December 2017 *Update*

BSA Expands Programs to Welcome Girls from Cub Scouts to Highest Rank of Eagle Scout

Effective 2018 program year

Today, October 11, the National Council of the Boy Scouts of America's Board of Directors unanimously approved to welcome girls into its Cub Scout program and to deliver a Scouting program for older girls that will enable them to advance and earn the highest rank of Eagle Scout.

Starting in the 2018 program year, families can choose to sign up their sons and daughters for Cub Scouts. Existing packs may choose to establish a new girl pack, establish a pack that consists of girl dens and boy dens or remain an all-boy pack. Cub Scout dens will be single-gender - all boys or all girls. Using the same curriculum as the Boy Scouts program, the organization will also deliver a program for older girls, which will be announced in 2018 and projected to be available in 2019. This approach allows the organization to maintain the integrity of the single gender model while also meeting the needs of today’s families.

This decision expands the programs that the Boy Scouts of America offers for both boys and girls. Although known for its iconic programs for boys, the BSA has offered co-ed programs since 1971 through Exploring and the Venturing program, which celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2018.

**DEC 2017 Update** Click Here for an overview of the Early Adopter Opportunity for Councils
Click Here for a Description of the Family of Scouting Programs

September 2017

BSA Announces Membership Fee Increase

The mission of the Boy Scouts of America is to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law. 

To do this — while delivering the nation’s foremost youth development program — the BSA must remain vigilant in controlling costs. Although we have been successful in reducing our expenditures in many areas, it has become necessary to evaluate our annual membership fees. 

Based on feedback from both volunteers and employees, the BSA membership fee will increase to $33 for all registered youth and adult leaders, effective December 1, 2017

Membership fees support the services that are necessary to provide Scouting to youth from 7 to 21 years of age. From education to high-adventure experiences you can’t get anyplace else, the BSA provides unique growth opportunities at a great value. 

Services include primary liability coverage for all volunteer leaders and chartered organizations, ongoing advances in technology, fundraising support, new program development and membership recruiting strategies, and support materials. In 2016 alone, the BSA served 2.3 million youth members through approximately 270 local councils across the United States and its territories. 

With the help of all of our volunteers and Scouting parents, we will continue accomplishing incredible things for young people and the communities we serve. Please see the attached 2017 Membership Fee Increase Q&A for more information, including a Q&A section.



May 2017

May 23rd, 2017

Three Local Eagle Scouts Recognized as High School Valedictorians

Springfield, MO, May 23, 2017
The Ozark Trails Council is proud to recognize the academic achievements of three local high school students from Springfield. Ben Moore (Central High School), Sam Becker (Kickapoo High School), and Andrew Thomas (Glendale High School) have each been named as valedictorian of their graduating class in 2017. Uniquely, each of these young men is an Eagle Scout in Troop 235 chartered by Wesley United Methodist Church in Springfield, Missouri. It's an exceptional young man who is named valedictorian of his high school class, and even more exceptional that he has achieved such recognition alongside two fellow Eagle Scout friends from the same Boy Scout troop.

“These young men exemplify what it is to be an Eagle Scout. Not only that, they serve as a reminder to all of us that scouting is still a strong, thriving part of our community. Scouting has had a demonstrative effect upon American history, particularly in the areas of leadership, which can be seen in roles such as United States Presidents, Directors of the FBI, Directors of the CIA, military, astronauts and leaders in law, medicine and business industries. Regarding their commitment to individuality, academics and community service, I look forward to watching these young men excel in all future endeavors as they continue to reflect the values instilled in scouts across the country”
– David Doran, National Eagle Scout Association Chair for the Ozark Trails Council

In 2016, 142 young men achieved the rank of Eagle Scout, Scouting’s highest honor, throughout the Ozark Trails Council. Skills learned in the Scouting program have proven to translate to greater success in higher education and professional careers for those who become Eagle Scouts. “The Scouting program prepares kids for life.  Boy Scouts graduate high school and college at a much higher rate than non-Scouts.” Says John Feick, Scout Executive/CEO of the Ozark Trails Council. “From the time boys join Cub Scouts in the first grade, reading and education are entwined within Scouting’s method of developing young men and women into leaders and good citizens.” To date, only 4% of boys who join the Scouting program will achieve the rank of Eagle Scout. These three, and each of our Eagles, have added their names to a list of notable Eagle Scouts that includes former President Gerald R. Ford, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Astronauts Neil Armstrong and Jim Lovell, Stephen Spielberg and many others.

Each graduate has made plans to attend college this fall. Ben Moore will study biochemistry (University of Arkansas), Sam Becker plans to study physics and astronomy (Texas Christian University), and Andrew Thomas will study mechanical engineering (Missouri S&T). The Ozark Trails Council is proud to recognize their incredible achievement and congratulates each of them. 

“Congratulations to these three graduating seniors on their accomplishments.  Ozark Trails Council is proud of all of our Eagle Scouts and we hope that the skills and values that they learn through the Scouting program prepares them for continued success and achievement throughout their careers.” – Louis Griesemer, Board President of Ozark Trails Council 


April 2017

April 26th, 2017

Scouting for Food Collects Record Donations for Local Food Bank

Scouts and volunteers in the Ozark Trails Council, Boy Scouts of America finished the annual ‘Scouting for Food’ drive in March with their best collection year to date. Each spring the Council partners with Ozarks Food Harvest in Springfield, as well as several other local food pantries in the area, for their largest community service project of the year. Scouts and volunteers set up collection points in front of grocery stores as well as deliver and pick up bags in neighborhoods to collect food donations for the community.

“Scouting has a long-standing mission of giving back to the community, and we look forward to this project each year because it creates an immediate impact in the lives of our neighbors here at home” – John Feick, Scout Executive/CEO

In 2017, Scouts worked the entire month of March and collected a record number of 38,342 pounds of donations, which will equal over 31,952 meals provided to families in the community, according to Ozarks Food Harvest. That number exceeds the 2016 amount of 32,178 pounds and 27,000 meals.

“We’re so proud of the area Boy Scouts and their record collections during this year’s Scouting for Food. Their dedication to helping our neighbors in need will allow us to provide more than 32,000 meals” – Bart Brown, President/CEO of Ozarks Food Harvest



September 2016

Ozark Trails Council Recognized for Excellence in Marketing

Pictured above: David Doran (Ozark Trails Council Executive Board), Angela Smith (Owner, AdSmith), John Feick (Scout Executive/CEO), Jared Alexander (BSA Special Projects Director), Shannon Perryman (VP of Creative Services, AdSmith)

SPRINGFIELD—The Boy Scouts of America Ozark Trails Council received national recognition at the 18th Annual President’s Marketing Awards. The local Boy Scouts division was awarded Best Mobile Campaign, as well as an honorable mention for Best Website.

“We are incredibly honored by this recognition,” said John Feick, Boy Scouts of America Ozark Trails Council Scout Executive. “There was such a tremendous display of talent among the fellow nominees and winners, all in celebration of an organization that has a lasting impact on the lives of boys and young men in our area.”

The 2016 PMA evaluated and judged all applicable entries for their excellence in marketing on behalf of the Boy Scouts of America, creativity, and alignment with national brand standards.

Feick additionally thanks the marketing professionals at ADsmith Marketing & Advertising, who designed The Boy Scouts of America Ozark Trails Council website and worked alongside them in initiating the mobile campaign.

“We can’t thank the ADsmith team enough,” said Feick. “Their dedication, personal involvement, and support of the Scout’s mission helped make this possible.”

Scouting’s programs and outdoor adventures give young people the opportunity and freedom to explore a world beyond the boundaries of everyday life. It presents them with chances to try new things, provide service to others, build self-confidence and develop leadership skills.

These experiences not only help Scouts while they are young, but also stay with them throughout their adult lives, growing into exceptional men and women that respect their family, community, religion, country and themselves.