Friday, June 7, 2013

Eastern Nevada BSA trip

As the Council Commissioner, I try to go with the Scout Executive for his Fireside Chats with the various BSA Districts throughout the State.  This week fell on Elko and Ely.  Elko on Tuesday and Ely on Thursday.  That means I had a day and a half to explore some of the wilder parts of Eastern Nevada.  Wednesday and Thursday morning was spent in Lamoille Canyon, sometimes referred to as Nevada's Yosemite.  I hiked up Lamoille Canyon trying to get to Lamoille Lake.  I didn't have a map but just planned to follow a well wore trail.  About a mile up the trail I lost the trail in snow drifts.  After the third time losing the trail I headed back down.

I packed up the Trailer and headed to Ely.  I went by way of Wells so I could visit Angel Lake.  We had a good meeting in Ely and then it was travel home via Highway 50.
Home sweet home

Beginning of hike up Thomas Canyon

Beaver Dam half way up

Did I mention, I really like Beaver Dams?

Top of Lamoille Canyon

Angel Lake


Jeff & Marla, Gwen and Keith Ashby, Sandy and Jim Rogers, Laif and Kara Meidel.

For the last five months the BSA has been going through a decision making process on whether or not to allow gay youth and adults in Scouting. It has been contentious and confusing. The LDS church chose to not take any position on the matter or to try to influence the process until after the BSA had made a decision. Originally the proposal was to allow both gay youth and gay adults. After a lot of polling and town hall style meetings the position evolved to one of allowing youth who had gay leanings but did not act on them but to bar adults who were “openly or avowed homosexuals and whose behavior would be a distraction to the mission of the BSA”. For this proposal to go through would require the affirmative vote of the national voting members of the BSA, of which there are 1400 nationwide.

The vote was to take place at the BSA National meeting in Dallas Texas. Since I am the Council Commissioner, I was one of the voting members. I was very concerned about the militant homosexual community using Scouting to advance their agenda, so I was pleased that BSA maintained their position on adults. I think a lot of kids get very confused on issues of sexuality. With popular media, pornography, and general lack of moral education today it is a difficult time to be a boy or young man.

The vote was 61% in favor of the resolution and 39% against. The media came out and basically said BSA open to gays. Unfortunately the BSA did a poor job of communicating the entire content of the resolution and many people made their judgments from based on the media message.

In reality the entirety of the resolution reinforces and makes stronger several aspects of what it means to be a Boy Scout.

The Resolution reinforces that “Duty to God” is a vital influence in a Scout’s Life. It points out that Scouting is for youth and youth should not be sexually active regardless of sexual orientation. It points out that there is no change in the standards for adult leaders. And finally it points out that no youth will be denied participation in BSA based on sexual orientation alone as long as they abide by the other principals and requirements of Scouting.

It is interesting to note that the LDS church has had the same standard in the General Handbook since 2010. It states that as long as youth are keeping the commandments and abiding by the standards as laid out in the “For the Strength of Youth” pamphlet, they are encouraged to participate in the programs of the church including the BSA.

One the way back from Dallas, we stopped off in Phoenix for a quick visit with Jesse and Cori and the Grand kids.

Office Remodel and Open House

Bo and I have shared the same office space for 17 years now. We have had as many as five people working in 1100 square feet, plus office supplies, storage, and files. (a lot of files) When the company across the hall from us called it quits we looked into combining their space with ours. We moved a few walls around to move the entrance to the office to the end of the hall so that one door would enter both spaces. The new office space was painted a sickening shade of blue so we repainted it to match our other side. We put down some porcelain tile to connect the two spaces. We completely redid our storage area. We brought in a digital electronics firm so that now we have state of the art networking, wireless and phone systems. We also have a conference room now that we wired with a giant 80 inch video monitor. Everyone jokes that it so we can watch sports, but we don’t have it hooked up to the TV. It is for displaying client information in meetings. We now have about 2300 square feet for the five of us to work in. We actually have more space than we need but it gives us room to grow and we didn’t have to move.

Phase two of our growth plan was to hire another financial advisor. We have been looking for a while but I think we have made a good hire in hiring Virginia Bayne. She is from Santa Rosa California, has a finance degree from Fresno State, worked for 3-4 years for Edward Jones and two years for Waddell and Reed in our Reno Office. So far she seems to be a good fit for the office and is proving very helpful. Time will tell how much money she makes us but so far she has been a big help in customer service issues.

Phase three of the plan is for me to take more time off. I’ve been taking a couple of Fridays off a month so far this year and I really like that. I’m going to try to get more of those Fridays in.


This year for Spring Break we met Jesse and Cori and three grandkids in Orlando Florida for some Disney Magic Kingdom time. A lot has changes since we were last in Orlando 30 years ago. Disney has 26 resort hotels in the area, their own bus service between the airport, hotels and theme parks, and there are now two water parks and four different Theme Parks.

We stayed in the Disney Animation Studios Hotel. It had a Lion King and jungle theme are a huge swimming area. The grandkids enjoyed all the Lion King murals and figures in the area. The rooms were decorated to look like a jungle theme.

We went to the Disney Hollywood Studios park first. Lots of Disney themed movie attractions. A big hit was the Star Tours Ride. Very appropriate since Disney now owns the rights to all the Star Wars Movies.

The second park we visited was Epcot Center. It was very cold this day and very windy. We were a little underdressed but not as much as some tourist we saw. It was also incredibly crowded. We did make the rounds and had a great Japanese dinner with a view of the fireworks show.

Disney has a “Magic Hour” for guests at the Disney Hotels. They open the parks and many of the rides an hour early. That means we are at the bus stop at 6:30 AM with the kids all ready to go. With that early schedule it was nice to take a couple of down days to sleep in and spend some pool time.

We also went to the Magic Kingdom which is pretty much an exact duplicate of Disney Land in Anaheim. Our last park day was in the Wild Animal Park. They had rides and typical Disney stuff but they also had a great tour where we saw a lot of wild animals in a semi wild habitat. They also had a great show production with a Lion King Theme. Of course Grace and Eden had to get out with the performers. Grant was a little too bashful. (A little man after my own heart).

Star Tours

Toy Story Characters
Grant designed this car on the computer.

Jesse and Cori at Epcot Center

Goofy and Grandkids

Lion King Show

Lion King Show