Issue #27 – June 2018


A Note From the Founder – Graduation!

by Kerry Cordy

My apologies for posting the newsletter so late.  June 1 was my youngest daughter’s high school graduation as well as the high school graduation of the rest of my staff.  As a result none of us were in the office much for the past week as the kids were busy with finals and graduation practice and I was busy on the Sober Grad celebration committee.  I thought this would be the perfect time to introduce the Frontier Girls/Quest team to everyone as I am so proud of them.  I only wish they were not all heading off to college in the fall. 

Kristine and Ashton

Creative Director – Kristine Cordy

Passionate about the correct font choice and consistent color schemes, my youngest daughter Kristine has made it her mission to clean up the Frontier Girls website and social media to be more engaging and navigable.  By 2019 we should have a whole new look. In addition to redesigning our website, Kris bubbles over with ideas for new videos, clipart, photography, and more to help Frontier Girls learn and explore. The wild child of the team, Kristine’s energy and enthusiasm keeps us all on our toes as her whirlwind of creative juices fill the office.

Shipping and Receiving Manager – Ashton

Ever wonder who makes your badges, packs your boxes, puts all those pins on the Frontier Girls pin cards?  That would be Ashton. Every order that comes in he prints, creates the badges requested (and designs them if they are new or custom), packs the box and makes sure it is shipped out as quickly as possible.  Quiet and efficient, Ashton plugs in his earphones and moves like a smooth machine until everything is accomplished.


Mikey and Kristine

Bookkeeper – Mikey

Mikey spends his afternoons on Quickbooks entering every sales receipt, purchase order, invoice, check and credit card expense that Frontier Girls produces.  When his brain becomes too numb with numbers he also helps out with inventory control and researching resources for the Badge of the Week. Ever ready with his witty sense of humor and a hug, Mikey is the ray of sunshine around our office that keeps us smiling.


On-Call – Shannon

Shannon is our on-call who comes in any time it gets crazy busy or someone calls in sick.  Her main job this spring was to cover for Mikey while he was out playing varsity baseball for several months.  Shannon may be small, but her spirit certainly isn’t.  Her infectious smile lights up a room and her willingness to take on any job keeps us running smoothly.

Kristine and Shannon









Boy of the Month: Alasdair Duke, Level 3, Troop 109

Alasdair Duke has completed Level 3 with Troop 109 achieving his Gem and WOW! Awards. He
entered the Frontier Boy programme as a Level 1, at which time he was also enrolled in Cub Scouts of America,
and earned his Fruit of the Spirit and Liberty Awards. He transitioned to Frontier Boys as a Level 2 and earned
his Liberty, Fruit of the Spirit, Life Skills and Discovery Awards. As a Level 3 he has become fully involved
in the Frontier Boys programme. For his Make a Difference Award he took over leadership of the Star
Appreciation Packets for East Texas Patriot Guard Riders project that had been established by his elder brother
Arthur at Level 4, enabling the project to continue with the participation of Troop 109. Alasdair’s
servant’s hearts totalled up 290 volunteer service hours to the community at Level 3.
Alasdair is looking forward to Level 4 and is keen to complete the Major Awards. His particular love is
the Outdoors and is looking forward to shadowing and volunteering in this area.
 Frontier Girls major character purpleMajor in an Area of Discovery

by Megan Lundquist

I recently finished earning my 9th Major. I am a Leader/Level 5 in Troop 159. I started working on them as a Level 4  2011. It has been a long journey! But even knowing I had nine to complete, I didn’t want to rush. I see a big difference in the knowledge I gained when I first started earning them and the ones I finished more recently. The older I got, the more deeply I was able to understand the things I studied.

These awards taught me that I can do more than I think I can and the world is a very interesting place where all kinds of people have to work together doing all the things that need to be done. Florist, flower arranger, missionary team leader, camp kitchen staff, surveying equipment engineer, small business owner, audio visual technician, CNA, missionary and so many others! I never thought I’d do half of the things I did (like get a modified bed bath and place a bedpan!), and some of them have led me to explore new hobbies and careers. I will be applying for a kitchen staff position next year at a summer camp, and I have the confidence & necessary skills ~ thanks to Quest!

I am so thankful for the things I learned in each of the nine Areas of Discovery while completing these awards.


Tips and Treasures

submitted by Kimberlynn Swafford – Troop #148

Badge Tips: for telescopes and binocular used for badge work

For those you might be working on or planning on work on badges that use telescopes or binoculars and would love to take pictures of what your seeing here is some equipment that you need.

For binoculars you will need a tripod adapter, all binoculars comes with a tripod socket located in the front between the eye pieces. You will need check the socket thread size before buying a tripod adapter. Then you will have to check the thread size of the base of your adapter because that will screw onto you tripod base. Next you will need to get a tripod or make a stand for your binoculars so is stays steady.

For both telescopes and binoculars there are universal cell phone adapters that will attach to your telescope/binoculars and your cell phone sits inside a cradle. Use a key phrase: ” Cell phone adapter for telescopes or binoculars” when searching.

Then you are going to need what is called a “shutter release cable” or a “shutter remote”. A shutter cable is a wire that plugs into your earpiece hole on your cellphone with button at the end of it to snap pictures. We have found from researching that these the button at the end of the cable is extremely fragile, so try not to spend a lot of money on the shutter cable. A shutter remote can run fairly cheap and are small so you might want to put some kind of landyard at the end of it. 99% of the remotes run off of bluetooth and use button battery # CR2032. The battery goes for about $25.00 unless you can find a generic version. The reason you want a shutter cable or remote is because of the magnification when you push the button on your phone to take a picture it could make your picture blurry from your phone shaking. A good a cheap place we found to remotes is on and places like harbor freight sells a 4 pack of generics for $4.00.

For those who have a quick release tripod already and are afraid of losing the base or want to have a base to leave on your adapter this website has an extensive list of tripods that will give you the model # of you quick release base.


Beth’s Badge Challenge

In April, Beth issued a badge challenge for Autism Awareness and Acceptance Month. We extended the deadline to include May. We have selected a winner! Amanda Piccirillo, for the extensive book display she coordinated at her local library. Amanda will receive a small prize in the mail soon!  To enter the contest Amanda had to do the following:
1. Earn the Autism Awareness badge.
2. Complete a random act of autism acceptance.
3. Share your RAOAA in an email to with the subject: “RAOAA Contest”
Beth will choose a winner and send a surprise prize to that person.


Frontier Girls Make a Difference AwardMake A Difference Review Board

by Katie Lundquist – Leader Troop #159

n the April newsletter, I discussed the extra guidelines our troop has in place for the older kids earning their Make a Difference Award. One of those guidelines involves having Level 3 and up sit for a Review Board. For the Review Board, I ask for 3-5 parent and older kid volunteers, one of which is chosen by the child himself. As the troop leader, I do not sit on the board but introduce the candidate to the others and talk briefly about their Make a Difference project.  Then the board spends 15 minutes or so talking to the child about their Quest experience in general, and their project in particular. We aim to keep it light and conversational so the candidate is at ease, but formal enough that they learn valuable interviewing and presentation skills.

This Review Board helps me to make sure the child has gained leadership experience and is enjoying themselves in Quest. It helps ensure that we are running a quality program as a troop.
The following are examples of the questions we may ask, choosing them at random:
  1. Of all the patches/badges/awards on your uniform, which one means the most or which one of them are you proudest to wear? 
  2. If you could do it all over again, would you, and why? 
  3. What lessons did you learn from the MaD Award process and how do you think those lessons will help you in your future endeavors? In other words, what will you take away from this experience? 
  4. How would you describe the effort you have put into your Quest career? Expected response: I did my best. 
  5. What advice would you give to a new Quest member? 
  6. You are about to breathe your last breath. What is the one Quest memory (beginning with Preschool and going all the way through) that is going to put a smile on your face?
  7. What is the most pressing issue today? Why?
  8. What point of the Quest code of conduct do you think is the hardest for the youth of today to follow? Why? 
  9. Why should you receive the MaD Award?
  10. If you could change or add one requirement for the MaD Award, what would it be? 
  11. What is something you found in Quest that you can improve upon? 
  12. What is the moment you knew you wanted to earn the MaD Award?
  13. Did you ever think about quitting this project? If so, what made you stick with it? 
  14. Did you have a Quest member refuse to comply with a request to perform one of their duties? How did (or would) you react? 
  15. What outdoor experience have you had that you wish every Quest member could have? 



Frontier Girls & Frontier Boys Hold 10th Year-End Awards Meeting!

By Sylvia and Charlotte Duke

Frontier Girls & Frontier Boys Troop 109 held their 10thYear-End Awards Meeting on Monday, 14th May, 2018. Troop 109 is now the longest running troop in the country besides the parent Troop 101, in California. Troop Leader Sylvia Duke thanked the Rotary Club of Big Sandy and New Beginnings Christian Fellowship for their continued support and then presented a photo show of the Troop’s activities.  Over the past year the Troop  participated in nine service projects; enjoyed a field trip around Big Sandy; made more than 850 Star Appreciation Packets for the East Texas Patriot Guard Riders; performed a concert of traditional American music in aid of Agape House; and as a Troop earned ten merit badges: Bubbles, Home Fire Safety, Take the Lead, American Folk Music, Hawkins Helping Hand, My Community, Local Motion, Etiquette, Teatime, and Veterans.

A total of 404 merit badges were awarded to Troop members including those earned by students at home.  Servant’s Hearts awarded to students for volunteer service to the community this year totalled 750 hours. 

Many Troop members were also presented with higher level awards: two Discovery Awards, requiring one merit badge from each of the nine Areas of Discovery; five Life Skills Achievement Awards; three Make A Difference Awards, for which students plan, execute, and lead their own volunteer service project for the community.  In addition: three Leadership Awards, which require the Make A Difference Award, the Take the Lead badge and three other character badges relating to leadership; two Fruit of the Spirit Awards, requiring all nine character badges of the Frontier Girls Creed (Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self Control); one Liberty Award, covering civics/government and elections; and four Gem Awards, the highest award in the program, which involves earning all the other higher awards listed above.  There were also four WOW! Awards for earning 100+ merit badges at the student’s current level.

Special guest this year was our Pioneer Member from Wales, Beth Henderson. Beth has been with Frontier Girls for five years, and has really given it her all, even though she is the only Pioneer Member in the United Kingdom. She is the first Pioneer Member ever to achieve all the Higher Level Awards at Eagle Level (those listed above plus all nine Majors in an Area of Discovery), and the third member of Troop 109 to do so, following in the footsteps of Charlotte and Arthur Duke. Beth is an avid horse lover, enjoys making jewellery, drawing and is a wonderful pianist.  She delighted the audience with a piano solo of The Music of the Nightfrom The Phantom of the Opera by Andrew Lloyd Webber, followed by her own Entertainer Medley, which extemporizes on The Entertainer by Scott Joplin. As a memento of her years in Frontier Girls, the Troop presented Beth with a scrapbook of her time in the program. We are truly thankful for the privilege of having Beth with us for the evening, and wish her well in her future endeavours.

As the evening drew to a close Mrs. Duke had one more award to present. The story behind the Starfish Award tells of a woman walking along a beach after a storm, picking up starfish which were drying out and dying on the sand, and flinging them back into the ocean so they could live. Upon being told that she couldn’t save enough to “make a difference”, she simply tossed another one back into the sea, saying, “Made a difference to that one!” Mrs. Duke presented the Starfish Award to Mrs. Bonnie Strub, who faithfully comes to every meeting she can, helps in any way she can, and makes a difference in the life of each student she interacts with, even though she does not have a student of her own in the program. We really appreciate Mrs. Strub’s service and willingness to help.

The meeting ended with the announcement that the Troop has once again earned Super Troop status, recognising that Troop 109 goes above and beyond in the annual programme it offers to students. The Troop posed for a group photo, and then ended the evening by singing three songs from the Traditional American Music Concert performed in February.  The students, family members and guests then enjoyed refreshments and conversation after the Meeting.







Mahayla and Josey Logsdon Receive Their Discovery Awards. 

Life Skills Awards: Anna Aga, Collene Duke, Caroline Duke, Alasdair Duke and Beth Henderson are Awarded Their Life Skills Achievement Awards. 

Special Award: Mrs. Bonnie Strub is Presented with the Starfish Award for Her Service to the Troop. 

Gem Awards: Collene Duke, Caroline Duke, Alasdair Duke and Beth Henderson Receive Their Gem Awards. 

A Major Achievement: Assistant Troop Leader Kimberly Walls, Beth Henderson and Troop Leader Sylvia Duke Hold the Certificates for All Nine of Beth’s Majors in an Area of Discovery. 

Super Troop: Troop 109, back row l to r: Assistant Troop Leader Kimberly Walls, Arthur Duke, Jonathan DeClerck, Alasdair Duke, Sarah DeClerck, Kristin Mosley, Beth Henderson, Charlotte Duke. Front row l to r: Ezra Walls, Josey Logsdon, Asher Walls, Collene Duke, Hannah Walls, Caroline Duke, Nathaniel Walls, Liyah Walls, Anna Aga, Mahayla Logsdon, Troop Leader Sylvia Duke.

 All photos by Don Walls.


Poetry Contest!

The Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award 2018 is now open! If you’re aged 11-17 enter now at by 31 July 2018.
The top 100 poets, chosen by judges Daljit Nagra and Caroline Bird, will receive a range of fantastic prizes including publication, membership to The Poetry Society and a stack of books and poetry goodies. Top 15 winners also have the chance to attend a life-changing residential writing course and receive mentoring. Read last year’s top 15 winners for free at and the 85 commended poets at – and don’t forget to enter!




     Cheery the Camp Chipmunk

I was foraging under the picnic tables the other evening after the campers had returned to their campsites, and I found a damp piece of paper lying there.  I checked it out carefully in case it was interesting, but all I could see were lots of squiggly brown lines, tiny numbers, and green and blue blotches. Oh, well—I guessed it would make good nesting material.  My burrow had flooded in a downpour earlier in the week, and the paper and grass that lined my nest was sodden, so new shredings would be welcome.

As I dragged the paper back toward my burrow, a large shadow passed over me and I froze in terror.  A heavy black bird landed on the fence rail near the camp road, and I relaxed warily.  Jenny the vulture has a nest in a rock pile in one of the unused campsites, but she doesn’t usually associate with us lively folk.

Jenny glanced at the paper I was dragging, then stared sharply at it.  She cocked her bald head to the right, then to the left, considering the colors and lines.  “That blue loop looks just like the big island in the camp creek,” she mused.  “I like the island—there are always fish for me washed up along the shoreline.”

I shuddered discretely, and looked again at the colored lines, tugging at the paper to lay it flat.  I couldn’t understand what she was seeing.  The island was just a little rise in the middle of the creek—I had never considered it had a shape.

Jenny cocked her head again.  “That wiggly blue line is right where the streamlet enters the creek.”  And that double black line looks like the camp road.  She hopped down to the ground beside me.  “If I squint my eyes, all those close brown lines blend together and look like the shadows in the steep ravine around the streamlet.  In fact, I think this is where we are right now!”  She touched the page gently with her beak, right at the point where the double black line made a sharp turn near some small black squares.

I looked again at the paper, then at the island in front of me.  The bend in the road was at my back, with a small cabin beside me.  There was a tiny slope down in front of me, then a flat stretch of forest before the creek.  Then the big island, and the flat land on the other side of the creek with a bare patch in the trees.  Then I could see a steep slope up, with three ravines, just like the paper showed.  At the top of the slope was a large flat treeless area.

And I realized that the paper was made to let me to see what my home looked like from a birds-eye view.