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Q/A: Resident Camping Requirement

Q: I have a question about Unit Elections. For the camping requirement of six consecutive days and five nights of resident camping does the camping have to be at a Boy Scout owned and operated camp, or can it be a troop long term campout allowed by the council?

A: The exact wording of the camping requirement can be found in the current printing of the Guide for Officers and Advisers (#34997A, revised 2012). This book sets forth the official policy of the Order of the Arrow on this topic. The pertinent passage, on page 20, says:

"... long-term camp consisting of six consecutive days and five nights of resident camping, approved and under the auspices and standards of the Boy Scouts of America."

It does not say that the resident camp must be at a Boy Scout owned or operated facility. If the national Order of the Arrow committee had wanted to say that, they would have. The language used was very carefully composed. If a troop runs their own long-term resident camp, "under the auspices and standards" of the BSA, it qualifies. The BSA does have very explicit standards for a resident Boy Scout camp, requiring much more than just a week long campout. Your local council camping people can provide more information on what the current standards are.

Some of the confusion may be caused by an error in the current Boy Scout Handbook, which stated the camping had to be at "a local or national council facility", but that is incorrect.