At USSSP we had a question about the Arrow of Light
ceremony and when is the best time to do an AOL ceremony. Mike
Bowman at USSSP suggested the
In general I highly recommend two separate
ceremonies for the Arrow of Light presentation and crossing-over
from Webelos to Boy Scouts. This is not hard to do and something
that has worked well for me in similar situations. What I would do
runs like this:
Conduct your advancement ceremony near the middle
of the Pack Meeting and top it off with a very special Arrow of
Light Ceremony. When you are done
Close the advancement ceremony. At this point break
the action with a few items to finish your Pack Meeting. By now you
should be nearing the end of the meeting. At this point you might
announce that the Pack's business for the night is nearly closed
except for a very special event that commemorates x number of
Webelos Scouts that are this night graduating from the Cub Scouting
program and becoming Boy Scouts at Troop(s) xxx and yyy. Introduce
the Scout leaders (adult and youth) from the Troop. Call the
graduating Webelos forward as a group to stand on one side of the
front of the room.
Have the Scout leaders on the other side. Call
out each name. As the boy crosses to the other side he is welcomed
by a Boy Scout leader and perhaps presented with a Troop Neckerchief
and red tabs for his shirt or a Boy Scout handbook. If you have
time, you could rig up a bridge for the boys to walk across to
signify bridging over to Webelos.
A popular ceremony using a
very simple bridge follows:
Try this simple cross-over idea with
some great symbology.
Needed: four 4"x4"x5' posts and five
Paint one plank blue, one gold, one red,
and one BSA green. Leave one unpainted. Paint the posts brown.
the Webelos Den Leaders to place one of the posts on the ground in a
N-S direction. Then ask the Scoutmaster to place a second post on
the ground about four feet away and parallel in a N-S direction.
Announce that this is symbolic of the foundations of Scouting that
these leaders have laid through outings represented by the natural
Then ask each set of leaders to place an E-W post over
the N-S posts about three to four feet apart, pointing out that by
building on Scouting's foundations these leaders have set the stage
for bridging the boys from Cub Scouting to Boy Scouting.
Webelos #1 and his parents bring the unpainted plank forward and
place it across the E-W posts. State that this represents the boys
as the arrived in Cub Scouting full of potential but
(If they were in Tigers use a plank painted orange
and make a statement about how they were on fire to learn about
Ask Webelos #2 and parents to bring the blue plank
forward and place it snuggly against the unfinished plank. State
that this represents the Wolf and Bear years where with the help of
their parents the Scouts became true blue and loyal friends.
Webelos #3 comes forward with his parents and places the gold plank
next to the blue to represent their golden years in Cubbing as
Webelos learning important skills through activity badges
culminating in the Arrow of Light.
Webelos # 4 comes forward with
his parents and the green plank. Announce that this represents their
new beginning as Boy Scouts who will soon be green Tenderfoot
Scouts, anxious to begin the Boy Scout trail to Eagle.
Webelos #5 and parents put down the red plank.
Comment that this
plank is red like the predominant color in the Eagle badge and
represents the beginning of their journey to become Eagles.
are assembled at the unfinished board side of the now completed
bridge and presented graduation certificates and a patch board of
their Cub Scout badges and awards (many use a large piece of plywood
cut in the shape of a Scout emblem and covered with blue felt on
which are mounted the badges earned by the Scout).
presentations are over, the Scoutmaster invites each boy in turn to
cross the bridge. Once over, he is welcomed into the Troop. His
Webelos neckerchief is replaced by the Troop neckerchief in a
presentation. Same thing for each boy.
Say some personal words about
how proud you are of their accomplishments and how you know they
will work hard and succeed in whatever they try in Boy Scouting
(Positive expectations = positive results).
End of ceremony. Go home
and cry tears of pride and joy at seeing them grow up so fast and
AFTER CLIMBING THE MOUNTAIN,
CAN NOW ENJOY THE VIEW.