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That one thing.....

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Ladies and gentlemen, can you help a newbie out? I'm about to embark on my first SC EVER, and I was wondering. After the basics, what is the "one thing" you wish you would have brought to Summer Camp?




One excited ASM!!

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You'll have a great time. But not only do you want extra toilet paper, make sure it's two ply; the one ply just doesn't cut it.


Bring a book for your free time, a hammock if you have one, and a water bottle! Pack smart, what you think you really need. The list you receive from the camp is usually a pretty good list to go by, it has been made by people that have been going to camp for years.


Have a great time, and good luck!

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I have a small daypack with a hydration system I wear. Helps me to keep hydrated. I keep a hat, knife, first aid kit, bandana, pen, pencil, notepad, and rain gear in the pack.


I have a few breakfast bars, peatnut butter cracker, jerky sticks in there as well. The first year scouts tend to crash mid afternoon due to heat, activity, lack of water, and strange food. A bit of snack and a drink of water and they perk up.


I bring my xacto knife and carve neckerchief slides to fill the time. I bring a paperback to read after dark. Definitely bring a folding chair.


From a leader viewpoint, we make sure we bring several Sharpie markers to help reduce Lost & Found. Recommend the troop pack a sleeve of plastic cups and write the scouts name on it. They get one for the week. The troop sets up the shade tarps and keeps a 5 gallon water cooler in the campsite on the folding table under the tarp to encourage hydration. It gives the scouts someplace to go and play cards and swap stories. The adults take the permanent shelter for their play area.


Troop needs to hang a clock on the shelter so scouts don't have an excuse not to leave for class, waiter duty, etc on time. Bring a large bottle of talc powder to treat crotch rot. Encourage the scouts to change out of the bathing suit immediately after the class to prevent crotch rash. 100 feet of binders twine or 1/8 braided nylon is useful for setting up clothes lines to dry the towels and bathing suits.


Tuesday afternoon/night is the peak of homesickness. We hold a troop discussion after the evening meal so everyone can discuss their feelings. Helps them to understand they are not the only ones missing family and routine. Do not let anyone call home!!! Once they make it through Tuesday, they usually have it under control.


Bring a coat hanger to allow your uniform shirt to air out. You will wear every morning for flag raising and meal, every evening for flag lowering and meal. You will wear it at opening and closing campfires. Hanging it up lets it air out and limits wrinkles.


Bring a battery alarm clock for you and one for the SPL. The SPL needs to get up early enough to get the waiters up and off to the mess hall. Then he can wake the rest of the troop. At least one leader will need to get up to confirm the SPL is up.


A watermellon Wed or Thursday for evening snack is a welcome treat for all. Some camps have a SM/ASM cobbler cookoff. Plan ahead and bring the all the necessary equipment and supplies.


A legal pad and pen to take and leave notes at the adult shelter or bulletin board is very useful.


The adults always find a need/use for a battery circular saw, hand saw, hammer & nails, tape measure, and hand full of nails/screws. Out troop always volunteers for a camp service project. Having a few tools makes things go much easier.


Identify a troop medic to handle all the in campsite minor injuries. Bug bites, minor cuts, scrapes, rash, splinters, etc. Some camp medics are part time and always on the opposite end of camp at the wrong time of day. Identify 1 adult to follow along behind all the scouts who must take daily meds to ensure that happens.





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Personally, it's a piece of 1/4-inch plywood that goes between the mattress and springs of my camp cot. Number two would be a square of carpet for the tent.


For the troop, we do a lot of things to make camp fun and homey for the down time spent hanging around the campsite. To me, one of the best parts of summer camp is hanging out with your mates. We make sure we have plenty of lanterns so the guys can play cards and games at night. We have a variety of tools and materials for guys who are interested in working on things like carving, basketry or leatherwork projects. Citronella candles keep be mosquito back. One night we'll have watermellon, a cobbler the next.



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Sheets! Most times dont even unroll sleeping bag. Bandana for when my neck needs to be cooled off.


One thing we take for each scout is a letter(s) from parent/sibs/grandparent/pet etc. They get them on cook in campsite night usually Wednesday. We think it helps.


Have fun!!!



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I also make sure I take some extra rope that I can use to help attached the bedsprings to the frame as there are always some springs missing or over-stretched.


While sealing by OA Brotherhood at Fall Fellowship last year, I was in charge of the detail that fixed all of the camp bedsprings. You would not believe how many were missing or ruined by the end of the camp cycle.


I like the board idea between the mattress and bedsprings. I may try that this year. Even doubling up the mattresses last year didn't help as much.


TwoCubDad - what size is your board? I never measured the normal cot size to see what the length and width were. Thankfully we take our troop trailer so getting it there is not a problem.

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One item we keep in the Troop trailer which is very handy at camp. It's our Bag O' Gimp. Several spool of various colors with a binder of instructions for different projects. Amazingly even the older scouts find it a great way to pass the idle time. Other leaders bring their whittling knife and crank out at least one or two slides in a week. Usually the boys join in as well.

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AMEN on the 2-ply and the Gold Bond. We have a two pound container that stays on the picnic table. MAKE SURE you get the body powder. NEVER use the Gold Bond foot powder anywhere but on the feet -- if you know what I mean.


Not sure about the size of the plywood. About 30" wide and 48 long. Depends on the size of the cot.

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