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  • 1. General Questions
  • 2. Scout Questions
  • 3. Parent Questions
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  • 1. What is a Kinus?

    Each and every year, Scouts for the Northeast and elsewhere, get together for a weekend of camping fun and excitement. We have delicious kosher meals provided by our kitchen staff and spend a beautiful Shabbat together. We also play all sorts of fun games, and learn all sorts of exciting stuff.

    Not a camper? It doesn't matter! Many of the adults who attend the Kinus do not think of themselves as campers, but still manage to have a blast. The weather is always beautiful! We guarantee it! The crowd is friendly, and the experience is fantastic! We also have various activities for our scouters and interesting lectures for the adults on various Jewish topics. For the more adventurous, on Sunday, we have various hikes from a ten mile trek to a light ramble around the camp grounds exploring the local wildlife and plants,  and other fun activities.

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  • 2. What do I need to pack?

    We have a downloadable packing list. The packing list has been honed to perfection by years of experience. You do not need expensive outdoor stuff. Most of us do quite well with Target for almost all of our camping gear. They have everything you'll need and at reasonable prices. I may not shop at Target if I were going to scale K2, but we're talking about a weekend camping trip.

    We do highly recommend that you buy true outdoor gear, and not the sleeping bags you might use for sleep overs. This also applies to tents too. The backyard play tents with cartoon pictures are just too lightweight for sleeping in the outdoors.

    Oh, a helpful hint about tents: When a tent says it can sleep "X" number of people, it is talking about people being packed like sardines. We recommend that you buy a tent that advertises itself as twice the size that you need. For example, if you are two people, buy a four man tent. If you are three people, buy a six man tent. Also, if your kids are old enough to sleep on their own, you might want to consider getting two separate tents: One for the kids and one for the adults. Remember that you'll be storing your gear in your tent too.

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  • 3. Are shower facilites available?

    Shower facilities are available, but be sure to follow BSA rules for Gender and Age separation.  Youth Protection policies require that No adults share bathroom and shower facilities with youth, and that gender specific facilities are used.  Hidden Valley's modern Shower facilities accommodate all needs.
    Please be sure to clean up after yourself!  As Scouts it is our duty to return the facility back in the same or better condition than we get it!

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  • 4. What shall I wear at the Kinus?

    Proper Shabbat attire for the Kinus is our scouting uniforms. For those who don't have scouting uniforms, comfortable clothing is good. Few people actually bring Shabbat clothing.

    If you want to go on a hike, you should have hiking shoes. You should also wear appropriate and comfortable, but sturdy clothing. This includes girls too! Shabbat clothes will get torn on hikes. Shabbat shoes will get ruined. We recommend to girls who like wearing long skirts that they should consider wearing pants underneath. There will come times when they may have to lift their skirts up to get over rocks or prickly plants.

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  • 5. How far do I have to shlep everything?

    You are allowed to take your car to your campsite in order to unpack it. However, you can't park your car right next to your tent. Expect to carry your stuff from your car to where you'll pitch your tent about 25 to 100 feet.

    Although Hidden Valley allows you to unpack your car by your campsite, you are not allowed to park your car there overnight. There is a parking lot by the front of the camp.

    We recommend that you go to the campsite, unpack your car, then move your car back to the parking area before setting up your campsite. This way, other people have a chance to unpack their cars too.

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  • 1. Can Girl Scouts come too?

    Unfortunately, due to changes in BSA policy, only registered Scouts BSA and Cub Scouts can attend Kinus.


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  • 2. Can I bring my iPhone/Android/Tablet etc?

    Yes and no...

    No - we don't want you playing electronic games. There's simply no reason to. It's just not the regular environment where you would normally play such a game -- such as when some teacher or parent droning on and on how you don't listen to them and you always have your nose in your phone.

    This is a fun and exciting place with lots to do. If you're too busy texting or playing games, you might miss seeing some exciting wildlife like a bear! Besides, there's no WiFi. The 4G coverage is nonexistent, and you'd be lucky just to get a cell phone signal at all.


    We do want to encourage you to take pictures (but not on Shabbat). And, we realize that most people now use their phones as their cameras. So...

    You can bring your cellphone or iPod Touch and use it as a camera. Please don't text or play games. If you do, we will redirect you to another activity.

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  • 3. My Scout Troop / Pack is not attending Kinus. Can I still come?

    Of course! We welcome all Jewish scouts. Contact the Kinus program chair Mr. Sheldon Freidenriech [email protected] to coordinate being part of a Provisional Unit at Kinus.  Your will be assigned a temporary leader who will get you registered and set up for Kinus.


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  • 4. I'd like to attend Kinus, but my parents cannot attend. Can I still come?

    National Boy Scouts requires all Cub Scouts and Webelos scouts to be accompanied by an adult for each camping trip. The Kinus is at a very large campsite with hundreds of kids, and the staff cannot be responsible for each and every child.

    Each scout attending the Kinus must have some adult who is directly responsible for them.  Boy Scouts may get permission from their Troop Leader, and may use their Troop Leader as their responsible adult, if their Troop Leader agrees. If a scout is attending without his parents, guardian or troop, he may contact the Kinus Chairman at [email protected] for arrangements.

    We strongly encourage Cub parents to attend and make the Kinus a family affair.

    We love the camaraderie with our fellow Jews, the beautiful environment, and the fun activities that take place during the Kinus. It's a chance to meet the old friends from all over the Northeast who attend the Kinus each and every year. It's the chance to see the excitement in our children's faces when they accomplish something while having fun at the same time.

    *All adults attending with Scout age (5th grade and up) units must be registered with BSA
    **All adults attending Kinus must have a current valid Youth Protection certification.


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  • 1. I attended the Kinus last year. Can I help out this year?

    We'd love to have you on our staff! Contact the program chair, and we'll be more than happy to let you help out. In addition to helping lead a program session, we need volunteers to help us cook, build our eruv, or help us plan activities. Please let us know what you'd like to do, and we'll be more than happy to set you to work.

    We'll be happy to make sure your help will be counted towards your school's, troop's, or pack's community service hours.

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  • 2. You want me to go to the Kinus?

    Okay, let me get this straight: You want me to drive to the middle of some bear-infested woods, go to some campsite where there's no running water, sleep on some lumpy sleeping bag on the ground, and get bitten by a bunch of plague ridden insects. And, you expect me to call that fun?

    Short Answer: Yes

    Long Answer (written by a Kinus parent):

    About 15 years ago, I took my oldest son who was then just an eight year old Bear Scout to my first Kinus. My wife stayed at home with our younger two kids. My first question upon arriving was "Where do you go to the bathroom?". My second question was "You go to the bathroom where?"

    I had no idea what I was doing. I didn't know how to setup the small tent I got just that week, and I was prepared for a miserable experience. I was just hoping my son would enjoy it, but not too much because there was no way I was going to do this again!

    To my surprise, I really enjoyed myself. The camaraderie was great. The Shabbat meal was wonderful. The next day, I watched my son participate in all sorts of activities, and he had a blast. I met many of the other people who attended from all over the Northeast, and enjoyed the campfile that Saturday night.

    The next year, I tried to convince my wife to come with the entire family (including our then 2 year old son). She was extremely hesitant about the whole idea, but I convinced her by buying a extra large tent and told her that if she didn't come, I would have wasted our money on such a big tent.

    She also loved it. She found the outdoors very relaxing, and enjoyed the adult shiurim. Our youngest two sons attended a few programs, but really just enjoyed the outdoors and discovering the chipmunks that ran around all over and newts who preferred to hide under the rocks. We went on a few short nature hikes with them that were part of the activities. Meanwhile, my oldest son (now a Webelos Scout) had a reunion with the various scouts he had met the previous year.

    Now my oldest son is in college and my younger two are now Scout leaders. But, every year we still all go together to Kinus. We look forward to getting out into the woods and meeting all of our friends. We enjoy the company, the campfire skits, the walks, and simply relaxing around the camp in the great summer weather.

    Of course, my family is now old hands at this and now help the other new parents setup their tents and introduce them to the Kinus.

    The point is: Yes, believe it or not, you will have fun. Most of the people who attend the Kinus are not people who are well versed in the woodsy lore. They are accountants, computer programmers, lawyers, doctors, and other middle aged, squishy-around-the-middle, turn-up-the-air-conditioner, can't-we-take-the-elevator, type parents. You don't have to know how to use a compass. No one is expecting you to put on a 75 pound backpack and hike 20 miles. Heck, we will even help you set up your tent and tie any and all knots that need tying. After all, we are boy scouts! This is far from boot camp. The atmosphere is absolutely relaxing. It is unbelievably beautiful. It is inspiring.

    Plus, the food is really good. We have a professional Chef on and a seasoned kitchen team.

    So, yes. We want you to come. We want you to enjoy yourself. But most of all, we don't want you to miss out on all the fun.

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  • 3. Is the Kinus safe?

    This is not Disneyland. The water is truly wet, the rocks are very rocky, and you can poke your eye out with one of the many sticks that abound in this campsite. This is nature and not some set created by a bunch of imagineers.

    But then again, we have been running this Kinus for years, and have had no serious injuries. There is a forest ranger who is extremely helpful. The people who run the Kinus have decades of experience with camping. We also have a whole flock of medics who can administer first aid. We follow all Boy Scout safety regulations.

    What we do ask you to do is watch your young children and make sure they are supervised -- much like you would do if you went to the grocery store or walked downtown. And make sure they obey some basic safety rules such as no throwing rocks, no running around with sticks, and no wandering off into the woods by themselves. The last one is a bit important because there is no fence and it is very easy for a young child to wander off into the woods and quickly get lost. Fortunately, we've quickly located any kids who did get lost, and they usually return a bit dirtier, a little wiser, but otherwise in one piece.

    However, we have plenty of well supervised activities for the scouts, and we'll be running youth minyans on Shabbat to help keep your kids busy while you're davening.

    So, yes, the Kinus is safe. We make sure we have plenty of good adult supervision at the activities, and there will be more than enough to do to keep your kids very busy. We want you and your family to enjoy the Kinus. As long as you follow your common sense, the Kinus is a safe place for you and your family to spend the weekend.

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  • 4. How long is the drive to Kinus?

    Due to Memorial day weekend traffic make sure you give yourself plenty of time to avoid trying to beat Shabbat for your arrival and set up.
    The traffic in beautiful South Central Pennsylvania is usually light, but most attendees are leaving locations where Friday afternoon traffic can be challenging.  Aim to be at Camp by 4 PM and give yourself extra time to avoid anxious worry when traffic does not cooperate.

    The 2024 Memorial Day Kinnus will take place at Hidden Valley Scout Reservation in Loysville Pennsylvania. Nestled in the beautiful countryside of South Central Pennsylvania.

    The Address for the West End entrance to Hidden Valley Scout reservation is: 268 Hidden Valley Rd, Loysville, PA 17047 GPS location: 40.35277286611817, -77.35430440204405 Copy Plus Google Map code: 9J3W+37 Loysville, Pennsylvania Click here for map and directions:


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