Since the jamboree moved to the Summit Bechtel Reserve, the OA has utilized the Indian Village as a unique opportunity to reach every participant on a more intimate level. This interactive, interpretive and hands-on experience resides atop the “Summit of the Summit,” Garden Ground Mountain, providing a memorable experience to all jamboree participants. Through Operation Arrow in 2017, the Indian Village will return to lead an informative and engaging cultural journey of the Shawnee nation history and present day lifestyle as a representative of the American Indian “trail through time.”
Since SBR serves as the regional ancestral home of the Shawnee tribe prior to European contact, Indian Village staff will strive to present an accurate and appropriate glimpse into American Indian culture through this people’s customs and traditions. Like most nations, the Shawnee people have a rich history filled with poignant moments and people in American history. In addition to presenting these significant events and leaders, the village will reflect on the small moments of everyday life of the Shawnee people to discover the ingenuity and resourcefulness of American Indian peoples.
Jamboree participants will begin their journey in the Indian Village in an Algonquian village, similar to those in the 18th century. Along the way, they will participate in hands-on learning stations to gain a full appreciation of a socially advanced culture relying on primitive technology for survival. Each unique station has been selected to offer realistic challenges in a survival scenario while demonstrating direct components of modern STEM curriculum. Stations along the trail will include textile dying, flint knapping, tomahawk throwing, a powwow celebration, drums and flute music, as well as fire by friction.
There are three federally recognized Shawnee tribes that currently inhabit portions of “Indian Country” in northeast Oklahoma. The end of the Scouts’ trail in the Indian Village will show a small piece of southern plains culture, into which the Shawnee have adapted. There will be furnished teepees to resemble their homes after relocation and settlement. The ultimate highlight of the village will be the dance arbor, where jamboree participants can participate in the sights and sounds of a modern day powwow.
Tanner Lashinsky, assistant jamboree vice chief for Indian Village during Project 2013, said the following about his adventure at SBR:
“American Indian culture is something that has always interested me. Having the privilege to share that interest with Scouts at the jamboree is a memory that I will cherish forever. That keen memory is also accompanied by many other fantastic jamboree experiences that are at the ‘summit’ of my Scouting experience.”
Indeed, through the knowledge and experience of Scouts, Scouters and Arrowmen, along with the guidance of current Shawnee tribal members, jamboree participants will leave the Indian Village with an enriched experience and appreciation for the struggles and successes of the Shawnee people. In 2017, we are asking even more of our youth Arrowmen from across the country to step up and join us at the Summit Bechtel Reserve. Slots for Operation Arrow are filling fast, and we are now over 45% full! If you are interested in joining the Indian Village staff, or one of the other OA staffs, please visit oa-bsa.org/jamboree. There you will be able to register and find all the information you need. If you are unable to commit just yet to Operation Arrow, please fill out this Google Form, and a member of the Operation Arrow Marketing & Promotions Team will reach out to you to answer your questions.
We look forward to serving with you as we #FuelScoutingsAdventure in 2017!