Index : Pennsic Experience | Pennsic Camping List

Getting Involved
The Necessities
Your First Event
Beyond the Basics
Pennsic Guide

Pennsic Camping Needs

What you need for camping at Pennsic will very much be determined by where you are camping. We really do recommend for new people to the SCA/Pennsic and camping especially, that you find a group to camp with. The shire has a wonderful encampment and most of the people camping with the shire are long experienced Pennsic campers and will be there to guide you through much of the event.

If you got into this because you knew someone from another group, or someone who camps with another group, they may want you to camp with them. You don't have to camp with the shire, it is not a requirement for Pennsic.

Once you know where you are camping, this will determine how you are handling food.

Food stuff

Are you part of a meal plan ( where the cooking is delegated out among members and there is a set price for the meals)? Are you going to be eating at the food court? There are at least 6 vendors at Pennsic that serve food, and 2 that do a great breakfast. ( prices are between about $5.00 and $10.00 per meal depending on what it is ) Are you expected to bring kitchen equipment? MOST established groups will already have this figured out, all you need to do is as them what the plans are and what they need you to contribute.

There are grocery stores near by to purchase food, and they are used to dealing with the SCA, we tend to go shopping in garb and they give us the grocery card discounts when you ask and very often they have specials just designed to cater to our needs.

No matter what I recommend bringing a small stash of non perisables that you like. Keep them handy for quick snacks, breakfast, etc.

Setting up home

This deserves it own little blurb as its probably the second most discussed area around getting ready for pennsic after garb.

Your camp and your tent are your home for a week ( or more ) you will want to be comfortable. Things like small tables, shelves of some form/stackable crates, etc to keep things out of totes but off the floor are invaluable. A hanging rack for clothing is almost a must, as you need to let the wrinkles out, and liviing out of the totes gets very tiring. But remember if it rains things will get wet so keep dry clothes somewhere.

Look around at other set ups and see how they do things. Add to your set up gradually, once you really know what your needs are. If you try to do it all at once, it is expensive and overwhelming. Have fun, take it slow.

Garb Needs

Garb needs change in just a few ways from a basic weekend camping event. QUANTITY! You are gone a week or more. Not only that, the weather like always is not predicable. This is August in Western Pennsylvania. The days can be incredibly hot, the nights very cold. It will rain. Layers are a wonderful thing. The inner layer from the day before becomes the outer layer the next day. Undershirts and chemises can be rinsed out. ( unless its horridly damp ..but there are some laundry facilities on site and a laundromat in town ) Think comfortable and lots and lots of walking. SHOES!!! Make sure your shoes are comfortable. You will be walking miles and miles. Bring changes of comfortable shoes. Inner soles can be very helpful.

If you are going to be doing things like the masked ball, or other special events, you will also need one good "court" outfit. Otherwise, most of it is very casual and due to weather and conditions, you don't tend to see really really good clothing. People just dont want to ruin it camping.


That being said, there is not much to change from the basic camping list. It will get you through Pennsic. And what you find you don't have you can always borrow or go into town to get what you need. There is a big Walmart in town as well as lots of other shops. Most of all, have fun, enjoy!! Pennsic is a wonderful experience.

Basic Camping Lists

The basic camping list is in the necessities page linked here : Basic Camping List .

For your convenience we have also included a printable text version of this list here .

Disclaimer: This is the Newcomers Page for the Shire of Hartshorn-dale of the East Kingdom of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc.  The maintainer of this page is Lee Ann Posavad.  It is not a corporate publication of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. and does not delineate SCA policies. In cases of conflict with printed versions of material presented on this page or its links, the dispute will be decided in favor of the printed version.
This page last modified May 27, 2003.