Scouting Forums

National Summertime Activity Award

I became our Packs Advancement Chair in 2015. At that time, the National Summertime Activity Award, was the only award, that was given for the previous Scouting year rank. Example: the Tiger pin was earned the summer after they received their Tiger rank, even though they are currently in the Wolf den. Does this still hold true? We have a new Advancement Chair and this questions came up.

We have asked the BSA’s Cub Scout team, and the answer that we were given is that pack committees can choose whichever way works best for them. Just my opinion, but now that Lions are officially a part of the Cub Scout program, it makes sense to me that the Tiger summertime pin would be earned the summer between kindergarten and first grade. Otherwise, they would not be able to earn the summertime pin even though they met the same requirements as other Cub Scouts. The summertime pin is just intended to encourage Scouts to participate in pack activities over the summer.


Maybe they should add a pin for lions! :yum: I like that idea better!


It makes no sense to me to give an award that is named for a den the Scout is no longer a member of. My pack always awarded the pin based on the den the Scout entered at the start of summer. Webelos had 2 summers to earn it and if they met the requirements twice, they received 2 pins.


Since we seldom had any scouts who joined the summer before their first grade year, our pack always awarded the pin based on the den that the scouts were in at the end of the program year, and it was always awarded at the first pack meeting of the year to encourage more scouts to be active over the summer.

This is what we did, too. Scouts and parents were confused when we did it the other way, because the Scout would be getting an award in the fall for a den that they hadn’t been in for 3-4 months. We would also sometimes have Cub Scouts join in June, so it solved the problem of what to do with them, because they were never in that den during the school year prior.

And now with Lions being an option, Cub Scouts can join at any time during their kindergarten year, so they should also have the opportunity to earn the Tiger summertime pin the summer between kindergarten and first grade.

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I agree with this - and even before Lions were part of our Pack, my youngest joined in June as soon as the previous year’s Tigers became Wolves. He was super excited to join since his big brother was already in, and then to earn the summertime award.

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I became Cubmaster earlier this year, and it has been quite some time since our pack had July and August activities.

We’re administering the National Summertime Award by presenting the award for the Scout’s new grade levels, since Cub Scouts work on awards for their current level and do not go back.

In my opinion, when they introduced the separate versions of the pin in 2009, this is what they intended. From 1971 to 2008, there was one version, and it was also available to adults. This would make the Tiger version very rare, since Tigers usually wait until September to join.

If it was intended that the award is earned for the previous level, that would mean a Tiger who joins the day after kindergarten ends could not get the award the first year, even though he JOINED as a Tiger. He would have to wait a full yea before working on the award, and that doesn’t seem right.

Now that Lions are already in place, the Tiger award should be earned much more frequently.

I think there should be a Lion version of the award. I have one who already joined and will probably “earn” it, but there is nothing to present.

Our school year ended on June 14. We had three pack activities during the first 10 days of June. Technically, our current Wolves were still Tigers during that time. Since Cub Scouts cannot work on awards for the next level, they should not be able to count those activities for the Wolf National Summertime Award. However, we are applying common sense in recognizing that school ends late here compared with much of the country. So, we are counting any June activity as applicable to the Scout’s level as of the end of the month. We have no June activities scheduled after the last day of school and thought it would be absurd to schedule one just for the sake of the National Summertime Award.

Lions are not supposed to join until the fall (August-September), when they are actually in kindergarten (or kindergarten age, if a school district does not have a kindergarten program).



I’m not sure it says Lions can never join until they are actually in kindergarten. The document is dated in April 2018, and it says the new Lion program starts in August or later. I can see how you draw your conclusion, but I think they are only talking about the first year after emergence from the pilot program. Further, it doesn’t say that the Lion must have already started school. It just says “August or later.” Presumably, the word later is there in case there is a delay in the rollout. Based on what it says in the document, if I assumed the young person had to already be attending kindergarten, I wouldn’t be able to register a Lion in August, even if the program was ready, if the first day of school was September 5. That doesn’t seem to be what they mean.

In my school district, kindergarten students register in the spring. Once the last day of school has passed, they are registered (no longer prospective) kindergarten students.

My local council offers Lion program sessions at Cub Scout overnight camp. Since Lions cannot attend as Lions, this is presumably aimed at youngsters attending camp as younger siblings who happen to be starting kindergarten in the fall. At least, that’s the only logical conclusion I can draw.

The Guide to Advancement section says the Lion rank is for youth who are kindergarten age. It doesn’t say it is for youth attending (or even enrolled in) kindergarten.


The inconsistency about when a scout can begin is one of the reasons I think our pack continued applying the system as I described.

For some scouts, who are on year-round classes, they don’t start the subsequent grade until the fall, and continue to be in the “current” grade through either late July or early August, depending on the program. Rather than telling youth in year-round programs that they can’t start until the fall (when they have completed kindergarten and are now in first grade), but allowing youth in a 9-month program to start in June, it seemed most fair to “run” the program year September to August, rather than June to May. Our kids on 9-month cycles register for school in the late summer, rather than the spring, although we submit a “letter of intent to return” just after the end of the school year. If you don’t show up for registration in the late summer, you drop off the list and lose your slot.

As I said before, it wasn’t generally an issue, since we had so few youth joining in the summer. However, that would have meant nearly no-one could earn the Tiger summertime award, which made less sense to us than assuming the existence of an 18-month Webelos program allowed the summertime award to be earned in the summer “dividing” the Webelos years, which would put everyone else earning their summertime award during the summer ending their Tiger/Wolf/Bear year.

I suspect nobody (or probably the same somebodies) would actually balk either way you implement the program.

I’m not sure I would want to wander down the rabbit hole of distinguishing [grade-level age] from [grade level]. That would have moved at least a couple of my cub scouts (who started school late, or started in a different country) up into dens with scouts they didn’t know, as opposed to the scouts they knew from school.


I’ve had it confirmed recently by Anthony Berger, National Director of Cub Scouting, that there is no summer program for Lions.

IMO we don’t want to start recruiting in Preschools. That sounds awful. I do have some little siblings participating this summer who will officially become Lions in August. If they do an event each month, I’ll find something to give them.

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Jennifer the guidance I received from district and council and these future Kindergarten scouts are enrolled in Department of Defense Schools overseas, was to let DODEA determine age eligibility, and take that the scout is enrolled in school for the next year 2019-2020 as a Kindergarten Student they can be in a Lion’s Den. It is still June and I have four Lions signed up, and several came with big brothers. In my personal opinion this is where scouting should have been over 50 years ago. Along with that I also have Den Leaders for the den. Last year we had 11 Lions which made up the majority of the Pack, now are rolling over into two Tiger Dens. Got to get them early and sink the hook.

Very Respectfully,

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Here’s a link to the program schedule my local council puts out for Cub resident camp:

They’ve got program sessions devoted to Lions. I’m new to the council, and I was surprised when I saw it. After mulling over the inconsistency (a resident camp program for Lions when Lions cannot sign up for camp per the Guide to Safe Scouting), I concluded that this must be for younger siblings of Cub Scouts attending camp who just happen to be launching their Scouting careers as Lions.

I agree with you about not recruiting in pre-K classrooms.

However, there seems to be no purpose to choosing an arbitrary date like August 1, when a Scout may register as a Lion. What is the point of it, when the Scout has an older sibling?

Based on Mr. Berger’s statement that there is no summer program for Lions, if the Lion in my pack participates in our conservation project on July 20, he cannot get a Conservation Good Turn patch. We would have to change the date of the project to August 1.

I do see a purpose of not allowing Lions to register before “August or later” in 2018, because they needed to be sure the official program was ready to launch. But we have it now.

Also, if the rule is that there is no summer program for Lions, does that mean that I really cannot allow a Lion to register in my pack until September, because school doesn’t start here until after Labor Day? “Summer” doesn’t mean the same thing everywhere. Here in Delaware, the entire month of August is still clearly summer. Our pack’s first weekly meeting of the program year is scheduled for September 9. Our last on will be on June 12, 2020. In may parts of the country, the program year is over before Memorial Day.

Please don’t interpret any of my rhetorical remarks as daggers being thrown at you. It is obvious you’re one to apply common sense, since you said you’d recognize incoming Lions who met the National Summertime Award with something. My comments are only intended to get to the bottom of the actual rule and foster discussion about whether it makes sense.


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I think August 1 is generally early enough that no one is starting their school year before it. IMO national was concerned that allowing June 1 Lion registrants would eventually lead to recruiting in preschools.

Regarding your council having a summer camp for Lions, I can only assume they aren’t aware of the national rules (that’s the better alternative than a blatant disregard).

I think it’s technically true that an incoming Lion who participates in something on July 20 shouldn’t get credit, but if your council was willing to register them, it’s not their fault… and we don’t punish the youth for adults’ mistakes.


Peter, I think that the resident camp may offer Lions programs for those that choose to do a day time visit. My council follows that Lions cannot camp, but are encouraging Lion dens to may a day visit so that the Lions can get excited about camp and are not left out. It also offers the Lions an outdoor activity and a Lion partner to see what the program entails, and hopefully get them exited about the program enough to consider taking on a den meeting or two, or even stepping up to becoming a Lion guide.


The camp does allow visitors, and there may be some who take advantage of the Lion program.

However, the camp imposes no lower age limit for siblings of Scouts who are attending camp. The leaders’ guide does not say that a parent may bring a younger sibling of a Scout attending camp EXCEPT if the younger sibling is a Lion. Such a rule would be ridiculous. What would be the point of insisting Lions cannot attend, if a nine-month-old baby is welcome?


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FWIW, we allowed the Den Leader to choose on a Scout by Scout basis. Part of the reason was because of our logic for the Outdoor Activity Award, which is a bit more complicated. For that award, you must complete rank specific requirements and attend Summer Camp. However, we saw Summer Camp as the “culmination” of your Rank year. Everything you worked on all year was to prepare you for Summer Camp. Thus, counting your Summer Camp from the year prior (before you did any rank work for that year) made little sense.

Of course, this meant the Outdoor Activity Award would never be earned for your AoL year. Somewhat exacerbating this issue was the fact school ran quite late into June. So a June event that was not still during the school year could be hard to pull off. In fact, I want to say one year the school year pushed into the first week of Summer Camps. Furthermore, we had no Den meetings during the Summer, so as Dens, we never worked on Rank requirements. In fact, there was a certain motivation NOT to as any that are required would ultimately need repeated in the Fall as new Scouts joined at each rank level.

Obviously, going the other way meant the Tiger year version of the award was almost never earned.

If you go through enough awards, programs, etc. for BSA you will ultimately find that the “new year” has many different dates. There is the Scout’s birthday, January 1, June 1, “end of school year”, “start of school year”, blah, blah, blah… In fact this meant we could and might be still working on Rank requirements when other Scouts in the nation had already moved on to the next rank because our school year was still in session. It makes the “date” almost meaningless, so we tried to find a better “intent.”

Our solution then, as I mentioned was to allow the Den Leader to choose, but not allow double dipping of requirements. So attending Summer Camp could apply to the award for the year before, or year after, but not both. You would have to attend Summer Camp twice, to earn the award twice. Having reached this conclusion, we lumped the Summer Time Activity Award into the same decision since it included events during the same time frame.

Ultimately, Summer was treated as a transition phase. Except for awards worked on at camp, Summer events were primarily social. Any rank specific awards earned over the Summer (which were not terribly common anyway) were allowed to apply either way as the Den Leader saw fit. We eliminted the technicalities and made sure the Scout was recognized. Everyone was happy.

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Our pack and District are on a Sub-Tropical island in the Pacific Ocean. The best weather of the year is in the winter with moderate temperatures and low humidity. District holds Day Camp AKA Summer Camp this year will be 4-5 Jan 2020. I like the idea of Lions have some day activities to do on the side and I think I will incorporate that since I am Pack Committee Chairman and also District Day Camp Chair. Summer Time pack award is a struggle for us, especially incorporating Outdoor Activity Award as the heat/ humidly index can get over 100F which is not safe nor fun.

We only work on achievements through the school year, but we try and meet every Monday through the summer to do something, but we also sit in Typhoon Ally so we end up cancelling about 50% of our planned events.

The outdoor activity award can be worked on year round.

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