Troop 5, 50th Anniversary @2011
Troop 5 of Palo Alto is a friendly, medium-sized troop with active scouts and involved adult leaders. It was established in 1961. Its chartering organization is the Rotary Club of Palo Alto.

Troop 5 draws its scouts mostly from Jordan, JLS and Terman Middle Schools and Palo Alto and Gunn High Schools. Most Scouts live in Palo Alto and Mountain View. Former Cub Scouts generally come from Pack 6, Pack 14, and Pack 52.

Troop Goals

The three aims of Scouting are the development of character citizenship, and fitness. The Principles of Scouting are stated in the Scout Oath, Scout Law, Motto, and Slogan.


Troop 5, like most Boy Scout Troops, is run primarily by the Scouts with guidance from the adult leaders. Scouts in the Troop elect the Senior Patrol Leader (SPL), who heads the Patrol Leaders’ Council (PLC). The SPL, with the help and advice of the Scoutmaster and elected Patrol Leaders, appoints one or more Assistant SPLs, Quartermaster, Instructors, Troop Guides, Scribe, and other Troop Officers.


A major part of Scouting involves outdoor activities. Troop 5 has a strong outing program.

Each year includes overnight camping (typically 30 or more nights offered each year), backpacking, a winter campout, day hikes, orienteering, rock climbing, bicycling and rafting/kayaking. In alternate years, Troop 5 sends crews to Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico and the Minnesota-Canada Boundary Waters Wilderness Canoeing Area. View the Troop calendar to see the many outings our Scouts have enjoyed.

The Troop participates in District and Council activities each year including the Mountain Man Rendezvous and the Spring Camporee.

A trip fee is generally charged for each activity to cover the expenses incurred for that outing. The fee covers the cost of transportation, meals, campground fees, etc. Some of the outing equipment, such as tents and cooking gear, is provided by the Troop.

Troop Meetings

Troop 5 meets most Mondays at Palo Verde School at 7:30 PM in the Multi-purpose Room, with some activities occasionally preceding the meeting. The Troop does not meet on Monday holidays or in August. Those dates are often used for extended campouts.


All Scouts wear the appropriate Scout uniform to all Scouting functions including outings. The Troop 5 uniform is the usual BSA class-A uniform – BSA shirt with proper patches, pants and Troop 5 neckerchief. The troop also has a “Class B” T-shirt and heavier fleece hoodies with the Troop 5 logo suitable for non-uniform activities and general wear.

Community Service

Troop 5 participates in a number of community service projects each year including Scouting for Food, Memorial Day Flag placement at the National Cemetery in San Bruno and community Emergency Preparedness events.


Scouts who are active in the Troop’s program will advance in rank almost automatically. As he learns each skill by doing it on the outings, a Scout will be signed off for the requirements or will accumulate the experience needed for many of the merit badges. As a result, a large fraction of the Scouts in Troop 5 achieve the Eagle rank.

Recent Eagle projects include a portable library for a reading garden, information kiosk for Towle Campground in Foothills Park game tables for senior citizens having restricted mobility, a classroom with an evolving mural for a restricted opportunity school, benches for a church courtyard, and several storage sheds for schools in the Palo Alto district.

Adult Roles

Each Scout’s family is expected to directly support at least 2 major activities each year. This may take the form of being a trip coordinator, adult leader on a campout, adult leader at summer camp, handling the annual registration, Troop Committee member, Assistant Scoutmaster, serving as a Board of Review member or Merit Badge Counselor, or other activity.

The Troop encourages each family to support our local BSA council – Pacific Skyline – in their annual Fair Share drive. The council provides essential services to all the troops in the area, such as the BSA store, Camp Cutter and Camp Oljato.


To join Boy Scouts, a boy must either be 11, OR have finished Fifth Grade, OR have earned the Cub Scout Arrow of Light Award. He does not need to have been in Cub Scouts or a Webelos Scout.

Before joining we ask prospective scouts and their parents to visit at least two regular troop meetings and meet with an adult leader. This gives the youth and parents a chance to make sure that Boy Scouts and Troop 5 is for them.

Application and other necessary forms can be found under RESOURCES/Forms and should be turned in to the Membership Chair. Dues are $100 per year. This fee covers BSA membership fees, a subscription to Boys Life, advancement patches and badges, as well as adult and youth leadership training.

To learn more about Troop 5 or to arrange a troop meeting visit contact Scoutmaster Gary Anwyl at