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Nothing hard and fast. A lot depends on the camp and the program you want to run. Some camps and activities are booked solid a year in advance - others you can register for the week of with no trouble.


One thing you may find helpful is to task your Troop Historian with recording all of the outings your troop does, and include feedback useful for the next time you want to plan that outing. Stuff like, "Get reservation in early," or "Campsite floods after a light rain" - things like that.

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What if you asked the PLC to develop such a list and then had them follow it and part of the PLC agenda, a standing item, would be a discussion of the Units level of preparation for all events since the last PLC with changes in the Check list as a result of the evaluation.


It could lead to the youth owning the preparation process and understanding why things are done when they are because they helped develop the system.

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When my boys planned out their own summer camp activity, they would always sit around the picnic table at the end of the week and make the decision whether to come back next year or find a new camp. If they decided to return, when they went up to check out, they would sign up for next year. If they didn't have a good experience and they wanted a different camp, the boy would start checking out new camps and sign up asap.


For campgrounds that didn't have a reservation system, the boys would always plan a backup site as they preped for the outing. I remember getting up to one place that they found a place to camp which was in fact their 4th choice. Worked out just fine. Depth of planning is as important as making reservations.


The boys usually needed a headstart on programs 4-6 months in advance. The planning was done by a single boy that would "take lead" on the project and it was left entirely up to him to pull it together. If he needed help, it was always available, but seldom asked for. With ownership of the outing in the hands of the boys, seldom did we have problems. I don't think any two boys ever did it the same, but it all seemed to work out just fine.



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