Graham McCaw, Collin Osiek, George Buckner, and Gatlin Knisley prepare for activities at summer camp.

Graham McCaw and Collin Osiek enjoy an eight-mile canoe trip on the Current River.

Graham McCaw works towards his Climbing merit badge.

Scout Troop 25 earns gold

Collin Osiek works towards his Archery merit badge.

Troop 25 camps in a cave.


 Story and photos submitted
by Scoutmaster John McCaw

The Webb City Boy Scout Troop 25 recently completed an active and successful year, achieving Gold Level distinction in the Boy Scouts of America’s Journey to Excellence program for 2022.

Journey to Excellence is the BSA’s planning, performance, and recognition program designed to help Troops to plan, monitor, and evaluate their performance and their ability to serve youth, and to encourage and reward the success of units, districts, and councils. It is meant to encourage excellence in providing a quality program at all levels of the BSA.

There are specific criteria for the unit to plan and accomplish. For Gold Level distinction, the troop must earn points in at least eight different categories and must earn a total of at least 1,000 points. A balanced troop earns points related to planning, membership, program activities, and volunteer leadership.

Webb City’s troop earned more than half of its points based on program activities, which included regular patrol meetings, six short-term camping trips, one long-term camping trip, and multiple service projects throughout the year.

Scouts enjoyed a variety of activities throughout the year including archery, axe throwing, camping, canoeing, climbing, fishing, hiking, kayaking, mountain biking, rappelling, shooting, small boat sailing, swimming, and much more.

The troop also engaged in a variety of service projects throughout the year including, litter removal, landscape maintenance, food pantry support, environmental conservation, and support of veterans. The troop completed over 150 man-hours of service throughout the year, including over 50 hours dedicated to conservation efforts.

Additional highlights for the year include the induction of two scouts, Gatlin Knisley and Graham McCaw, into the Order of the Arrow, which is scouting’s National Honor Society dedicated to a brotherhood of cheerful service. Membership eligibility is based on meeting certain advancement and camping requirements and being nominated by other youth within the troop. 

Additionally, three scouts, Collin Osiek, Gatlin Knisley, and Graham McCaw earned their National Outdoor Achievement Award for camping. This award requires earning the rank of First Class, completing three specific merit badges, and completing at least 25 nights of camping.

The Webb City troop currently includes scouts in a variety of ranks including Scout, First Class, Star Scout, and Life Scout. While some of the scouts are pursuing their Eagle Scout rank, all members can benefit from the program, regardless of their rank or pace of advancement.

Colin Osiek, Graham McCaw, and Gatlin Knisley work on a conservation project.

Active scouts within the troop have earned a total of more than 60 merit badges. These include merit badges for American Business, Archery, Astronomy, Camping, Canoeing, Citizenship in the Community, Citizenship in the World, Climbing, Collections, Communications, Cooking, Crime Prevention, Emergency Preparedness, Family Life, First Aid, Fishing, Game Design, Geography, Home Repairs, Indian Lore, Leather working, Oceanography, Personal Fitness, Personal Management, Pets, Public Speaking, Reading, Railroading, Scholarship, Scouting Heritage, Small Boat Sailing, Stamp Collecting, Sustainability, Swimming, Truck Transportation, Wilderness Survival, and Wood Carving.

The troop is well supported with adult leaders, who bring experience in a variety of backgrounds including art, business, education, engineering, finance, healthcare, information technology, law enforcement, logistics, and more. The troop earned additional points towards Journey to Excellence based on adult leader training, including the completion of a week-long advanced leadership training by Scoutmaster John McCaw and Committee Chair Jason Osiek.

Troop 25 meets at 7 p.m. Mondays at the First Presbyterian Church in Webb City. New members are always welcome, and the troop is well equipped to work around other activities and sports.

First Presbyterian Church members have been extremely helpful and supportive as the troop strives to develop youth and positively impact the community.

The Boy Scouts of America, or Scouts BSA, is a youth led organization with the aim of providing character development, leadership development, citizenship training, and personal fitness – with an aim to prepare every eligible youth in America to become a responsible, participating citizen and leader who is guided by the Scout Oath and Law.

JROTC cadets and Scout Corbin Stinnett  laying wreaths at the Veterans Memorial in Mt. Hope Cemetery during Wreaths Across America.