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Camp Frank S Betz




Camp Frank S Betz is a 57 acre preserve located in Berrien Springs, MI.  The camp has been in continuous service since 1922 and contains a variety of terrain consistent of rugged topography.  The camp provides great outdoor opportunities for individual units, district, council, and outside groups.  It is located on Lake Chapin and is within close proximity of Lake Michigan & Warren Dunes State Park.  The camp also owns approximately 7 acres on Batchelor Island located about 10 miles upstream on the St Joseph River near Buchanan, MI.  


Click here for a map of Camp Betz

Ranger Notes

The speed limit at Camp Betz is 5 miles per hour. 

NOTE: Please be sure Scouts do not use the rails on the bunk beds to pull themselves into the top bunks, as this will break the welds holding them on the beds.

All garbage must be place in the dumpsters before you leave camp.  Any garbage cans in campsites must be emptied before you leave.  Dumpster is in the main parking lot from late Fall through early Spring, and near the the barn the rest of the year.

All cabin floors must be swept and moped before leaving.  Be sure to clean the grease tray on the stove and griddle.  All restrooms are to be cleaned at the end of your stay.  Please leave the camp better than you found it.  

Camp Betz Improvements

Camp Betz is in the midst of a major program to upgrade almost everything in camp. This effort is being paid for by volunteer fund raising and other in-kind donations, the Order of the Arrow, and the Pathway To Adventure Council Board designated funds. Much of the work is being done by Betz Properties Committee members and other volunteers.  Your cooperation and assistance will help us to continue these improvements and preserve Camp Betz for future generations of Scouts.

While at camp, please consider helping to improve the camp with a service project.  The Camp-master has a list of service projects for units large and small.

Camp Betz Rules & Guidelines

All BSA rules regarding Youth Protection and unit operations are to be observed.  Scouts and leaders should not enter closed program areas, construction sites and should obey all notices and signs posted in camp.
Please notify the Camp-master if your unit will be leaving camp during your stay.


Camp Betz speed limit is 5 miles per hour. 
All vehicles are allowed only on designated camp roads and must be parked in the main parking lot by Peace Pony or the lower lot by Thunderbird. 
Private vehicles are not allowed on campsite trails or service roads, no exceptions!  Only a trailer and two vehicle may be parked at buildings during unit use.


No outside wood is allowed at Camp Betz.  We have plenty of firewood for your use, please use some of it up, by enjoying a fire during your stay.

Follow Leave No Trace Guidelines

Use existing fire rings – do not create new fire rings or scars.

Let campfires burn all the way out, use only enough wood as you are willing and able to stay up to watch.

If there is partially burned wood in or near your fire ring, use it to feed fires.

Follow BSA safe campfire practices

Build fires appropriately sized for their use
Have a fireguard station nearby (tools, water)
Keep tents & flys a safe distance away
Do not leave fires unattended

Keep firewood rack/supply neat and orderly

Please re-stock from nearby pile if available

Martin Kessler Chapel

The chapel is available for unit use or private reflection.
Please remember that a Scout is Reverent – use the chapel only for it’s intended purpose.

Campsite Guidelines

Do not infringe on other campers - use only the site assigned to your unit.
Keep inside your site boundaries – do not set up tents or other equipment on the road or in pathways.
Respect other campers,

Do not enter another unit’s site without permission
Observe quiet time (10 pm to 7 am)

Do not move picnic tables from another site to yours


Secure all food in lockable containers or in your unit trailer.  Do not leave waste or extra food out for animals.  Clean dishes in your campsite, not in the restrooms


Garbage cans are provided in campsites during the summer months.

Use bags inside the cans

Garbage cans are available from the Camp-master during the winter months

The unit is responsible for retrieving and returning the can to storage.

Before Checkout

All unit and personal gear must be removed from campsite
All garbage must be removed from the campsite and placed in the camp dumpsters before you leave camp. 

Dumpster is in the main parking lot from late Fall through early Spring, and near the barn the rest of the year.

Restroom facilities must be cleaned and free of garbage

Thanks for keeping YOUR camp clean for the next unit and have a safe trip home.

Building Guidelines
Parking/Vehicle Access

For units renting Thunderbird Dining Hall, Pinetree, North Cabin, or South Cabin, a trailer and up to two vehicles may be parked near the cabin, in the designated parking areas.

All other vehicles must be in one of the parking lots. 

Building Use

Please be sure Scouts do not use the safety rails on the bunk beds to pull themselves into the top bunks, as this will break the welds holding them on the beds.
Do not allow Scouts to play with/adjust thermostats, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors


All restrooms must be cleaned at the end of your stay. 
Unit is responsible for any and all damages to the building
All units must check out with camp master, who will inspect the building with the unit leader

Put tables and bunks back into place.
All cabin floors must be swept and mopped before leaving. 
All garbage must be removed from the building and placed in the camp dumpsters before you leave camp. 

Dumpster is in the main parking lot from late Fall through early Spring, and near the barn the rest of the year.

Make sure your unit’s personal gear is removed.
Stove needs to be clean. Clean grill following instructions.

Grease trays on the stoves and griddle must be emptied and cleaned.
Wipe out oven.

 Make sure refrigerator is empty and cleaned out.  Unplug refrigerator and open doors.

Close and lock all windows.
Make sure the area outside the building is clean.

Please leave the camp better than you found it. 
Camp master/caretaker will lock doors.

Thanks for keeping YOUR camp clean for the next unit and have a safe trip home.

Other Rules for Consideration

No sheath knives
No knives may be used by Scouts unless they have earned the Totin’ Chip card, which they must have with them. Folding or multipurpose knives must be lockable.
No axes or saws may be used by Scouts unless they have earned the Totin’Chip card. They must have the card with them. These tools must be used under adult supervision at all times and in an ax yard. Scouts must have permission from the Scoutmaster before they use any woods tool.
No firearms or ammunition.
No fireworks of any kind.
No drugs or alcoholic beverages.
No smoking: Scouts are prohibited and parents are asked to do it out of sight of the Scouts.  
No aerosol cans are permitted.
No gadgets are to be constructed without the permission of the Scoutmaster.
Closed toe shoes must be worn at all times, outside cabins.
Tents are for sleeping only.
No urinating in or around the campsite! That is what the outhouse is for!
Scouts will use the buddy system for all activities at camp.
Running is not permitted.
Tree climbing is not permitted.
Campfires are allowed only when the Scouts have earned the Firem’n Chit card and must have the card with them. Adults leader permission must be secured before starting a fire. The fire must be confined to the established fire ring and under adult supervision at all times.
The cutting of live trees is not permitted – any fallen wood found on the ground may be gathered for campfires and cookouts with the permission of the Scoutmaster.
FLAMMABLE LIQUIDS: Stoves, lanterns, heaters, or any appliance using liquid fuel are to be used under adult supervision. Remember no open flames in any tent or other structure is allowed. Bulk storage of liquid fuels will be in accordance with accepted safety standards as outlined by BSA policy.
PETS: No pets of any kind are permitted in camp. Pets owned by the camp's resident Ranger and the Ranger's family are exempted.
FIREARMS / BOWS & ARROW / SHEATH KNIVES / CHAINSAWS: Guns are not permitted in camp unless they are being incorporated into an established range activity being operated under BSA standards. Prior arrangements must be made with the Pathway to Adventure Shooting Sports Committee Chair before entering camp with firearms or bow and arrows. Firearms and bow and arrows must be surrendered to the Ranger upon entering camp, the Ranger will store all firearms, bow and arrows, and ammunition. Sheath knives are not allowed in camp. Chainsaws are prohibited in camp per order of National BSA.
ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES/NON-PRESCRIBED DRUGS: Intoxicating beverages and illicit drugs are not allowed in camp. Ranger/Campmaster have been instructed to enforce this policy and will ask the person(s) in violation to remove themselves from camp permanently.
All activities at Camp Frank S Betz should be run in accordance with the National Camping Standards of the Boy Scouts of America, The Guide to Safe Scouting, the Health and Safety Guide of the Boy Scouts of America
Two-deep leadership, BSA Youth Protection policies, and buddy system must be enforced at all times.  Adult leaders are responsible for the actions of their group
All buildings, except for the one you have rented, are off limits.
Do not mark, embellish, or drive nails or screws into building.
Do not cut any standing trees without the Ranger’s permission.
Please stay on camp property.
Fish in the fishing area only.  Do not fish in the swimming area.  You must have an adult on the waterfront to fish.  You do need a Michigan fishing license.  
Do not bring firewood to the camp.  Any wood down on the ground is yours to use as firewood.
Winter hydrants are pressure systems, do not pump the handle.  Gently, pull handle up for water.  Gently, lower handle to shut water off.  
Riding in the back of open trucks, trucks with toppers or trailers is NOT ALLOWED at any time.
No Pets.
No tent trenches.
No Firearms, weapons or fireworks on any Scout property. See special program requirements for use of the rifle and archery ranges.
No other vehicles are permitted beyond the parking lot.  Exceptions to this rule are as follows:

Emergency vehicles
Vehicle needed due to medical reasons
Camp vehicles and authorized work vehicles
No RV’s are allowed in campsites.  They must remain in the parking lot at all times.

Only those over the age of 18 may operate any power equipment of their own in camp.
All trash should be bagged up and put into the dumpsters located at the north end of the parking lot.  Do not just put it on top.
Units supply their own trash bags.
No food, trash, or dishwater should be dumped in the washstand sink or latrine seats.
Nothing should be in the latrine pits except for human waste.  Units will be asked to remove all other trash, including pop cans, before being allowed to leave camp.
In case of an accident, please complete the council accident form and give a copy to the Ranger.

Directions to Camp

Directions to Camp Frank S. Betz

3858 Snow Road, Berrien Springs, Michigan 49103

The address above will take you to the caretaker’s house by GPS. 

Camp Entrance is the next driveway west on Snow Road, look for the yellow and blue Camp Betz sign.

GPS coordinates of main entrance to camp:  41.926233, -86.366352


Camp phone:              269-471-9429 (only answered when someone is in camp)

Camp Caretaker:        Jared Hicks 269-208-7771


Camp Frank S. Betz is located on the St. Joseph River near Berrien Springs, Michigan.  It is approximately:

- 75 miles from the Robert J Welsh Service Center in Munster, IN

- 97 miles from the Steve Fossett Service Center in Chicago, IL

- 107 miles from the LaGrange Service Center

- 127 miles from the Arlington Heights Service Center


Directions A (I 94 into Michigan):

•Go to Indiana East on either:

I90 out of Chicago and at Indiana exit 21 get off onto I94 East to Michigan
I80/94 from the South Suburbs, stay on I94 East to Michigan

•Take Interstate 94 East to Michigan and take Exit 16 at Bridgeman, Michigan.

•Turn Right at bottom of ramp and proceed into town (1 mile) (McDonald’s on left side of street)

•Turn Right on Lake (Shawnee) Road [First Stop Light], Lake Street turns into Shawnee Road Proceed 14 miles.

•Turn Right onto Red Bud Trail [The intersection is a Four Way Stop] Proceed 1 mile.

•Turn Left onto Snow Road Proceed ¾ mile.

•The Camp Entrance is clearly marked on the right side of the road.


Directions B (Indiana Toll Road):

•Take Indiana East on either:

- I90 Skyway out of Chicago.  Stay on the Indiana Toll road when it merges into I 80 at exit 21.
- I80/94 from the South Suburbs, take Indiana exit 16, merge Indiana Toll road I80/90 east.

•Take Indiana Toll Road I80/90 east to Indiana Exit 72.

•Pay toll and head north on US 31 to Michigan

•Take Exit 13 Snow Road in Berrien Springs, Michigan

•Turn right onto Snow Road heading west at the top of the exit ramp

•The Camp Entrance is clearly marked on the left side of the road ½ mile from the exit ramp.

3858 E Snow Rd
Berrien Springs, Michigan 49103

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Program Area

Camp Use Policy Back to Top

Policies for Safety and Vandalism

1.All activities will conform to BSA National Guidelines as set forth in the GUIDE TO SAFE SCOUTING.

2. The Scout Oath and Law apply to all in this camp.

3. All vehicles will be parked in designated PARKING areas, not campsites. No violations will be tolerated or permitted except in case of emergency or as designated by the Camp Master. Only drive on the designated  road and adhere to the posted speed limit.

4. Alcohol, drugs, pets, tobacco products, firearms and fireworks are prohibited  and under a Zero Tolerance Policy.

5. Build fires in properly designated areas and NEVER leave unattended.

6. All camp property, buildings and trees are not to be damaged in any way. The unit or group renting at the camp assumes full responsibiblity for any loss or damage to equipment. 

Check In Procedure Back to Top


  • You will get a call or email from your Campmaster prior to arrival.  Please be sure to inform him of your approximate arrival time (Chicago Time).  Be sure to get a cell phone number for the Campmaster for your weekend.
  • Each unit MUST turn in a complete list of all participants with an emergency contact name & number. This is required!
  • When you arrive at camp, check in with the Campmaster at Anderson Lodge. (This is the first cabin you see as you enter camp.)  If Campmaster is not present, call him on the cell number you received earlier in the week, as he may be checking in another unit.
  • Reminder: THE SPEED LIMIT IN CAMP IS 5 MPH. Driving off the roads or on campsite trails is not permitted. A trailer and up to two vehicles may stay at North Cabin or South Cabin.  All other vehicles must be parked in one of the two parking lots.
  • Unit leader and Campmaster will go through the building or campsite and check its condition.  Any prior damage needs to be noted on the check-in form.  When you check out you will go through this again.
  • Please remind Scouts not to use the rails on the bunk beds to pull themselves into the bunk, as this will break the welds.

The Frank S Betz Properties Committee has undertaken a program to continually upgrade the camp. This effort is being funded by voluntary donations, Michigamea Lodge, Order of the Arrow, and Pathway To Adventure Council.  A lot of the work is done by volunteers.  Please respect the property and be sure you Scouts do not vandalize it.  Please leave the property better than you found it.

If you are looking for a service project, your Campmaster can help you find a project.  It is best to ask for your service project during the call or email prior to coming to camp.

Check Out Procedure Back to Top

Camp Frank S Betz - Check-Out Procedures

  • Before leaving you must checkout with the Campmaster or caretaker before leaving camp.
  • Be sure to clean all areas you used, empty grease traps on stoves, and mop all floors in cabins.
Cancellation Policy Back to Top

Cancelations must be received via email to no less than thirty (30) days prior to arrival at Camp for a refund.

No refund if less than 30 days.

Cleaning Policy Back to Top

When renting building(s) and/or campsites please leave everything in better condition than you found it.  All garbage will be disposed of in designated disposal areas. Floors are to be swept and mopped.  All itsy-bitys in campsites are to be picked up.  A cleaning fee will be assessed if property is not left in an acceptable condition.