Butler 7th Grade Field Trip to

Gettysburg, Harrisburg, and Hershey PA

March 15-16, 2024

Butler 7th Graders – It’s time for the Gettysburg field trip!  Spend two days touring Pennsylvania’s most historic areas with your friends and teachers.

Gettysburg

Site of the most epic battle in U.S. history!

Harrisburg
Interior photo of the Pennsylvania State Capitol Rotunda

Seat of Pennsylvania’s government.

Hershey
Sign outside of Chocolate World with candy bar characters

Chocolate wonderland. Sweet!

KEY INFO

Trip Cost – $390

Jan 31 – Deposit ($100)/Sign Up Due
Space is limited, late sign ups may be refused.

Feb 8 -Roommate Forms Due

Feb 15– Final Payment Due

Mar 7 @ 6 pm – Parent Meeting – IHS auditorium

Mar 15 -16 Field Trip!

What You'll See

At Gettysburg National Park, the Visitor’s Center film (narrated by Morgan Freeman) gives a great introduction to the Civil War and the Battle of Gettysburg. The Cyclorama is a massive, 360-degree “Battle of Gettysburg” painting-in-the-round measuring 377 feet around and 42 feet high. The group stands in the center of this three-dimensional diorama as the events of the 3 day battle unfold in front of them, culminating with the fury of Pickett’s Charge. After this dramatic re-telling, students explore the museum exhibits at their own pace.

At the Civil War Museum, a group of reenactors passionate about the civil war and educating, host a variety of hands-on activities where we get a better picture of life during the war. Areas to explore include musket firing, marching in formation, period dance, and treatment of wounded soldiers. Students love the museum scavenger hunt!

A licensed battlefield tour guide will board each bus as we embark on a two hour tour of the town and battlefield of Gettysburg. History will come alive as the students get out and explore the infamous Peach Orchard, Devil’s Den, and the site of Pickett’s Charge. These guides are awesome with kids, bringing history to life with sensational stories and fun activities.

Find out what makes politics so exciting when we tour the Pennsylvania State Capitol Building. Sit in the House and Senate chambers; walk through the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. The beauty and art in this majestic building serve as the backdrop for a lesson in Pennsylvania history and state government.

At Hershey’s Chocolate World, you’ll learn how chocolate is made on the chocolate world ride. Browse the gift shop for souvenirs to bring home to family and friends.

Evening fun includes social time and a pizza dinner party.  More details will be forthcoming.

Trip Cost

  • The trip price covers transportation, professional planning, reenactors, admissions, lodging, and meals. $30 of the cost is a school-required trip insurance that guarantees a full refund if we have to cancel the trip, or if your student is unable to go, for any reason.
  • Trip may be limited due to interest and capacity at the hotel and at the places we visit.
  • Pay deposit by clicking “Sign Up”.  After you complete the required sign up forms, you will be directed to a secure payment page where you can pay the deposit.
  • After the deposit due date has passed, you will receive an email with your student’s balance.  A “Final Payment” button will be posted on this page, and you can use it to pay your balance.  
  • You can pay by check (ACH) or by credit card.  Credit card payments incur a 3% fee.
  • There will be a fundraiser to help offset the price.  Check the website for fundraiser information.
  • There is a limited amount of scholarship money available for students in need.  See Mrs. Casher EARLY to pick up an application.  The application, essay, and teacher recommendations are all due no later than the trip registration deadline.
  • REFUND POLICY: $30 Trip Protection is included in the deposit.  If your child drops at any time, for any reason, you will receive a refund of all money you have paid so far (except fundraising profit, and the $30 Trip Protection fee).
  • Refund requests must be made before we depart for the trip, and in writing to Denise Casher or Rebecca Green.

Hotel & Roommates

We will be staying at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites, Gettysburg.  This newer hotel has clean comfy rooms with cable TV, blow dryer, and 2 queen beds.

Students choose their own roommates using a form that will be distributed in Social Studies class.  All forms for a room should match, be stapled together, and submitted to Mrs. Carlson by the due date.

Students who do not have roommates will be encouraged to find other students in the same circumstance and ask to room with them.  Mrs. Casher assists with the room list.

We ask for students to sign up 4 per room.  If they have fewer than this, they may be asked to combine with another group, or to add a student who needs roommates.  

Rooms of 5 are discouraged; there are only sleeping accommodations for 4 people in each  room.   Rooms of 5 are only allowed by special permission in extraordinary circumstances.  If you feel this is warranted, contact Mrs. Casher. 

Meals & Money

Our meal plan:

Friday
Breakfast: Not included – send healthy snacks on bus.
Lunch:  Subway cold cut trio or turkey 6″ sub, chips, dessert, & water.
Dinner: All-you-can eat pizza + soda.

Saturday
Breakfast  hotel hot buffet
Lunch:  Hoss’ chicken tenders and fries, soup, salad, & dessert bar.

If you have special dietary needs, bring food that is safe for you.  We can store a cooler under the bus, if needed. 

Spending money:  $30-$50 will be enough for vending and small souvenirs.  More will be needed if you plan to purchase T-shirts or sweatshirts.

Food and beverages are permitted on the buses and in hotel rooms.  Our first meal is lunch on Saturday. Eat breakfast before you leave or bring something easy to eat on the bus.  Only drinks with resealable containers are allowed.  Students are expected to discard waste and keep buses and rooms clean. If not, snack privileges will be revoked.

Student Behavior

  • Students are expected to abide by all applicable school policies while on this trip.
  • The District has the right to deny a student from participating based on disciplinary or other issues that arise before the trip (e.g., fighting, bullying, etc.).
  • If a student does not abide by the rules, the following measures will be taken:
    • verbal warning
    • assigned seat
    • student remains on the bus with a chaperone during stops
    • phone call home
    • consequences at school 
    • If student behavior is significantly disruptive or endangering, you will be expected to come and pick up your child. 
  • Butler staff and students have gone on the Gettysburg field trip for decades.  They’ve always been well received by the hotel, restaurants, and tour sites visited.  Help us keep up our good reputation!

Packing & Preparing

What to Bring:
Take all items on board the bus that you plan to use throughout the day, including phones, jackets, spending money, snacks/drinks.  If you want gym clothes for the evening activities, bring those on the bus, too.

Everything you’ll need at the hotel (sleepwear, toiletries, games, more snacks & drinks) goes in a bag that can be put in the under-bus storage.  You won’t be able to access it throughout the day.

Medication:  must be given to the chaperones before boarding.

Weather:  We will be outside and walking A LOT!  Wear comfortable shoes.  Check the forecast and bring the right clothes, including jacket/rain coats.

Phones and other screens:   Students are responsible for their possessions, so use discretion.  Label these items with name and parent phone number in case they are misplaced.

Music and video: Must be played through headphones. No flash photography after dark.  No laser lights.  Movies rated G or PG only.

What NOT to Bring:  Don’t bring anything that isn’t allowed at school. You and your luggage will pass through metal detectors and will be searched thoroughly before boarding the buses.  Please triple check that there are no items that would be prohibited in school, or you may not be able to attend the trip.

Safety

Student Safety is the most important aspect of this tour. The following procedures are in place to ensure safe travels:

  • Chaperones and tour coordinators have required clearances. Most are district employees who know the students and are familiar with the places we visit.
  • Experienced tour coordinators travel with the group at all times. They explain meeting times, places, etc. in advance of each stop. They will alert students and chaperones to any changes that need to be made, and are in contact with the bus drivers at all times.
  • Students travel in groups with their roommates and their bus chaperones.
  • The places we visit have strict security and/or police on site.
  • Hotel rooms do not have exterior exits. Hotel rooms have landline phones and students are told how to contact chaperones during the night.
  • A security guard is present all night. Mechanisms are put in place to ensure students do not visit one another’s rooms during the night.
  • Only experienced drivers are used, and we strictly follow federal laws pertaining to driver safety.

Questions?

Jess Carlson, History Teacher
jessica.carlson@basdk12.org
724-214-3400, ext.5543
Denise Casher, School Liaison

denise.casher@basdk12.org
724-214-3405 (office)
724-822-1208 (mobile)

Rebecca Green, Tour Coordinator