Are Unit Outings and Campouts OK?
We strongly recommend that all Scouting activities in Minnesota and Wisconsin follow a virtual format from 11/20/2020 through 12/18/2020.
Once the current pause expires on 12/18/2020, we recommend following the guidance below, which is consistent with standards for Youth Programming & Outdoor Activities established by the Minnesota Department of Health.
Many of you have questions about how to conduct outings within BSA guidelines during the pandemic.
As you plan, first check out Scout Unit Trip Planning Tips to ensure you are meeting basic Scouting guidelines. Second, please check for regular updates to the Council’s COVID-19 page and Unit Restart Guide. Look for the brown tab labeled Unit Meetings, Activities & Outings.
Q: Is it ok to hold an event or outing?
A: We have created a flow chart to help you make that decision. Please note that your plans should follow state guidelines and have the endorsement of the parents of the youth who are attending.
Q: Can we go camping?
A: Yes, published guidelines note that campouts with people from different households are acceptable if social distancing and increased sanitation procedures can be maintained. Groups sizes should follow current state guidelines.
Q: Can individuals share a tent?
A: Best practice is to encourage all participants to either tent with a member of their household or by themselves. If individuals from different households must share a tent, social distancing (6ft) should be maintained. Sleeping head to toe is recommended.
Q: Should we require participants to complete a health screening prior to attending?
A: Yes, we recommend that you use our camp health screening tool. If anyone shows signs of illness they should stay home. Additionally, we recommend that you rescreen individuals on a daily basis for all events that include overnights.
Q: Can we carpool?
A: Best practice is to encourage only members of the same household to ride together in a vehicle. Other arrangements are at the discretion of individual parents and effort should be made to increase physical distance among passengers.
Q: How should we deal with a suspected case of COVID-19 while on an outing?
A: Any individual suspected of COVID-19 should be immediately separated from the rest of the group. With the assistance of a parent or unit leaders, the individual should seek and follow medical guidance from a physician.
Q: When should we wear a mask during Scouting activities?
A: Following state guidelines, all people should wear a mask when social distancing is difficult, either indoors or outdoors. Additionally, masks should be worn when in indoor spaces or vehicles containing multiple people. Masks are not necessary if the group of people all live together in the same household.
Q: Can individuals from different households sleep in an indoor facility together?
A: We have discussed this question at length with our Risk Management Committee and volunteer physicians. We have also reviewed multiple mitigation strategies for reducing the risk of transmission. However, based on the advice of our health professionals, we are not allowing individuals from different households to use indoor spaces for sleeping at our camp properties. We recommend that your unit follow the same guidance outside of our camp properties as well. We will continue to review this approach on a monthly basis.