Order of the Arrow
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 crew 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!
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.2023 Spring Conclave May 19-21 2023 Fall Conclave Sep. 22-24
Winter Banquet: Held each December at varying locations. A family-oriented awards and recognition banquet caps-off a day of training and fellowship.2023 Winter Banquet Dec. 1-3
Summer Fellowship: Held in late August at varying locations. The weekend includes fellowship, training, camp staff interviews, and sightseeing.2023 Summer Fellowship Aug. 25-27
Lodge Leadership Development (LLD): A weekend held in early March that includes fellowship and training to build teamwork and leadership skills amongst the Lodge and Chapter Officers.2023 LLD Mar. 3-5
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.2023 Section Conclave
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
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 Crew desiring one. Additionally there are guidelines for Troop and Crew 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 six 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 $20 and if paid in advance are only $15.
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 $20.The following are the current Adult Advisors of the Lodge and Chapters. If you have questions, your local your local chapter should be able to assist you with most questions about the OA.
Lodge Advisor: Karen Zenger (email@example.com)
Lodge Staff Adviser: Mary Mazza-Andersen (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Cherokee Chapter (Rio Grande District): Matt Unsworth (email@example.com)
Cheyenne Chapter (South Valley & Valencia County): Bryan Burks (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Comanche Chapter (Santa Fe): James (Phil) Rowe (RoweJP@comcast.net)
Crow Chapter (Farmington & San Juan County): Catherine Grobler - interim (email@example.com)
Mescalero Chapter (Sandia District): Cynthia Howard (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Ponil Chapter (Cimarron & Raton): Paul May (email@example.com)
Sioux Chapter (Los Alamos & White Rock): Joe Greene (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Ute Chapter (Colorado): David Zenger (email@example.com)
Zuni Chapter (Gallup): Dan Peacock (firstname.lastname@example.org)