The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a heavy toll on Scouting; challenging Scouts and Scouters at every level of the organization to think of new and innovative ways to engage their members.
Throughout the pandemic, Tsisqan Lodge, like many others, has had to adapt their program to continue to deliver the Order of the Arrow’s mission and purpose for the Scouts and Scouters of the Oregon Trail Council. Over the past year, Tsisqan has held monthly online LEC meetings, two virtual fellowship weekends, virtual Brotherhood attainment sessions, two virtual officer training weekends, and a hybrid induction weekend as part of Momentum: Spark. That adds up to (we will just say a lot) of hours on Zoom. However, for the first time in over 14 months, Tsisqan Lodge held its first full in-person lodge event – Service Weekend.
70 Arrowmen gathered at Camp Baker on April 16-18 for a weekend of much needed fellowship and cheerful service. In addition to masking and social distancing requirements, everyone in attendance was required to complete a Pre-Event Medical Screening Checklist, sign a special participation waiver, and get their temperature checked. The lodge purchased four hand sanitizer stations to place around high-traffic areas to encourage good hand hygiene and placed reminder signage around camp.
During the weekend, Arrowmen broke up into small groups to work on a variety of service projects to help prepare Camp Baker for the summer camp season. Projects completed during the weekend include repairing breakers in the kitchen, installing new exit signs in the dining hall, restoring power to the Cook’s Cabin, brush clearing around campsites and trails, firewood split, and much more. One of the highlights of the weekend was building 13 new, and much needed, picnic tables. The tables will get put to use this summer to help with a cohort-model summer camp with social distancing during meal times. The lodge performed a total of 560 hours of service during the weekend.
On Saturday evening, three Arrowmen sealed their membership by becoming Brotherhood members.
The lodge officers put a lot of hard work into planning the event and it showed in the near flawless execution, despite the 14 month gap between in-person gatherings. Everyone left the weekend with such enthusiasm and excitement. The officers, feeding off the energy of a very successful weekend, now look toward the next event, Spring Induction Weekend, where they will welcome new members into the lodge.