By Matthias L.
Last Summer I was able to go through one of the most challenging, yet rewarding experiences of my life. For two weeks in the middle of July I volunteered for the United States Forest Service and battled through the wilderness of the U.S. – Canada border in northern Minnesota.
The days were long and the nights were short. For the first week my crew of 6 Arrowmen and 2 foremen from around the country: Virginia, Georgia, Florida, California, Indiana, Oklahoma, Alabama, and me from California as well worked 10 hour days. Our mission: to restore and maintain portage trails in the Boundary Waters Wilderness Area. The OA is known as the “Brotherhood of Cheerful Service” because members of the OA commit themselves to the selfless service of others; for the first week we showed why the OA is known for that. We built retaining walls, sledge-hammered big rocks into little rocks and generally performed backbreaking work from dawn till dusk.
After the week of Forest Service work, my crew was free to set off on our own adventure. We paddled for 80 miles across breathtaking lake after breathtaking lake. This wonderful trip was by no means easy. We were constantly feasted upon by mosquitos, our shoulders ached from paddling and our feet never dried. For someone that has lived almost his entire life in suburban Los Angeles, it was a shock and was emotionally exhausting.
Paddling for three hours and then carrying an 80-pound canoe on my shoulders for a 5 mile portage was not so fun for the body or the spirit in the moment. The feeling I got though when we arrived at our campsite after a long day was incredible. Even though each day was both physically and mentally grueling, it was the greatest experience of my life that I would not trade for anything. although it was no “cruise” the two weeks instilled in me an iron resolve and a strong work ethic. It also taught me great leadership skills as I took my turn in rotation as crew leader. The lessons and friends I took home from this trip I will never forget as I look back and say to myself, “Yeah, I did that!” I encourage every Arrowmen who is reading this to consider going to one of the High Adventure bases especially Northern Tier, you won’t regret it, it will be the best decision you ever make.
On March 14th from 7:00am to 5:00 in Monrovia at Rosemead High School (9063 Mission Drive, Rosemead, CA) Council and district leaders from across Southern California are coming together for the Southern California Commissioners College.
Here they are going to learn all the ins and outs of becoming an effective leader in their councils or districts. One of the class sessions will be about The Order of the Arrow and having a healthy relationship with their Lodges and chapters: taught by our very own Dr. Steve Jacobs.
Malibu Lodge will be representing all of the OA in southern California. We need Arrowmen out there supporting Dr. Jacobs at his class and afterwards to answer any questions. It is a great honor to represent the OA at the SCCC, so lets put on a good show.
If you can go please RSVP to Lodge Chief Matthias L. at firstname.lastname@example.org
ArrowTour is one of many programs and initiatives that comprise a year-long celebration of the Order of the Arrow’s centennial anniversary. In the summer of 2015, four delegations of youth Arrowmen will travel to council camps and Scouting events to bring our national centennial experience to Scouts, Arrowmen, and communities throughout the country.
ArrowTour will provide opportunities to reflect, connect, and discover the Order’s Centuries of Service, both past and future. The Order of the Arrow is excited to partner with councils to provide this program accessory at Boy Scout summer camps, service centers, and Scouting events.
“Wake up. The suns almost out but it’s time to get started. It’s another beautiful day in God’s country. Time to get moving.” I climb out of my tent walk to my pack and grab my clothes for the day. It’s the fourth of July and we probably have a long way to go. I’ve been here for almost two weeks and I’m sad knowing I have to say good-bye on Saturday. OATC has been a life changing experience and I know I won’t forget it anytime soon.
While at Philmont, I kept a journal logging my thoughts, feelings, and experiences on the journey of a life time. OATC crew 622 met on June 21st and 22nd we were strangers for the most part bound by the same dedication to cheerful service. We came from California, Pennsylvania, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan, Iowa, South Carolina, and New York, but we all bore the symbol of the arrow. For a week we bonded and became friends as we rigorously built trail. I had never built trail in my life before, it was an immense amount of work but an incredible amount of fun. We built 700 feet of trail and cleared out another 500 feet for the next crew to use. Looking at the trail we produced and thinking back on it I’m proud of our work, especially since I know that it will provide a safer way up Mount Phillips for future scouts. I had loved trail building but it was time to leave, time to go and trek. Continue reading “OA Trail Crew Adventure” »
I am very excited to announce that the Order of the Arrow is coming back to Camp Emerald Bay on Catalina Island! On July 12th-18th Emerald Bay is opening their doors to the OA for the entire week for us to experience their unique program while there are no other regular campers in camp. This will be a week long fellowship event where Arrowmen will get to to do awesome things like ocean kayak, war canoe, mountain bike, snorkeling, and maybe even scuba diving and thats just the start. If you aren’t able to go to NOAC or you just want to get warmed up for it this is the event for you.
The cost is $350 including transportation, a great price! Registration and more details will be available at the end of February.
Lodge Chief, Malibu Lodge
Welcome to 2015. This past year was amazing due to the hard work of the Lodge Executive Committee. We broke recent attendance records at almost all of the Lodge events, we earned Gold in JTE for the third year in a row, we won the Spirit Stick at Conclave, and our membership is healthy and strong at just under 600 members (the most in our Section). We closed the books on the first hundred years of our order on a high note, and with experienced Chapter Chiefs and Advisors making up this year’s LEC led by a great group of Lodge officers and their Advisors I know we will open the second century up with a bang.
We have a lot of great events and surprises in the works so be on the look out for announcements from the Lodge coming out in the next couple of months. Or preliminary calendar for the year is on the Lodge website (just go to the calendar tab) so you can see when our normal events are coming up such as Induction Weekends and Fellowship. It will be updated as we announce new events.
I look forward to seeing you all out there this year.
Lodge Chief, Malibu Lodge
On April 4-6, Malibu Lodge had 8 participants go through the National Leadership Seminar (NLS) at Camp Pollock up in Lake Arrowhead. It was a weekend of fun and fellowship, as well as a 3-day intensive leadership program filled with keynote addresses, movie clips, role play, and group discussions. I think I can speak for all of our participants when I say that we all left as better leaders and Arrowmen.
NLS is an Order of the Arrow specific course and is put on by each region across the country. We met several national officers including the National, Southern, and Western Region Chiefs. We also got to meet Arrowmen from across the Western region, the furthest coming from Colorado.
Personally, I learned much about organizational leadership and breaking down situations. I believe it will make me a better leader and Lodge Chief and it makes me even more excited for the rest of the year.
I hope to see as many Malibu Lodge members as possible attend NLS in the future because it truly is a great program that every Arrowmen should experience.
Lodge Chief, Malibu Lodge
Day 10: Today was awesome!!! We slept in late and woke up to breakfast burritos! We went swimming for a little while, then went up to Thunder Point for a bit of solitude. John Morgan and Hickey took us out and separated us and left us to think for a few hours. After, we had lunch and canoe wars!!! After a canoe capsized, we put them away and just swam for a while. When we got out, we did a communal dish- washing and then ate dinner. John Morgan scheduled a night paddle for us tomorrow. We’re getting up before dawn tomorrow in the hopes of making it at least 25 miles before calling it quits for the day. Only 3 1/2 more days of paddling left to go!!!
Day 5: Happy Birthday to me!!! It started out a sunny, but wet day. Thunderstorms had raged all night long, but a sunny day graced me as I walked outside my tent. I was greeted by a storm of ” Happy Birthdays ” and the smell of bacon. We set out after breakfast and I sterned the canoe almost flawlessly. I was told to portage the canoe again. It was just as hellish as yesterday. I began the day setting rocks. The rest of the foremen came by canoe and gave us beads, one for each day of the voyage. One of the foremen, Ryan, gave me a spoon even! The rest of the day I hiked the trail clearing brush with the loppers. I got a free duff for my b-day too. I also got to pick the dinner: Spaghetti !!! Hickey and John Morgan baked me a cake… kinda… It was kinda gooey to say the least. But it was GOOD !!!!! Thunder roared in the distance again, so we packed up and went to bed. Thus ending the fifth day.
O.A. Wilderness Adventure
This summer I was able to attend the O.A. Wilderness Adventure at the BSA Northern Tier High Adventure Base along the Canadian border. Along with a crew of eight other arrowmen, our adventure lasted two weeks and we had the time of our lives. The following is from the log book we were all encouraged to complete to help us remember our experiences.
Malibu LodgeThe Malibu Lodge is an OA Lodge in Section W4N. We are based in the Western Los Angles County Council and include six chapters. Our camps include Camp Whitsett, Camp Josepho, Camp Emerald Bay, and Triple R Ranch.