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2014 OA Section Conclave Inspires Scouts

by Darlene Karthauser


The weekend of July 18 - 20, 2014, saw three adult and 5 youth Arrowmen from Texas Hills chapter attend the 2014 Section Conclave in San Marcos.

Section Conclave for Order of the Arrow includes lodges from Beaumont to Midland to Dallas to Brownsville.  The weekend was filled with displays, competitions, workshops and games. 

Scouts and Scouters arrived at Texas State University in San Marcos and checked into San Jacinto Hall on Friday.  The Chapter was asked to provide a judge for any competition since we had a team competing in the Pre-Ordeal Ceremony competition.  Dinner was on our own before the activities started, so the Texas Hills Arrowmen went to Chipotle Grill for a quick, but filling meal of Tex-Mex burritos. After dinner we all hurried back to the meeting at the dorm to find that we would have opening ceremonies in the LBJ Conference Center.The opening ceremony introduced the Scouts to the current section leadership and the special guests, including the National OA Chief.  The opening ceremony charged the Scouts with energy for the weekend asking each Arrowman to find his "Arrowman State of Mind", the theme for the weekend.  After the opening ceremony Scouts headed back to the dorm for an ice cream social and a restful night's sleep in order to be ready for the action packed Saturday.

Saturday morning breakfast was early in the Jones Dining Hall.  The selection of breakfast items satisfied most needs and the Scouts were off to a fun-filled day of adventure.  There were displays on "the Quad" demonstrating the many opportunities for adventure that are available to Scouts.  Scouts could dress up as a fire fighter, learn about water sport high adventure camps, and learn about ways to earn some of the new merit badges like robotics, sustainability, and inventions. There was a Scout museum displaying patch collections.  There were patch traders and regalia-making demonstrations.  While all this was going on there were also workshops on ceremonies, regalia, and Indian Heritage.  Competitions begain at 8:30 am for singing, drumming, and ceremonies.  Texas Hills' ceremonial team did not compete until late in the afternoon, so they spent their morning practicing their lines and working as a team. 

That eveining after dinner was the Arrowman Bash with a carnival-like atmosphere where Scouts were able to engage in fellowship with other Arrowmen. Following the Bash, the Lodges met to elect the next section officers. Aina Topa Hutsi demonstrated great levels of spirit by chanting in unison "ATH, ATH", but also by participating in every event possible during the weekend conclave.  After the new officers were elected, the hall was cleared for PowWow and the dance competition.  Over 50 individuals participated in the competition and many others participated in the danicing.  The colorful regalia further inspired Scouts to be prepared for future gatherings. 

Sunday morning held the closing ceremony and the induction of the new section officers. Our Lodge Chief, Rod Reyna, was elected as Vice Chief. Aina Topa Hutsi took home the Spirit Award for an amazing 4th year in a row!  As we all loaded the cars and headed for home, both tired and energized, the Texas Hills Arrowmen talked of plans for participating in future events and ways to improve the ceremonial team so that they could actually participate in a ceremony at Ordeals.  Also, plans for recruiting more team members, adding ceremonies, and making more regalia were all discussed at length. 

Overall, The 2014 Section Conclave was a huge success for all involved!  ATH! ATH! ATH!

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