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scoutmaster106

Fall Camporee Ideas -Night

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Ive been ask to do next years fall camporee for our district. I know its a year from now ,but I want to do a night camporee.I have ideas for the day time on Saturday. But I need Ideas for a night camporee. Anyone every been apart of one? Heard of one? Most camporees are merit badge related or skills. I want this to be an all out fun camporee. After talking to scouts thru the district ,they want something different. Ive seen the Mission Impossible Night Camporee that is on the web. I like some of those Ideas ,but not all..Throw me some Ideas out here,would love to hear from you. Thanks!

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Do a search on "Night Hawk" or "Scout Star Trek". You might come-up with some hits from Canada as Night Camporees are very popular there, but go by the names above.

 

The ones I've participated in have involved hiking 3 miles (5km) in a loop at night--well, they've got the room for it where they hold'em at the ones I've attended in New Brunswick and the few times we've tried it here in the Maine wilderness. Event stations are all along the trail. Each patrol is assigned a different starting point. Patrols are allowed up to 20 minutes to complete the task at each station (depends on the difficulty of the task and the number of patrols you're expecting).

 

Check-in/Registration is usually 4 to 6pm. Patrol Leader's meeting at 8pm. You hit the trail at 9pm and must complete/quit by 5am. Breakfast (provided by the district at the Canadian event) is 5:30-7am. Closing with awards at 7:30am.

 

At the Canadian events, you're judged on:

Whether or not your patrol announces themselves upon arrival and asks permission to enter the site.

How well they work as a patrol to complete the task and not necessarily whether or not they complete it. Rather, how well they work as a team depending on the task--infighting/arguing costs'em points.

Whether or not they ask permission to leave the site when the task is complete.

 

Leaders/advisers are welcome to observe/cheer their patrol(s), but they can't coach/help them.

 

Events I have seen used:

 

Low-level cope course elements such as the spider web, using 2 to 3 candles as your only light source. Sounds hard, but sit there a moment and you'll be amazed at how quickly your eyes adjust to the small amount of light. It IS enough to complete this task.

 

Disability awareness teamwork: Blind nailing a nail to a board. Sounds scary, but can be done safely--three scouts, two are blindfolded, one is not. Only the non-blindfolded one can speak. One of the blindfolded ones has the board/nail. The other blindfolded one has a hammer. This can only end badly, right? Not, if it is well controlled. The non-blindfolded scout must guide the other two verbally in properly placing the hammer above the nail. When in the correct place, the hammer wielder may lightly tap the nail a few times to keep it in place and then strike it solidly. More of a fear factor for both blindfolded scouts.

 

Variations on Kim's Game--unkempt campsite. Scouts are lead into a messy campsite and given five minutes to "police" it without picking anything up (so the next patrol can see it and so on). Then led away and must write down as many problems as they can remember such as an ax out in the open with no sheath, litter on the ground, etc. In total, about 20 items/problems. The year I observed this (walking from site to site for future ideas), the patrol in question missed the underwear hanging from a tree branch 7 ft off the ground. :)

 

Night compass work--just as it's described.

 

Various team building games

 

Hot chocolate/snack station--'cause the events I've attended have been held in late October and it's not unusual to watch frost form around you on the trail as the night progresses.

 

Tarzan swings using the equivalent of giant nylons with a knot in the end--two platforms a couple feet off the ground and about 30 ft apart. Enough of these giant nylons to swing from platform to nylon to nylon to nylon to so on to other platform. Most scouts don't make it all the way across.

 

Astronomy station--provided you have a cloud-free night.

 

Slingshots (with certified range person) using dry dog kibble for ammo fired at targets downrange.

 

Almost any event station you would normally use during the day could be used as a station at a night event with a little thinking/planning--pioneering projects, obstacle courses, etc.

 

Good luck and no, it's not too soon to start planning for next year.

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WOW!! Those are very good ideas! Thank you for the info,if you come up with other ideas please send them my way. I want to make sure its a camporee they never forget.Im bringing troops in Friday evening and for Saturday we have a aviation club willing to give airplane rides and a local helicopter plant that is willing to give them also. We do a Golden Kettle cook off every year so we will still do that Saturday evening. Then start night events later..That is my plan as of now,I had planned on finishing around 1:30 or 2:00.. But like your idea of even later. So,is it a big hit with the scouts compared to day camporees? Thanks alot!

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the only added idea I have is nighttime orienteering. We left very small glo sticks at the correct coordinates, where you couldn't see it until you were almost upon it.

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Thanks for the heads up on glo sticks..very good idea...I have found a couple camporees where they had over 200 stations to complete..You can use alot of those for night stations. Keep the ideas coming in! Your comments are only going to help others looking for help,especially me...lol

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One of my fondest memories from my old troop, in the early 70s, is that we'd sometimes do a night hike. One place in particular, a state park, we'd be there every spring to go caving. Friday night, after arriving and setting up camp, we'd go on a night hike. The rules were simple, our SM asked to minimize talking and to not use flashlights. Sure enough, after a little while, our eyes would adjust (and maybe this trip was always timed so that we went when the moon was bright) and we didn't need to talk. The hike wasn't long -- maybe a couple of miles -- but it would end at a huge natural bridge.

 

In our troop now, I don't know that our scouts could hike quietly. They get this funny thing going on that when it gets dark out, they feel more compelled to yell. Even from tent-to-tent, right next door.

 

Lots of kids, my sons included, also seem to be comforted by flashlights. I still tend to walk at night, without light, unless I really need it (and yes, sometimes I walk slow!). I also abhor those headlamp-style things that seem to be adjusted just so the person wearing them shines them directly in your eyes when they're talking to you. Man, just shut them off! Your eyes adjust!

 

(it's funny, though, how our Scouts don't have any problem at all running through the woods playing their version of Manhunt, while minimizing flashlight use)

 

Anyway -- if I were in a similar circumstance of trying to dream up night activities, I'd do something similar. A night hike -- how about one that ends at a council ring for a campfire? To help make the experience more personal, maybe you could send out patrols at staggered times, such as every 5 minutes. That could help prevent it from being a long line of scouts yelling back and forth, flashlights everywhere (ruining their night vision). Even better to incorporate the idea of nighttime navigation, or maybe do what astronomers do -- red lenses only.

 

Guy

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There is a largely unexplored world called "Night Scouting."

 

http://inquiry.net/outdoor/night/index.htm

 

Note that the index page is arranged to give you immediate access to the Night Games. However you might want to spend some time with the considerable amount of material that follows, then introduce the stuff you like one chapter a month to your own Troop, especially on Friday nights which tend to be wasted. This practical experience can then be transferred to the Camporee.

 

Yours at 300 Feet,

 

Kudu

 

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I've been invovled in a few, we did them under the Star Trek and Star Wars themes, but you can make up any theme you want. The scouts love them. I'm sure that if you do a search night camporees at google and at Scouts-L.org archives, you will get more information than you can read. The basics for us is we started the competition from the evening campfire and went to about 2:00 AM in the morning. The adults cooked breakfast and had a lot of fun doing that.

 

Barry

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Camp O Ree at night is what we're doing in a month, based on Scout excitement over the idea (one of our Scouts had done it in another Council). We're going with a Saturday night Relief of (Siege of) Mafeking theme (see http://usscouts.org/usscouts/reliefofmafeking.asp). We're going to be offering work Friday and Saturday towards some of the historic merit badges (tracking and signaling will come in handy during the siege). As folks arrive Friday night, we may offer as part of that late night activity an assortment of other wide games, and maybe a spoof merit badge in Zombie Survival.

 

For more Camp o Ree ideas, see also http://troop33dekalb.net/links.html#camporee, and http://www.troop33.net/campdir/links.html and http://www.netwoods.com/campguid/campguid.html and http://www.netwoods.com/document/camporee.html.

 

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Thanks for all the ideas! I came up with the idea of using fire tacks to where the boys have to locate them to get to next station.And use compass to find the next station. I talk to a scouter who is helping put on a camporee this weekend,they have 330 stations. I dont need that many,but have more than what the patrols can actually finish. And have one or two stations between each patrol so that there isnt any backups. Let me know what you guys think..

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Our Spring Camporee was a "night time" event. We did a variation of the above mentioned "Relief at Mafeking" from the US Scouter site. Some of the events...

-fire starting

-3 point orienteering course

-finding north without a compass

-Kim's game

-Morse code

 

Shoot me your email and I'll send you the bulk of the details.

 

This event was so popular that we're doing it again this coming Spring.

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My troop did a camporee based on CSI and Clue. Different events had clues and patrols had to formulate the crime scene solution and bring their answer to the campfire. I don't remember many details and I can't find a write up. The boys planned it. They had fun.

 

My troop did the Mission Impossible Camporee back in the fall of 1997. It was one of the earlier night camporees ever held. The website for that event was mentioned:

http://www.troop33dekalb.net/mission1.htm

 

Links to camporee ideas may be of interest:

http://www.troop33dekalb.net/links.html#camporee

 

Eight years ago in 2002 we hosted another night event camporee for our district called "Project Darklight". The boys did the planning and it was well received. It's similar to 1997, but with some different events. I wish we had constructed a website for it. Below is a summary of the camporee posted to Scouts-L listserv 10-08-02.

 

= = = = = = = = = = = = =

 

Subject: Project Darklight

From: golden cliff

Reply-To: golden cliff

Date: Tue, 8 Oct 2002 12:40:19 -0500

Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN

Parts/Attachments: TEXT/PLAIN (139 lines)

 

 

 

Project Darklight was the name of our recent Camporee.

 

It was a night camporee, similar to one we did 5 years ago called Mission Impossible. It was themed to spies doing night missions.

 

The program started about 6:45pm and continued until about 2:00am.

 

My older Scouts were young ones when we did the last night camporee.

They thought is was great and wanted to run it this time around, so I

stepped back and let the boys have the freedom to make it happen. They did a great job and we got a very positive response from the troops in attendance.

 

Here is a summary of the program.

 

Troops starting assembling around 6:45pm on Saturday night, where they

were assigned to one of eight groups. The opening included an 8-10 minute video filmed and edited by the boys. It was shown on the side of a building using a video projector.

 

The film was very professional. The story line had our local university as a secret government installation being used for the development of satelite based laser weapons. Some bad guys stole some computer discs, good guys stole them back. During a pursuit, they give the disc to a boy scout selling popcorn. Three days later at a troop meeting, a govt agent approaches the boy and asks about the disc. He is instructed to bring the disc to the camporee that weekend for a rendezvous. Both good and bad guys are coming to the camporee looking for the Scout with the disc.

 

At the end of the film the MC asks if the Scout with the disc is present. From the back of the crowd the boy holds up the disc. Just then a jeep drives up and the Scout is kidnapped. The jeep speeds off into the camp.

 

The 8 Groups of Scouts must now go on several dangerous missions to defeat the bad guys and save the kidnapped Scout. There are 8 themed events.

 

Event 1 -- Surveillance Recon

-------

The group is divided into two subgroups, Alpha and Beta. Alpha is given a radio, a laptop computer, and a map showing where a disc is hidden. Beta is taken to a large enclosed tent with a radio, blank paper, and a marker.

 

Alpha uses the radio to describe the map to Beta who attempts to draw it. A security campera is trained on Beta's table. Alpha watches Beta drawing the map through the camera image on the laptop's screen. Alpha communicates the map descriptions and corrections to Beta through the radio. When Beta gets the map right, they use it to go out and recover the disc. It's all about communications and teamwork.

 

 

Event 2 -- Blind Escape

-------

There's been an explosion blinding half the group. Everyone must escape before a second explosion kills everyone. Time is limited. Scouts are paired up. One blindfolded, one not. The sighted Scout must talk the blindfolded Scout through an obstacle course to safely escape.

 

 

Event 3 -- Secret Agents

-------

Hiking a trail through dense woods, the group encounters two agents, first evil, then good. They must report as much detail to the second good agent about what the first evil agent said and a full physical description. It's a version of Kim's Game.

 

 

Event 4 -- Enemy Encampment

-------

Enemy agents are sitting around their campsite. Your group must get close enough to count the people, tents, and equipment, then create a diversion so a team can get into the campsite and retreive a disc.

 

 

Rest break/snack time

--------------------

Halfway through the program, we had a 30 minute rest time. Each group was responsible for having their own sack lunches, snacks, and drinks.

 

 

Event 5 -- Codebreaker

-------

Each group divides into two. Each subgroup must send and receive a

message in morse code using flashing lights. The message is a code

telling them it's safe to proceed to the next event.

 

 

Event 6 -- Satelite Recon

-------

Scouts are given coordinates to where satelite weapons have been hidden. They are to use compasses to locate the satelites and report on their existance. (One of the boys made some really great looking satelites out of cardboard which were suspended from trees with fishing line. They looked like they were hovering in mid air when illuminated by flashlights.)

 

 

Event 7 -- Finding Jordan

-------

Jordan is the name of the kidnapped 12 year-old Scout. It was a basic

search and recue operation at a remote part of camp. (We had a coyote

problem at that end of camp. A coyote came within 20 feet of where Jordan was hiding. He shined his flashlight on the beast and it went running away. So did Jordan. As the group was ready to go out in search of Jordan, he came running up the hill at full speed screaming... " C O Y O T E ! "

 

 

Event 8 -- Worst Case Scenario

-------

As the staff member is explaining the rules of this event, an enemy agent comes out of the darkness, shoots him three times with a loud toy gun, and retreats back into the darkness. The group must treat him for first aid; three gunshot wounds in the leg (puncture wounds), a broken arm from falling, and shock.

 

 

At the end of the event, we had a Mission De-Briefing. Groups had been given a disc with a number score from each event. The discs are tallied and 3rd Place, 2nd Place, and 1st Place are announced. Units were back in their campsites by 2:00am. It got dark and quiet very fast.

 

Each event was 30 minutes with a 10 minute travel time in between.

 

It was a great leadership event for our troop. All Scouts participated in planning and running the Camporee. Adults were in supportive roles.

 

I had no job during the Camporee, which was nice. I just walked around without a flashlight, using my night vision, observing. We borrowed 12 FRS radios for communications, with each event having a radio and key staff. I didn't have one though. I watched, usually secretly. Sometimes I would reveal myself and there would be a newsflash on the radio that there had been a confirmed "Cliff Sighting".

 

Most of the time, they didn't know where I was. They did a great job. It was a lot of work, but also a lot of fun for them.

 

YIS,

Cliff Golden

Scoutmaster Troop 33

DeKalb, Illinois

 

 

 

 

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