Pack 50 Families: With store sales of popcorn by the dens under way, we wanted to provide you with the vital information for the other (and larger) portion of the popcorn campaign—sales by the scouts individually to their neighbors, relatives, classmates/teammates, parents’ co-workers, and people at organizations to which the family belongs. Although the sales activity centers on your boy(s) in Pack 50, the key to success is whole family involvement. Essentially, this is the same approach used by the Girl Scouts in selling cookies in the Spring.
Every boy needs at least one—preferably more—of the Trail’s End popcorn sales brochures handed out at the September pack meeting. The brochure is critical because it contains (1) the popcorn product descriptions and prices, (2) the sign-up forms for taking people’s popcorn orders, and (3) pictures and descriptions of the prizes your boy(s) can earn for various levels of sales. Having multiple copies of the form allows the adults in your Scout’s life to take them to their offices, job sites, and businesses. If you need another form, we plan to have them available when scouts are selling at the grocery stores or please contact the Popcorn Colonel.
The Pack splits the proceeds from popcorn sales with the BSA Marin Council and the company that makes the popcorn. As with store sales, ultimately, neighborhood popcorn sales is as much about community engagement as it is about raising money. We want everyone to know that their town is home to a viable Scouting program backed up by responsible adult leaders working for youth development and community good. In addition, popcorn sales is the only significant fund-raiser for the Pack, and revenue from the popcorn campaign offsets the cost of Pack activities for the remainder of the year, keeping subsequent per-activity costs minimal. On the basis of Pack funding needs and historically realistic sales achievements, an “expectation” has been established for each boy to sell at least $175 in this “door-to-door and online” campaign. An adjustment can be made for families with more than one boy in Cub Scouts. While each boy is a success, regardless of how much they sell so long as they “do their best,” the Pack asks parents to buy popcorn, or make a donation, for the balance of any sales less than the $175 “expectation.” This allows the Pack volunteers to concentrate on planning and delivering quality programs for the remainder of the year, rather than worrying about funding shortfalls.
Also attached are descriptions of prizes the scouts can get for selling different amounts of popcorn. All scouts will receive a badge for selling regardless of the amount.
Neighborhood sales by the Pack is the heart of the popcorn door-to-door sales campaign (as are online sales; see below). The boys must wear their uniforms when going door-to-door or setting up a neighborhood popcorn stand. They should show people the brochure of product choices, and explain that they are selling popcorn to raise money for Pack 50 scouting activities such as going camping, collecting food for the hungry, and participating in other community service activities. They take popcorn orders by having people fill out the forms for the popcorn products they want and collecting the money (cash or check to “Pack 50”) now. We cannot take credit or debit cards. Be sure to have some $1 and $5 bills on hand for making change. The boys should explain that they will deliver the popcorn in mid-November. They should always say “thank you” regardless of whether people buy popcorn or not.
Scouts should follow common-sense safety rules:
Do not go alone. Always have an adult present.
Do not go door-to-door after dark.
Do not go into someone’s home. If invited in, politely say you’ll wait at the door while they get their money/checkbook.
Don’t run or walk in the middle of the street.
In addition to selling in your neighborhood, other great places to sell are your church (or other house of worship), clubs or gyms (neighborhood, swim, gymnastics, etc.), and other activity centers.
START NOW. All completed take-order forms and checks/cash must be delivered to the Popcorn Colonel. If any popcorn on your form was already delivered to customers using Pack 50 supplies on-hand, check the DLV (for delivered) column at the far right of the form. If you want to drop off a partial order early, so that you don’t have too much cash in your house, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Boys can sell to distant relatives and friends by setting up an on-line account at “Trail’s End,” the Scouts’ popcorn company (see http://sell.trails-end.com/login). Click on create an account in the upper right corner. It gives your Scout an account (he doesn’t need to already have an e-mail address) and sends your relatives and friends a “personalized” e-mail explaining why he’s selling popcorn and the products available. The cost of on-line popcorn is a bit more, because it includes shipping, so use the regular take-order form for local relatives. On-line sales are credited to your Scout, and count toward prizes and the $175 expectation.