Spring Campout: Last Minute Notes

by Kimberly Cimino in Camping, Instructions, Troop 24

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Its almost time for the spring campout to Cantigny Park in Wheaton, IL.  Please carefully review this post as the campsite location and check-in process is completely different from last year’s outing.

Arrival:  You can arrive at Cantigny as early as 4pm on Friday, May 6.

Entrance:  Overnight campers do NOT go to the Cantigny’s main gate.  Instead, all overnight campers will go to the back gate which is on the East side of the park south of the intersection of Roosevelt and Shaffner roads.  This link provides directions to the intersection, but the entrance is about 250 feet south of this intersection (to your right as you drive south).  When enter the service road, park in the lot by the greenhouse building, which is on the north side of the road (to your right as you head west).

Parking:  When you arrive, look for my car, a green Ford contour, that we will mark with some type of Pack 24 identification.  Parking passes will be available at my contour, be sure to fill one out and then display the parking pass on your rear-view mirror.  As a Plan B, we may ask a Troop 24 boy scout to stand near the entrance to the service road and help distribute the passes as families arrive.

Campsite:  The campsites are given out on a first-come, first-serve basis.  The sites are several hundred feet away from the parking lot.  We will try to get the closest one to the restrooms and the parking lot, but won’t know for certain until Friday afternoon.  Some of the leaders will try to bring wagons or other kinds of transportation to help haul gear from cars to the campsite, and we encourage all families to bring something to help carry gear if they can spare the space.

Friday Night:  Our flag ceremony will now begin at 6pm, followed by pizza dinner served by the Tigers.  After The boy scouts from Troop 24 have graciously agreed to work with the cub scouts in small groups to demonstrate fire building and safety.  At approximately 7:30 the boy scouts will have a flag retirement ceremony.  When it gets dark, we will break out the s’mores (served by the wolves) and have campfire stories, songs & skits.  The evening will end when we have our flag retirement.  Cantigny does not permit any scouts to leave the camping area after dark, with the exception of visits to the restroom when accompanied by an adult.

Saturday Morning:  On Saturday morning, we will start with a flag ceremony, followed by breakfast served by the Webelos I.  The morning is open, although some dens have planned activities.  I also have some scavenger hunt materials and self-guided tours that have been provided by Cantigny that I can give to anyone that is interested.  We will have a flag retirement ceremony at 10:30am as we need to break camp by 11:30 to clear out of the campsite.

Saturday Afternoon:  The fun doesn’t need to end once we have broken camp.   Instead, families can drive to the main entrance of Cantigny (located on the West side of the park), and park at the main parking lot.  The Bears will serve lunch in a picnic area and we will prepare for an afternoon of games and bottle rocketry.  Remember to either bring an empty plastic soda bottle, or make one in advance of the camp out.  Official activities end at 3pm on Saturday afternoon.

Weather:  The forecast for Friday is partially sunny with highs in the lower 60’s and overnight in the 50’s.  Saturday has some thunderstorms in the forecast, so we may have to abbreviate our visit if the conditions don’t cooperate.  However, be sure to bring rain gear just to play it safe.

Uniforms:  Scouts should not wear their class “A” uniforms.  Instead, we suggest you have them wear their class “B” (T-shirt) uniforms.  It may not be very warm, so in that case most scouts will be wearing jackets or sweaters.

Questions:  If you have any final questions, please contact your den leader.  I will circulate an email to all families that are camping with some final notes.

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