Question: I was told that the Minnesota State Patrol is involved in teaching a school patrol camp in the summer. Can you provide me with some information about it?

Answer: Yes we are. Legionville is a summer camp where school patrol students are taught the fundamentals of school patrol, school bus safety, bicycle and pedestrian safety. It is located just north of Brainerd, and is operated by the American Legion, using State Patrol Troopers as instructors. I am one of the instructors again this year.

The typical patroller is a student entering fourth, fifth, or sixth grade. Each youngster, between the ages of 8-13, attends and is sponsored by an organization from their hometown. The patrollers are selected to represent their schools at Legionville by the School Patrol Advisor of their school and local personnel. Teams of patrollers are encouraged to attend together to enhance their training and knowledge. Exceptions to this restriction can be made but must be cleared in advance through the American Legion. Legionville is currently taking applications.

Legionville is celebrating 80 years of instruction. It actually started 83 years ago in 1936, but because of World War II, class was canceled in 1942 and 1943. Last summer, the class was cancelled due to a large 4 acre bog that settled on the lakeshore in front of the camp. The bog has since been removed. The 'old familiar barn' is gone and a new one has been built.

Besides school patrol and school bus patrol training by Troopers, other instructors help complete the week with swimming, canoeing, first aid training and many other activities and games. The camp is a very active place. Parents can pay for their kids to go, even though there may be some limited numbers of scholarships available each year through local schools, State Patrol Troopers Association, local American Legion posts and many other venues. The registration fee is $285 per student and that includes lodging and meals.

Campers take part in six days and five nights of learning and fun. This year, weekly sessions run from the middle of June, until the middle of August. For registration and camp information go