Guest Author - Erik Moeller
The fall of 2008 is coming soon and so is a new Boy Scout uniform. The uniform is moving into the 21st Century. There are a lot of changes and they look really positive.
I know it’s not the most significant change but the most impressive change is that the olive green socks with the red tops are gone. Yeah!! They have been replaced with several options of socks that are designed to be more functional. They are designed with support features and possess moisture wicking abilities to help keep the feet dry.
The red color is gone in numerous other places as well. Forest green is the new color. The shoulder loops are forest green; the unit numbers are forest green on khaki; the “Trained” patch is forest green on Khaki; and the emblem on the hat is now an embroidered forest green.
Uniform material is changed also. Shirts are Khaki and the pants are forest green. Material options are available. The basic material is a 67/33 cotton to polyester blend that should make them easier to care for and give Scouts better wear. The SupplexTM material is designed for active wear since it dries quickly and provides 50+ UV sun protection.
There are a number of changes in the design of the shirts. Front pockets on the shirt are roomier and are closed with a “Velcro” type closure. There is also a pocket on the left sleeve. Long sleeve shirts have a new configuration. They have “inside Swiss tabs and outside loops.” This means the long sleeves can be rolled up and buttoned in the rolled up position, making the shirt very versatile in changing weather conditions.
Scout pants have also undergone a significant transition. In addition to material and color change, pants now come with unfinished seams in the legs so you can fit the pants to your exact length. Pants are also available in the Classic fit and Relaxed fit- a nice option for some of us with a more “mature” figure. Both styles have a feature that allows the portion of the pants below the knee to be zipped off. More functionality and more comfortable. The belt is wider and made of a sturdier web and the buckle has a more up to date look and feel.
Pricing on short sleeve shirts appears to be between $24.99 and $37.99 depending on size and material. Long sleeve shirts are about $5.00 more. Pants are $34.99 to $39.99 depending on size and material. Belts are $9.99 to $11.99 and caps are $11.99 to $12.99.
Although I haven’t seen these uniforms, all evidence leads me to believe Scouting is moving the uniform in the right direction. I would like to hear your comments as you get a chance to put these new uniforms to use in the field.