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Great Southwest Council, Boy Scouts of America Heading

Order of the Arrow

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The Order of the Arrow (OA) is Scouting's National Honor Society.  Its purpose:

  • Recognize those campers- who best exemplify the Scout Oath and Law in their daily lives and through that recognition cause others to conduct themselves in a way that warrants similar recognition.
  • Promote camping, responsible outdoor adventure, and environmental stewardship as essential components of every Scout's experience, in the unit, year-round, and in summer camp.
  • Develop leaders with the willingness, character, spirit and ability to advance the activities of their units, our Brotherhood, Scouting, and ultimately our nation.
  • Crystallize the Scout habit of helpfulness into a life purpose of leadership in cheerful service to others

This is a unique organization, where membership can only be obtained by being elected by non-members. It is a service-oriented group, and nominated individuals (youth and adult) must meet high standards of service and camping. Elections are held once a year in each troop, team and post desiring one. After election, candidates must complete an Ordeal, a complex and very meaningful induction ceremony. Currently, Ordeals are held twice a year at the Spring and Fall Lodge Conclaves. The OA is aligned along council and district boundaries. The lodge for the Great Southwest Council is Yah-Tah-Hey-Si-Kess Lodge. Chapters exist for each of the nine districts of the council, with larger chapters forming clans. The lodge, and each of its chapters, is led by a Chief (elected youth), an Adviser (appointed adult) and a professional Staff Adviser. 

 

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Order of the Arrow Events
  • Spring and Fall Lodge Conclaves: These weekend events are held at Gorham Scout Ranch in May and September each year for the purpose of fellowship, ceremonies, service to camp, and new member induction. The OA performs the opening and closing service for the camp, as well as, numerous service projects.

  • Winter Banquet: Held each December at varying locations. A family-oriented awards and recognition banquet caps-off a day of training and fellowship.

  • Spring Fellowship: Held in early March at varying locations. The weekend includes fellowship, training, camp staff interviews, and sightseeing.

  • Lodge Leadership Development (LLD): A weekend fellowship and training to build teamwork and leadership skills amongst the Lodge and Chapter Officers.

  • Section Conclave: Held in April at varying locations. The section is made up of three lodges, including those from Roswell and El Paso. The weekends include training, fellowship, Indian dancing, sharing ideas, and various competitions.

  • National Order of the Arrow Conference (NOAC): NOAC is held every three to four years (non-jamboree years) in August at a major university in the Midwest. This is a very inspirational event that includes training, competition, activities, patch trading, ceremonies, and elaborate shows.

2017 Event Registration

It is preferred that you register online as this is the most convienent and helps to reduce registration errors.  The links below will take you to the calendar event online registration.

If you prefer, there are PDF forms provided for email or in-person registration at the Council office.

Spring Fellowship (Mar 3-5)     (Paper Registration Form)

Section Conclave (Apr 21-23) (External Link)

Spring Lodge Conclave (May 19-21)    (Paper Registration Form)

Lodge Leadership Development (LLD) (Aug 25-27)    (Paper Registration Form)

Fall Lodge Conclave (Sep 22-24)    (Paper Registration Form)

Winter Banquet (Dec 2)    (Paper Registration Form)

 

There is also a PDF file that contains forms for all 5 Lodge events. This PDF will take the common personal information and copy it to all of the registration forms. You can then just fill out the unique information for each event and print the form to register in person.

Member Paper Event Registration Forms (For non-online signups)

 

Membership

Youth members of the Order of the Arrow are elected by their fellow Scouts in annual Unit Elections held in the Spring of the year for each troop and team desiring one. Additionally there are guidelines for troop and team committees to recommend adults for membership. Full membership eligibility requirements and election procedures are available from the current edition of the Order of the Arrow Handbook. Once elected, candidates must complete a weekend Ordeal, complete with Indian-lore, camp service projects, and meaningful induction ceremony.

After ten months as an Ordeal Member, one can seal their membership as a Brotherhood Member by learning more about the customs and traditions of the Order of the Arrow.

Vigil Honor Members of the OA served the lodge for at least two years as Brotherhood Members, and are recognized by the lodge for their leadership and example in providing service.

Once inducted into the Lodge, the yearly dues are $10 and if paid in advance are only $8.

Member who are transferring from another lodge or wish to be reinstated after an absence must fill out the Membership Information and pay the current years lodge dues of $10.

 

Contact

The following are the current Adult Advisors of the Lodge and Chapters.  If you have questions, your local chapter should be able to assist you with most questions about the OA.

 

Lodge Adviser: Ty Till (ty.ae5vr@gmail.com)

Lodge Staff Adviser: Randy Saunders (randy.saunders@scouting.org)

 

Cherokee Chapter (Rio Grande District): Terry Brown (Tblazestar@aol.com)

Cheyenne Chapter (EVM District): Ron Liss (lissraed@yahoo.com)

Comanche Chapter (Santa Fe District, Taos area): Currently unassigned

Crow Chapter (Anasazi District): Duane Burton (burtonscouts@gmail.com)

Mescalero Chapter (Sandia District): Cynthia Howard (cynhoward@msn.com)

Ponil Chapter (Encantado District): Currently unassigned

Sioux Chapter (Los Alamos area): Richard Thompson (rttrunski@aol.com)

Ute Chapter (Mesa Verde District): Karen Zenger (karenzenger@yahoo.com )

Zuni Chapter (Zuni Mountain District): Dan Peacock (dtpeacock@yahoo.com)

You can also visit the National Order of the Arrow website.