Frequently Asked Questions
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What is ScoutFest?
ScoutFest is the largest Scouting event Washington Crossing Council organizes. With over 2,000 Scouts, Siblings, Parents, and Volunteers attending, ScoutFest is one of the largest events that many Scouts will ever experience.
ScoutFest is held on October 26-28, 2018 at Mercer County Park Fairgrounds.
Weekend camping is optional Friday, October 26th to Sunday, October 28th. All of the activities take place on Saturday, October 27th and day passes are available for those that want to come for just the day.
How do I register for ScoutFest?
Visit our Buy Tickets page to get started.
We ask that you register as a unit when completing Weekend Camping or bulk purchases for Saturday Day Passes. Individuals can register for Saturday Day Passes.
When is ScoutFest?
ScoutFest will be held October 26-28, 2018.
What is the weekend schedule?
The main activities will take place on Saturday, October 27th between 9:00 am and 4:00 pm. Participants with day passes may arrive as early as 8:00 am on Saturday and may stay as late as 9:30 pm, which is when the Scout Show ends. There are additional activities for Campers with Weekend Passes. The official schedule for this event will be provided at check-in.
Where is ScoutFest being held?
ScoutFest will be taking place on October 26-28, 2018 at the Mercer County Park Fairgrounds in West Windsor Township, NJ.
Most activities will take place at the Festival Grounds at Richard J. Coffee Mercer County Park, West Windsor Township, New Jersey. The park contains other venues, such as a lake, walking paths, Frisbee golf, and biking trails.
Directions can be obtained by Googling “Mercer County Park New Jersey”. Click on https://www.mercercountyparks.org/assets/Mercer_County_Park.pdf for an online map of the park. Paxson Avenue is the main road that runs through the park. Drivers are encouraged to use the eastern entrance to the park, off of Edinburg Road. The event parking lot is about 1 mile from this east entrance and will be a right turn off of Paxson Avenue. The other entrance is off of Hughes Drive and the parking lot is 1.6 miles away and would be a left turn. Please obey all traffic signs while driving through the park and watch out for deer crossing the road.
How much does it cost to attend?
We have two prices for ScoutFest: Weekend Camping & Day Passes
Weekend Camping – $30 per person (ages 5 and older)
Saturday Day Pass – $20 per person (ages 5 and older)
Who can come to ScoutFest?
BSA registered scouts in all programs: Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting, Venturing, Exploring and Sea Scouts – and of all ages and gender, and their family members (adults and siblings) may participate.
Prospective scouts, who are of scouting age but are not currently BSA registered, may also be invited by a BSA registered scout to participate in this event. Prospective scouts will register to attend this event with that scout’s unit. This registration will include the prospects name and contact information. Prospective scouts of Cub Scouting age will be required to be accompanied by an adult family member.
All BSA registered adults, volunteers and invited guests (not BSA registered) may participate.
We attended ScoutFest in 2016, is this one different?
ScoutFest18 is a little similar to the event we held in Hunterdon County in 2016. With a new venue, some new activities, and a lot of great things planned throughout the park, ScoutFest18 is planned to be our best event yet.
Learn more about our programs by visiting our Activities page.
Where do we park?
Participants with vehicles must use the event parking lot, which is an open field across from the Camping Area and Festival Grounds. Part of this lot is shown as “CP1 Cricket” on the online map. There will be electronic message boards along Paxson Avenue providing information to direct drivers to this parking. For everyone’s safety, please drive slowly in this lot and follow the directions of the Parking Attendants.
Vehicles with Handicap plates or passes, or vehicles transporting participants with special needs may park in the gravel lot between the campsites and the Festival Grounds. If you plan on parking in this special needs lot, you are encouraged to contact us at beforehand at email@example.com so that we may better accommodate you.
Please do not park in the permanent lots adjacent to and across from the Skating Center, without expressed permission from a Staff Member. This is for everyone’s safety and convenience. If you park in one of these lots without permission, you will be asked to move your vehicle.
When we get to the event, where do we check-in?
Once their vehicle is safely parked, all participants with Saturday-only day passes must check in at the designated check-in area. For Campers, your unit leader should check your unit in on Friday.
Unit Leaders: please make sure all your drivers have the information provided above!
How is camping set up for ScoutFest?
Participants may camp Friday and Saturday nights in an open field next to the Festival Grounds. Campers should arrive no earlier than 6:00 pm on Friday, October 26th. To make any special requests and for further information, please refer to the ScoutFest18 Camping Rules.
How do we plan for meals?
All participants need to provide their own meals at this event. There will be food and beverages available for purchase from Food Trucks during the day on Saturday only.
Will you have religious services?
We plan to hold a Scouts Own Service at this event; participants of all religions are invited to attend. A Catholic Mass is also planned for our Catholic participants so that they may meet their religious obligations. Other religious-specific observances are being planned. If you wish to volunteer to help with this, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. The times for all these services will be provided in the official event schedule, to be provided at check-in.
ScoutFest Camping Rules
- The BSA Guide to Safe Scouting applies, as at all BSA activities.
- Don’t forget to bring Health Forms, parts A and B, for all participants. You’ll need to keep these handy at your campsite. We don’t need a copy.
- Smoking and alcohol are prohibited at all Washington Crossing Council Events and ScoutFest18 is a smoke-free, alcohol-free event.
- Absolutely no ground fires, nor in barrels or other containers that sit on the ground that will scorch it. Similarly, no wood Do not bring firewood to the event for any reason.
- Township fire regulations additionally state that “Recreational fires shall not be conducted within 25 feet of a structure or combustible material“ and that includes tents, so it effectively excludes recreational fires from campsites.
- Additional relevant fire safety rules mandated by West Windsor Township:
- 1. All cooking equipment must be listed for commercial use.
- 2. Must have a minimum of one 2A10BC fire extinguisher. Additionally, any vendor cooking with grease (deep frying) is required to have a listed Class-K fire extinguisher.
- 3. All fire extinguishers must have a current annual inspection tag attached.
- 4. Cooking appliances shall be used in accordance with their listing.
- 5. Must be separated from tents, canopies, or air supported structures by a min. of 5 feet.
- 6. Must be separated a minimum of 3 feet from combustible decorative materials.
- 7. Propane cylinders in use, or storage, shall be secured to prevent tipping, or placed on a stable flat surface.
- “Take only pictures; leave only footprints.” ScoutFest18 is a Leave No Trace, High-Density Camping event. What you bring in, you take out, including charcoal, etc. There will be a dumpster at the corner of the trailer parking lot near the maintenance shed. We will inspect each campsite prior to your checking out.
- Mercer County Park has neighbors, loud noises are prohibited. There is a 10 PM noise curfew. We will enforce quiet hours between 10 PM and 6 AM. Leaders are responsible to see that all Scouts remain quiet and in their campsite during these hours.
- Water will be available at certain areas in the Festival space, and a hose at the Commissioner Tent.
- There is no electricity in the camping area.
- “Sign in / registration” will be at the Commissioner Tent, at the main entrance to the camping area next to the trailer parking area. ONE leader from each unit should come here, after you park (or drop-off ONE leader/passenger while parking a trailer). We will give you your campsite, wristbands, an information packet, and more (TBD).
- NO Vehicles are allowed in the camping area itself.
- Trailers will have a separate parking lot close to the campground. There a special entrance and traffic flow for vehicles bringing trailers. ONLY TRAILERS CAN PARK THERE. You will park the trailer, un-hitch, and park in the normal parking area across the street.
- If you have heavy objects you may come in the trailer entrance, only to drop those items in the parking lot, and then move the vehicle across the street to the normal parking area.
- If you have a handicapped license or temporary permit, or other special needs, send us an email (see below) and we can arrange a close parking spot.
- Note that it is between 450 and 1600 feet from the parking lot to the camping area (shortest and longest possible distances).
- Campsite assignment will generally be first come, first assigned, so if you want a good site, sign up early (subject to the following qualifications).
- A Scout is Courteous. Please respect other unit’s campsites, and they will respect yours. There is one “backbone street” – Washington Boulevard, running the length of the camping area, with cross-street “ribs” between every-other campsite. Please use these “streets” and do not walk across other campsites.
- You may request a campsite near another, for example, a pack near a troop, by sending us an email with your request (see below).
- There are a few sites near the woods. If you want to use hammock camping, and understand the likelihood of poison ivy, make this request by sending us an email (see below).
- The smallest campsite will be 10 x 15 yards (30 x 45 feet), for units with only a few overnight campers. Larger sites will be 20 x 15, and 30 x 15 (and 40 x 15 if necessary, or maybe 20 x 30?)
- Digging is not permitted, this includes trenching around tents, etc.
- All tents must be staked down to prevent them from becoming windblown hazards.
- You should plan to bring all the food your unit will need.
- Don’t forget to bring plenty of ice. There is no electricity in the camping area.
- There will be food trucks during the day on the far side of the Festival Grounds, but that is intended mostly for day visitors. (Expect long lines.)
- All cooking should be done with camp stoves using only propane or charcoal, in keeping with the No Ground Fires and Leave No Trace provisions, above.
- And just to be perfectly clear: match-light charcoal only, no liquid fire starters, cook in a container or grill above the ground, extinguish and dispose of ashes properly.
- Special requests: “camp site near Council / District / Unit NNN”, “camp site near the woods for hammock camping”, “handicap or special parking request”, send an email to:
email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org
at least 3 weeks before the event. Don’t forget to include your Name and position, Your Council / District / Unit number, how many attendees.