August 2016 Lodge Events

This past month Section SR-9 lodges held three events. Check out the event articles and photos below from Alibamu, Ini-To, and Withlacoochee Lodges.

Alibamu Lodge Pilgrimage Ordeal
by Will Reeder

Alibamu had a fun filled Ordeal August 19-21. There was plenty of time for brotherhood and fellowship in addition to plenty of time for service. We made progress on our new sand volleyball court that is scheduled to be completed this fall. After inducting several new members and sealing other members in the ties of Brotherhood on Saturday, we ended the evening with a cracker barrel and a corn hole tournament. After many attempted to take the title of champion, it was brother Lucas Lynn and former SR-9 Secretary, Matt Harris, who ended with the coveted title! After a short rest Saturday night, we finished up a great weekend with a devotional and a lodge meeting. We would like to recognize and thank our section chief Patrick Mapp and Coosa Lodge’s Vice-Chief of Fellowship Daniel Beitel for attending our Ordeal! It really meant a lot to us. We had a great time and we are looking forward to what lies ahead for Alibamu and the rest of SR-9.

The newest members of Alibamu Lodge after being inducted in August 2016.

The newest members of Alibamu Lodge after being inducted in August 2016.

Alibamu Lodge is building a new volleyball court at their camp.

Alibamu Lodge is building a new volleyball court at their camp.

Ini-To Lodge Summer Ordeal
by Daniel Kirkland

The Ini-To Lodge Summer Ordeal was a huge success. We had fifteen new members inducted and fourteen seal their brotherhood. The project was very meaningful to our camp. Camp Thunder now has a wonderful entrance complete with rock paths, mulch, and bushes. After the ordeal ceremony the new inductees participated in capture the flag with other members of the lodge. Other members patch traded in the dining hall. New member orientation took place before vespers on Sunday morning. New member orientation and vespers were conducted by Will Harper. We are excited for our upcoming Fall Fellowship.

New Ordeal members from Ini-To Lodge wearing their brand new sashes.

New Ordeal members from Ini-To Lodge wearing their brand new sashes.

Withlacoochee Lodge Summer Fellowship
by Saul Crumpton

We recently wrapped up our Summer Fellowship event. It was a grand time, with many activities such as service, leadership development, and fellowship. Arrowmen had the opportunity to participate in small service projects like building a new GaGa pit for the camp. They were able to utilize the new pit to get to know one another better, as well as develop their knowledge of ceremony performance and putting on unit elections thanks to our LLD presenters. The cherry on top for the event was the guest visitors we had from Waguli Lodge that put on a few informational seminars to help bolster our efforts in developing a lodge drum and dance team. Special thanks to Dallas Adams and Chris DeHart for traveling down and helping us out.

Annual Withlacoochee Lodge Photo

Annual Withlacoochee Lodge Photo

Withlacoochee Lodge Brotherhood Ceremony Team

Withlacoochee Lodge Brotherhood Ceremony Team

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November NLS Course

SR-9 NLS Map

National Leadership Seminar
by Austin Dowd

We have a fantastic opportunity for members of Section SR-9 to meet new brothers and learn one-of-a-kind leadership skills at an upcoming NLS course inside our geographic area. NLS stands for National Leadership Seminar and is hosted by experienced Order of the Arrow members from all over the country including current national officers. It is a great weekend full of sessions to help form the next leaders of our Order. The NLS course is November 11-13 in Talladega, Alabama. For those unfamiliar with Talladega, it is halfway between Birmingham and Atlanta along Interstate 20. This will be the first NLS Course inside SR-9 since 2009 and the next course this close will not be until spring of 2018. NLS is encouraged for all lodge and chapter leadership to attend and help better their local program.

Section SR-9 is offering a grant program for youth members to attend. We will cover half of the cost for thirty Arrowmen, but hurry because spots are being claimed quickly. In addition, your lodge may have scholarship funds available. Notify your Lodge Adviser that you are interested in attending, and he can assist you in receiving the Section SR-9 Grant.

The registration deadline is October 28 but do not delay because spots fill quickly. Go to http://southern.oa-bsa.org/nls for more information and to register.

NEXT: A New Century

NEXT National Event

Lodge leaders from across the nation gathered this summer at Indiana University to share ideas and lay the groundwork for our second century as an Order. Over thirteen hundred Arrowmen were in attendance, including representation from nine SR-9 lodges.

A unique element for this national event was the use of crews, much like at National Leadership Seminar. Lodges were broken up upon arrival and experienced the conference with one of sixty-three crews. Each crew included fourteen to sixteen delegates, all from different lodges, and one crew guide. The crew guide was a key component of the NEXT program delivering the training sessions and crew discussions every day. Section SR-9 had six brothers hand selected for this important role, and we want to thank Craig Barnwell, Ken Barton, Chris Brightwell, Clayton Carte, Frank Harper, and Tyler Stepanek for their hard work throughout NEXT.

Each day had a theme that the training and activities centered around. Day one was brotherhood day where the members of each crew bonded and began to know each other. Innovation day was second where all delegates were introduced to a new form of problem solving called LeaderX. This model may be used by attendees in any problem they face within or outside of Scouting. Next was membership day where delegates examined the problems we face across the nation in membership retention and brotherhood conversation. New ideas to address these problems were brainstormed and written down to be adopted on a national scale. Finally, delegates had program day showcasing leadership development, service, and ceremonies which give the OA our purpose. The closing program element was a massive bonfire in the center of campus.

Section SR-9 Chief Patrick Mapp was the experience conference vice chief for the event in charge of the overall schedule, crew guides and crew activities. He described serving in this role as “an opportunity I will never forget” having the chance to “impact Arrowmen across the nation on such a large scale.” Patrick worked long days throughout the event to ensure every delegate had a wealth of new ideas and knowledge to share back home.

NEXT created friendships and connections that will last for years, and the ideas shared will be implemented in lodges across the nation in the coming months and years.

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Nine SR-9 Lodges were represented at NEXT. The lodges were Alibamu, Chattahoochee, Coosa, Echeconnee, Egwa Tawa Dee, I-Tsu-La, Ini-To, Mowogo, and Withlacoochee.

NEXT Conference Vice-Chiefs including SR-9 Chief Patrick Mapp

NEXT Conference Vice-Chiefs including SR-9 Chief Patrick Mapp

SR-9 Officers and Lodge Chiefs found the Redbull

SR-9 Officers and Lodge Chiefs found the Redbull

Prism: Experience the Spectrum

Prism National Event
by Trey Patuka

I was privileged to attend the 2013 National Jamboree at the brand new Summit Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia. It was a great experience. I loved meeting Scouters from around the world, patch trading, and checking out our new high adventure base.  I was only 13 at the time, but I knew it was an awesome opportunity to be at the very first Jamboree held at our own property. There was so much to see and do that I simply could not take it all in, but overall, it was amazing!

I was sitting at the February lodge executive committee meeting and the lodge leadership announced the eight available spaces for the OA Prism. I knew I wanted one of those tickets.  I could not wait to go back and see The Summit again.  I wanted to see what was new and what had changed.  Plus, I knew it would be a great experience to be one of the first Arrowmen to see the Summit Circle.

My mom, my scoutmaster and his son, all fellow Arrowmen, went with me to the June 29 – July 2 session. We were not able to attend during the Southern Region week, but we enjoyed meeting new brothers from the Central Region.  We were fortunate to have beautiful weather the days we attended.  Pulling into the Summit Bechtel Reserve headquarters on the first day and seeing the visitor center was very cool.  It was not completed during my visit in 2013.  I was amazed at how large and empty the base camps looked when they were not filled with thousands of Jamboree tents.  It was like seeing SBR through a new set of eyes.

On my first full day, I participated in the Summit Center program areas.  My favorite was the climbing wall at Boulder Cove.  I also tried out the kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, and shooting areas.  I always love crossing the CONSOL Energy Bridge and if you are at the Summit, you have to check it out.

The second day, we spent the morning doing a conservation project at the Summit Circle.  It was unique to do a service project at the ceremony site and know I made a difference that will last forever.  The Legacy Lodge Plaza and the Reflection Trail with lodge rocks and quotes from our founders and ceremonies lead to the Summit Circle, but they are special on their own. Walking the path and entering the circle for the first time made me excited to be an Arrowman and be part of our history. That night we participated in a special inauguration ceremony at the circle.  This is something I will never forget. Seeing the past and being part of the present makes me enthusiastic to be part of the future.

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Seven SR-9 Lodges were represented at Prism. The lodges were Alibamu, Chattahoochee, Coosa, Egwa Tawa Dee, Ini-To, Mowogo, and Withlacoochee.

Trey and his mother at the WWW Overlook in the Summit Circle

Trey and his mother at the WWW Overlook in the Summit Circle

Trey on the CONSOL Energy Bridge

Trey on the CONSOL Energy Bridge

July 2016 Lodge Events

This past month Section SR-9 lodges held two events. Check out the event articles and photos below from Aracoma and Waguli Lodges.

Aracoma Lodge Ordeal Weekend
by Matthew Levan

The Aracoma Lodge Ordeal weekend was a huge success! Out of the thirty-five candidates called out, we had thirty-two complete their ordeal. During the weekend we enjoyed various activities such as playing frisbee, patch trading, and hunting Pokemon. Our work projects included taking down tents from summer camp, clearing brush and debris, pressure washing picnic benches, and pulling weeds. The ceremony committee gave great performances in the pre-Ordeal ceremony and the Ordeal ceremony. We were very pleased with the event, and cannot wait for our fall fellowship.

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Aracoma Lodge Ceremony

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Aracoma Lodge Ordeal Candidates

Waguli Lodge Ordeal Weekend
by Samuel Pankey

I would first like to say this Ordeal weekend we accomplished much more than we previously expected. Everyone worked diligently and to their best ability to make sure we finished what needed to be done. Our new candidates awoke bright and early from their ground cloths. After a hearty breakfast we split up everyone into clans and began work. Whether it was picking up brush from the side of the roads, replacing the boards on our picnic tables, painting, staining, or organizing the pole barn; everyone completed projects they would find memorable for years to follow. There was also significant work done on the founders’ ceremonial ring. With drainage work and new steps this ordeal has put us two steps closer to its completion. This project is not only worth remembering for candidates, but will make a lasting impact on the lodge for generations to come. We would like to give our most cheerful welcome to all thirty-eight of our new brothers. In addition, we have seventeen new brotherhood members that will continue to add to the cheerful spirit our lodge possesses.

Waguli Lodge Ordeal Inductees

Waguli Lodge Ordeal Inductees

Waguli Lodge Ordeal Project

Waguli Lodge Ordeal Project