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New camp each year or same camp each year

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  • New camp each year or same camp each year

    Hello,

    There is a raging debate in the troop I volunteer with about whether to continue visiting a different summer camp each year (its really more of a disorganized rotation) or to change and visit the same camp each year. As a scout my troop visited the same camp every year, conducted service projects in the spring, and built a strong connection with the camp. The scouts in this troop do not build that same connection. I'm curious to know if you have thoughts about these two very different approaches.

    Thank you,
    SM Kelly

  • #2
    Our boys count on the same camp - and campsite - every year. Couldn't change their minds if you tried. And some have. That said, the boys who are venturers wind up visiting camps throughout the area on spring summits. So, anyone who has that itch can get it scratched.

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    • #3
      I let my boys decide by patrol what they wish to do. If they have a bad experience they tend to research other camps and if the grass isn't a whole lot different then they keep researching and tying new camps. My new troop wanted a primitive camp, I suggested they get on the internet and check out the one I knew about. They liked it, they voted this summer to go back next summer. Who knows what they will decide next year.

      So far with the variety offered, the older boys never seem to get bored with the change of scenery occasionally. They can always decide to go someplace else at any time.

      And yes, the boys have picked two different camps during the summer. It's no more difficult to organize than a summer camp and high adventure trip during the same summer.

      Stosh
      Last edited by jblake47; 07-28-2014, 11:16 PM.

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      • #4
        Boys decide. We have 5 camps we have typically visited, but new ideas are encouraged. As far as I'm concerned, there aren't any limits on what they can choose. In fact we're going somewhere next year we've never gone previously at the recommendation of a transfer Scout who's previous Troop loved it. Objectively, it seems going the same place every year would get boring, but to each his own.

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        • #5
          Our council has 2 summer camp properties, one with two BS camps and a Venturing base so there is variety available. One issue is the least one of the Council's two Lodges (yes two) requires a troop to attend camp in council every other year. I know, it has been said on this board they can not do that, but they do and it is not a hill I or anyone else apparently wants to die on. Outside that restriction why shouldn't they get to choose where they go? I am hoping they pick Maui next year.

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          • #6
            My son's troop alternates each year between two different camps. One on a lake and one on the ocean. From how much I've heard the boys and leaders raving about the ocean camp, I'm sure they would probably go there every year if finances weren't an issue. It is awfully expensive compared to the lake camp.

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            • #7
              We're fairly loyal to the council camp but we also have a second week at a non-scout-camp location that varies according to the PLC decisions.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by smminute View Post
                Hello,

                There is a raging debate in the troop I volunteer with about whether to continue visiting a different summer camp each year (its really more of a disorganized rotation) or to change and visit the same camp each year. As a scout my troop visited the same camp every year, conducted service projects in the spring, and built a strong connection with the camp. The scouts in this troop do not build that same connection. I'm curious to know if you have thoughts about these two very different approaches.

                Thank you,
                SM Kelly
                I can see both sides. We change camps every year. Our basic justification is that since adults are taking a vacation, they may as well have different scenery. That part is nice, and the boys get to meet different troops from different areas. That said, I can see how it might be nice to go to the same camp every summer, have the same campsite, etc. I wish that our local camp was better.

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                • #9
                  Our Scouts decide at their leadership/next year trip planning meeting every August or September. They have never gone as a Troop to our local camp, nor have they ever gone to the same summer camp 2 years in a row.

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                  • #10
                    We tried different camps. We have decided on a permanent camp same week and campsite. The camp we decided on is economical for all scouts and has a great program. We offer a high adventure summer trip for scouts 14+. This way the younger scouts get a great experience and the older scouts can do either or both.

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                    • #11
                      At our annual planning meeting in August a few years ago, our boys were telling us they did not want to go to summer camp the next year. When I asked why, they said that they had been to our council camp every year for years, and they had done everything the camp had to offer, and they did not want to go again. I asked them if it would be different if they went to a different camp for the next year. A gleam came to the older boys eyes, and they said "mayby....". So I asked where they wanted to go. They conferred, and told me they wanted to go to Colorado for summer camp (two states away.) We gave the job of finding a camp to a committee member, and he found camp Ben Delatour near Ft. Collins, CO. The boys loved it in the mountains, although there was not much in the way of water sports. But that is not what we went there for.

                      So the next planning meeting we had, I asked where they wanted to go. The older boys said that the mountains were great, but this year they wanted to be somewhere with a great aquatic program. Again we searched, and found Camp Constantine, situated on a huge reservoir west of Fort Worth, TX. We got a campsite right on the water, and set up our own swimming area with ropes and lifeguards and everything al la safety afloat. Another great trip.

                      After that, younger scouts said that they had not been to our council camp, and wanted to go there. Who would have thought.

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                      • #12
                        The furthest I have gone to get to summer camp is: 16 hr drive, 1000+ miles (one way). Every few years, it's worth it. I have no idea how many great camps we drove by to get there either. Wasn't my pick, but the boys loved it and that's all that counts.

                        Stosh

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                        • #13
                          We embrace the best of both worlds, rotating between our local camp and an away camp every other year.

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                          • #14
                            Our troop has a long standing tradition of going to the same camp and campsite every year. Some boys look forward to the same tent. We've talked about maybe adding a second week of camp to try something different, but I don't think they would be willing to give up the camp they love.

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                            • #15
                              The troop I currently serve goes to the council camp every year, same week. They also offer several high adventure trips that the boys decide on. We encourage all first year scouts to go to the council camp.

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