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Pinewood Derby 2018 Rules and Info

Oh, yes, it’s that time of year again! This year’s Pack 196 Pinewood Derby will be held on Saturday, February 24 beginning with a 9 a.m. check-in and a 9:30 a.m. flag ceremony. Optionally, you can check in your vehicle on Friday night at 6 p.m. — everything will be taking place at Cross Tracks Church.

This year we’re again holding a “tech” session on Saturday, Feb 10th, where you can design, develop and build your Pinewood Derby cars. We have all of the tools and safety tips you will need. Lunch will be provided, so please join your fellow Scouts and families for this fun and educational opportunity. (More details on the TroopTrack site.)

Cubs should have received info about the rules and guidelines with their car kits, but here’s an electronic copy (PDF download) in case you misplaced it or want to refer to it on your phone or at work or whatever.

Here are some links to our previous years’ posts about the Pinewood Derby, which include some tips and tricks:

The Timeline again:

  • Friday, February 23, 6 p.m. Optional Check-In — get your car checked out early. Once it’s checked in, it will need to stay at the venue.
  • Saturday, February 24, beginning at 9 a.m. – Check-In, Flag Ceremony & Racing!

Renew Your Membership, Transfer or Join Online Now!

Don’t fret if you missed last night’s recruitment event. Whether you’re new to Scouting or whether you’re renewing an existing membership (or transferring to Pack 196), you can still do all this online — and even pay for a t-shirt.

Existing members of Pack 196 just need to pay their annual dues, while we have forms for collecting info of new Scouts or transfers from other Packs.

Find all the instructions and info and get started on our registration page! If you have any questions or difficulties with the process, use this form to contact the webmaster.


Participate in Summertime Pack Activities, 2017

Boys who participate in three Summertime Pack events (one each in June, July, and August) are eligible to receive the National Summertime Award pin. Please wear your class B uniform to all Summertime Pack events to represent Cub Scouts. Below are the options for June and July in the summer of 2017. We’ll update this post or add a new one when August activities are available.


Fishing with a Ranger at Inks Lake 
June 2, 9, 16, 23 & 30 (every Friday in June) from 6pm to 7pm —  at Inks Lake 3630 Park Road 4 West, Burnet, TX 78611

Everyone is welcome for this free catch and release instructional program. No fishing license required while on state park property. They have the poles, the worms and the instruction. All you need is your smile. Meet behind the Park Store. This event is free with park entrance fee.  No reservations required.

Liberty Hill Public Library Star Party
June 20, 6:30pm to 9:30pm — at Liberty Hill Public Library, 355 Loop 332, Liberty Hill, TX 78642

The fun begins at 6:30pm with Carl Clark of NASA who will show us amazing pictures and talk about the Hubbel Telescope. At 7:30pm the Austin Astronomical Society will be on the field in front of the library with their telescope for us to look at the skies with. We always get to see some amazing sights and learn about the skies from people passionate about their hobby.


Hands on History at Camp Mabry
July 15, 6pm to 9 pm — at the Texas Military Forces Museum at 2200 West 35th St. Austin, TX 78703  A photo ID is required for all adults to enter the base.

A pic from last year’s event

Tickets are $5 at the door. Children under 6 are free. There is an early bird admission if you want to beat the crowds at 5:00pm. Tickets to enter early are $10.

Come see and handle some of the most famous weapons in military history. The Texas Military Forces Museum will be opening its gun vault for one night. Climb inside a M4A3 Sherman tank, German Hetzer, WWII and post-war era jeeps, a Kiowa and Raven helicopter, US and German Halftracks and M113.  Weapons from the Civil War through the War on Terror will be available to touch and more.

Pack 196 Swim, Ride, and Grill Party
July 29, 11am to 3pm — at Elizabeth Milburn Park & Pool, 1901 Sun Chase Blvd, Cedar Park, TX 78613

Come join us for the best of summer! Milburn pool has slides for all ages, a water play ground and deep water swimming area.  The park has a rock wall, several playscapes, shaded picnic tables, a biking path and a BMX trail. Bring bikes and don’t forget your helmets.

Pack 196 will provide hamburgers and hot dogs.  Bring a side or dessert to share.  Each family should provide their own drinks.

There is a fee to access the swimming pool.

Please RSVP so we can plan and shop accordingly.


Mark Your Calendars for the Blue & Gold Banquet, 2017

After the Pinewood Derby, our Pack’s next big event will be the Blue & Gold Banquet, which will be held in the Junior High School Gym on February 27th. All of your family members are welcome to attend, so put it on your calendar now. We’ll update you about the cost and RSVP process closer to the date.

In the meantime, you might be asking yourself “What is the ‘Blue and Gold Banquet’ all about?” Here’s a little explanation from the Boy Scouts of America:

Most Cub Scouts celebrate Scouting Anniversary Week in February with a “birthday party” called the Blue and Gold Banquet. In nearly all packs, the Blue and Gold banquet is the highlight of the year. It brings families together for an evening of fun and cheer. It’s often the Pack meeting for February.

The purpose of the Blue and Gold banquet is to celebrate the Pack’s anniversary, thank Pack leaders and other adults who have helped the pack, and inspire the leaders, Scouts, and parents. Packs often like to invite former members and other Scouting or community leaders to take part in their Blue and Gold banquet.

The banquet can be like a regular Pack meeting, with songs, skits, stunts, and awards. Or it can be something different and a little more special. Your Pack may decide to bring in an entertainer such as a magician or a storyteller. Or you could have a video or slide show of what the Pack did over the past year.

We’re looking forward to seeing you all at this year’s event!


It’s Pinewood Derby time again! Scouts should be receiving their kits and numbers from their Den Leaders at an upcoming meeting if they haven’t yet done so.

For the uninitiated, here’s how the Cub Scouts describe the event: “The pinewood derby is one of the most popular and successful family activities in Cub Scouting. Pinewood derby cars are small wooden models that Cub Scouts make with help from their families. Then they race the cars in competition. The cars are powered by gravity and run down a track. Most packs have a pinewood derby every year. It can be run indoors or outdoors. Every boy can design and build his own ‘grand prix’ car to enter in the race.”

Download our Pack’s official rules for 2017 in PDF format. There’s a lot to know in terms of acceptable modifications and weights, so please keep these rules close at hand when preparing your entry.

The 2017 Event Timeline

  • Check In: Friday, February 24, 2017, 6 pm (Optional). Check-in will involve ensuring your car adheres to all of the requirements outlined in the official rules. At that time, you’ll hand over your project for safe keeping until the event begins.
  • Race Day: Saturday, February 25, 2017 – 8:30 am check in for those who didn’t come to the optional check-in on Friday. Flag Ceremony at 9:00 am
  • Location: Cross Tracks Church (Formerly Liberty Hill UMC), Liberty Hill, Texas
  • Philosophy: The Pinewood Derby is set up to be a technical learning/teaching experience. Cub Scouts are to build the cars with the aid of an adult. Each child should do as much of the work themselves as safely as possible.
  • Cost: No entry fee

Support for Parents and Scouts

One of the main purposes of the Pinewood Derby is to teach the principles of sportsmanship. In this spirit, all Scouts, parents, and race officials will support every Scout in their attempt to build the best car they can. If you have questions or need technical assistance, please contact one of the race officials, your son’s Den Leader, or other parents in the Pack. You will find no shortage of people willing to provide tips, experience, and tools.

We hope to have one or two days when Scouts and Akela have access to a workshop with tools they may not have at home. Details of these events to be announced as they’re firmed up. Regardless, though, you will find people willing to share.

To help you in your project, here’s a collection of links to helpful resources for Pinewood Derby car builders…

A Former NASA Engineer Explains The Science:

Super Fast Pinewood Derby Track

The 2009 Pinewood Derby National Championships

The Official Cub Scouts Pinewood Derby Pinterest Board


Scout Night with the Austin Spurs 12/3

unnamedThe Austin Spurs are excited to continue the great tradition of Scout Night!

As previous years, the team will host a pregame basketball clinic and have some on-court activities post-game. All Scouts who participate in this night will receive an Austin Spurs Patch. The basketball clinic will be held at the PAC (Premier Athletic Complex) from 4-5 pm, and will be open to the first 100 Scouts who register.

This year’s Scout Night will also include a STEM Fair that will consist of several fun and interactive STEM activities! The STEM Fair will be going on at the arena following the basketball clinic, and will continue through half-time.

Each ticket will include a food voucher, good for a hot dog and soda at any concessions stand within the arena. To purchase tickets, visit https://groupmatics.events/#/event/austinspursscoutnight (deadline has been extended to November 30).



RSVP For Our Fall Campout!


Pack 196 Scout Parents: 

It’s nearly time for our Fall Campout, so please RSVP as soon as possible and get more details and directions on our private TroopTrack site. (Contact the Pack 196 Webmaster if you are having trouble logging in.) The per-family fee for the event is $10.00. We are really looking forward to a fun weekend in the pine forest, and we hope lots of Pack members come along!

If you’re not a seasoned camper (and even if you are), you may want to check out some camping packing lists to get ideas about what you need to take. Your Den Leader should provide you with more info about what to bring and what to expect. See you there!


Join Cub Scouts or Renew Your Membership Online Now!

14799925774_e7fb8242d3_o-1Eager to join Cub Scouts for the first time, or would you like to complete your annual membership renewal now, rather than waiting for the official Pack 196 recruiting night on Monday, September 12? Well, you’re in luck!

This year, we’ve added website functionality that will let you pay your annual dues securely online with your debit or credit card, and, if you’re new to Scouting, you can complete the required membership forms — for Youth or Adult memberships — all from the comfort of your computer. If you’ve been with the Pack in past years, you can check out our password-protected portal and verify that we’ve got all your information up to date. It’s super easy!

We’re hoping this capability makes it a lot more convenient for folks to pay their annual dues and also saves our volunteer Treasurer from getting a cramp from writing out receipts manually on Monday night. Plus, if you get the paperwork out of the way you can enjoy visiting with Den Leaders and fellow Scout parents while your kids have fun with all of the activities we have planned for Recruiting night.

We’ll have games, a bounce house and lots of other fun diversions for the boys so they can get a taste of what’s to come this Scouting year. To join, go to our sign up page where you can get all the info: http://pack196.org/join-cub-scouts


From Facebook: Hands on History Night at Camp Mabry

From Our Facebook Page:


A fun Night at Hands on History at Camp Mabry.

See the original post here.
Posted by: Cathy Shore Hoysa


rr_express_logo_detailHead out to the Ball Game with your fellow Cub Scouts and members of our charter organization — the Liberty Hill United Methodist Church — as our local minor league baseball team plays the Memphis Redbirds on August 2 at 7:05 p.m.!

The church choir will be singing the national anthem before the game and we’ll all be able to sit together in the stands on the third base side (in the shade) and enjoy one another’s company. Anyone who wants to sing the national anthem with the choir can contact our charter organization representative.

Presale tickets for our reserved area are $7 each, and orders must be in by July 27. Special LHUMC Round Rock Express t-shirts are also available for $12. More info on how to pay and who to contact is available to Scout Parents on our password protected site or you may pay here on this page. If you don’t have a login to the password-protected site yet, please contact us so we can get you set up.