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Scouting remains the premier program for kids to learn to lead, create character, and

have fun with friends. This fall, we'll be getting HOOKED ON SCOUTING!


Our Join Scout Night recruitment campaign returns with the Hooked on Scouting theme last used

with great success in 2018. Every new youth who joins will receive a free fishing pole, and will be
invited to Fall Family Adventure Camps where they can use their fishing pole for the first time! 

Flyers, yard signs, posters, and all the normal campaign materials will be available for units to
promote their signups. 


Many schools have given permission for school talks to resume this fall which is a key step in rebuilding our Cub Scout programs. But school talks, flyers, and yard signs alone will not be enough in order to maximize the opportunity before us this fall. By partnering together to promote multiple Join Scout Nights in our communities, engaging families to share their Scouting story on social media, and units working in collaboration, we can ensure every youth receives an invitation to join. "In Scouting we get to be involved as an entire family and when we participate with our units, our district and our council we make friends who become an extension of our family. These are bonds that cannot be broken." -Melissa Biltz, Council Membership Chair


Scouting began as and remains a grassroots movement driven forward by groups of people working together to campaign about shared ideas. Our shared ideas were penned in 1910 and remain unchanged. We hear them each week... "On my honor, I will..."  "A Scout is Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful..." This fall, we can come together around these shared ideas. We can work together to invite every youth to join our programs. We can grow Scouting together.


Vision: To recruit every eligible youth in the Buckeye Council by mobilizing volunteers and providing the required resources to effectively grow Scouting membership.

Purpose: To create designated opportunities for prospective Scouts and their families to join a new or existing local unit. The goal is to increase the number of youth and parent volunteers served through the Scouting program in a particular community.


Traditional recruiting methods are back and will not have any limitations in most communities. These include school talks, yard signs, flyers, posters, stickers, custom recruitment plans for each unit, and more. Modern methods of recruiting are continuing through geofencing of schools, the free trial experience at, and advertising on social media. Learn more about each recruitment method below and how it can fit into your unit's plan.


Our plan is that every new Scout that joins between August 1st and October 31st will receive a free fishing pole to use at Family Adventure Camp! The fishing poles will be distributed by Campaign Coordinators and District Professionals staff upon receipt of completed and paid applications for new youth.


The Buckeye Council will be offering a free trial experience through the platform of for potential Cub Scouts. This program will focus on the basics of Scouting covered in the Bobcat badge, as well as fun activities that engage the entire family. It will be a simple and flexible program for families that gives them a taste of the Scouting adventure and encourages them to continue that adventure by connecting with a local unit.


At any point in time, families can simply go to and sign up for a free trial of Scouting! The free trial will include:

  • All content to complete the Bobcat Badge

  • Instructional videos

  • STEM experiments

  • Fun, at-home activities

  • And more!


With the rising cost of membership fees, the free trial will provide families the chance to try Scouting risk-free. During the free trial, families will provide contact information, elementary school, and town so we can connect them with a local Cub Scout Pack.


To excite youth early and ultimately capture their interest longer, Official Launch Packs will be

available for order and purchase at every JSN. These packs are designed to equip the new Scout

with some key basics to launch their Scouting Adventure. Included will be the program

appropriate hat, neckerchief and slide, handbook, a flashlight, admission to a Family Adventure

Camp and a coupon for discounts in the Scout Shop.


The Buckeye Council is investing in digital marketing through Facebook ads, geofencing. Through this technology, when a parent enters a radius around the Join Scout Night event they will receive a notification on their Facebook page inviting them to attend the event. Promote your pack and sign up information in network groups like NextDoor, community Facebook groups, school newsletters, etc.

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The free trial is designed to be a four-week program, but all content is on-demand and can be completed at once or over time.


The recruiting of Scouts and leaders happens at the unit level and in the communities where people live, work, and play. While the Buckeye Council and the district membership teams will support each unit in their recruiting efforts, each pack will be responsible for the following:

  • Maintain constant communication with the unit’s volunteer Join Scout Night Campaign Coordinator assigned to assist.

  • For Packs, make a commitment to conduct a Join Scout Night enrollment at the local elementary school on one of the pre-approved dates.

  • Confirm JSN event dates with the Join Scout Night Coordinator or district professional no later than June 30, 2022. 

  • Distribute yard signs to current unit members, asking them to display the signs in high visibility areas from August through October.

  • Attend the Join Scout Night Kickoff in July.

  • Recruit enough current leaders to conduct a well-organized recruiting meeting that follows the council plan.

  • Turn in the new youth applications to the volunteer Join Scout Night Unit Coordinator or district professional within 24 hours of the JSN event.

  • Promote attendance at local Family Adventure Camps.

  • Inform new leaders of online and in-person training opportunities.

Our Pack's Plan to Reach Every Kid at _____________________________ Elementary. 

STEP 1: Schedule Your Join Scout Night.

  • Schedule your in-person recruitment on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday. This allows a school talk to happen in the same week of the recruitment event. If a school talk occurs on a Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday, the sign up can be later in the week to keep the information in front of parents.

  • If your pack recruits from multiple schools, there should be one Join Scout Night at each school. 

  • Hold your recruitment in the school cafeteria to allow a familiar meeting place for all parents of new Scouts.


STEP 2: Schedule Your Parent Orientation Meeting.

  • The parent orientation meeting is where you discuss unit finances, upcoming events, the popcorn sale, and leadership structure of the pack. 

  • Parent orientation meetings should happen within 10 days of your Join Scout Night. 

  • This can also be another opportunity for families to join the pack. 

STEP 3: Schedule A Second Chance Join Scout Night

  • Families might not be able to make it to the first Join Scout Night or Parent Orientation meeting. Schedule a second chance Join Scout Night 2-3 weeks after the first joining opportunity. 

  • A second chance Join Scout Night can be at your meeting location, the elementary school, or a local community center. 

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The Buckeye Council will fully support any in-person recruitment events in every way possible with flyer distribution, school talks, providing parent orientation packets, geofencing the school, providing free model rockets, etc.


After deciding on a date for your Join Scout Night, the Buckeye Council staff will contact the school to schedule the Join Scout Night and school talk. 


Buckeye Council staff will schedule in-person school talks with each elementary school. In-person school talks with flyer and sticker distribution are the most successful recruitment method because kids can get excited about recruitment and take home information directly to their parent.


Ideally, school talks occur on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays to allow

for Join Scout Nights to occur later that week at the school. Packs are

encouraged to have 1 or 2 adult leaders come to the school talk to help pass

out flyers and stickers. For any schools that will not allow in-person school

talks, the Buckeye Council has created a video school talk that we will provide

to all schools with the request that they show to kids through whatever means

they have available.



To help the unit be successful in recruiting new members, each district is committed to recruiting district volunteers to assist the unit leaders and parents. The volunteer Join Scout Night Campaign Coordinators will help the unit by:


  • Contacting the unit leaders prior to the recruiting meeting to review the plan.

  • Participate in the unit recruiting meeting, the parent orientation meeting, and the second chance opportunity, as needed.

  • Assist new families in completing application forms.

  • Collecting applications, fees, and sign-in sheets from the unit leadership to turn in to the Buckeye Council.

  • Delivering incentive items to the pack leadership.


The Buckeye Council has a number of marketing materials to maximize your Pack's recruitment efforts. These will be available at the Buckeye Council Service Centers and at the Join Scout Night Kickoff in July. 

It will be more important than ever before that units and parents promote their own program through their networks. In-person school talks with flyer and sticker distribution are the most successful recruitment method, but it is extremely important for the individual unit to self-promote as much as possible.


Use ALL the recruitment tactics below to promote your own unit.

  • YARD SIGNS: Yard signs will be provided to all units to promote in person sign ups and
    Scouting in general! Put these in high traffic areas in town, at the school, and at your
    chartered organization.

  • FLYERS: Recruitment flyers will be distributed through all schools connected to units having in person recruiting where allowed. We will provide these as hard copies as allowed, but electronic everywhere. Where allowed, schools will receive three rounds of flyers – a flyer during the first week of school, a flyer during the school talk, and a flyer a few weeks later to invite Scouts to a 2nd chance sign up.

  • POSTERS: Place posters around town in common locations like gas stations, community bulletin boards, and even at school!

  • BUDDY CARDS: Peer to peer recruitment will be as important as ever. Buddy Cards will be provided to units for friends and families to join in the Scouting adventure. We will custom print buddy cards for your unit with Join Scout Night details. While physically distributing buddy cards might be difficult, consider an email “Parent-to-Parent Campaign."

  • SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING & GEOFENCING: The Buckeye Council is investing in digital marketing through Facebook ads, geofencing. Through this technology, when a parent enters a radius around the Join Scout Night event they will receive a notification on their Facebook page inviting them to attend the event. Promote your pack and sign up information in network groups like NextDoor, community Facebook groups, school newsletters, etc.

  • SCHOOL OPEN HOUSES: Work with your elementary school to have a table and a few members from the pack at the open house! The Buckeye Council can equip you with promotional materials for your school's open house. This is a great opportunity to provide a fun activity for kids, mingle with parents, and share the word about Scouting.

  • CHARTERED ORGANIZATION INVOLVEMENT: We will better engage our chartered partners to educate them on their ownership of their Scouting programs and gain their support for recruitment. Put information in the church bulletin, put yard signs up, make an announcement Sunday morning, etc!



To better capitalize on promotional efforts, create excitement, and ensure enough time to recruit youth through follow up efforts, we will have a tight, three week window for all first round Join Scout Nights. These must be scheduled on Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday night during the last two weeks of August and beginning of September. All JSN events must occur at the local elementary school.


  • Unit leaders and district leadership meet to conduct a 2023 Growth Plan. - Unit Leadership & District Leadership

  • District leadership meets with principals to schedule fall Join Scout Nights. - District Leadership

  • Secure 100% Join Scout Nights Talk Dates, Times, and Locations. - District Leadership


  • Attend Join Scout Night Kickoff at Gorman Rupp - Unit Leadership

  • Attend Join Scout Night Kickoff at Stark State - Unit Leadership



  • Parent Power Packets distributed to all Scouting households - Buckeye Council Leadership

  • Social media advertising begins: elementary schools geofenced, Facebook advertising, etc. - Buckeye Council Leadership

  • Distribute buddy cards and yard signs to families - Unit Leadership

  • Utilize chartered partners to help promote (church talks, billboards, bulletins, newsletters, social media, etc. - Unit Leadership

  • Secure a table at your school's Open House to promote your pack - Unit Leadership


  • Scouts distribute buddy cards - Unit Leadership

  • Yard signs go up in high trafficked areas (at school, chartered partner, soccer fields, etc.) - Unit Leadership

  • Attend school Open House - Unit Leadership

  • First Day Flyers are distributed to school to go home the first week of school - District Leadership

  • Social media advertising continues - District Leadership

  • Share on social media promotion about joining your pack - Unit Leadership


  • School talk occurs. Here flyers and stickers are distributed. - District Leadership

  • Scouts wear uniform to school on day of school talk or day of Join Scout Night - Unit Leadership

  • Unit Coordinator and Unit Leadership confirm JSN plans - District Leadership & Unit Leadership



  • Have directional yard signs out at school - Unit Leadership

  • Join Scout Night takes place - District Leadership & Unit Leadership

  • Applications submitted to Unit Coordinator or district professional - Unit Leadership


  • Send new families a welcome email - Unit Leadership

  • New youth are registered - District Leadership


  • Parent Orientation occurs - Unit Leadership

  • New youth receive Welcome to Cub Scouts Newsletter - District Leadership

  • School receives another flyer promoting Second Chance Join Scout Night - District Leadership


  • Hold Second Chance Join Scout Night - Unit Leadership

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