2024 AFJROTC National Orienteering Championships

We welcome all US Air Force JROTC units from across America and overseas to participate in this event.

February 24-25, 2024

Jay B Starkey Wilderness Park, New Port Richey, Pasco County, Florida

The Jay B Starkey Wilderness Park covers over 8,300 acres of land and is a cooperative venture between the Southwest Florida Water Management District and Pasco County Parks and Recreation. The park has a kiosk area, shelters and pavilions, playgrounds, horseshoes, and volleyball courts.

Co-hosted by Suncoast Orienteering (SOAR) and Florida Orienteering (FLO)

Gord Hunter, Suncoast Orienteering – Event Director, Mapping & Course Setting
Blaik Mathews, Florida Orienteering – Timing, Live Tracking
Bob Putnam, Florida Orienteering – Course Consultant
MSgt Eric Brown, Citrus High School – Host School, Awards
Mike Engestrom, Suncoast Orienteering – Web Master

EMBARGO: Any person planning to compete in this championship event may not visit Jay B Starkey Wilderness Park outside of the DAY USE area for any reason before the event. Anyone who “goes roaming” or is found to have done a recon of the area will be considered disqualified from the event.

Schedule (Eastern Standard Time)

Friday, February 23, 20241:00 PM – 3:00 PM(Optional) Arrival & practice course for teams
Saturday, February 24, 20248:30 AM – 11:00 AMCheck-in & practice course for all teams
Saturday, February 24, 202411:00 AMStarts according to pre-published start list. A later than usual FIRST START time to allow for extra travel time on Saturday morning.
Sunday, February 25, 20249:00 AMStarts according to pre-published start list. A later than usual FIRST START time to allow for extra travel time on Saturday morning.
Sunday, February 25, 2024AWARDS
About 12:00 Noon
We encourage all teams to stay for the Awards Ceremony.
CoursesClassesMaximum Time
Yellow (2.5 km to 3 km)Separate male and female Novice level courses for Grade 9 onlyMaximum permitted course time: 120 minutes
Orange (3.5 km to 4.5 km)Separate male and female intermediate (JV) level course for any grade level.Maximum permitted course time: 180 minutes
Green (5 km to 6.5 km)Separate male and female advanced (varsity) level courses for any grade level.Maximum permitted course time: 180 minutes

Teams may enter up to 10 cadets at each course level. The best three times will count for the teams’ scores. Teams short a finishing orienteer will be assigned a time of 200 minutes.

Complete the team registration form here. The Master Roster may follow later. We will assign the four-letter “school codes” to schools that need them.

Travel and Accommodation
The closest airports are Tampa International Airport (TPA) and St Petersburg/Clearwater International Airport (PIE).

There are many hotels in the New Port Richey area. We are working with the Pasco County tourist authority to create hotel package deals. Stay tuned.

Expected Weather
Weather in this part of Florida in late February can range from cold to hot and dry to very wet. Prepare for various weather conditions, but it is unlikely to be freezing or snowy. In the unlikely chance that weather or any other conditions make participation in an event of this nature unsafe, the organizers reserve the right to cancel one or both days. Canceling both days will result in a full refund of paid competition fees.

The physical address of the Jay B Starkey Wilderness Preserve is 10500 Wilderness Park Blvd, New Port Richey, FL 34655.

What3Words (W3W) address: willow.wrangle.cages

Jay B Starkey Wilderness Park is mostly flat. There are some contour lines, but as often as not, they designate sinkholes instead of hills. Downward contours are marked with a tagline when necessary.

Do not enter the extensive marsh areas!

Do not disturb the wildlife in this wilderness park.

Be aware there are other park users, particularly cyclists and equestrians, so try to avoid them.

Medals will be awarded to the top three male and female cadets on each course.

Trophies or plaques will be awarded to the top three teams on each course and overall.

Annual ‘travelling trophies’ will be awarded to the top varsity and junior varsity teams.

Results will be posted here at the conclusion of the event.

Live Tracking
Before the event, cadets may download the Livelox app to their smartphones. When logged on at the event, they will be live-tracked to see where they are, and afterward, their track will be available for review. Review the full tutorial on Livelox at http://www.floridaorienteering.com.

More Information
Detailed event bulletins will be distributed to registered teams by mid-January and again two weeks before the event.
Bulletin/LOI #1, October 31, 2023

How to prepare for the Championships
It is not too late for your team to get ready and become competitive. Practice will help you on the road to perfection. That is a long road, but we can make a start:

  • Seek out the support from your nearest orienteering club. They will love to see you at their events. The schedule for Suncoast Orienteering (SOAR) and Florida Orienteering (FLO) events are listed on this website.
  • Seek an orienteering map of your school campus and/or nearby park. Talk to the local club, Suncoast Orienteering or Orienteering USA, and their Junior Mapping Program.
  • Seek instructional information on competitive orienteering. Several instruction videos exist on this (SOAR) website and at Orienteering USA. Learn how to quickly study and interpret the map, make a route choice decision, and then carry out that decision, making corrections when necessary.
  • Study (virtually) information about the park, including photos and aerial images from Google Earth and other sources. This is like a football team’s scouting report for the next game.
  • Ask questions! You are unlikely to get the answer if you don’t ask a question.
  • Contact: Gord Hunter, Event Director gordhun@rogers.com