COVID19 and Northern Star Camps, Meetings & More

COVID19 and Northern Star Camps, Meetings & More

Limited small indoor groups and larger outdoor groups allowed

10/09/2020 - The Unit Meetings tab has been updated to include the emergency order in Wisconsin.

Northern Star Scouting has taken a small step away from Scouting at Home, and toward in-person den, patrol, and any group gatherings as of June 09. Per the Governor of Minnesota’s orders, and without conflict with state standards in Wisconsin, groups of young people and adult leaders that number 25 or fewer in an outdoor space, or fewer than 15 in an indoor space, and follow all social distancing (including 6' spacing) as well as self-screening safety standards may again meet in person for merit badge programs, roadside cleanups, Eagle service projects, and more.

As of now, any meeting of more than 25 people gathered outdoors, or more than 15 people indoors, is not allowed.

Northern Star Scouting continues to operate partially in a virtual capacity following State of Minnesota, Wisconsin and CDC guidelines, with a limited number of staff returning to the Leadership Center starting May 18. Here is a status summary of announcements that appear in detail on these pages:

  • All units are restricted to gatherings of 25 people or less in an outdoor space, and 15 people or less in an indoor space, following all safety guidelines
  • All council camp properties are open, with some restrictions – Day Camps will begin in June as scheduled
  • Base Camp Leadership Center is open to outside visitors, but with additional safety restrictions in place.
  • Overnight camps began on July 5, we have prepared by using the best-practice health and safety guidelines as well as continuing to prepare for alternative camping experiences, should they prove necessary.

Continue to monitor this page for updates

Looking for COVID19 and Camp Information?

Virtual Scouting Options

During this time, we'll do our best to give suggestions and guidance on ways Scouting can continue virtually (digital meetings, at-home advancement, etc). Stay tuned to this page, our new Scouting From Home Page and our social media channels for that. In addition, our Scouts BSA and Cub Scouts Facebook groups have been very active with volunteers giving tips to each other. Check them out as well!

The Twin Cities Scout Shops and Base Camp Customer Service Desk for Drop-offs/Pick-ups will open within safety guidelines on Tuesday, June 2.

To find the open hours for each Scout Shop location, please visit our Scout Shop page. Please note that these hours may change often and with short notice because of COVID-19.

All will follow current state guidelines and social distancing practices


(Updated 9/24/2020)

Over 4000 youth connected with each other, the outdoors and Scouting at camp this past summer. We are proud and fortunate to share that we did not have any reported cases of COVID-19 attributed to a camp experience.  See the Health and Safety section for information on our precautions.

Fall Camp Programming 2020

We are excited to offer our traditional Cub Scout Fall Day Camps and Spookyree Camps in October.  As always, these events promise a ton of outdoor family fun!

Our key programs are not changing but our overall session capacities and individual group sizes have been lowered to ensure we can meet social distancing standards and state requirements for reducing the risk of spread of COVID-19.



weekend Camp operations

All of our properties are available for units and families wishing to participate in tent camping.  At this time we are not opening indoor accommodations for overnight use.

Units wishing to reserve a building for day use only (inclement weather, cooking, etc.) should contact our customer service team at 612-261-2303.

Units and families will need to follow published guidance as it relates to group size, distancing, sanitation, face coverings and other accommodations aimed at reducing the risk of spread of COVID-19.

We are excited to welcome you back to camp!

Family cabin rentals

Three of our properties are opening cabins for rental by individual families throughout the fall.  We encourage all Scouting families to take advantage of this unique opportunity to get some extra time outdoors surrounded by the beauty of your favorite camps.

Check out Family Cabin Rentals for additional information and to make your reservation today!

Winter Camp Programming

Based on demand seen during the summer we are making changes to our line up of winter programming in 2021.  At all levels, we will maximize outdoor fun and minimize time indoors!

Polar Cubs will be offered at just Phillippo Scout Reservation and Rum River Scout Camp in January and February.  Registration opens on November 1.

Traditional Scouts BSA programming at North Wind Winter Adventures at Stearns will not operate.  However, the Spearhead program at Snow Base will run as a single overnight with Saturday arrival.  The Snow Huskies program will be offered as a day camp only.  Registration opens on October 1.


Working with physicians and following state guidelines, we developed protocols enabling us to successfully open our camps this past July.  Those effective strategies include:

  • Small group sizes (reduced capacity)
  • Minimal mixing between participant groups
  • Social distancing
  • Maximizing outdoor time
  • Use of face coverings indoors and when social distancing is difficult outdoors.
  • Increased sanitation of high touch surfaces
  • Additional emphasis on handwashing.
  • Self-administered daily health screening for all participants
  • Exposure and testing response plans


All planning and financial deadlines remain in place.  

We understand that our current situation requires both flexibility and accommodation.  So, if you are unable to meet deadlines, contact our office (612-261-2303) prior to the payment due date to discuss alternate arrangements.


We want to ensure that all families feel safe and comfortable sending their children to camp.

If a family decides to no longer attend camp due to health risk, we will refund all fees paid if the request is received by our office at least one week in advance of the start of their camp session. Requests outside of this timeframe will be evaluated individually.  

This practice will continue for the remainder of Fall 2020.


We understand that more families may now be faced with economic hardship due to the impacts of COVID-19 on the economy. Please communicate to all that financial assistance (camperships) is available to those in need. More information can be found following the button below.

Northern Star units can meet for den meetings, patrol meetings, service projects, or outings in groups of 25 or less in an outdoor space, or 15 or less in an indoor space, per state guidelines.

As of October 8, Wisconsin has issued an emergency order limiting indoor group sizes to 25% of the posted occupancy rate of the room (not to exceed Northern Star’s limit of 15 people). If occupancy rate is not posted, indoor groups may not exceed 10 people.

All other state guidelines with regard to social distancing and sanitizing should also be observed.

Can my unit hold our activity, meeting, or event? (Flowchart) Unit Camping FAQ Health Screening Checklist

Q: We cannot find a meeting location, can we hold our Scout meeting at a camp facility?

A: In order to help units stay active and keep Scouting strong during the pandemic, select camp facilities will be available, at no cost, to hold regular pack, troop or crew meetings. Check out Unit Meetings at Camp for more information.

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: What if a participant cannot wear a mask during Scouting activities?

A: Unless a participant has a medical exemption, all participants must comply with state guidelines requiring use of masks indoors and when social distancing is not possible outdoors. Those who have a medical exemption should sign the exemption sheet to be kept on file with the unit or activity leader. Those with a valid exemption will be asked to wear a face shield and indoor activities will be restricted to well-ventilated spaces that provide at least 144 square feet of floor space per person. If a participant cannot wear a face covering of any type their involvement in indoor programming, or outdoor programming without social distancing at all times, will be limited.

All About Face Coverings

Q: What if participant has symptoms or tests positive for COVID after attending a Scouting event?

A: The symptomatic person should isolate and follow physician’s advice for personal care. Use the Suspected COVID Case in a Scouting Activity Flow Chart to determine what actions to take with other participants who attended the Scouting activity.

For guidance we are following the detailed recommendations that can be found here for reference:

Some events that have been cancelled are automatically issuing refunds.

For other events and weekend camps, we are recommending fees and deposits be carried forward to a new date. If preferred, we will make full refunds upon request.

For June camps that have been postponed, if alternative dates that work cannot be scheduled, refunds will be made.

We want to ensure that all families feel safe and comfortable sending their children to camp this summer. If a family decides to no longer attend camp due to health risk, we will refund all fees paid if the request is received by our office at least one week in advance of the start of their camp session.  Requests outside of this timeframe will be evaluated individually.

If camps are forced to close this summer, units will be given a choice to credit all fees toward a future reservation or receive a full refund.

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