It’s your Ceremony. Ultimately it is up to the Eagle Scout and their family as to the size, location, and date of their Eagle Court of Honor. If there are several scouts who want a combined ceremony, the families should get together early to work out and agree upon all facets of the event. The following paragraphs outline the areas you and your family should discuss and plan for when thinking about commemorating the occasion of achieving the rank of Eagle.
The Venue. The Nichols Bethel United Methodist Church has been the traditional location for any Eagle Courts of Honor, however, nothing prevents you from conducting the ceremony in another preferred location. Many ECoHs are held in the main chapel area with guests sitting in the pews, but ceremonies have also been conducted in the Cafe area since there is the capability to live-stream the event from there. Due to Covid restrictions and personal preference, some ceremonies have been conducted outdoors in the parking lot as well. You can use this link to request which room or area you would like to use for your ceremony, and check back by phone to ensure they received the request.
Letters of Congratulation and Awards. There are numerous letters of Congratulatory Letters that you can request on behalf of your Eagle Scout from local officials to celebrities across the country. For the instructions on how to request a letter from local government officials up to the President and Vice President take a look at this guide.
- For a letter from the Commander of US Cyber Command, prepare a short biography of your scout (something you would put in your ceremony program), and request a letter through their website at https://www.cybercom.mil/Contact-Us/ . You can use the following example of what to enter in each block here
- Bryan On Scouting also has a great guide on everything you need to know about these letters and who else you can request letter from, just go here.
Theme, Format, and Scripts. Your Eagle Court of Honor can follow any theme that you and your family identify with. The most popular are ones that incorporate ideas and concepts from across the history and principles of scouting. These include but are not limited to the following…
- Akela and the Pack
- Red, White, and Blue
- The light (candle) of knowledge
- Lord Baden Powell’s Legacy
- Climbing the mountain
Many components of the ceremony format can be found on the BSA Troop Resources site. You can take a look at some of the examples there as well, and pick what works for you and your family best.
Examples of Scripts for different themes are abundant. You can find some of them at the following sites:
A great way to encourage younger scouts to continue scouting is to involve them in your ceremony. They will be able to see firsthand the results of persistence and hard work, and being involved in the ceremony will make them feel part of the achievement.
Guest Speakers. If you have a guest speaker in mind, you should try to coordinate with them as soon as you can. Guest Speakers are not a requirement, but if your scout has a special connection to someone in the community who can connect with scouting, then it can add significance to the ceremony. Those who are community leaders who are also Eagle Scouts themselves are great choices for this.
Reception. Providing refreshments following the ceremony allows the participants and attendees the chance to gather and talk about the Eagle Scout’s accomplishments and future. A cake and some punch are the most traditional, but potlucks and BBQs are also great ways to celebrate and involve family and friends. If their are multiple scouts being recognized, the families may want to divide up the responsibilities or the types of dishes to bring. At Nichols-Bethel UMC, you can request to use either Manning Hall, the Beacon Café, or even the outside parking lot between the church and soccer field. Click here to go to their online request form or call 410-674-2272.