It finally happened! Nicholas became an Eagle Scout and we had his Court of Honor and celebration! According to him, I’ve been planning it all my life… and he’s sort of right. It’s my own Eagle Project, according to him.
These are the table centerpieces. I made labels for oversized cans (they are called number 5 and number 10 cans that institutions like schools use). You can probably get them at warehouse stores like Costco or Sam’s. But you’d have to eat a lot of food to empty them. Ask your school. They may save them for you! I filled the large one with 9 red roses (from Costco) and birch branches that I bought online through Ebay for next to nothing. They are nice and twisted. The mason jar with the white flowers were spray painted with “looking glass” paint by Krylon to achieve the “mercury glass” look. The clear mason jar with the “fireflies” in it is filled with fairy lights from Amazon that you can purchase right here: Nick’s Firefly Jar Lights They are meant for wedding centerpieces… but every mom who’s helped their Eagle celebrate knows that a Court of Honor is like a small wedding. For real. The lantern is an LED battery operated hurricane lamp with a dimmer switch. I found it on sale on Amazon here: Nick’s Nifty Red Lanterns Sadly, they are not on sale right now. But you never know. The “flag” linen is created by using a burgundy and navy blue table runner (from Tablecloths Factory) and silver pintuck chair ties (from LinenTablecloths). The black tablecloths are from the economy line at LinenTablecloths. It’s actually cheaper than buying them. They always have a sale going on at both of these places. I got the runners for 65 cents each and the tablecloths for less than $5.
This is the tablescape I put at the head of the food table. It contains the same design elements as the table centerpieces, but more of them… and a big flag (only $3 at Walmart). The large can is filled with birch branches, hydrangeas, and little flags. The tall red candles are from The Dollar Tree. The wooden stars I found at Target a couple of summers ago around the Fourth of July.
Below is his cake. It’s a two tiered red velvet cake with smooth buttercream icing and cream cheese between the layers. I gave a photo to Laura, my local grocery store baker (she’s actually an Event Planner) and had her make it for me. The top is just an eagle statue that you can buy online at Amazon right here: The Eagle Statue on Nicholas’ Cake.
These are the cookies I ordered online through Rita’s Etsy shop called “A Custom Cookie.” You can order them customized from her Etsy Shop. She has these Eagle Scout symbol ones as well as adorable merit badges! I’m so glad I found her.
Every celebration needs a take-home table so that guests can leave with sweet treats as a reminder of the special day. Nick’s Court of Honor included s’mores trail mix packets, custom candy bars, and mini-s’mores kits. I made all the printables to put these together. You can find various customized designs like these items in my DigileachDesigns Etsy Shop.
Probably the quickest way to coordinate your Court of Honor in color and theme is to starting with the invitations. Matching invitations and program covers can set the whole tone. Keep in mind that you don’t always have to go for the traditional bold red, white and blue either. Try out more muted versions for an antique look. Go for something completely different and use the olive green and red Scouting colors or even greens and browns for a rugged, woodsy or outdoor feel. There are lots of options. I have an assortment of designs in my Etsy shop in all of these themes and colors at www.digileachdesigns.etsy.com.
If you don’t have your Eagle Scout’s portrait made professionally, you can create a keepsake of your own by taking the photograph yourself to include on your Court of Honor invitation. Perhaps you even have a friend who loves photography that might really enjoy taking the photographs for you. First of all, make sure your camera is on the setting that allows you to take a photo in the highest resolution possible. Find your location. Seek natural light if possible. This could be any place (indoors or out) meaningful to your Scout. Consider using the troop’s flag as a background if you take a photo in the Scout hut or meeting facility. Maybe you would like to take the photos with your Scout’s Eagle Project, or at a favorite setting outdoors. Be sure to take several shots. Probably even more than you think you need. Try different angles, poses, and camera positions. Take some close up shots as well as full body shots. You might even want to have your Scout standing, sitting, and kneeling. Make sure you have some photos taken horizontally as well as vertically. Leave plenty of spacing around your subject to allow for cropping in the design process.
I’ve made over a thousand printables for Eagle Scouts and there is one thing for certain, there is no set formula for putting together a Court of Honor program booklet. I’ve seen some with just about everything about the Eagle Scout and his trail to Eagle. I’ve seen some that contained nothing but poems. I think the only thing that is a given is the cover panel with at least the Eagle Scout’s name and date on it. Some people add the city and state the ceremony will be held. And others include almost all the information that would be found on the invitation (date, time, location, street address, city, and state). Some include a photograph. To make the most of your booklet, tie the inside panels together with the outside cover panels by using the same color, fonts (or ones very similar to them), and graphical elements. You can do this even if you are making the booklet yourself or using a store bought cover and creating the text for the insides yourself. If there are stars on the cover, try to use a star here or there on the inside. If there are stripes, incorporate stripes and so on. This will help your booklet more complete instead of an inside section and outside section completely separate from each other.
Here is a listing of some of the wonderful things some of my customers have included in their booklets. It might spark some ideas for yours!
- Rundown of order of events for the ceremony and who will be performing each task
- Eagle Scout’s biography (positions held, camps attended, conferences attended, Order of the Arrow involvement, and favorite activities). This is usually in paragraph form, but sometimes it is a list
- Merit Badges earned (some people just put a number, others include the listing of all that have been achieved)
- Eagle Scout project description
- Photos of the Eagle Scout, of him as a Cub, or the Eagle project (or any combination of them)
- Special thank you note to those who have supported your Scout on his trail to Eagle or helped with his Eagle project
- Special message from the Eagle Scout
- List of ranks with dates achieved
- Scout Law and Scout Oath (this is usually put on the back cover panel, but not always)
- Poems are popular. The most common are “Eagle Scout’s Prayer,” “It’s Just and Pin,” and “The Eagle Scout“
- Blank pages. You don’t have to fill up every panel with information. It’s okay to leave blanks
Most booklets are four panels. Some are eight depending on the amount of content. I have a number of program booklet designs in my Etsy shop. Some people have me print the front and back cover panels and they type up all the information for the inside panels and do that themselves. Others send me all the information and I design the inside panels to coordinate with the outside ones, then email them the file for them to print all their copies. I do not include samples of the inside panels in my Etsy shop simply because everyone’s booklet will look different. Even when using the same cover, two booklets will be different depending on how the coordinating graphic elements will be used. I’ve provided a glimpse here though so that you can see the value of integrating the design style of the outside cover panels with the inside ones.
You can get disposable tablecloths and napkins (and even plates) from a number of places in order to make your Court of Honor extra special. The local dollar store (we use The Dollar Tree), Walmart, Target, Hobby Lobby, Party City as well as many other stores carry the rectangular tablecloths in standard colors, in addition to plates, napkins and cutlery. Hobby Lobby and Walmart carry some round tablecloths as well. If you are looking for something a little different, the best place I have found online is at www.partyatlewis.com. They carry round and rectangular covers as well as rolls of disposable covers in about 30 different colors. Ones I would most likely use for a Scouting event are the red, brick, navy blue, ivory, white, silver, hunter green, sage green and gold. They also sell napkins, cutlery, and placemats, all at relatively inexpensive prices. In the Memorial Day and Fourth of July section are a great variety of flag inspired patriotic disposables. Of course there are other places online, but this is the site that has been most useful for me so far.
Is it a smaller more personal, yet formal event? I found that it is cheaper to buy nice linens instead of renting them. Renting costs around $11.00 each tablecloth. You can purchase them from www.linentablecloth.com for $5.00. I’ve purchased both black and white in rounds and rectangles, and use runners as my accent colors. You can get them online from the same place for around $2.00. However, I got a whole set of red runners from The Dollar Tree at Christmas time for guess what? One dollar each!