National Event

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Fourth National Indian Seminar

1982 Indian Seminar patchThe fourth National Indian Seminar was held from July 31-August 7, 1982 at Peaceful Valley Scout Ranch near Elbert, Colorado, roughly 70 miles south of Denver. Approximately 145 Indian enthusiasts from lodges around the country, as well as 55 staff members participated in the weeklong event. In keeping with tradition established at previous seminars, the main focus of the event was the training and education of Arrowmen on Native American customs, culture, and traditions. Once again National OA Committee member and Lead Adviser for Indian Events, Don Thom along with OA Executive Secretary, Bill Downs together served as co-directors of the seminar. National OA Committee member Greg Guy continued to serve in his role as the seminar’s Program Director. The seminar’s administrative leaders were able to secure a sufficient number of highly qualified staff to ensure participants the opportunity to learn about a wide range of topics, and the chance to work with both Indian and non-Indian instructors on a one-on-one basis.

Second National Indian Seminar

After a four-year absence due to the cancellation of the 1976 event, the second National Indian Seminar was held at Camp George Thomas in Apache, Oklahoma from August 13-19, 1978. Approximately 170 Arrowmen from around the country participated in the event that for the first time saw both youth and adult participants. Like the first seminar, the purpose for a second National Indian Seminar was the continued emphasis on American Indian culture and crafts, and to educate Arrowmen on the histories and traditions of Native Americans. 

NOAC 1977

In 1977, the OA gathered in the South for a National Order of the Arrow Conference for the first time . The University of Tennessee, Knoxville received the honor of hosting the 62nd Anniversary Conference.

The Order had first attempted a southern National Meeting in 1942 at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, but that meeting was canceled because of war restrictions. At the time the meeting would have had to exclude non-white members because the campus was segregated. This time when the OA came to the South that was no longer a problem (The University of Tennessee had desegregated 25 years earlier).

1977 National Jamboree

The 1977 National Scout Jamboree was held at Moraine State Park, Pennsylvania, from August 3 to 9 with the theme “Forward Together”. 28,601 Scouts participated in the Jamboree.

National Indian Seminar Cancelled

Due to the tremendous success of the first National Indian Seminar held at Philmont Scout Ranch in 1974, the idea of holding another similar event was being discussed even before the first one concluded. With the untimely death of Maury Clancy late in 1974, longtime Arrowman Don Thom became the driving force behind all OA national Indian events from 1975 well into the 1990s.

NOAC 1975

The Order of the Arrow returned to Miami University, Oxford, Ohio for the 60th Anniversary National Order of the Arrow Conference. The last time the OA had visited the campus was 23 years earlier in 1952. There were 4,200 Arrowmen in attendance. The Conference theme was, “Foundations for the Future”.

First National Indian Seminar

Since its earliest beginnings, the Order of the Arrow (OA) has enjoyed an almost spiritual relationship with the histories and traditions of Native American peoples. This kindred spirit is evident in the OA’s ceremonies, its symbols, and even in its name. By borrowing so much in the way of culture and crafts from the American Indian, the Order has accepted an obligation to maintain the highest standards of authenticity. Yet, with all of the interaction between the OA and that of Native Americans, there were those individuals who recognized a need for an informative program that furthered the understanding and awareness of the American Indian culture. This need gave rise to a pilot program known as the ‘National Indian Seminar’.

NOAC 1973

For the first time, the Order of the Arrow came to the west coast and held the 58th Anniversary National Conference at the University of California, Santa Barbara. 4,400 delegates attended the NOAC many making the cross-country trek.

The idea of going to California was extremely popular and the Conference was officially an early sell out. Even with this success, the Order has not returned to the west coast since and has preferred locations more central to the Scout population.

OA Day at Disneyland

On Monday, August 20, 1973 the Order of the Arrow (OA) hosted the first, and only, Order of the Arrow Day at Disneyland theme park in Anaheim, California. For most Arrowmen this was their first visit to one of the Magic Kingdoms.

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