The purpose of this FAQ page is to try to answer many of the questions that are commonly asked by parents and boys concerning the Scouting program and Troop 62 in particular. Questions are grouped into six sections:
Getting Started in Scouts
I want to join scouts... what do I need to do?
...what are the expectations?
Joining Troop 62 is pretty easy:
 There is an age requirement — boys must either be 11 years old, or have received the Cub Scout Arrow of Light Award.
 Ask one of our adult leaders for a "Boy Scout Application." After completing the Application (don't worry, it's short), return it to the Scoutmaster with a check for the annual fee.
 Participate in as many Troop activities as you can. These include weekly troop meetings, camping trips, community service projects, and summer camp.
Expectations / Commitment
Scouts can progress through the program at their own pace. The BSA allows boys to be in Boy Scouts until their 18th birthday. Our Troop expects each scout to do their best to follow the 12 points of the Scout Law. Beyond this basic expectation, achievement and rank advancement is up to the individual scout. We meet regularly with each scout to discuss their progress and help them set goals for achieving rank advancement ("Scoutmaster Reviews").
How can I find out more about Boy Scouts?
...are there any online resources?
The best way to find out about Boy Scouts is to talk to one! Feel free to come to one of our troop meetings and see what we're about. You can find out more about Boy Scouts by contacting the Connecticut Rivers Boy Scout Council. There are also plenty of online resources — here are just a few:
— Boy Scouts of America - National Council Website
— Connecticut Rivers Council Website
What do I need to buy?
For a start, you need to buy a Boy Scout "Class A" uniform shirt and a Boy Scout Handbook (both available at the Connecticut Rivers Boy Scout Council Office). For camping trips you'll need a sleeping bag, a sleeping pad, a water bottle and other miscellaneous supplies. Troop 62 supplies tents.
What does it cost?
Each scout is responsible for weekly dues (we prefer not to publish the amount online, but it's very reasonable), as well as fees associated with weekend camping trips, and special events, like summer camp ski trips and the spring trip.
Where can I buy a uniform?
You can buy Boy Scout uniforms at the Connecticut Rivers Council Office
When do I wear my uniform?
Wear your uniform to each and every scouting meeting, event, and activity. If the event is a work detail, or involves strenuous physical activity like a hike, you can wear your Class "B" uniform (troop t-shirt).
Where on my uniform do I put my rank badge?
Rank badges are sewn to the face of the left pocket of your "Class A" uniform. You can find a diagram showing this on the inside cover of your Boy Scout Handbook.
How should I attach badges and patches to my uniform?
They really should be sewn on - even just a few stitches around the edge is usually sufficient. Some scouts have tried hot-glue, but the patches start to fall off after a few washings. For more information about uniforms, see our Uniforms page.
Note: Merit badges are sewn onto a merit badge sash, not the uniform itself.
Meetings, Events, and Activities
Should I wear my uniform to meetings, events and activities?
YES — wear your uniform to each and every scouting meeting, event, and activity. If the event is a work detail, or involves strenuous physical activity like a hike, you can wear your Class "B" uniform (troop t-shirt). Do not come to scouting activities without your uniform.
I didn't find out about an event — why?
Event announcements and sign-ups are done at Troop Meetings. If you miss a meeting, contact your Patrol Leader and ask what you missed. If your Patrol Leader missed the meeting, contact the Senior Patrol Leader and ask what you missed. Email announcements are done as a courtesy if adult leaders have the time.
My parents didn't find out about an event — why?
Each Scout is responsible for making sure his parents know about the activities they want to participate in. For a complete list of activities, see our Calendar page.
Who leads the troop?
To the greatest extent possible, the boys lead. We expect our scouts to assume responsibility as they grow in the Scouting program, and lead the Troop. This isn't as much a burden as it is an opportunity — the scouts can pursue almost any activity that they put their minds to. The scout in charge of the troop is the Senior Patrol Leader, an experienced scout elected to the position by his peers, based on proven leadership ability.
The role of the adult leaders is to guide the scouts in this process, provide opportunities for scouts demonstrate leadership, and ensure health and safety.
What's a Patrol?
A Patrol is a small group of scouts (6-10) within the troop that work as a team. Each scout is a member of a patrol, which is led by a Patrol Leader. Patrol members can choose a patrol name; some typical names are "Wolverine" patrol, "Flaming Arrow" patrol, "Viking" patrol. A patrol insignia is worn on the right sleeve of the "Class A" uniform, just below the United States flag.
Can women participate in the scouting program?
Yes. The Boy Scouts welcome adult volunteers of both sexes. As a safety measure, the BSA requires all adult leaders and volunteers to register with their local council.
I heard about something called "Order of the Arrow" — what is it?
The Order of the Arrow, also called "OA", is a special camping- and service-oriented society within the BSA. Scouts that have achieved 1st Class rank and have met a camping requirement are eligible to stand for election as OA nominees by the other scouts in their troop. The annual OA election typically occurs in January or February. For more details, see our OA page.
Outdoors and Camping
Can I bring a friend who is not a Boy Scout on a troop camping trip?
Sorry, only Boy Scouts may participate in scouting events. Webelos Scouts may participate in troop events when accompanied by a parent.
When is our next campout?
Ask the Senior Patrol Leader, or look on our Camping page.
What should I bring on our next campout?
As a general rule, follow the Boy Scout motto: "Be Prepared". You can find camping checklists in your Boy Scout Handbook, and on our Camping page. At a minimum, bring a warm sleeping bag, a sleeping pad, a water bottle, and clothing suitable for the weather.
I went on a campout and got a commemorative patch — what should I do with it?
In Scout lingo, these patches are referred to as "temporary" patches, and are usually associated with a one-time event, like a District Camporee. The appropriate place for them to be worn on the "Class A" uniform is on the face of the right pocket. Do not sew them to the merit badge sash.. For more information, see our Uniforms page.
Can I bring matches on a campout? ...what about a lighter?
When you go camping, you should bring some matches with you — they're a basic piece of survival gear. We expect you to know how to use matches PROPERLY and SAFELY. However, you may never bring a lighter or any liquid fire accelerant on any scouting activity. This is a BSA Policy.
Can I bring my new machete on a campout?
No. The BSA strongly recommends that scouts only use folding knives (jacknives). Small sheath knives are allowed, but blades longer than about 3 inches should be left at home. All scouts must receive knife safety training before using a knife.
Can I bring my new tent on a campout?
You betcha! Just tell the Scoutmaster or trip leader so we can adjust the number of troop tents we bring.
I'm scared of the dark — can I sleep in the Scoutmaster's tent?
Only if he's your Dad. BSA rules specify that adults can only sleep with members of their own family (children and legally married spouse), or other adults of the same sex — no exceptions. But you can still pitch your tent right next to the Scoutmaster's!
What's "advancement" mean within Boy Scouts?
Each scout has a rank, starting with "Scout", then "Tenderfoot", progressing up to the highest rank of Eagle. Ranks are attained by fulfilling requirements specified in the Boy Scout Handbook. For more details, see our Advancement page.
What's a merit badge?
A merit badge is a special award given to a scout who has studied, learned, and/or performed in a specific subject area. There are over 100 merit badges that a scout can earn in diverse subject areas, ranging from Citizenship to Swimming to Theater to Fly Fishing. For more details, see our Advancement page.
Why are my friends ahead of me in rank?
Rank advancement generally happens more quickly when you participate in scouting activities. Throughout the school year, we work on rank advancement and merit badges as a group at our weekly troop meetings. We also work on rank advancement activities at our monthly camping trips. Troop Community Service opportunities also count toward rank advancement. Another important way that scouts can achieve advancement is by attending summer camp with the troop — this is an entire week devoted to learning skills needed for rank advancement, and for earning merit badges.
Can my Dad sign off that I have completed merit badge requirements?
We prefer that merit badge requirements be signed off by someone other than a parent, preferably a merit badge counselor. However, in special circumstances we may allow a parent to sign your merit badge "blue card" — ask your Scoutmaster about this.