10 of the craziest places Scouts have camped overnight

A baseball stadium, an aquarium with sharks swimming overhead and the camp where Friday the 13th was filmed are among the craziest places Scouts have camped in recent years.

After we had so much fun seeing cool places where Scouts meet, I asked to see the craziest places they’ve camped. I received dozens of submissions and have shared out 10 of my favorites below.

Have one to add? Email me your photos using the instructions here.

1. On the same floor where the San Antonio Spurs play

1-ATT-Center

Who: Pack 48.

Where: AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas, which is home of the NBA’s Spurs and the Rampage of the American Hockey League.

Why it’s crazy: A bunch of Scouts camping on the same grounds traversed by Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili. Mary, one of the leaders in Pack 48, adds: “We are the maroon bedrolls to the left of the overhead screen along walkway.”

2. On a minor league baseball field

2-Baseball-field

Who: Pack 253, Chestertown, Md.

Where: Frawley Stadium in Wilmington, Del., home of the Wilmington Blue Rocks of the Carolina League.

Why it’s crazy: Instead of fighting post-game traffic, the Scouts “watched a great game and got to spend the night on the field,” says Scout leader Nicole.

3. On an island in the middle of an Alaskan river

3-Alaskan-island

Who: Troop 256, Pickerington, Ohio.

Where: Yukon River, Alaska, on a small rock island in the middle of the river.

Why it’s crazy: Because of the remoteness, no setting sun and the fact that “hardly no one camps there,” says Scoutmaster Brent.

4. In an aquarium (right under the sharks)

4-Aquarium

Who: Pack 24.

Where: Ripley’s Aquarium, Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Why it’s crazy: Cubmaster Ed quotes one of his Cub Scouts, who recently asked, “Mr. Ed, when can we sleep with the sharks again?”

5. In a museum (right under the dinosaurs)

5-Science-museum

Who: Pack 86.

Where: Science Museum of Minnesota in St. Paul.

Why it’s crazy: Because of the surroundings, says Scout leader Nicole. “The Science Museum of Minnesota is a great place to camp because it provides a great program and many cool exhibits to sleep next to.”

6. At the camp where Friday the 13th was filmed

6-Friday-the-13th

Who: Pack 192, Wayne, N.J.

Where: Northern New Jersey Council’s Camp No-Be-Bo-Sco in Blairstown, N.J.

Why it’s crazy: Otherwise known as “Camp Crystal Lake,” the first Friday the 13th movie (1980) was filmed at No-Be. The council even offers official Friday the 13th tours of the camp.

7. In a “haunted” jail in Canada

7-Canada-jail

Who: Troop 213, Export, Pa.

Where: The cells of the Ottawa Jail Hostel — a “haunted” 19th-century Canadian county jail.

Why it’s crazy: It’s really the only acceptable way to spend the night in jail — in real cells, with real bars and with a real clanking barred cell door.

8. On a beach in the shadow of a roller coaster

8-Cedar-Point

Who: Troop and Pack 409.

Where: Cedar Point Beach in Sandusky, Ohio, next to the popular amusement park. This was part of an official Heart of Ohio Council event.

Why it’s crazy: Scout leader James says, “An early wake up call from coaster test runs? Oh, what a great four years on this campout!”

9. Inside an 18th century fort

9-Fort

Who: Troop 61, Wooster, Ohio.

Where: Fort Niagara near Youngstown, N.Y.

Why it’s crazy: “The Scouts slept inside the fort in the former soldier bunk area,” says Scouter Mark.

10. Inside a submarine

10-inside-sub

Who: Pack 169, Port Huron, Mich.

WhereUSS Silversides, a World War II submarine in Muskegon, Mich.

Why it’s crazy: A chance to sleep in the berths where brave men once served our country.

Your turn

Share photos of the craziest places you’ve camped here.

86 Comments

  1. An igloo on the side of Mount Rainier in winter. A GP-Medium tent in Fort A.P. Hill. Under a plastic sheet in a creek bed (during the rain). Between two logs on a deserted beach.

    Ah – the fun times we had!

    • Are boys have slept on the ice at the Maverik center in West Valley City, Utah and the smiths ballpark where the Salt Lake bees play, all just this year. Actually we didn’t sleep on the ice, we did that in the corridors but we did invade the ice for a few hours after the game!

  2. Pack 70 camped overnight in the Riverbanks Zoo, Columbia, SC… We got to take special behind the scene tours, and saw a special security force that was guarding rare black ivory that was being transported across the country. Our scouts and parents loved it!

  3. We have done the Minor League Baseball Stadium in Jackson TN, home of the Jackson Generals and the Battleship USS Alabama in Mobile Alabama. Great Times…Dan Way Troop 32 Selmer TN.

  4. In the old terminal of the functional airport. They took us out on a shuttle with security out on the runway to show how they check out the runways after midnight. They had to constantly be in contact with the FAA via radio. It was pretty cool.

  5. Sleeping wth the Sharks also, but in Gaitlinburg, tn. Also, in the racks on the Aircraft Carrier Yorktown at Patriots Point, SC.

  6. Minor league baseball field after a Grand Prairie Airhogs game, onboard the USS Lexington, and NASA Johnson Space Center.

  7. Pack 3383 from Mackinaw City Mi. camped out on the Icebreaker Mackinaw Maritime Museum in our hometown! We had the run of the ship! All the scouts said their favorite part was the tour and the patch, of course 🙂

  8. We do an annual camp at a drive-in movie theatre complete with 3 movies. I don’t know if it counts as “crazy” but we certainly have fun!

  9. When we camped at No Be Bos Co last year not only did they NOT offer Friday the 13th tours, when we asked if it was really the place the movie was filmed they threatened to kick us out if we mentioned it again. They don’t want to be associated with it.

  10. Pack 421 slept under the T Rex at the Perot Museum – the ‘dinosaurs’ were snoring loudly that night! I had 2 Tigers that would not go to sleep as they were afraid the dinos would ‘come to life’.

  11. Troop 289, Western Lake County-Ohio, we joined Troop 360 and thousand other Scouts camping at the base of the Perry International Peace Monument on Put-In Bay island in the middle of Lake Erie. One camping trip I will never forget!!

  12. My boys have camped in an old castle in Germany, the beaches of Normandy, National Cemetery in St Avold France, Klondike Derby in Kanderstag Switzerland, and the Kansas City Speedway.

  13. Under an SR-71 airplane at the Strategic Air Command museum outside Omaha Nebraska. Alongside a hanger filled with a B-52, etc.

  14. In a cave! Blue Springs Cavern in Indiana. Great staff. Special overnights just for scouts and they see parts of the cave the public tours don’t.

  15. Pack 420 Janesville, Wi spent the night on the USS Cobia, another WWII era sub at the Wisconsin Maritime Museum in Manitowoc, Wi. We also stayed in the EAA Airventure Museum in Oshkosh WI.

  16. 35 years ago when i was a scout, there was a scout camp on an island in the delaware water gap. I think it was called treasure island.

  17. Here in Grand Rapids, Michigan most Troops have gone to the USS Silversides submarine. The White Caps baseball stadium has an annual camp out of a game, hot dog, drink, popcorn and a movie on the jumbotron before sleeping. The Grand Rapids Public Museum offers several boy and girl scout merit badges but they also do a “Night at the Museum” sleepover. Winter Polar Bear is usually at the ski hill to go tubing. There are a lot of great opportunities all around for scouts if you start looking into it.

  18. Eddie Buonaiuto of Denver’s Frontier District and Troop 376 loves to tell how his “urban camping” while growing up in New York City included camping on top of the Empire State Building. I’m sure you can’t do that any more, but what an experience!!!

  19. Minor League field — Frederick (Md) Keys, across the street from the cemetery where Francis Scott Key is buried.

    In hammocks on frigate U.S.S. Constellation in Baltimore harbor

  20. Cub Scout Pack 108 from Fort Mill, SC has camped at: USS Yorktown Aircraft Carrier at Patriots Point in Charleston SC, South Carolina State Museum in Columbia SC, Charlotte Knights Baseball Field when it was in Fort Mill, SC, and Myrtle Beach OceanFront at Ocean Lakes Family Campground for beach sweep (clean up litter on the beach). Lots of fun times and memories for the scouts and parents!

  21. Troop 135 (Delmarva Council) camped out on the roof of a building at 112th street overlooking Central Park in NYC! Hiked the length of Central Park, visited the Central Park Zoo, rode the subway to The Battery, round trip on the Staten Island Ferry, ate pizza at Lombardi’s on Spring St., subway back uptown, hiked back to our “camp site”, and along the way way met an elderly Cuban gentleman in Spanish Harlem who shared that he had been a Scout in Cuba prior to Castr’s takeover! What a weekend.

  22. USS Constellation in Baltimore Harbor. Cubs or Boys can become “Powdermonkeys” in the Civil War era Sloop o’ War. You have to schedule it sometimes a year in advance. http://www.historicships.org/ Also available, Lightship Chesapeake, sub USS Torsk, and USCGC Taney, last surviving ship from the Pearl Harbor attack. Gotta find my photos and scan them in for this….

  23. Troop 1 (Transatlantic Council) took many trips throughout Europe (thanks Jim Steiner)!! One trip we stayed nights in different US Military cemeteries at Normandy, Verdun and in the countryside of France.

  24. WAY BACK, in the mid to late 1950’s, members of our Post camped at Fort Myer in Washington, DC. We slept in the military barracks, ate at the military mess hall, and had easy access to all of Washington DC. With all the changes in our world today, I don’t know if it would be allowed any more.
    Steve E. Pack, Troop and Post 54, Queens, NY

  25. We once had a Camporee in the early 1980’s at a Air National Guard Base & the boys slept next to A-10 Wart Hogs “Tank Killers”. It was so cool. Couldn’t get anywhere near military aircraft today.

    Troop51 Fayetteville, NY

  26. Pack 42 has slept overnight at the Boston Museum of Science, under the T-Rex and in the Electric Theater, aboard the USS Salem and the USS Massachusetts in Fall River, MA.

  27. Minor league ballpark camping in Eau Claire, WI… Please be warned that IF they forget to turn off the sprinkler system and IF those spigots pop up under the rain fly, the inside of the tent gets very wet! Very fun memory of a very wet wake up call!

  28. In an medical transport airplane at the Strategic Air Museum in Omaha, NE, In the aquarium at the Omaha Zoo, in the Chimpanzee house Kansas City Zoo, in a Salt Mine at Hutchinson Kansas, Baseball field of the Kansas City T-Bones, Baseball field of Kansas City Royals, frozen lake at Boundary Waters (Opik), those are the most oddly spectacular sites.

    There are also golf courses, wilderness areas, improved campgrounds, campgrounds that needed improved, pastures, next to cemeteries, on hay bales, pond dams, and state parks.

  29. our Council (Greater Niagara Frontier Council) does a council wide event with the local minor league team – game, parade around the field, camp on the field, show a movie on the jumbotron, etc), as well as a camp out at Fort Niagara. We also do Council events at local and state parks.

  30. On the USS Slater a DE in Albany NY, the USS Massachusetts, a Battleship the Valley Cats in Troy NY under the stars in center field, at the River Rats hockey arena in Albany NY, Herkimer Co Airport, Fort Ticonderoga, and the Plattsburgh Air Force Base an old SAC base from the Cold War, Indian tribal land in Eastgreenbush NY and the Herkimer Diamond mine in Herkimer NY

  31. Troop 976 on board the Lexington Aircraft Carrier and Sam Houston Area Council 100 years of Scouting camped inside of the old Texas World Speedway outside of College Station TX.

  32. Pack 133 in Mendham NJ has camped under the big blue whale at the Museum of Natural History, NYC, the Intrepid and under the plaques in the Baseball Hall of Fame, Cooperstown.

    When I was a scout, I also camped at West Point and a naval base in Annapolis.

  33. Troop 108 of Fort Mill, SC has camped a couple of times a hundred feet underground in a cavern at Lost Sea Caverns in Tennessee.

    Lots of fun, and the “Wild Tour” let’s you go in places you’re not sure you’d be able to get out of.

  34. Pack 313 has camped on the USS Intrepid, in the Museum of Ntural History, in the Liberty Science Center, and at Adventure Aquarium next to the hippo tank!

  35. Upper Yosemite Valley, three miles from the top of Half Dome in a torrential rain storm and the most fiercesome thunder and lighting storm I have ever experienced. Troop 316, Valencia, CA.

  36. When my boys were in scouts, they camped on the baseball field at the Bowie (MD) Baysox stadium, also at the Maryland Science Center in Baltimore.

  37. Over the years, Pack 181 of Andover, NJ has camped at Skylands Park (minor league field) in Augusta, NJ; Liberty Science Center; DaVinci Science Center in Allentown; Battleship New Jersey; and the Philadelphia Zoo. And yes, No-Be-No-Sco in Blairstown does not like to talk about their Friday the 13th connection, as far as I know. But maybe that’s changed.

  38. 1976 for our Nation’s Bicentennial, Miami Valley Coucil in Dayton Ohio held a jamboree at Wright Patterson Air Force Base. I don’t remember how many scouts were in attendance, but we were camped out in the field near the Air Force Museum around the runway.

  39. I was also at the friday the 13th camporee at no be. I wasn’t my troop (from the same town) but with the OA staffing the event

  40. In a German castle built in the 1100s and is now owned by the German Scouting organization. Cub Scout Pack 243, Landstuhl, Germany.

  41. Pack 403 in Pleasant Hill, CA spent the night in the cells at Alcatraz. Over our scout career we camped on an Aircraft Carier, a submarine, in the zoo…but the best was the prison. I got to sleep in the Birdman’s cell. Awesome memories!

  42. We have slept in the middle of an airforce base a few times, then in a house museum built in 1840’s which housed lots of famous and high ranking people throughout the years, on a few different stages, under an aquarium, in school classrooms, in football and basketball stadiums and in a zoo.

  43. TOTAL DARKNESS …We spent the night in the Marengo Cave. In the morning the staff treated us to a pancake breakfast near were we slept. Very strange put a great way to go…. what time of year. The temperature is always the same, and it never rains.lol

  44. Troop 240, from Guaynabo, slept in San Cristobal Castle, which was built on 1783, at Old San Juan, Puerto Rico. The ranger took us to underground tunnels where Spaniards watched for the enemy. Great experience!!

  45. On the moon:
    Eagle Scouts: Neil Armstrong (Apollo 11) and Charles Duke (Apollo 16)
    Life Scouts: Edgar Mitchell (Apollo 14) and David Scott (Apollo 15)
    First Class Scouts: Alan Bean (Apollo 12) and Alan Shepard (Apollo 14)
    Second Class Scouts: John Young (Apollo 16) and Eugene Cernan (Apollo 17)
    Tenderfoot Scouts: Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin (Apollo 11) and Harrison Schmitt (Apollo 17)
    Cub Scouts: Charles “Pete” Conrad (Apollo 12)

  46. On Guam my troop waded out to a little island and camped. In Tucson we’ve had campouts on the turf at Arizona Stadium, home of the UA Wildcats and on the upper concourse at the Convention Center where the Tucson Roadrunners hockey team plays.

  47. On the 110th floor of the twin towers. TROOP 99 scarsedale, NY. Couldn’t camp outside due to high winds. Still one of my most memorable trips.

  48. As a scout I slept with the sharks at sea world Orlando got to see their saw nose shark swim by. Current council host an events with the local minor league baseball teams to sleep on their fields

  49. Troop 911 Pleasanton has camped on the USS Pampanito (SS-383) a WWII Diesel Sub and the USS Hornet carrier(CV-8). Both in SF Bay.

  50. Pack 516 has been to Ripley’s aquarium in Gatlinburg TN, we have camped at the zoo in Knoxville, we have also been to Patriots point in Charleston SC and stayed aboad the Yorktown, we recently stayed at Kings Mt in sc, then in August we were at space camp in Alabama and come January we are going to do a night in wonderworks in pidgon forge tn. 🙂

  51. Infield of the Fisher Cats minor league baseball team and Boston Museum of Science with Pack 75 of Bow, NH and at NH International Speedway, NH Army National Guard training base, and aboard the Joseph Conrad in the historic Mystic Seaport with Troop 86 of Concord, NH

  52. Troop 58 — MacMillan Woods, Gettysburg Battlefield (twice) — near where Pickett’s Charge (3 July 1863) was organized. Several boys said they “saw something” (Check it out — except for a registration fee, it is free!)

Join the conversation