Campfire blanket

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Patch poncho

The camp blanket is a significant piece of memorabilia for many Scouts and Girl Guides around the world. Scouts and Guides sew badges onto the blanket to represent all their achievements and events competed in, and out, of Scouting. Camp blankets are often used to display and store badges "earned" in a younger section, e.g. a Guide will sew her Brownie badges onto her blanket or a Scout will sew his Cub badges.

The campblanket is not limited to fabric badges or patches. The blanket can also include neckerchiefs (necker, scarf), pin badges, sashes and other memoribilia. The size, shape and layout of badges on a camp blanket has no guidelines. They can be randomly scattered, or organized in any way chosen by the owner.

Camp blankets can take various shapes but they are broadly found in three forms. 1) A standard blanked with fabric patches or badges sewn on but no change to the shape of the blanket. 2) A "poncho" style where a hole is cut in the centre of the blanket, the blanket is then worn over the head. 3) The blanket has a slit cut from one edge to the centre to allow the blanket to be worn over the shoulders, fastenings may be added.

Camp blankets tend to be worn at campfires and sing-alongs in the evening, where an extra layer is a welcome addition to normal clothing as the temperature drops. The blanket can also be used at night as an extra sleeping layer or pillow.

History[edit]

The first use of the camp blanket is unknown, but it can be traced back to Native Americans, who wore them as ponchos around their camp fires.[1]

Comparing camp blankets is a fun activity that many Scouts and Guides enjoy. The blanket often represents your experiences in the Guides or Scouts- which camps you have attended, interest badges earned, interests outside of Guiding and Scouting. Many Guides and Scouts take patches from their home area to large camps or international gatherings to swap with the people they meet, providing them with a memory of their experience at camp.

Many Guides and Scouts have large numbers of badges waiting to be sewn onto their blankets, the desire to swap, earn and collect badges often outstrips the desire or time to attach them to the blanket- there is even a badge for that.

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