About Us

Phelan Lodge

A Brief Description

BSA Troop Devon 50, chartered May 31, 1927, is an active, "Scout-led" troop of approximately 75 boys and girls ages 11 to 18 and a large number of dedicated adult leaders from Tredyffrin Township, PA, and nearby communities of suburban Philadelphia. In 2019, Devon 50 chartered a Girl's Troop which meets at Camp Jarvis on Tuesday evenings at 7pm.

The Troop has a diverse youth membership and large crew of adult volunteers. We welcome youths of all backgrounds and abilities and strive to support and develop boys and girls who are interested in learning and developing their skills and leadership abilities through civic, conservation, education, community service, and outdoor experiences. Our scouts learn and grow physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially as they enjoy and master new skills and experience teamwork and leadership opportunities. We have a proud record of outdoor adventure and individual achievement, with 391 boy and girl Eagle Scouts to date, which both colleges and employers recognize and value. For our latest brochure, please see the attached below.

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Our Chartering Organization

Most scout troops around the nation are chartered out of an institution, like a church or fire hall (the majority seem to be churches). Devon 50 is a self-chartered troop organized by the parents of the scouts. Our first charter, posted on our cabin wall, lists the chartering organization as "Devon 50 Inc., A Group of Interested Citizens".  For this and other reasons, we want to register an adult for every scout - you are all, in a sense, members of our chartering organization. 

Camp Jarvis

Devon 50 has one of the finest scouting facilities in the area. We have two large cabins on nearly 10 acres of woodland across from the Great Valley Baptist Church. Outdoor skills are a key part of our program, and Camp Jarvis includes a rifle range, an archery range, and a tomahawk range, all supervised by well-trained adult volunteers. The Troop is planning a new climbing wall in 2021. Our smaller, older cabin (Browning Lodge), built in the 1950s, is available for rent to other scout troops and cub packs. Our larger, newer cabin (Larry Phelan Lodge), built in 2013, is reserved for Devon 50 scouts. Our scouts enjoy indoor and outdoor activities, competitions, formal ceremonies, and plenty of fun on this beautiful and spacious property.

Our Program

Scouting is designed to take place outdoors, and most of our activities do. Our scouting year runs from early September to the following summer. We typically have 9 to 10 monthly trips within a two-hour drive one way. Monthly trips take most, but not all, of the weekend. We often leave around 5 pm on Friday afternoon, and return between 11 am to 3 pm on Sunday, depending on driving distance and activities. A Scouts' Own service (held on Sunday morning) is held on each monthly trip. Trip types include biking/hiking, backpacking, white water rafting, canoeing, skiing, winter camping, caving, climbing, and beach "chilling." Iron Scout cooking competitions keep everyone well fed. Rifle shooting is often a part of the winter camping at other scout camps. We also do city trips, which have included New York City, Washington, D.C., Annapolis, MD, and Philadelphia, PA., usually "camping" indoors at a local church or scout camp. We visit historical sites, such as Gettysburg, Antietam, Harper's Ferry, and nearby Valley Forge National Park. We alternate tours of the Army and Navy service academies. We organize one to two Merit Badge Jamborees each year at Camp Jarvis (fall and spring) to help scouts progress toward their Eagle rank and explore new interests and career possibilities. We also participate each year in the Chester County Council First Aid Meet. 


Community Service

Devon 50 has always provided cheerful service to scouting and the community. For patrol and troop service projects, our scouts have assisted at local run/walk races for military veterans and moved goods at food pantries. Scouts also provide service hours to the community for rank advancement and to complete certain merit badges. Local community organizations helped in this way include outdoor cleanup, planting, and conservation work at local libraries, the Medal of Honor Grove, the Chester County Open Lands Conservancy, Jenkins Arboretum, and Valley Forge National Historic Park. Our 391 Eagle projects have included building trails, establishing native tree identification areas, landscaping, repairing stonework and walkways in the community, distributing recycling bins, taking photos of historical tombstones, videotaping recollections from veterans, and building wheelchair-accessible outdoor tables, just to give a few examples.

Summer Camp

Devon 50 boys have attended summer camp at Camp Horseshoe every year since it opened in 1928. Most scouts think of those two weeks as the highlight of the year. In a wooded setting on the Pennsylvania/Maryland border, next to the Octoraro River, scouts engage in fun and friendly competitions, eat heartily, learn important scouting skills, and earn merit badges in over 30 subjects. Many parents comment about how their boys mature after their Horseshoe experience each summer. Devon 50 girls also participate in camping events and will have their own campsite at Camp Horseshoe in 2021.


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High Adventure

Older scouts who have achieved First Class and above can attend our trips to Philmont Scout Ranch, New Mexico (backpacking), Seabase in Florida (scuba), and Northern Tier in northern Minnesota and Canada (wilderness canoeing). We send many scouts to National and International Jamborees. 

Adult Leadership

Our adult leaders do not run the troop. The scouts do. Adults are there to help and do so with enthusiasm and dedication. We do ask that at least one parent from each scout family actively help in some way. Helping can mean outdoor camping, driving on trips, "back office" work, grounds upkeep, uniform replenishment, merit badge teaching, and rifle range supervision, just to give a range of the skills and time needed. Time commitments can be seasonal or year-round, with a quiet period in July and August. All adults interacting with scouts must take Youth Protection Training (YPT) (at no charge) and pass a PA15 background check. Specialty training is subjects such as Wilderness First Aid, Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills (IOLS), and NRA Rifle Instructor courses are provided at modest costs. No previous scouting experience is required. 


We have a Joint Patrol Meeting of the boys troop on the second Wednesday of each month and one Troop Meeting for the boys troop on the fourth Wednesday of each month, each between 7pm and 8pm at Camp Jarvis in the Phalen cabin. The girls troop meets on Tuesday evenings each week from 7 pm to 8 pm. Scouts are expected to wear Class B at joint patrol meetings and full Class A uniforms at troop meetings. In addition, each scout should attend their patrol meeting once per month, with the time and place organized by the patrol leader. 

Youth leaders for the boys troop (the Greenbar) attend a Greenbar Meeting on the first Wednesday of the month, between 7 pm and 8 pm, at Camp Jarvis in the new cabin. The Assistant Scoutmasters (ASMs) meeting is right after the Greenbar, from 8 pm to 9 pm. The third Wednesday of the month is used for the Troop Committee meeting, between 7pm and 9 pm at Camp Jarvis in the new cabin. As a parent, you are welcome to attend all meetings (keeping in mind that the scout-led meetings need "space" from adults, who are generally nearby in the adjacent areas).

In summary:

1st Wednesday:            Greenbar 7 pm to 8 pm; ASM Meeting 8 pm to 9 pm

2nd Wednesday:           Joint Patrol Meeting 7 pm to 8 pm

3rd Wednesday:            Troop Committee Meeting 7 pm to 9 pm

4th Wednesday:             Troop Meeting 7 pm to 8 pm

Each Tuesday:                 Girls Troop Meeting 7 pm to 8 pm

Patrol meetings are scheduled by the individual patrol leader and take place separately from the above meetings. 


Dues (per family) are:

  • One Scout                $203 
  • Two Scouts               $359
  • Three Scouts            $510
  • Adult Only                 $73   no scout currently in the troop; age 18 and over 

Up to two Adult registrations are included in the scout registrations if the adult(s) and the scout(s) are a family. 



Wreath Sales

To keep our annual dues low, as well as an active program of monthly trips affordable for all scouts, our primary fundraiser for the year is Wreath and Swag Sales. Beginning at the end of October through late November, each scout has a reasonable quota of fresh balsam wreaths and swags from Maine that they are asked to sell. Scouts are coached on how to sell and benefit from the very real skills acquired in doing so each year. Scouts sell with a buddy or one of their parents. All scouts who meet their quota qualify for a Mystery Trip each spring with no trip fee.


Devon 50 is located at 920 N Valley Forge Rd in Devon, PA. Our campground is directly across from the Great Valley Baptist Church. Please note that we do not have mail service to this address. Mail can be sent to P.O. Box 633, Southeastern, PA 19399. 

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