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Thread: St George's Day

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    Senior Member dragonhhjh's Avatar
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    St George's Day

    After years of mumblings/grumblings and months of more intense debate since April 2017, our district have decided decided to do something different for St George's Day in 2018.

    Our city is made up of 3 districts, all of whom used to parade through the centre and split off into their respective churches/cathedrals (we have 2) which would alternate each year for the sake of variety (although all Christian denominations, of course ).

    Over the years the other 2 districts decided to go their own way. One now holds an activity day and the other can't seem decide what it wants to do one year to the next.

    What has surprised me is just how divisive the debate surrounding this in my district has been. I would go so far as saying they have been the most heated debates by far I have seen in 8 years of scouting in this district.

    So, what does your district do (if anything)? How popular is it (with YP and adults)? And what is your average turnout?

    Very interested in the responses!
    James

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    We've not had a parade in the time I've been back in Scouting (I have an abiding memory of standing in the rain as a kid for what seemed like hours waiting to "march" to Bath Abbey). There have been a couple of years where we haven't done anything due to clashes (I think last year we had a clash with the County Jamboree) but most years there has been a District day out at some fun attraction - Longleat, Crealy Adventure Park etc, where a short rededication ceremony happens before everyone gets on with having a fun day. District chip in towards the costs. Seems to attract a fair crowd - always going to be some issues about it being a weekend etc in terms of availability but I'm certain its better attended than some rain soaked shuffling fest like we used to have!
    Does anyone know what's going on?

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    Senior Member Kastor's Avatar
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    We do a parade through the streets and a service at a large church. People mumble on and off about doing something different but no one has come up with an idea of what could be done differently that would work and would get the same attendance.

    It's high impact in that all the town see us and we get 800-1000 attend with every Group/Unit represented. There are lots of parents and general onlookers lining the streets and it can get a bit crowded.

    We have looked at using a school or other venue instead of the church but they are all outside the town centre so we would end up stuck on the edge of town and would lose most of the "grand event" element. If it did move out I doubt we've have anywhere near the attendance.

    We do district activity days anyway so another one for St George's wouldn't be anything special whereas a parade through town holding up the traffic is definitely different and only occurs for St George's. There is a bit of a parade for Remembrance Day but scouts only send a representative number to that as it's all taken over by the military with TA, Legion and Cadets. They wouldn't be able to cope with us as well.
    To get more kids we need more adults - are we getting the message yet?

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    I think the problem with St George's Day is people often have different ideas about what it is for.

    In my experience some see it as an opportunity to show off Scouting to the local community whereas others see it as a fun day for the young people. If you can't agree on why you are doing St George's Day then you may struggle to agree on what to do.

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    ESL and DESC ianw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Simon.md View Post
    I think the problem with St George's Day is people often have different ideas about what it is for.

    In my experience some see it as an opportunity to show off Scouting to the local community whereas others see it as a fun day for the young people. If you can't agree on why you are doing St George's Day then you may struggle to agree on what to do.
    And whether a bunch of kids shuffling past the local community represents scouting.

    In my district for the last n years we've run a District family camp at the district campsite. So Jo Public don't get to see us but parents do, and everyone seems to have a good time. Lots of activities and stuff Saturday, then a few more activities Sunday followed by a service in the marquee. Probably about 600 people. There are about 1000 scouts and adults in our district. But obviously lots at the camp are just parents. I do feel it brings the district together somewhat.
    Last edited by ianw; 01-11-2017 at 03:34 PM.
    Ian Wilkins
    Farnham District Explorer Scout Commissioner

    Jambowlree - World Scout Ten Pin Bowling Competition
    All sections, all countries, runs December 2017 - May 2018
    http://www.jambowlree.org

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    ASL Kev's Avatar
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    Our district hold a very christian service in what is called 'The Abbey' but is now just a large parish church. It usually looks quite full. It is never held on (or within a few weeks of) St Georges day though, there is always a tale of a messed up booking, so it just feels like compulsory church parade. I hate it. We have actually paraded through the town (down the main shopping street) first for the last few years.

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    Senior Member Bushfella's Avatar
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    Bit early for the annual SGD debate...

    SGD is one of THOSE things. There are some who see it as some sort of sacred cow and it MUST be in a church and it MUST be this or that.

    I don't believe that the youth members actually enjoy it. They go because they are told to, or are asked to. They do it out of loyaty to their Group/ Leaders, not because they enjoy it. We stopped for many years when the Scouts said that they never wanted to be asked to do one again. When I was DDC I felt obliged to attend, and I asked my Group to attend, and they did, but they didn't like it.

    What bugged me was all the adults we never saw from one year to the next, turning out in their best uniforms for an hour or so at Church, and then vanishing into the ether again for another 12 months. No support at any other events - so what was the point?

    When we ran (and still run) SGD hike camps and family meals we get a great turnout (usually).
    Ewan Scott

    It seems that there are a lot of Nawyecka Comanch around....





    Nawyecka Comanch'": "Means roundabout--man says he's going one way, means to go t'other" Ethan Edwards - The Searchers



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    Senior Member oneiros's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bushfella View Post
    Bit early for the annual SGD debate...
    Oh, I dunno. It's our Group's turn to run the SGD service at the church this year; our first planning meeting is in a couple of weeks.

    (Any novel and interesting ideas or scripts would be gratefully received.)

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    Senior Member dragonhhjh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bushfella View Post
    Bit early for the annual SGD debate...
    The timing is because after months of debate and deliberation (the district seemed agreed it didn't like the traiditional but couldn't decide what it wanted to do instead) the district seem to have decided what it wants to do next year and now has the bare bones of a plan which just need fleshing out and organising.
    James

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    Quote Originally Posted by oneiros View Post
    (Any novel and interesting ideas or scripts would be gratefully received.)
    Make sure you allow for use of the alternative promise as well as the core promise.

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    Senior Member Rikki01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kev View Post
    Make sure you allow for use of the alternative promise as well as the core promise.
    Why?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

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    Our District do a church parade.
    Again over the years there have been many heated debate about 'tradition' etc. We even had a DC who is a vicar trying to talk people into an activity type event.

    As a Group though we 'dropped out' of the parade as we felt it was a waste walking through the back streets to a church that isn't big enough if all the District turned up, that takes up a couple of hours on a Sunday afternoon but spoils the day for a family. We used to get at best 15 to 20 kids turn up.

    Instead we have an activity day on the Sunday where we get over 120 people from our group on our local campsite. The Scouts and Cubs turn up on Friday night and camp and do their own thing on Friday night and all day Saturday, the Beavers turn up Saturday afternoon and most camp (in tents) with some in the building. Whole Group campfire Saturday night and activity day and renewal of Promises on Sunday.

    This year it was our Group's turn to run the District 'Parade' and the DC said think outside the box and fully approved of Groups making their way up to the Trig point (conveniently near the campsite) on the Saturday afternoon and having a pic-nic and renewal of promises and a bit of a thought based on what you could see from this vantage point.

    2018 sees a Church Sponsored Group being lead group and have said that it will be back in Church - it is unlikely our group will be involved.

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    ASL Kev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rikki01 View Post
    Why?
    Don't tell me voting to leave the EU was also a vote to ban the alternative promise!

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    Senior Member Rikki01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kev View Post
    Don't tell me voting to leave the EU was also a vote to ban the alternative promise!
    Haha. No. But I have lost great respect for this aspect after discovering some Groups are exempt from offering any alternative promise and also do not allow those outside of their religion into their Group with full backing from TSA.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Rikki01 View Post
    Haha. No. But I have lost great respect for this aspect after discovering some Groups are exempt from offering any alternative promise and also do not allow those outside of their religion into their Group with full backing from TSA.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    It is not just religious organisations that can have closed sponsorship agreements.

    Schools, youth offending institutes, businesses, the military etc can all restrict membership to members of the sponsor's organisation, so it is not just religions that can and do.

    For what it is worth it has always been so in Scouting. Nothing really wrong with it but can make the members isolated.

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