Welcome to BSA Troop 153 in Fremont CA!

We meet from 7:00pm - 8:30pm every Monday when Fremont Unified School District is in Session.  

We meet at Mission Valley Elementary School in the Multi Use Room in the back of the school located at 41400 Denise Street, Fremont, CA  

Boy Scout Troop 153 has served boys in Fremont, CA for over 60 years.

Any boy between the ages of 11 and 18 is welcome to join us. We emphasize a strong program of camping and outdoor activities.

Advancement and the Scout's responsibility - A Scoutmaster's note

Posted by rhertel on Jul 11 2020 - 1:19am

Over the past few months we have experienced a number of disruption to normal life, changing how we school and work, how we meet, and for Scouting how we communicate and document our activity. There are a number of things that used to be easy to do because one could count on a regular cadence of meetings and events. Times have changed for everyone, including the adult volunteers who now face many new pressures from their work and home life. Today it is all the more important that a Scout takes responsibility for their own path. Of late the Scoutmasters and the Advancement team have observed some concerning behavior across the Troop that is creating more difficulty for the volunteers that help operate the Troop. What follows is a reminder of the expectations put upon all Scouts, and particularly expected among the older Scouts. Please make sure you read this in full, as it may help your future advancement.

Updated: Merit Badge opportunities for Summer - Exploration Camp by Golden Gate Council

Posted by rhertel on Jul 11 2020 - 12:04am

In light of the lack of availability of summer camp due to the ongoing health emergency, GGAC will be expanding their summer MB program. Some content has changed from earlier announcements, and their website has added three additional weeks where courses may be taken. Also, look out for additional news stories for other MB options this summer

The Golden Gate Area Council, which is the name of the new merger of the San Francisco Bay Area Council + Mount Diablo/Silverado Council + Alameda Council, will be running a summer program to supplement the Summer Camp opportunities for Merit Badges. 2020 Exploration Camp will be different than past Exploration Camp events run by SFBAC; MB classes are setup as a weekly virtual session with each class lasting 5 days running about 1-2 hours. Scouts would sign up for one or more badges for the week, similar to how it is done at Summer Camp, with each session meeting daily at the specified time. Badges are signed up individually, and costs are relative to the badge.  

More Below:


Posted by adkadepurkar on Jul 4 2020 - 12:09pm
Hello all,
During these troubled times, many people have been left hungry or without proper necessities. I have contacted the food bank, and they provided me with a list of items that they are short on. I hope to hold a troop item collection for people within our troop who have excess of items that the food bank needs to donate the items to them. We can do this by running it in a similar fashion to scouting for food. What I need is for scouts and parents willing to drive to step forward and reply to this email, so I have a rough estimate of the amount of volunteers that we have. We will be driving around to scouts’ houses to pick up the items that they have placed outside and take them to the food bank. To all families who have the items below and are willing to donate them, please send me an email with your address and the items that you have so we can arrange a time for us to pick them up.  
Right now we could use the below pre-bagged items.    


Cancelled: Wente 2020 Summer Camp - Plus 2021 camp news

Posted by rhertel on Jul 2 2020 - 10:00pm

Announced July 1 from SFBAC/GGAC, due to ongoing concerns over the Covid-19 and the local and statewide Health Department restrictions, summer camp at Wente and their other camps will not be able to be held this year. We are seeing similar decisions made all over the State, which had only a few camps able to create social distancing protocols to start with. Other summer camps we have worked with in the past are also closing this summer (Oljato, Emerald Bay, etc.) or were unable to find a way to open due to the safety needs and camp design compatibility issues. SFBAC/GGAC has posted a letter on the subject, attached to this announcement.

SFBAC/GGAC is expanding their virtual Merit Badge class offerings to compensate to allow Scouts to earn some badges. Troop 153 will be researching other opportunities for virtual learning and will continue to make announcements via the Troop website. We are also in the process of planning for summer camp in 2021, with Wente tentatively targeted for July 4-10 and Emerald Bay being researched for a late summer session (August 1-7 if offered.) And don't forget that National Jamboree is in 2021 and the Council is sending groups. See the previous announcement about National Jamboree for more information on that.

Pacific Sky Council virtual MB opportunity, and others that can be researched.

Posted by rhertel on Jul 2 2020 - 6:57pm

The Pacific Sky Council (representing Scouts on the SF Bay Area peninsula) is offering some Eagle-required Merit Badge classes. Scouts may take courses from any Boy Scouts of America registered adult that is certified to be a Merit Badge Counselor, though some may needs to help with additional communication between the MBC and the Advancement team or SM. The extra work can be worth it if you are looking for an unusual badge or a badge in high demand. Again, these are organized directly with the MB provider not Troop 153 and all payments and other communications would be with the MB provider. Make sure you follow Youth Protection guidelines so they can communicate with you.


Pacific Sky Council's offering this July can be found here: https://scoutingevent.com/031-38603  and they are offering four Merit Badges currently

  • Citizenship in the Community
  • Citizenship in the Nation
  • Citizenship in the World
  • Communications


A list of nearly 50 other councils all over the country offering virtual Scouting programs can be found in an article on Scout Share. Note, Troop 153 has not validated the information here but most links seem to point directly to Scout Council sites. Always take care when following links. The article is found here. http://www.scoutshare.org/Resources/Articles/virtual-summer-camps-scouts-bsa-the-list

Email Courtesy and Youth Protection

Posted by rhertel on Jun 11 2020 - 2:18pm

A message from your Scoutmaster reminding you about good communication practices. Please take time to read all of this.

How you communicate is very important to the troop, and this week I've had a number of failures in communication from youth new and old. I will bring to you one example. Today I received an email from someone. I say someone because the person didn't sign their name to the end of their email. Their email address has a "funny" (I'm sure to them) name in the address field that doesn't tell me who they are, and their email address doesn't have their name in it either. They are asking for help, but because they didn't tell me who they are AND they failed to copy their parents I have no way of replying to them within Youth Protection guidelines. And their email missed many of the common courtesies as well. No signature or closing, no formatting, name not capitalized. A Scout is Courteous, and that includes in communication.

As we have repeatedly said, you MUST copy your parents or another adult, or a mailing list with many adults on it, when emailing a Scouting adult you are not related to. If you do not, this person can not email you back unless they choose to look up your parent (if they can) and add them to the reply. When you don't follow Youth Protection guidelines, your question may go unanswered or at best be delayed by days. As you get older and start emailing people outside the Troop, they have no ability to look up such information and may simply ignore your email. This may result in you missing that Merit Badge class or getting your Eagle project approved. By not following the rules, you make extra work for others and some will simply choose to not do that work. It is your loss. As volunteers, we are busy with many things and if you make it hard to communicate we will spend time on things we can do first. If you follow the Youth Protection guidelines, you still must communicate your message well to be successful.

When sending an email, you are not texting a friend. You are engaging someone in a conversation and often asking them for something. Take this seriously, treat the person you are communicating to with respect. Open with a proper salutation, close with the proper complimentary closing and your name. Consider a signature at the end. Make sure the message body and subject communicate what you need well. This is an important lesson for Scouting, where you will probably be emailing people you don't know as you advance in rank, and it is an important lesson to learn as you start considering college and work. Writing a good email can impact hiring and college entrance, and goes a long way when building your network.

An example of a good email in a business/professional context can be found here: https://erinwrightwriting.com/how-to-format-a-business-email/

BSA Troop # 153

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