Build a Summer Adventure with The Boy Scouts of America

With warmer weather upon us and summer break here, it’s time for moms to pull out their lists of fun outdoor activities, because all moms know that two weeks into summer you’ll start hearing the familiar sounds of, “I’m bored!” and “There’s nothing to do!”

It doesn’t take long to run through the list of tried and true boredom busters like board games, running through the sprinkler, and going to the park. So it’s time to branch out and find a few not so common activities to keep the kiddos busy this summer. The Boy Scouts of America is hoping both parents and kids will take a look at their new series of videos called Handbook Hacks that launched on YouTube earlier this year.

The latest edition of the Boy Scout Handbook was updated this spring to include some of the topics and trends that are popular among today’s youth. Mike Surbaugh, Chief Scout Executive of Boy Scouts of America, says the Boy Scout Handbook was created to “help Scouts build an adventure.” Why not use some of those ideas to create a few summer adventures for your kids?

The Handbook Hacks series is made up of short (generally less than two minutes) videos that each showcase one particular skill or activity from the Boy Scout Handbook. The first two videos in the series highlight fun ways to spend time together as a family.


Your first thought may be to find an outdoor activity that will get your kids outside instead of in front of a screen. But there’s a way to combine a fun outdoor activity with your smartphone. The first Handbook Hacks adventure to add to the list of summer adventures is geocaching. If you’ve never heard of it, geocaching is the modern version of a treasure hunt. Using GPS from a smartphone, you search to uncover objects hidden all over the world! There are millions of geocaches out there waiting to be found! 

Geocaching is a fun way to spend an afternoon outdoors with your kids. You can dress up like pirates and pretend to be on the hunt for Blackbeard’s long lost treasure, or don a pair of fairy wings and pretend to be Tinkerbell in search of more lost treasure. However you decide to embark on your adventure, the fun part is not knowing what you’ll find!

Watch the entire Handbook Hacks video on Geocaching by visiting the Boy Scouts of America on YouTube.

Another fun family activity highlighted in the Handbook Hacks series is foil cooking. Whether in your backyard, on a camping trip, or in the kitchen, foil cooking is a fun and easy way to get your kids involved in making dinner. It’s quick and super simple. 

Basically, you create a foil packet using one of several various techniques; add meat, vegetables, and seasoning; and cook it over a fire, on the grill, or even in the oven.

Kids can be creative and personalize their packet with the wrap technique they like best. Clean-up is a cinch since you can eat right out of the foil! This one’s an easy adventure to have any night of the week. You can build an entire evening adventure out of it by cooking outside on a fire and then roasting marshmallows and telling stories or playing games in the backyard. If you don’t have a lot of time because of work and swim lessons and everything else going on during the week, you can let the kids load up their foil packet with meat and veggies, put it in the oven, and have fun eating out of the foil 20 minutes later!

Watch the Handbook Hacks video on Foil Cooking to see for yourself!

Little adventures here and there are what make summer fun. Running through the sprinkler. Neighborhood bike rides for ice cream. Eating dinner on the picnic table. They’re the things we remember from our childhood when we’re long grown up. So head out into the neighborhood in search of treasure or grab the aluminum foil and fashion up some dinnerware! Before you know it summer will be over and cooler weather will be settling back in. Maybe this time the kids won’t be the only ones sad to see summer break come to an end!

For more summer adventure ideas, try 20 Thrifty Indoor Activities to Beat the Summer Heat.

Photo Credits: Fiona Shields, Boy Scouts of America, Visit Exmoor

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Michelle Frick

Michelle lives in North Carolina with her husband and their exuberant son. Having grown up in New England, she's a fan of hockey and the Boston Red Sox. During baseball season you can usually find her and her boys cheering on the Durham Bulls. When she isn't listening to a detailed explanation about Minecraft, she enjoys reading, drinking coffee, and running half marathons.

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