'Make Memories': Trail Life USA Invites Families Across US to Campout in Their Backyards April 17
The boys' adventure movement Trail Life USA has announced its first-ever "National Backyard Campout" -- encouraging families to "make memories" during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Headquartered in Greenville, SC, the Christian character development organization is inviting American families to have a camping adventure in their own backyards on April 17.
"Our resourceful troops have held their meetings online for the past few weeks during self-isolating," said Mark Hancock, CEO of Trail Life USA, which has more than 30,000 members in 830-plus troops across all 50 states. "But this is a time when cabin fever sets in -- and boys especially need to get outdoors in a safe environment."
While many parents will look back on COVID-19 as a time of uncertainty and anxiety, it's an opportunity for boys -- and girls -- "to remember this time at home with positive memories," added Hancock, author of Let Boys be Boys and 5 Critical Needs of Boys.
"Anything we can do as parents to help re-cast this tense time is good for our kids," he said.
Organizers hope the event will bring together families "virtually" across the nation via a live web broadcast, including story readings. Suggestions for games, activities, and outdoor cooking recipes can be found on the organization's website.
Families will also be able to share their own magical moments with others via photo and video posts.
"It's going to be a lot of fun," said National Event Leader Steve Padgett. "This is a great opportunity for families to spend time together, and create memories and habits that will continue long after this homebound time is over."
The organization urges all participating families to respect all emergency restrictions in their area, including self-isolating and social distancing from non-family members.
Launched in 2014, Trail Life USA describes itself as a "Christ-centered, boy-focused, character, leadership, and adventure organization," with troops meeting at local churches nationwide.
To find a Trail Life USA troop in your community, click here.