Blue and Gold Banquet
The Blue and Gold Banquet is probably the most exciting event of the whole year because it is a
birthday party for Cub Scouting in which all pack families can take part. The banquet is held in
February, the anniversary month of the Boy Scouts of America. The pack's big celebration gets
its name from the Cub Scout colors, blue and gold.
February is the month when Abraham Lincoln was born. February 12th is his birthday. February
is also the birthday of George Washington, the Father of our Country, and Lord Baden Powell,
the- Father of Scouting - both were born on February 22nd. With all that we have to celebrate in
the month of February, these birthdays are not the reason for our Blue and Gold Banquet. The
Blue and Gold Banquet is a birthday dinner for the whole Cub Scouting program.
The Cub Scout program was began in February 1930, just 20 years after the birth of Scouting in
the United States. Like all birthday celebrations, this is supposed to be firm, colorful and
Some packs make the dinner a potluck affair with each family bringing a covered dish, and other
packs prefer buying the food, having it prepared by a parent's committee, and then pro-rating the
cost among those attending. The plan of feeding isn't important. It is the Cub Scouting that
happens in making the program come that counts. Dens sit together with their families so that
den spirit and family relationships are strengthened. Guests may be invited and are seated either
at a head table, or with the dens.
Banquet arrangements must be made and planning done well in advance. Decorations may be as
elaborate or as simple as you wish. Attractive menu cards or dinner programs can be made;
place cards, centerpieces, place mats, nut cups, and favors are all suggestions of things, which
might be used. The dinner program should include entertainment from within the pack, rather
than outside entertainment.
Also, don't forget the importance of recognizing advancement of the boys. This is the secret of a
successful Blue and Gold Banquet.
There are three important things to remember:
- Be sure that pack leaders, boys and parents know that the Blue and Gold banquet is Cub
Scouting's birthday celebration.
- Begin planning at least two months ahead. Some packs begin even earlier.
- KISMIF - Keep It Simple, Make It Fun. Involve leaders and parents. Sharing responsibilities
makes is easier and more fun for everyone. Let the boys help plan and make the decorations,
but keep the cutting and pasting to a minimum. Do let them help make each item.
The dinner usually includes the following:
- Displays. These might be related to Scout Month; handicraft projects, den doodles, den wall
advancement charts, pictures of den and pack activities.
- Opening Ceremony. There are several special Blue and Gold openings, or use any good
- Invocation. A pack leader, a Cub Scout or a clergyman may give this.
- The Dinner. Remember to keep the cost reasonable, serve food that is generally acceptable to
all families and be sure the food is served hot. The dinner should go smoothly if adequate
planning and preparation has been done in advance.
- Welcome and Introductions. The master of ceremonies (usually the Cubmaster) will want to
recognize guests, the head of the sponsoring institution, etc.
- Entertainment and Singing. Den stunts and skits should be short. Outside entertainment can
be used but is not recommended because of cost - and besides, the parents come to see their
- Awards. This is the part of the evening that the boys have been waiting for. The ceremony
must be impressive, well executed and meaningful.
- Recognition of Leaders. This is a good time to recognize all pack leaders for their work
during the year. Again, a long drawn-out ceremony will cause the boys to start squirming in
their chairs, so make it short but meaningful.
- Closing Ceremony. Again, use a Blue and Gold closing or any good closing.
To be successful, the banquet must be planned well in advance. The Pack Committee selects a
banquet chairman, and that person recruits helpers to carry out the responsibilities of the Blue
Try to involve as many people as possible, and avoid giving Den Leaders too many additional
responsibilities,they will be working with their dens.
Planning Time Line
August: At the annual pack-planning meeting, decide on a date, time and place for the
Blue and Gold banquet. If a school location is desired, be sure all requisitions
and/or forms are prepared and turned in to the school as soon as possible. Recruit
a Chairman for the Blue and Gold Banquet.
September: Recruit subcommittee chairmen (physical arrangements, invitations, dinner,
decorations/ambiance, program, entertainment, awards/recognition, etc.)
October: Be sure the location has been secured. Plan the budget for the banquet. Encourage
all committee and subcommittee members, especially the Chairmen of each, to
attend Pow-Wow and take the classes related to planning a Blue and Gold
November: Subcommittees should begin meeting and planning their parts of the banquet.
Banquet Chairman should report to Pack Committee about the plans and budget
for the Banquet.
December: Blue and Gold Committee should meet with den leaders to give ideas for
decorations, program, invitations, information, etc. Secure entertainment, if from
outside the pack; make assignments to dens for entertainment, if from within the
pack. Notify the physical arrangements committee so seating can be planned. On
banquet night, meet guests at the door furnish them with a nametag, and help
them find their seats.
January: Dens begin work on their decorations. Invitations completed and sent to families
and quest. Special guest invitations mailed.
February: Reconfirm location, time, and place. Reconfirm entertainment. Buy supplies,
plates, coffee, etc. Program agenda ready for printing. Deadline for RSVP. Let
dinner committee know reservations to make final food order.
Banquet Day: Early set up, needs to be scheduled so people have time to go back home if
needed. This is it, have fun! Cleanup after banquet. Immediately following the
banquet, write thank you notes for entertainment, donations, etc.
The banquet committee makes the following important decisions, and then works in teams on
Physical Arrangements Committee
- Make arrangements for banquet location.
- Check seating capacity and number of tables available. Estimate attendance.
- Check lighting, stage, heating, and public address system.
- Locate rest rooms - makes sure they will be open.
- Check availability of coatroom or coat racks.
- Make floor plan of tables, plans seating, head table (if desired).
- Make arrangements to get into building early the day of the banquet.
- Set up tables and chairs for the dinner.
- Inform dens what time they can decorate.
- Be sure to allow time for people to get home and dress for dinner.
- Arrange for clean-up committee.
- Determine whether guests will be seated at the head table or with dens. Notify physical
arrangements committee so seating can be planned.
- Select Master of Ceremonies.
- Make assignments for various parts of the program, as described above.
- Plan room decorations, exhibits and displays. (Each den should handle Table
- Make copies of program for people participating (or you may wish to have a printed
program for everyone attending).
- Avoid speeches on the program
- Include a planned activity for small children so they won't get impatient.
Dinner Committee decides the serving method catered, potluck, or committee prepared.
- Contact caterer - agree on menu and cost.
- Take reservations and estimate cost.
- Check with caterer on time of delivery, finding out if he provides plates, silverware, etc.
- Are drinks and dessert included?
- Plan two serving lines, if more than 150 people attending.
- Collect money prior to banquet.
- Decide if dens will plan their own menus or if each den family will bring food to
contribute to an over-all menu.
- If dens plan their own menus, each Den Leader should act as coordinator.
- Need serving spoons & pieces for each dish.
If committee prepared:
- Select menu.
- Recruit committee to prepare food.
- Take reservations and estimates of attendance.
- A few days before banquet, purchase food and deliver it to members of the committee
who will be preparing it.
- Collect money prior to banquet.
Types of Banquets
- Pottuck #l: Each den's families are asked to provide one main dish and one extra dish (salad,
vegetable, or dessert). All food is placed on one table and served buffet style. The pack
provides the beverages and breads. No charge is made for the meal.
-Potluck #2: Each den's families are asked to provide a vegetable, salad or dessert. The pack
provides the meat, beverages and breads. All food is placed on one table and served buffet
style. A charge is made to cover the expenses.
- Family Style Potluck: As in #l, except food is only on the table(s) assigned to-that den and
is passed family style. The den may provide breads and beverages or the pack may provide
them. No charge is made for the meal.
- Cook your own: The pack decides on the menu, purchases the food, and distributes it to the
dens for cooking and preparing. A charge is made for the cost of the food.
- Box Supper #l: Each family is asked to bring one box supper for each family member. All
boxes are collected at the door and are auctioned off for a pack moneymaking project. The
family members may eat together, sharing the boxes that they purchased.
- Box Supper #2: Each female member of a family brings a box supper for three people.
These suppers are auctioned off as in #5, but the person who buys the meal must eat with the
person who prepared it, plus one child.
- Box Supper #3: Use either of the two box supper methods, except no charge is made for the
meals and no auction held.
- Sponsor Dinner: The Chartered Organization provides all food, beverages, and condiments.
No charge is made for the meal.
- Catered Meal: The pack arranges with a local caterer to provide all or a portion of the meal.
Costs determine the prices of tickets. Usually children five and under are free.
- Cafeteria: Sometimes the banquet is held in a school cafeteria and the school provides the
meal, charging each person going through the line.
- Cafeteria #2: The pack purchases the food, which is prepared by the cafeteria staff. Charge
is based on cost of food and charges for the staff, if not donated. Pack members can
substitute for or assist the cafeteria staff, to cut costs.
- Restaurant: A local restaurant is selected as the banquet site and a menu is chosen. Charges
are based on the menu. Be sure to secure the cost of the meal, plus tax and tip.
- Dessert Specials: Ideas include dessert provided by the Chartered Organization, a Father-
son cake bake, and a build-a- sundae bar with ice cream in commercial containers and
toppings such as syrups, nuts, and whipped cream.
- Birthday Party: No food, but instead have cake and ice cream to celebrate Scouting's
(This outline can be altered to suit your particular pack needs and assets: the size of your pack and
treasury and most of all, creative people willing to work together to bring forth a beautifully
planned and fun dinner.)
Two types of invitations are usually sent: one to honored guests and one to each family in the
pack. The boys usually take this home from den meeting. One den might be asked to invite the
guests or an adult might do this. The invitation and its contents should reflect the high ideals of
Cub Scouting and also the theme of this year's Blue and Gold Banquet.
Honored guests might include the following:
District executive and family Boy Scout troop leader
Pack commissioner PTA president and spouse
Church minister and wife (if banquet Chartered Organization
being held there) Representative and spouse
Guest speaker Former Cubmaster and spouse
Guest entertainer School principal
This is the busiest part of Blue and Gold for den leaders and boys. Keep decorations simple
enough for boys to handle. Let them help plan, using a theme for a guideline. Here is a list of
items usually made for decorations to help carry out the theme. Doing a nice job on a few is better
than trying to make all those listed. (For ideas for invitations and decorations see the Craft section
of this Pow Wow book.)
Nutcups Napkin rings
Placemats Mother's corsage
Gathering period: Have someone to greet the families and guests as they come
in, give them name tags and direct them to their tables.
Have an activity for early arrivers.
Opening Ceremony: Flag ceremony or opening to fit theme.
Invocation: This is given by a pack leader or church minister and
should be non-denominational.
Welcome and Introductions: Recognize pack leaders and special guests.
Skits, Stunts, Entertainment:
Advancement Awards Ceremony:
Recognition of Leaders:
Announcements and Thanks:
Closing Ceremony: At this point in the program, the tone should be more
serious. Close with something inspirational or patriotic.