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  • 17-Jun-2020 5:57 PM | Michael Brand (Administrator)

    From the Desk of Jim Ridgeway - 

    A Powerpoint Presentation for CAIs 

    Using Zoom for Online Courses 

    This should answer most of your questions on this latest craze call ZOOM Meetings and how you can use this tool for Virtual Learning, be it Merit Badges, Adult Trainings, and Angler Education Seminars.

    All questions and notes of thanks should be forwarded to Jim Ridgeway .

    Thanks Jim for doing providing a "Zoom for Dummies" presentation.  FISH ON! 

  • 09-Jun-2020 11:33 AM | Michael Brand (Administrator)

    The world has changed dramatically since March BSA issued guidance on COVID-19 to Scouts and Scouters, Units and Districts, and Councils meetings, events, and workshops. 

    At the time, there was tremendous uncertainty about the trajectory of the pandemic, only a small handful of states had issued restrictions on activities, and the Center For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had just announced blanket guidance on a national level. 

    Leadership felt it was the most responsible action to postpone or cancel official events until further notice. We have learned a lot since then.

    During the intervening time, states have taken varying approaches to deal with the pandemic, the outcomes of these distinctive measures have had differing effects, and there has been extreme variability on the impact to communities around the county and the world. CDC guidance has evolved to the point where it is now challenging to view blanket guidance as applicable to all states and communities around the country. It would not be reasonable to provide the same restrictions for rural Montana as metropolitan New York. 

    So where do we go from here? We know that people are excited to get back together with friends meetings, spend time on the water, and enjoy social events, but we need to be cautious. We now providing updated guidance that reflects the variability of circumstances based on geography, considers human health, and allows CAIs  to find ways to safely engage within their communities.

    ·  CAI must defer to the leadership, health experts, following official, location-specific state and local regulations provided by respective health departments. This may include recommendations regarding acceptability and size of gatherings, travel restrictions, use of personal protective equipment, social distancing guidelines, and other precautions.

    ·  CAI must defer to the Local Council, Local District, and Unit Specific guidelines.

    ·  It is further recommended that all event organizers wait at least 15 days from the announcement of relaxed restrictions to assess impacts before moving forward with activities. This allows time to assess whether these new restrictions adversely affect the COVID-19 case rate, and reduces the likelihood of planning an event only to cancel it due to adverse outcome.

    Here are some additional safety recommendations regarding local fly fishing, casting, tying or administrative events:

    ·  Please remember that all face to face gatherings carry risk, regardless of size, and assess that risk against the importance of the event. Airline travel to and from events may pose risk for many travelers and as well those in the destination community. Gatherings that can be accomplished by telephone and videoconferencing remain preferred.

    ·  Please request that potential participants exclude themselves if they have or may have been exposed to Covid 19 within 2 weeks prior to the event, have a pending Covid 19 test, or have symptoms such as fever or cough.

    ·  Practice social distancing of at least 6 feet apart from one another and wear facial coverings, even outside. Facial coverings really do reduce the spread of infectious respiratory droplets transmitted by speech (especially loud speech), cough and sneezing.

    ·  Frequent hand washing, use of hand sanitizers, and disinfectant wipes are an important part of reducing infection. 

    ·  Equipment, such as fly rods, fly tying materials, etc. should not be shared. If gear is shared for some unavoidable reason, it and the user’s hands should be disinfected after use with disinfectant wipes or 70% alcohol solution.

    ·  Participants at gatherings should bring their own snacks, food, and water. If a meal must be served, individual packaging (“box lunch”) is far safer than a buffet or “grab and go” scenario.

    Our Scout and their families are very important folks, we would never want any of our events or meetings to be the center of an outbreak of Covid 19.

  • 01-Jun-2020 4:47 PM | Michael Brand (Administrator)

    Great Fishing Basics (Fresh Water) aka Drowning Worms 101

    Fishing Basics consists of a Power Point presentation and a Instructor’s Guide to teach fresh water fishing. 

    It is appropriate for Cubs, Scouts and Venture Scouts. 

    This is hands on, group participation program which takes from an hour to an hour and a half to present.

    The program is designed to give a student who has never fished the skills and knowledge, both practical and ethical, to go to a pond  and be immediately successful. 

    It is expected that the instructor will schedule a follow up fishing trip to a pond to allow the Scouts to apply what they have learned.

    The Instructor’s Guide gives the leader a road map to present the course.

    A materials list is included at the end of the Instructor’s Guide

    Great Job by our Task Team! Members include;

    • Fred Monahan
    • Paul Minenna
    • Pete Adams
    • Ben Jelsema

  • 22-May-2020 12:52 PM | Michael Brand (Administrator)

    From our Partners at IGFA!

    I hope this e-mail finds you and members of your community safe and healthy.

    I apologize for the delay in this email, but the IGFA Headquarters had to modify plans for celebrating IGFA Day 2020 due to the current global pandemic. Instead of having a theme focused on youth angling education and promoting group gatherings, the theme has changed to focus on individual anglers. This only makes sense to promote the safety of all around the world while we celebrate our sport.

    You can find more information on this page of our website and more details will be coming next week, but here’s the update as of now.

    If you can help us spread the word or feature a story on your social media with the #igfaday2020 during June 1st and June 14th, that would be great in showing anglers around the world just how much fun recreational fishing is and will always be.

    Thank you!


    Lisa Morse

    Youth Education Manager
    International Game Fish Association
    300 Gulf Stream Way
    Dania Beach, FL  33004
    Ph: (954) 924-4340

  • 19-May-2020 1:36 PM | Michael Brand (Administrator)

    Are you a Merit Badge Counselor for Fishing or Fly Fishing or Both?  Have we got a surprise for you.

    Fresh off the press! Revised Merit Badge Counselor Guides for your use.  These guides provide you awesome information to be used when working with you Scouts.

    Click on the links below to access the file.

    Fishing MB Counselor Guide

    Fly Fishing MB Counselor Guide

    A sincere note of thanks should be sent to Peter Adams and his Task Team.  Super Effort!

    If you are not a merit badge counselor and are called to service by reading these guides, please call your local Council today!  The youth are deserving of your time, and the return of your investment of time is huge!

    Michael R. Brand  Communications

  • 18-May-2020 8:24 PM | Michael Brand (Administrator)


    As Scouting moves to virtual and online platforms, we offer the following reminders to help keep kids safe. The below guidance applies to all online Scouting activities and meetings.

    Note: Some states may have legal requirements that differ from, and even go beyond, what is provided here. It is your responsibility to check and abide by your state laws and consult your local council when reviewing and applying the following guidance, which is not comprehensive.

  • 18-May-2020 7:12 PM | Michael Brand (Administrator)

    From the Desk of Ben Jelsema

    I have agreed once again to accept the leadership of the Jamboree Fishing Program.  This will be the 12th National Jamboree I have managed this fishing event.  Each was challenging and success was always been based on a dedicated staff, which were there for one reason – To provide very positive fishing experiences to our customers – The Scouts.  To this end, I invite you to be a part of our staff.


    Michael Brand will be our Vice-Lead. Michael brings strong management and communications skills.  Additionally many of our past leaders will return and others perhaps will accept an expanded role.

    Are you ready to “Face the Challenge”?  The National Jamboree Executive Committee has announced that registration is now open for older youth and adults to participate as Jamboree Service Team (JST) members.  Program options are available and I hope you might choose Fishing to positively impact Scouts and guests attending Scouting’s premier celebration.  Click this link to get started.

    There will be three JST sessions during the 2021 National Scout Jamboree to allow flexibility to desired applicants.  You will be able to select a session that best suits your schedule when applying to serve at the Jamboree. The following sessions will apply:

     Session 1 (July 17-24, 2021)

     Session 2 (July 24-31, 2021)

     Session 3 (July 17-31, 2021)

    Fees range from $450 to $895 with a deposit of $195 due at submission.

     he first 2021 Jamboree Service Team applications that sign-up and pay the deposit will receive the “Challenge Accepted!” temporary uniform patch.  (As shown below and if still available). 

    Once you sign-up your application goes through a review and approval by your council.  You will be ask to select your top three staff options. Many of us will select Fishing for all three.  Once an application is clear, it goes to the first option to accept.  We will move quickly for accepting qualified staffers.

    Last Jamboree we had 84 on staff and for 2021 we  have approval for a nice increase in order for our staff to have more time off to enjoy the Jamboree.  I now urge you the sign-up early and get a fellow Scouter to join you to staff fishing.


    C. Ben Jelsema                                          

    BSA National Outdoor Program Committee

  • 09-May-2020 2:00 PM | Michael Brand (Administrator)

    The Chairman of the BSA National Fishing Sub-Committee, Rick Kagawa, has scheduled a fireside chat for CAIs?

    His idea is to get input and information on what you as a CAI need so we can prioritize these needs for action by the Sub-committee.  

    Rick has requested that you e-mail questions in advance, to before the call.

    The ones that submit them before the meeting will be answered first. So get your questions in TODAY!

    Topic: CAI Fireside Chat
    Time: May 17, 2020 05:30 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

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