Dear Arrowmen and Friends,
Lodge 559 held its first Induction Weekend in over a year at Camp Orr this past weekend, welcoming twenty-eight new Ordeal members into the Lodge, while ten Ordeal members converted their membership to Brotherhood. During the weekend, your Lodge completed over 1,500 hours of service to our Mountain Treasure! Thanks to all the Ordeal candidates, Elangomats, Brotherhood candidates, and members who contributed to the improvement of Camp Orr. Despite masks and social distancing, your Lodge continued its tradition of cheerful service amidst blue skies, crisp temperatures, and eye-popping autumn foliage, then experienced ceremonies and peaceful nights of sleep under the soft glow of a full moon. Everyone agreed that it was great to be back at Orr!
After a long delay from the cancelled Spring Induction Weekend, your Lodge also called out and inducted six worthy Vigil Honor members under the able guidance of 2020 Vigil Chief Riley Heasley and an enthusiastic team of guides and Vigil brothers. The 2020 Vigil Honor inductees are:
Matthew Pyle-Magazine Mountain
Gregg Vickers-Magazine Mountain
There is a seventh Vigil Honor candidate who was unable to attend and who will be called out and inducted at a later date.
In other Lodge news, we extend a hearty thank you and best wishes to Grant DuCote, who completed his service as Associate Lodge Adviser (Activities). Grant is an Eagle Scout and a home-grown Arrowman, completing his Ordeal in 1981 and his Brotherhood in 1982, both at Camp Orr, and he was elevated to the Vigil Honor in 2016, also at Camp Orr. He served our Lodge in many capacities as Associate Lodge Adviser (Indian Affairs) and Associate Lodge Adviser (Activities), and he also served as Conclave Vice-Chief Adviser. Grant is a 2020 recipient of the Founder’s Award, the highest award that can be bestowed upon an Arrowman on the lodge level. He has been a constant fixture in our Lodge for many years, so please thank Grant for his service and wish him well in his future endeavors the next time you see him.
The OA is encouraging lodges to seek out younger adult Arrowmen to fill adviser roles, and with that in mind, we are pleased to announce that our new Associate Lodge Adviser (Activities) is Mark Prothero. Mark also is an Eagle Scout and a home-grown Arrowman, completing his Ordeal in 2014 and his Brotherhood in 2015, both at Rogers Scout Reservation; he was elevated to the Vigil Honor in 2018 at Camp Orr. Mark served as Razorback Chapter Chief, chapter vice-chief, and chapter secretary, and he served the Lodge as Lodge Treasurer and Lodge Vice-Chief (Indian Affairs). He was a member of the Razorback ceremonies team, performing the Ordeal and Brotherhood ceremonies as well as call-out and the old Arrow of Light and Crossover ceremonies. Mark served on the Camp Orr staff for two years, and in 2017, he was a member of the National Jamboree OA Trek staff. Mark accepted the challenge to step into an adult adviser role, and we look forward to other young adult Arrowmen moving into adviser positions in the future. Please welcome Mark as he makes the transition from OA youth to adviser.
Our new Lodge website is now a reality thanks to Communications Chair Connor Button and Associate Adviser for Communications Everette Long. It’s still a work in progress, but take a look at the site (and pay your 2021 Lodge dues!) at the following link:
This has been a difficult year for Scouting and the OA as we continue to endure the COVID-19 pandemic and the postponement, cancellation, or modification of several major Lodge events. However, your Lodge finished this unprecedented year strongly under the able leadership of Lodge Chief Matthew Maruri, inducting 63 new Arrowmen through our virtual and in-person Induction events (including our first girl Arrowmen!) and capturing the coveted Section 8 Golden Arrow as the top Lodge in Arkansas and Oklahoma. We are proud of how our Arrowmen pulled together, and we look forward continuing our strong tradition of cheerful service as we head to 2021!