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Meet the SR-9 Chief Patrick Mapp

Patrick MappThe section communications team sat down with SR-9 Section Chief Patrick Mapp and asked him a few questions about the section and his time as a section officer. Patrick is an Eagle Scout from Flint River Council and Vigil Honor member of the Ini-To Lodge. During his tenure as SR-9 Section Chief, he has represented our members well serving as the 2016 NEXT Conference Experience Vice Chief and the 2017 Jamboree OA Service Corps Vice Chief.

This is your fourth year as a section officer. What inspires you to continue serving the Order of the Arrow and its members?

Five months after my induction into the Order my lodge adviser invited me to the National Leadership Seminar. Little did I know that this seminar would change my outlook on servant leadership as well as my life. The values I have learned in the Order of the Arrow have inspired me to serve, lead, and commit myself to a life of cheerful service. When I was elected section secretary in 2013, I realized that I had become a part of something bigger than myself. As section secretary, I had the opportunity to visit many of the lodges of SR-9, and in doing so I interacted with you, the foundation of our organization. These experiences of interacting with all the members and exchanging ideas have inspired me to continue serving today.

Indian Winter is a much different event than the Heartland Gathering. What types of program are offered at this event that all Arrowmen can enjoy?

In 2014, I was elected to the office of Section Vice Chief, with a task to create a new innovative event for our section centered around American Indian Affairs. This task would present many challenges, but with the advice of our advisers and a lot of hard work, a new program is now in its third year. Our section has a grown in AIA and ceremony participation and for the first time, we offered customized Journey to Excellence classes to focus on local lodge problems identified by the national committee. Overall, the event continues to be a success, and I am looking forward to where it goes in the future.

Changing the name of conclave was a bold move for Section SR-9. What was the reasoning behind the name change, and what convinced you as Section Chief to lead the effort to have the Heartland Gathering?

Having been an integral part of the section for going on four years in an active role as a youth officer I look for things to improve from the previous year. Entering my third time chairing this premiere event, the section leaders were looking for opportunities to make our event even more “premiere.” As we gathered this past year for the annual Section Officers Seminar conversation centered around how great our program elements had become. Our dance and ceremonies showcase the best Arrowmen, shows are incredible, training offers exciting topics, our service lodges perform at the highest caliber, and our quest and admin events are awesome. We, as a section, have created an event that is phenomenal! This event is more deserving than the generic name, conclave, thus our decision to change the name to the Heartland Gathering!

Many Arrowmen have asked the significance of the “Heartland” as part of the new event name. Can you explain why the section chose this word, and what the Heartland means to you?

Our section slogan for as long as I can remember has been “Serving the Southern Heartland.” This is because we represent the center of the Southern Region. If you google the definition of heartland you get this, “the central or most important part of a country, area, or field of activity;” or “ the part of a region considered essential to the viability and survival of the whole.” These definitions could not be a better explanation of why we chose heartland and what this means to me. We as a section, as SR-9, are the Southern Heartland.

Finally, there are over 5,000 brothers in our section, and many of them will not attend a section event. What advice would you like to offer to all Arrowmen within Section SR-9?

My first section event, I was reluctant, nervous, and had no expectations, but, I gave it a shot. I encourage all Arrowmen to do just that. Try it out! Meet the section officers and other Arrowmen from around the section. You will be shocked just how exciting it is! See you at Gathering! 

Heartland Gathering

hg_fb_cover.jpgOn August 27, 2016, the SR-9 Council of Chiefs unanimously approved to rename the section conclave to the Heartland Gathering. This decision was made to highlight the section’s premier event and to give a unique name to one of the largest section-level events in the nation.

While brainstorming ideas for the new event name, the section officers looked at what connects Georgia and Alabama together. We considered Native American tribes and agriculture crops, but the one idea which peeked our interests is we are the center of the south. Our two states form the geographic and economic center of the Southern Region. The concept of being centrally located directly relates to the section tagline, Serving the Southern Heartland, which has been in use since the section was formed. As a result, the use of the word “Heartland” was an easy choice.

The inaugural gathering will take place from April 21-23, 2017 at Camp Lumpkin in LaGrange, Georgia. Mark your calendars for the event and contact your lodge for registration information. The giveaways for those who register by January 31, 2017 will be a pair of Ray – Ban sunglasses or one of five Heartland Gathering patch sets. The prizes are not just for youth. Adults over the age of twenty-one will be entered for two of the patch sets.

Section SR-9 is very excited about this new change and hope all Arrowmen will join with us in embracing our new event. Feel free to reach out to any section officer if you have questions or would like more information concerning the 2017 Heartland Gathering.

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