Scout Overnights at the Missouri Botanical Garden

Don’t miss your chance to experience the Missouri Botanical Garden (MBG) at night! Spend a fun-filled evening enjoying activities based on the wonders of nature and the world around you right here in our own backyard. Overnights are a unique opportunity to work toward badge requirements while having the Garden to yourself! Explore the Children's Garden, complete nature crafts, go on a night-time letterboxing adventure and more.

October 15–16, 2016
(5 p.m. on Saturday to 9 a.m. on Sunday)

Girl Scout Brownies and Juniors
Award work:
BROWNIES: Senses & Letterboxer
JUNIORS: Detective & Flowers

Cost: $45/scout, $30/chaperone.
One chaperone per five scouts is required

Registration opens September 6, 2016;
Registration closes September 26, at 5 p.m.

Scout crossing zig zag bridge in Japanese Garden

Note: Between the two sites (Missouri Botanical Garden and Shaw Nature Reserve) we are only able to schedule 3–4 overnights per year. Please plan accordingly.

Can’t make any of these dates? Check out our Overnights at the Shaw Nature Reserve or schedule an overnight experience of your own creation at Shaw Nature Reserve's Dana Brown Overnight Center.


Pre-registration is required. Please mail in the following items:

  • Completed Scout Roster form with tee shirt sizes and any dietary restrictions.
  • A Participant Agreement for each scout and chaperone. Those who do not submit these forms will not be able to participate. 
  • Full payment by check (or multiple checks) made out to "Missouri Botanical Garden."

Payment is not accepted over the phone. Please do not bring forms to main campus as the Scout Instructor is not located at that location. Forms must be mailed in at the same time to be received by the Scout Instructor. Payment and forms are required two weeks in advance. Troops are not considered to be registered until we have the troop's roster, health forms and payment in hand. Registration will not be accepted prior to the dates noted for each program, no exceptions!

Please send registration materials to:
Missouri Botanical Garden
Education/Scout Programs
PO Box 299
Saint Louis, MO 63166
Note: The age range for scout groups is determined by the designations set by the appropriate councils. In the interest of consistency, we are unable to make exceptions for children outside of the levels specified.

Cancellation Policy

For Scout Overnight refunds, cancellations must be made at least two weeks prior to the program. Refunds cannot be issued for cancellations less than two weeks in advance or for missed programs. If the Missouri Botanical Garden must cancel a Scout Overnight, you will be notified and receive a full refund.


Overnight Details

What to Bring:
  • Comfortable clothes
  • Shoes for walking and playing
  • Umbrella or raincoat 
  • Pajamas
  • Toiletries
  • Flashlight
  • Sleeping bag (tents are not permitted)
  • Pillow
  • Water bottle
  • Jacket or sweatshirt
  • Bug spray
  • Tarps for sleeping—1 for every 3 scouts (please see “Sleeping Arrangements” below)

You will be responsible for carrying your items from check-in at Linnaean Plaza to the sleeping area, which is about a 5–7 minute walk. Please pack accordingly! 

Parking for overnight participants at the Missouri Botanical Garden will be in the Ridgway Visitor Center parking lot located at 4344 Shaw Blvd., St. Louis, Missouri 63110. Please park on the left-hand (east) lot near Linnaean Plaza. There is no additional charge for parking. All sleepover participant vehicles must display the Sleepover Participant parking pass (received at check-in or emailed prior) in their windshield for security notification.

Check in:
Check-in begins at 5 p.m. and will close at 5:30 p.m. Please do plan to check in before then. All overnight participants need to check in at the registration table at the Linnaean Plaza Entrance. On-time arrival will give participants time to orient themselves, claim a sleeping spot, drop off their belongings, explore the Children’s Garden and participate in activities there before dinner at 7 p.m.

Participants are strongly discouraged from arriving after 7 p.m. If it is absolutely necessary for you to do so, you must notify the Scout Instructor 24 hours prior to the sleepover so special arrangements can be made. If a participant needs to leave between 8 p.m. and 8 a.m., please notify staff at least 24 hours prior to the day of the event so that we may make arrangements. Please contact (314) 577-9473 x 6357 or

Sleeping Arrangements:
Overnight participants will be sleeping under the stars on the lawn within or around the Kemper Center for Home Gardening. In the event of rain or inclement weather, participants will be moved inside. Please bring at least 1 large tarp with you. Items can get wet with dew in the evening hours. Guests are welcome to bring tarps, sleeping bags and blankets, but TENTS ARE NOT ALLOWED ON GARDEN GROUNDS. Sleepovers are scheduled during mild weather months, however, at times, the temperatures may vary. To be safe, we suggest bringing layers of clothes—as in a t-shirt and a sweatshirt/jacket as well as a raincoat or umbrella.

We will work on nature-related award or badge work during the evening. This information is determined and released for your information a few months in advance. We will help you complete 2–3 fun requirements per badge from at least 2 badges per scout level. If you are interested in working on the other requirements on your own during the overnight, please bring the appropriate award or badge information with you.

Your overnight experience includes a tasty, hot dinner, a healthy late night snack and a continental breakfast the following morning. We will include items from the essential food groups and will do our best to provide options for varied diets and “picky eaters.” Peanuts will not be served. Please e-mail regarding significant food allergies.

  • Dinner: A dinner buffet will be provided shortly after participants have arrived. The menu varies at each sleepover and may include: a build-your-own taco bar, or a baked potato bar, pizza or sub sandwiches. Beverages may include water, tea and lemonade. A yummy treat will be provided for dessert.
  • Snack: We will provide a late-night snack that may include fruit, vegetables, milk products, wheat, soy or eggs, unless the staff knows of an existing allergy or dietary need.
  • Breakfast: A continental breakfast will be served the following morning which may include fruit, assorted cereals, muffins, bagels, fruit juice, coffee, tea and other treats.

Please note: This is not a complete list, and not every item listed above will be available at every overnight. We do ask that all food provided be kept within designated eating areas.

Outside Food:
We ask that NO outside food be brought with you. If you have severe food allergies or specific dietary needs, we do allow you to bring in an outside snack under the following conditions:

  • It must be sealed in a heavy-duty plastic container (Tupperware, not a Ziploc bag). 
  • It must be labeled with the participant’s name. 
  • It must be taken directly to the dining area and left there for the duration of the event. 
  • Items must be non-perishable, as refrigeration space if very limited. 

Any guests needing to bring in outside food for health reasons should notify the sleepover staff immediately upon arrival. Please note: We can’t guarantee the safety of the food that is left in the classroom, nor can we take responsibility if it is lost or taken. Participants will be asked to take any food not meeting these criteria back to their vehicles.

Overnight Etiquette:
Staff will do all that they can to ensure your child’s safety while at the Missouri Botanical Garden. For the sake of other participants, children are expected to display cooperative and respectful behaviors. Should behavioral difficulties arise; parents, chaperones or scout leaders will be notified. If problems continue, we reserve the right to dismiss participants from our sleepovers. For the enjoyment of all our sleepover participants, please follow the guidelines below:

  • Have fun!
  • Respect your fellow sleepover participants and their belongings, as well as staff.
  • Eat only in designated eating areas.
  • Stay with your group, both children and their chaperones, at all times. If you get separated from your group, we ask that groups reunite at the Kemper Center.
  • Keep your shoes on (except while sleeping) and leave your wheeled shoes at home.
  • As far as we can tell, our plants do not snore. Overnight participants, however, sometimes do. Please be respectful of those who do and mindful of those who do not.
  • Lights out is quiet time. Please turn off or silence your electronic devices and go to sleep!
  • Staff and volunteers are here to help. Feel free to ask questions or go to them for first aid needs. A First Aid Station will be located in the Kemper Center. A staff person will be available at all times.

Participants are welcome to explore the Garden after 9 a.m. the next morning. If you wish to stay after 9 a.m., participants are asked to return their overnight gear to their cars and then re-enter through Linnaean Plaza before 9 a.m. At 9 a.m. the gate will close and normal admission rates apply.

Inclement Weather:
Participants should come dressed for the weather. All overnights are held rain or shine. In the case of rain, we will be able to relocate the group to an indoor covered area. If we are unable to hold a sleepover due to severe inclement weather, we will notify you by phone if staff decides to cancel prior to the event. In the event severe inclement weather occurs during the overnight, staff is prepared to ensure participant safety and will be using a facility that the staff has identified as a storm shelter.

Safety and Emergencies:
Overnight participants are encouraged to leave their belongings in the sleeping area during the overnight activities as a means of staking out their own spot. While we expect that all participants will respect other participant’s belongings, we do highly recommend keeping valuables on your person at all times, as the Missouri Botanical Garden does not take responsibility for any lost or stolen items.

The Missouri Botanical Garden Safety and Security team is on Garden grounds 24 hours a day. The Garden’s Safety and Security staff, as well as the Overnight Staff, are trained and certified in First Aid and CPR. In case of security concerns or emergencies, please contact any overnight staff member immediately.

Special Accommodations & Accessibility:
Please call the Scout Programs Instructor at (314) 577-9473 x 6357 or email at least 3 weeks prior to the date of the sleepover if you or your child/scout requires special accommodations.


Please contact the Scout Instructor at (314) 577-9473 x 6357 or if you have questions.