Merit Badge

Hou Koda District 2018 Spring Merit Badge Workshop – Sat. April 14

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The Crossroads of America Council Hou Koda District will be hosting its Spring Merit Badge Workshop:Hou Koda Logo

Saturday, April 14

8am – 4pm

LDS Church Brownsburg

9710 W. 56th Street, Brownsburg IN

Registration for the workshop will open up at noon on March 28.  Online payment processing will be available at that time.


Full details are still being finalized (costs, which classes are offered, etc.).  Please keep this event link handy for more details, coming soon.


District Spring Camporee: April 20 – 22, 2018

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Our location has been confirmed!

The Spring Camporee [April 20-22, 2018] will be held at the Indiana School for the Blind and Visually Impaired7725 N. College Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46240.

Unit leaders will receive the Spring Camporee Leaders Guide by COM Wednesday, March 14, 2018 via email.

The theme of the Spring Camporee is Willey’s Sirens and the focus will be on Emergency Preparedness.  Scouts will be able to earn the merit badge or pin for Emergency Preparedness.

Looking forward to a fantastic Spring Camporee!

CORRECTION – Del-Mi MB University to be held THIS weekend

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Please pass the word – the Del-Mi Merit Badge University will be held this weekend (March 9 & 10).  If you caught an earlier communication showing this to be May 9 & 10, that was supposed to be March not May!

Del-Mi District is hosting its annual Merit Badge University, this weekend, March 9th and 10th at Carmel High School. Over 500 Merit Badge slots are available for Scouts to take Merit Badges ranging from Swimming to Nuclear Science.

What: Del-Mi Merit Badge University

Where: Carmel High School (520 E. Main Street, Carmel) – Door 13

When: Three sessions are available. Some merit badge classes span across 2 sessions.

  • Session 1: Friday evening from 6:30 to 10 p.m.
  • Session 2: Saturday morning from 8:30 a.m. to Noon.
  • Session 3: Saturday afternoon from 1 to 4:30 p.m.

Register & More Info:

Cost: $6 per session, plus $6 for lunch

 Questions? Contact Laura Rushinsky at

Emergency Mobilization

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Thanks to Frank Otte, Scoutmaster of Troop 174 (CORRECTED 4:06 pm) for bringing this to my attention.

Here is a terrific opporutunity for scouts who need to work on their Emergency Preparedness Merit Badge.Date of E-Prep

Come join us; learn and have fun! The Marion County Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) is teaming up with Eskenazi Health, IU Health – Methodist, Riley and University, the VA Medical Center, IUPUI, Indianapolis EMS (IEMS), Indianapolis Fire Department (IFD), MESH and other agencies for a full scale Hazardous Materials Exercise.

We are requesting volunteers from each of the hospitals and service groups to volunteer to participate. Not only are we seeking adults, but also children, ideally ages 8-18.

This is a great experience for Scout and faith- based groups that are looking for an activity geared toward badge work; Emergency Preparedness or community volunteer hours. We do ask that we have an adult per 5 or 6 children as a chaperone.

Please let us know if you have younger children that would like to participate. There are opportunities for the children (and adults if you want to) to wear their swimsuit and get “showered”/de-conned by the Indianpolis

Fire Department and/or at the hospitals.

Flyer for download

Sugar Creek Merit Badge Counselor Training

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Merit Badge Counselor Training – May 18th, from 7:00 to 9:00 – Lebanon Branch of Church of Jesus Christ LDS – 2291 Witt Rd, Lebanon, IN

We have an important training opportunity for all scouters, parents of new scouts who want to contribute to the program, and adults who have the skill sets needed to be a merit badge counselor. Please make sure that all your merit badge counselors, and potential merit badge counselors, know about this training and strongly encourage them attend.  The training will be held at the Lebanon LDS Church building on Thursday, May 18th, from 7:00 to 9:00.  The trainer from the council will be Roger Schumacher.

As a merit badge counselor, your mission is to join fun with learning. You are both a teacher and mentor to the Scout as he works on a merit badge and learns by doing. By presenting opportunities for growth by way of engaging activities such as designing a Web page (Computers), performing an ollie and a wheelie (Snowboarding), or fabricating rope (Pioneering), you can pique a young man’s interest in the merit badge subject. Just think: Your hands-on involvement could inspire a Scout to develop a lifelong hobby, pursue a career, become an independent, self-supporting adult, and help the Scout advance toward becoming an Eagle Scout. By serving as a merit badge counselor, you offer your time, knowledge, and other resources so that Scouts can explore a topic of interest.

David Hovde

Sugar Creek District Training Chair

Upcoming MBU . . . at a real university

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There is a true Merit Badge University coming up. This term used to refer to opportunities to work on merit badges with university professors and researchers in the field.

Over the years, it has devolved into a generic term of any large gathering of merit badge classes.merit2bbadges

Wabash University is going back to the original concept . . . some of our district’s former scouts, according to rumor, helping organize it.

Here is more information from Jessica Hofman, Sugar Creek’s District Executive via Con Sullivan:

Want to learn about game design from a theater professor and video game reviewer?  Or help with a research study on turtle behavior as you learn the material for the Reptiles and Amphibians merit badge?  Or learn about astronomy from professors who have taught courses on Mayan archeoastronomy?  Or consider how buildings are designed from a Roman Architecture and Archeology expert?

These are just a few of the offerings at the Merit Badge College at Wabash on May 6th!  All of the badges (except First Aid) will be taught by college professors who are experts in the subject.  The cost is $20, and includes a T shirt and lunch.  There will be fun lunchtime activities and sessions for parents to learn about scouting and college opportunities.  You can register at  Registration closes on April 15th, and classes will fill, so register early!

Wabash’s faculty already has a strong relationship with council. One of their economics professors is Sugar Creek’s district commissioner.

This is a great opportunity for older scouts to go visit the beautiful campus in Crawfordsville and work with Wabash’s impressive faculty . . . with no grade pressure!

Here is more information:

Sugar Creek District
2017 Wabash Merit Badge College
Join us for a great learning opportunity and chance to work on your merit badges at an awesome venue!  Join us at Wabash College for the first annual Wabash Merit Badge College.  Reserve your spot now!
  • The college will be at Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana on Saturday, May 6th.
  • There will be two sessions (one from 9:30 to Noon and another from 1:30 to 4:00) with lunchtime activities in between.
  • Registration Cost is $20.00 for Scouts which includes courses, lunch, and a event T-shirt
All Day Merit Badges (requires both morning and afternoon sessions):
  • Robotics
  • Space Exploration
  • Reptile and Amphibian Study
  • Game Design
  • Animation
  • First Aid
Half Day Merit Badges (offered in one or both sessions, but does not require both sessions to complete):
  • Nuclear Science (afternoon, might open morning if there is enough demand)
  • Architecture (morning or afternoon)
  • Medicine (morning or afternoon)
  • Astronomy (morning)
  • Citizenship in the World (afternoon)
  • Family Life (morning)
Lunch Break Activities:
  • Chemistry Merit Badge
  • Ultimate Frisbee on the Mall
  • Activities for Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class Ranks (tree and plant identification, knot tying, flag etiquette, map and compass/GPS navigation course around campus)

Take a look!

Thoughts on Merit Badge Counseling

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The role of the Merit Badge Counselor always needs to be re-examined. It helps us keep the mission of the Counselor top of mind.

To that end, read this short article on Bobwhite Blather.

An important point is

Although not expressly prohibited, large group counseling is generally frowned upon. The Guide to Advancement cautions that in such situations, the counselor must confirm that each and every Scout completes each and every requirement, including the show, demonstrate, do and tell actions. It is not sufficient for a Scout to just sit in a class, write notes on a worksheet and turn it in.

The counselor, therefore, needs to tailor his or her counseling style to the merit badge and to the Scout. This means determining just how much teaching and hand-holding the counselor should do versus how much self-study and learning the Scout is expected to accomplish. Generally speaking, a Scout will learn more if he studies on his own, but he can certainly benefit from the teaching that a counselor can provide. As with other interactions with Scouts, it’s more effective if the counselor leads the Scout to learn and discover the answers on his own, rather than handing them over, as might be done in a classroom setting.

Del-Mi’s Merit Badge University 2017

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From Con Sullivan, our District Executive:

The Del-Mi Merit Badge University is approaching early next month. At this event we have 1,600 slots for Scouts over the course of Friday evening and all-day on Saturday. There are numerous Merit Badges that are offered and might make a good program offering for your units. I have included the information below. Please forward out to your units in your district if you believe this opportunity would fit with what your units might be looking for. We already about 900 of those 1,600 slots filled by Del-Mi Scouts, however there is plenty of room left. Here is info you can copy and paste while sending to your units:

What: Del-Mi District Merit Badge University

Where: Carmel High School, Freshman Center (520 E. Main Street, Carmel, IN) – Entrance 13

When: Friday, March 10th and Saturday, March 11th

Online Registration:

The Merit Badge University is open to any registered Boy Scout, Varsity Team member or Venturer working towards Boy Scout rank advancement.  Tiger, Cub, and Webelos Scouts are not eligible to participate (even if they will be crossing over into a troop later this year after the merit badge university).

  • Pre-requisites are required for many badges.
  • Online registration fee is $6 per Scout per session. Individual courses may have additional equipment or material fees.
  • Three sessions are available. Some merit badge classes span across 2 sessions.

o    Session 1: Friday evening from 6:30 to 10 p.m.

o    Session 2: Saturday morning from 8:30 a.m. to Noon.

o    Session 3: Saturday afternoon from 1 to 4:30 p.m.

Lunch is available from Noon to 1 p.m. at a cost of $6 per person.

There are over 1,600 Merit Badge slots open and available for Scouts. If your first choice is not available, there are plenty of other options.

Questions? Contact: Laura R. (

Ryan Kelleher  |  Del-Mi District Director 
Crossroads of America Council
Golden-Burke Scout Center
7125 Fall Creek Road North
Indianapolis, IN 46256
P: 317.813.7085 
C: 317.445.0658

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Merit Badge Counselors Terms Expire

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Remember that your Merit Badge Counselors are District Staff, not Troop Staff. That means their positions expire every year when the District’s Recharter Application (yes, District has a recharter application, too) expires on December 31, 2016.

We still have several troops and crews that have not confirmed the renewal of their Merit Badge Counselors. We need those immediately to prevent any loss of authority to sign Blue Cards.

Next week I will report on troops and crews that have completed the MBC rechartering process.

For more information, see prior postings.