Our Organization’s History
The idea for our organization came when James McEnulty and Steve Martin, then parishioners in the same church, and who had been Assistant Scoutmasters from other area troops, decided to start a new troop where the emphasis was on excellence in a youth-led program and not on parent politics or troop size. That one idea in 2004 led to Troop 555 being chartered in 2005, with James as Scoutmaster and Steve as Committee Chairman. For the first two years the troop slowly grew: James establishing the program and Steve creating the framework for what would ultimately become a larger chartered organization.
In 2007 the little organization decided to become a big organization and became officially known and chartered as Friends & Family of North Star Scouts, with the addition of Pack 555 and in 2008, Crew 555. It was around this time that Steve took over as Scoutmaster (as well as Cubmaster for the Pack), James became Crew Advisor, and Andy Lawrence became our second Committee Chairman.
During the period of time between 2008 and 2010, perhaps owing at least partly to the sensation of the Boy Scouts of America's 100th anniversary, the organization saw tremendous growth with the troop at one point have nearly 80 members! The adult leadership considered this and realized the troop had grown beyond the optimal size originally intended by Lord Baden-Powell. It was decided to branch off by adding an additional Cub Scout unit and to split the troop. By the end of 2010 the troop was again down to a fairly manageable size.
In 2010 many members of the troop attended the National Jamboree for the first time, and they would return in 2013. During this time Crew 555 also saw a significant change in becoming oriented toward field sports, teaching to younger Scouts and offering merit badge instruction, which would continue for several years.
In January 2011, after five years in the position, Steve stepped down as Scoutmaster, and the committee appointed Chris Peterson as the troop's third Scoutmaster. For two years the troop continued to evolve and graduate eagles, and also continued to weather the storm of recession being experienced in our community and the nation. Throughout the recession the troop never raised its fees, instead relying on fundraising and donations to keep the parents' out-of-pocket expenses as low as possible. The troop, pack and crew experienced fluctuations in membership like the rest of scouting, but continued to keep the flames burning brightly. Steve returned as Scoutmaster in January 2013, with Chris Peterson taking over as crew advisor.
Today, the troop, pack and crew remain continuously in pursuit of excellence, adapting to recent changes to all three programs, and preparing to expand in new directions.
THE TROOP GRADUATED THE FIRST TWO OF MANY EAGLE SCOUTS IN 2007. THE PHOTO ABOVE SHOWS MATTHEW MARTIN, 13, AND JOSHUA MACDAVID, 17. THESE TWO BOYS HAD THE PLEASURE OF BEING FOUNDING MEMBERS OF THE TROOP AS WELL, ALONG WITH PATRICK MCENULTY, BRANDON JOHNSON (ALL EAGLES), AND SEVERAL OTHERS.