Your Eagle Scout Court of Honor
Once you have passed your board of review, then you can start planning your court of honor. You will probably want to work closely with your Scoutmaster, parents, and other troop leaders. Some troops have an adult leader specifically designated to help plan courts of honor. This will be your special day. Good planning can make it very special. If you have friends who will be receiving their Eagle awards soon, you may want to do a joint court of honor.
You should plan your court of honor at least 6 weeks after your board of review. The official national policy states that "The Eagle Scout court of honor should not be scheduled until the local council receives the Eagle Scout rank credentials." This review and credential process normally takes two to three weeks, but could take longer. Your troop also has a lot of work to do to request and receive the recognitions that will be presented at the court of honor.
You should send invitations to the people who have made it possible for you to reach this prestigious achievement. You may want to invite important people in the community such as government officials. There is a printed invitation cover available from the Boy Scouts, or you may want to design your own. There are also many sources for Invitation, Congratulation, and Thank You cards available on the web. Try searching eagle scout greeting cards invitations (or congratulations or thank you) for various sources. Be sure to send out invitations at least 4 weeks in advance.
The Eagle Presentation Kit that includes your Eagle Scout medal, patch, Mom pin and Dad pin also includes a Mentor pin. You should discuss with your Scoutmaster and other leaders working with you in planning your Court of Honor who you might recognize by presenting this pin. It might be a leader in your troop who worked with you through the Eagle Scout process, or it might be someone from the organization you were doing the project for who was very helpful to you in the planning and preparation. It might be a relative who served as a specific inspiration to you to become an Eagle Scout. There is no definition of who this should be presented to, that is up to you. There is no requirement that it has to be presented to anyone. It is possible to purchase additional Mentor pins if you really feel that you want to present more than one.
Many Eagle courts of honor include refreshments including a cake with the Eagle medal logo on it. Some bakeries are hesitant to put this copyrighted logo on a cake. Some bakeries have gotten burned by "printing" copyrighted material before. You can get a pre-approval for the bakery giving them permission to use BSA copyrighted material. See https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2019/05/01/bsa-themed-cake/ for the steps to go through to get the form.
1) Plan Ahead. The process can take several days.
2) Identify the artwork you want to use. You can search for Eagle Scout Images. The most common image for Eagle cakes is probably the Eagle ribbon, but the patch is also popular.
3) Find your bakery. Discuss with them timing, capabilities, size, and cost. Get their name and mailing address for the application form.
4) Fill out the application. Go to http://licensingbsa.org/trademarks/cake-request/ and fill out the form. Click SUBMIT when done.
5) Wait for the form. BSA will send you an electronic form giving the bakery permission to make the cake using BSA logos. Print it and take it to the bakery and order the cake.
6) Get, Eat.
Ideas for planning
Many resources are available to help you plan your court of honor. Talk to other boys from your troop or other troops who have been through the process. Your Scoutmaster, and other adult leaders in your troop, can be very valuable.
Often one of the highlights of an Eagle ceremony is the presentation of letters of recognition from dignitaries and famous people who are Eagle Scouts. This is usually handled by your Scoutmaster, or another adult leader in the troop. You can pass this information along. Please do not send me requests for more information. If I had more information it would be here. There are many sources of recognition names and procedure information on the web. Be aware that all such lists get out of date quickly. Check that for elected officials you are still writing to the current office holder, and for the correct district. Some sources for information are
NOTE: Apollo 11 Commander Neil Armstrong has passed away. Please do not send requests for letters from him.
Don't forget local officials. Township supervisors and Managers, County Commissioners, and State Representatives and State Senators often will attend Eagle courts of Honor if asked, or get certificates from the State legislature.
One very special opportunity is to present an American flag flown over the United States Capital building in honor of the Eagle Scout. This can be arranged through your congressmen. There may be a cost for this flag or there may not. Call your congressmen's office to get the details of costs and how the check should be made out. As an idea, if it can be scheduled at least three weeks in advance, ask to have the flag flown on the day of the board of review, so the date on the flag certificate matches the date on the Eagle credentials.
For Catholic Scouts, a congratulatory letter is available from the bishop using the form available at http://www.eaglescout.itgo.com/Request for Eagle Letter from Bishop.doc.
A certificate of commendation is available from the Free Masons. Seehttp://www.eaglescout.itgo.com/Masons.doc for information.
National Eagle Scout Association
As an Eagle Scout, you will be eligible for membership in the National Eagle Scout Association (NESA). This organization of Eagle Scouts serves and supports those who have attained Scouting's highest rank. One of the things they do is publish a newsletter that keeps Eagle Scouts informed about special opportunities for Eagle Scouts such as scholarships, special recognitions, special events, staff opportunities, and participation as the Eagle Scout representative in the National Science Foundation programs in Antarctica. Memberships are for five years, and many troops present a NESA membership to boys at their court of honor. For more information, visit their web site at http://www.nesa.org/. You, or your Scoutmaster, can download a NESA application by clicking http://www.nesa.org/PDF/542-404_WB.pdf. You will need Arcobat® Reader to view and print this form. This is available free from Adobe. The application can also be done online (with a credit card) at https://www.kintera.org/site/apps/ka/rg/register.asp?c=9oIFJMPsGgIWF&b=9365585&en=6fIBJLMnH5IKIVMqG4JHLRPAIpJOLROxGhINIQOtHiKOLQPAJtE.
Links to Pages Around This Web Site
HOME 7 REQUIREMENTS PROCESS PARENTS GUIDE HANDBOOK/WORKBOOK LIFE TO EAGLE SEMINARS FIND PROJECT PLAN PROJECT MATERIALS CARRY OUT PROJECT WRITE UP OTHER REQUIREMENTS APPLICATION SUBMIT PAPERWORK BOARD OF REVIEW COURT OF HONOR SCHOLARSHIPS CONTACTS EXTENSIONS
This web site is a work-in-progress. If you find any mistakes, links that don't work, typos, or other inaccuracies, please let me know. If you have any suggestions of additional material that would be helpful to boys in earning their Eagle rank, I would always appreciate your input (Tom@Stalnaker.com).
Web site last updated 1/5/2021