise! Dozens of bottles of catsup. Pantry picked up every other day. When the busses were being loaded on the last day , we parceled out the left over snack food. Being sympathetic to the bus driver, I eliminated the gooey, messy stuff (peanut butter, jelly packets) .The Scouts took every cracker, cookie, apple pie, and fruit strip but pointedly left the trailmix bags. They had had enough of them! Camp A4 donated three boxes (the Summit Boxes) of trailmix granola. packets.
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#11 Basementdweller

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Posted 11 August 2013 - 07:39 PM

This is the first one at the newest high adventure base
Sons biggest complaint was the lines to do everything but his curriculum day. Missed out on the zip lines because of lines, didn't get the magic ticket for the big one. As of arrival last night he was not sure he would go to another one.


I can imagine that stuff is a big disappointment. I know even on the cub level the boys are romanced by the idea of getting to shoot bb's and archery at cuboree.
They get there, and what do they do..... walk walk walk, wait wait wait, ushered through a bunch of stuff that doesn't overly interest them..... then they get to the range..... stand in line..... wait some more.... listen to some long winded safety briefing.... wait some more.... then after all of that..... they are lucky if the get 4 minutes of shooting with a bunch of broken down arrows that won't even nock in the bow!
Talk about a let down!

I know I would be bummed if I travelled all that way and didn't even get to do the "big zip line" even once!
You gotta score a magic ticket???!!! If that was billed as a highlight every boy there should have gotten at least several turns on that thing or more!


you didn't spend thousands of dollars to send your scout to the cuboree.
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#12 Scouter99

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Posted 12 August 2013 - 01:56 PM

Well, some of this is hype built on a simple formula: youth + one location + scouting = fun.
So, what's different?

- Youth. For the first time, co-ed BSA units (i.e. Venturers) were a part of this Jamboree. This is no big deal in the rest of the world, in fact, co-ed units from other countries have attended for decades. But, the general thinking was that Jambo was never meant for venturers, so the was a "there's nothing interesting for you here" attitude. Now for a lot of crews, there's still nothing interesting! (Lot's of venturers occupy their time organizing their own weekend summits for their area every year.) But for many, it was an opportunity to connect with the BSA at large and learn where they fit in!

- Location. As nice as AP Hill was, it was designed for training young men and women for the machines of war. Once every four years it got re-purposed. But then it snapped back to its original purpose once the last scouter left. This new location is literally a "home" for scouting. It's setting is intended to provide wilderness training year 'round. Thus, this jambo was more of an "open house" as opposed to "convention."

- Scouting. Certain aspects of scouting got short-shrift at AP Hill. Some examples were aquatics, and some Venturing-specific activities. Also, taking a play from the world jamboree's book, a Day of Service was instituted. Each day, 1/5 of the participants went to serve the West-Virginian community. Before, barring some emergency, you were stuck on base for 10 days.

The other gee-wiz stuff (big ticket activities, flashy shows, speeches, patch-trading), that was kinda expected. (There's always a gimmick. And long lines for it, too.) But I think the three items above represent true "tweaks" in the core formula that most of us have been talking about.

BP, I was also interested in the adventure programs; cost turned me off. There are plenty of commercial outfits on the New River that offer the same whitewater adventure for hundreds less. If the whitewater is that inflated, I'm sure the others are, too.

#13 Tokala

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Posted 14 August 2013 - 02:57 PM

Definitely a different experience than AP Hill. I noticed the one day out of the 16 I was there and able to explore that water filling stations were few and far between. Seemed a major omission in the infrastructure plan. In the area where the OA headquarters were, we had all OA staff and all whitewater participants with NO water nearby which was approximately 3000 people. I had to use a 2-seater gator to run to D, E or F subcamp and fill 5-gallon igloos. The first day of whitewater program I filled 65 5-gallon igloos in 3 hours. I can't imagine how I could have accomplished this without the vehicle which we basically had to "steal" because the Jamboreedidn't feel that we needed a vehicle. The staff dining was very nice with very good breakfast and supper choices and quantity. At times the dining hall staff was rude and inconsiderate.Lunch left much to be desired. Limiting folks to 1 per box may have helped with counts, but there was always food left and then it was hoarded and guarded like it was gold. The frozen turkey sandwich the night of the closing show left staff with no alternatives for food except to stand in line for 2 hours at the Chat N' Chew toget something to eat. I don't see where it was that difficult to plan when to take the food out of the freezer and start to bring it to edible temperature. The meal had always been planned to be a box dinner. What I saw of the program areas showed that they definitely went "all in" on building areas for the Scouts to use. Sadly, the long walks/hike, long waits and the weather ruined many opportunities for the Scouts to actually use them. The site engineers failed at drainage. Everything was mud and it took days for it to dry out. The OA headquarters area remained mud for the entire Jamboree. There was not enough straw, mulch, or gravel to get us out of the mud. It eventually began to grow algae and the biting flies loved it!
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#14 JoeBob

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Posted 19 August 2013 - 09:29 AM

For those of us who were not there:


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#15 skeptic

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Posted 19 August 2013 - 09:54 AM

For those of us who were not there:

Thanks JoeBob; the positive always outweighs the negative.
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#16 Woapalanne

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 03:23 PM

For those of us who were not there:

Great video.
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