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Popcorn FAQ's

We’ve posted some of the most common frequently asked questions typically received throughout the sale.  This resource is broken into two sections, one for Scouts and families, and one for unit popcorn kernels/chairs.

Common FAQ’s for Scouts, Parents, and Families

There are a variety of flavors of popcorn at varying price points so that anyone can find their favorite and help to support your Scouting adventures.  View this year’s product listing here (2020 to come) 

A storefront sale is actually one way to do Show & Sell.  

Show & Sell is a portion of the early part of the popcorn sale where you can receive the popcorn in advance of selling it so that you have it with you to show (and sell) it to the customer.  Whereas Take Order is when you collect orders on an order form, order the popcorn, and then deliver it to them at a future date.  

A storefront sale is where your unit has received permission to sell popcorn outside of a local store or retailer.  For example, Dan Beard Council provides many opportunities to units to sell at area Kroger stores. This provides you with a new customer base as compared with other typical fundraisers. It is a type of Show & Sell because you have the popcorn with you and sell it on the spot.  Remaining popcorn at the end of the storefront shift is usually returned to your unit along with any records of sales.

You will need to go through the registration process and create an account for each Scout. Each Scout needs their own Trail’s End account so their sales can be tracked individually in the Trail’s End system. Once the accounts have been created, the app allows you to easily toggle between multiple Scout accounts without having to sign in and out of each. Sign in with your first Scout’s account credentials, making sure “Remember Me” is NOT enabled. Once signed in, at the top of the screen, click the drop down arrow next to the Scout’s name and choose “Sign In…” Now, sign in with your next Scout’s account credentials. If you go back to the drop down menu at the top you should now see both Scouts listed. Repeat for any additional Scouts in your family. This will allow you to easily toggle back and forth between Trail’s End Scout accounts.

Yes, the same email address can be used for multiple Trail’s End accounts, but the usernames must be unique

Once logged into the Scout www.trails-end.com account, there’s a ‘Share Your Page’ section in the upper left-hand corner of the dashboard. You can share your page via social media and email. Scouts can also share their page directly from the Trail’s End app by clicking the share icons at the bottom of the dashboard.

If a customer wishes to pay via personal check, please have the check made payable to your unit (Pack/ Troop). Your unit will then deposit the check into its bank account.

Yes, Scouts must have a registered Trail’s End Scout Account to qualify for Trail’s End Rewards and redeem their gift card.

Bonus Club Prizes are incremental incentives that Scouts can earn by selling popcorn at different levels. These prizes are cumulative, meaning that if they were to sell $1,600 or $2,600, they would receive a prize from the lower bonus club levels.

After the popcorn sale concludes, and your unit’s popcorn sales submits each Scout’s sales total to Trail’s-End for review, Trail’s-End provided Amazon Gift Cards will be released to each Scout’s Trail’s-End Scout Account. After your Popcorn Kernel submits the Scouts sales totals, there is a 7-day processing window. After the 7-day processing window has ended, the Amazon gift card claim code will be available in the Trail’s-End mobile app or from a PC using a web browser.

Common FAQ’s for Unit Popcorn Kernels/Chairs

The actual popcorn sale takes place during the fall.  Unit signups occur in the late spring, there is a popcorn rally with information and free resources in late July or early August, and then most units hold a unit kickoff shortly thereafter to start their sale.  The sale runs until mid-October with final popcorn being delivered the first week of November.

A storefront sale is actually one way to do Show & Sell.  

Show & Sell is a portion of the early part of the popcorn sale where you can receive the popcorn in advance of selling it so that you have it with you to show (and sell) it to the customer.  Whereas Take Order is when you collect orders on an order form, order the popcorn, and then deliver it to them at a future date.  

A storefront sale is where your unit has received permission to sell popcorn outside of a local store or retailer.  For example, Dan Beard Council provides many opportunities to units to sell at area Kroger stores. This provides you with a new customer base as compared with other typical fundraisers. It is a type of Show & Sell because you have the popcorn with you and sell it on the spot.  Remaining popcorn at the end of the storefront shift is usually returned to your unit along with any records of sales.

If your unit receives damaged/ defective product, we’ll be happy to exchange this product out for like product, at one of our weekly warehouse days. To help facilitate this, please set this product aside, placing it into a bag keeping the popcorn from spilling out.

Units have the opportunity to sign-up for many organized storefront show & sells throughout the sale. Following the Council Popcorn Rallies in August, units will have the opportunity to sign up for (3) Kroger Show & Sells during the first week, and as many as they feel they can fill.

In the Trails-End mobile app, Scouts must complete the transaction by taking credit card or cash/ check. If payment isn’t collected at that time, a note should be made that this customer still owes.

When completing a sale using the Trail’s-End App, the sale will be marked as “delivered” by default. If your Scout sells to a customer via Take Order, you’ll want to urge this Scout to mark the customer as “undelivered”.

Scouts have three options when selling Popcorn, all of which when combined leads to a successful sale.

Show & Sell is a selling strategy where Scouts sell product they have on-hand that has been issued to them, directly to the customer. The most common Show & Sell technique is where a unit sells Popcorn at a local retail store -known as Storefront Show & Sell.

Take Order is a selling strategy where Scouts take/ record orders to then fulfill at a later point. A few of the best ways to do this include door-to-door sales, or parents take the order form to their workplace.

Selling Online provides the opportunity for the Scout to boost their sale, selling to friends and family that may not live in the immediate area.

Units should follow all Youth Protection Policies and Guidelines outlined by the Boy Scouts of America. In summary, (2) registered adult leaders 21 years of age or over are required at all Scouting activities, including a unit Show & Sell. There must be a registered female adult leader 21 years of age or over in every unit serving females. A registered female adult leader 21 years of age or over must be present for any activity involving female youth. Notwithstanding the minimum leader requirements, age- and program appropriate supervision must always be provided

The Trail’s-End Mobile App allows your unit to process a sale, recording the transaction while accepting a credit card, cash or check. When units process a credit card through the Trail’s-End app, your unit avoids common credit card processing fees. Credit card sales accepted through the Trail’s-End app are applied directly against the units invoice due to Council, reducing the amount due for the product ordered by the unit.

When a unit accepts a credit card through the Trail’s-End app, the full retail value of the product is applied against the units popcorn invoice. After two business days, a credit will be applied to your units popcorn account. A detailed list of daily applied credits can be seen from the Transaction History section on the Account Summary page of the Unit Leader Dashboard. When a invoice is generated from the Leader Dashboard, all daily credits will be lumped into one line item on your invoice and will be denoted with “System credit applied”.

Throughout the Popcorn Sale, units are encouraged to transfer product among other Dan Beard Council units. The idea behind unit-to-unit product transfers is get product that your unit might be running short on or is selling a lot of, and to get rid of product that isn’t selling. Units can transfer product by the full case or individual container.

Unit Popcorn Kernels should consider joining the Dan Beard Council Popcorn Sale Facebook page, making other Dan Beard Council units aware of product they need more of or product that isn’t selling.

After the unit Popcorn Kernel meets up with another unit Popcorn Kernel, the “giving” unit should initiate the transfer from their unit’s Trail’s-End Leader Dashboard on trails-end.com. When a transfer is initiated by the giving unit, the receiving unit will receive an email notifying the unit of the transfer, to then be accepted.

All units selling popcorn will receive a base commission of 29%. If a unit representative attends one of the Council’s Popcorn Rallies (in August), the unit will receive an additional 3% commission, for a total of 32% Units have the opportunity to earn additional bonus commission by selling $20,000+. Bonus commission will be reflected on the units popcorn invoice prior to the final payment.

Units who sell Popcorn Online receive 35% commission for the sale. Example: if a Scout sells $100 online, the unit receives $35. The commission earned is applied directly against the units traditional sale, reducing the amount due to Council.

The Popcorn Festival is an event hosted by the Council in early September that is free for Scouts to attend and is at the Cincinnati Museum Center. Scouts will earn their “I’m Trained” Patch by attending several popcorn booths where they will have fun and learn about popcorn.  Then all attendees will get to explore the Natural History Museum or the Children’s Museum throughout the evening. We’ll also be giving out fun prizes and giveaways throughout the evening.

At the end of the sale, all Military/ Food Pantry Donations should be tallied up and recorded when placing your units final order. The Council will fulfill these Military Donations, delivering the product to local Military and Food Pantries.

Due to IRS guidelines and the BSA’s Policy on Fundraising, individual Scout units may not accept donations. Units may not solicit cash donations for general use. However, while selling popcorn, cash donations are often received. Units should turn in donated cash in the form of Military Donation orders –for example, for every $30 received, enter (1) $30 Military Donation or use the $1 Misc. Military Donation to capture these.

No, you cannot add Scouts on their behalf. This is due to youth protection laws such as COPPA (Children’s Online Privacy Protection). Trail’s-End cannot store information on a Scout unless they create an account. We recommend using the Invite a Scout feature or bringing a laptop, tablet, or phone to your kickoff and have Scouts register an account before they leave.

After your unit has placed and picked-up the initial Show & Sell order, you’ll have the opportunity to order additional popcorn to supplement your existing popcorn on-hand throughout the sale at our weekly warehouse days. Please visit our Popcorn Warehouse Page for a list of available dates and times. To place an a supplemental warehouse add-on order, please do so from the Trail’s-End Leader Dashboard, by selecting the warehouse location and day you wish to pick-up. Walk-up orders can be done however encourage units to place orders through the Leader Dashboard so that we can pull the items and have it ready for you when you arrive. Product must be ordered in full cases.

The best way to ensure all of your Scouts get registered under the correct unit is to use the “Invite Scouts” tool, located at the top of the Unit Leader Dashboard. This feature allows you to send an email invite directly to this Scout family, with the details of creating an account and your unit information. For many new Scout families, this can especially be helpful if there is confusion between the program level their Scout is registered (example: Pack, Troop, Crew).

When you view your unit invoice, you’ll notice that each order (Show & Sell, Take Order, and Supplemental Warehouse Add-Ons) are each expressed in groupings. The product ordered for each grouping is expressed by the individual container.

To put it simply, your Unit Invoice = Product Ordered, less unit commission percentage, less full credit card sales amount, less online sales commission.

Each year, Trail’s-End publishes a recommended Product Mix by percentage. Your unit should consider these percentages when placing your initial Show & Sell order.

Additionally -at the Popcorn Rally Kick Off event in August, your unit will receive a breakdown of the product that was ordered and sold during the last sales campaign. Your order breakdown will be expressed by full cases and individual containers. This data will be useful to you so that you know what items sold well, and which products didn’t.

As a general rule, we will allow your unit to order up-to 80% of your total order from the previous year. Your unit is able to order beyond this rule, however recommend that you have a plan in place.

The Initial Show & Sell Order is due: [Need Date]

When you place your units order, your order will temporarily show as pending.

When placing your units popcorn order, you may notice at the bottom of the Trail’s-End order form, the commission is shown at 29%. With that said, this is not necessarily your units commission rate. If your unit attended the Popcorn Rally (in August), your commission rate will be 32%, but will be shown on this page as 29%.

Free dinner for unit leaders to learn about the Popcorn Sale and the newest best practices for the upcoming Popcorn Sale.

Warehouse Pick-Up Locations

Vehicle Size

Do I need to rent a U-Haul vs. Enterprise vs. Penske Truck?

Schedule a pick-up time

Storage location and distribution to Scouts.

Units are encouraged to send a representative to one of the Popcorn Rallies for a number of reasons.

  • The first of these is that by simply attending the Popcorn Rally, your unit will earn an additional 3% commission, taking your unit automatically from the base commission of 29% to 32%.
  • Another reason why it’s important to attend the Popcorn Rally is that we provide your unit with a number of FREE resources, including a Show & Sell table banner, military donation bucket, Scout product checkout forms, discounted sample popcorn to be used at your unit’s kickoff event, and more!
  • While attending this event, you’ll learn about any changes along with the roll-out of new items for the upcoming sale! This is also a great opportunity to ask questions to our Popcorn Team, and establish best practices from talking to other ‘seasoned’ Popcorn Kernels.