Lodge News

Covid-19 Virtual Service Project

posted Apr 21, 2020, 5:17 PM by Charles Nusbaum

Fellow Arrowmen, 

Join us in a virtual service project this month to help feed members of our community. 

The Covid-19 situation has resulted in extraordinary job losses and disruption of income for thousands of Ohioans, including many in the cities and towns that make up the Lake Erie Council and Erielhonan Lodge. 

As a result, food insecurity is a growing problem. Many people don’t know where they will get food to feed their family. Groups are setting up food pantries to help, but they need donated food items to distribute. 

That’s where you come in. Between now and Saturday, April 25, please do the following: 

  1. Find  a food pantry in your community, possibly an established food bank or maybe a new drop-off location set up for Covid-19 donations, such as schools, churches, or synagogues. Contact them to see if they are accepting food or monetary donations and what items they need the most.
  2. When your family buys groceries (online, delivered, or at the store), get a few extra items of shelf-stable foods. Examples include pasta dishes, boxed meals, rice, beans, cereal, peanut butter, canned vegetables, canned/packaged chicken/tuna, cooking oil, or even pet food.
  3. Deliver the items to the food bank. Many have boxes or other means for you to make the drop in a safe, socially-distant manner. As you deliver the items, take a selfie.
  4. Post the photo to one of the lodge’s social media accounts. Tag @erielhonanlodge on Facebook and Twitter, or erielhonanlodge on Instagram. Use the hashtags #OA-EL and #LoveOneAnother. 

If your family isn’t planning a grocery run soon, another option is to make a monetary donation to the food pantry. Take a selfie as you’re making the donation. That’s also the best choice if your local center isn’t currently accepting food items from the general public.

Post your selfie on social media to report your donation by Saturday, April 25. That allows you to participate in the service project for the Lake Erie Council’s 2020 Scouting at Home Camporall that day. (To learn more, head to the camporall page on the council’s website, https://lecbsa.org/camporall). 

Thanks for making a difference in our community!

Yours in cheerful service,

Evan Richwalsky  |  Lodge Chief

Joe Wollet  |  Lodge Adviser

Winter Banquet 2020

posted Feb 10, 2020, 6:37 PM by Charles Nusbaum   [ updated Feb 23, 2020, 5:48 PM ]

On February 1, 2020, 230 Arrowmen, families, and friends gathered near the center of the council at Wagner’s of Westlake for our annual celebration of recognition and fellowship.  The evening began with gathering at our renowned trading post and the annual silent auction before sitting down to enjoy a delicious dinner.

The program kicked off with a presentation of a check for almost $11,500 to Marc Ryan—Lake Erie Council Scout Executive and Supreme Chief of the Fire—for contributions and gifts in kind by the lodge in 2019.

After looking back at our year, multiple special bead awards and recognitions were presented by our Vice Chiefs to dozens of deserving youths and adults.  Lodge Chief Evan Richwalsky and Lodge Adviser Joe Wollet presented their special awards to recognize outstanding Arrowmen for their contributions this past year.  All our new 224 Ordeal, 38 Brotherhood, and 12 Vigil members were recognized.

Larry Andrews was presented with a National Order of the Arrow Legacy Fellowship in recognition of his many years of selfless service at the lodge, section, and national levels. Larry Howell and JJ Conklin were presented with the James E. West Fellowship in celebration of their many years of service.

Son Ben Snyder and Father Jeremy Snyder were presented with the Founder’s Award in recognition of their spirits of selfless service to our lodge.

The evening was capped off with the Vigil Chief calling out fifteen Arrowmen for the Vigil honor:
  • Mr. Ben Altose
  • Alek B.
  • Spencer B.
  • Mr. Tim Carver
  • Mr. John Conklin Sr,
  • Steven G.
  • JJ O.
  • Joey P.
  • Zach P.
  • Donald S.
  • Mr. Mike Umstead
  • Breanden V.
  • Mr. Paul Visnosky
  • Owen W.
  • Mr. James Webb

Kudos to all who were recognized and a sincere thank you to all those whose hard work made the evening a success, especially CJ Howard (youth chair) and Mike Gleespen (adult chair).  (And props to Christy Howard and Jackson Luck for taking photographs!)

Fall Fellowship In Review

posted Nov 5, 2019, 5:36 PM by Charles Nusbaum

Arrowmen gathered at Camp Stigwandish over the weekend of October 18-20 for this year’s Fall Fellowship and the final edition of our Back to the Future themed events.  After setting up their tents in campsites organized by chapters, members gathered at the dining hall for fellowship, some games, and a showing of Back to the Future III.

Following a crisp, chilly night, everyone enjoyed a delicious breakfast of biscuits and sausage gravy before beginning the morning’s service projects.  Crews hit the trails to clean up branches and debris, including clearing several large logs that had fallen across trails.  Another crew spent the majority of the afternoon digging post holes and setting posts for the human foosball court that the lodge is funding and installing at Stig.

After lunch, members enjoyed an Amazing Race style series of challenges across camp, capped off with a dutch oven cook off.  LEC members participated in the national Thrive webinar with all the lodges across the country, discussing how to improve elections, inductions, and activation.

Everyone enjoyed a hearty dinner before elections for 2020 lodge officers. Congratulations to the following Arrowmen who were elected:

  • Lodge Chief: Evan R.
  • Executive Vice Chief: Patrick S.
  • Vice Chief, Program: Trevor H.
  • Vice Chief, Membership: Kaleb C.
  • Vice Chief, Native American Traditions: JJ O.
  • Vice Chief, Communications: Donnie S.
  • Vice Chief, Finance: Max H.
  • Chippewa Chapter Chief: Ian T.
  • Kittan Chapter Chief: Alek B.
  • Naxa Sipu Chapter Chief: Owen W.

Members capped off the evening by playing casino games and inducting three scouts to the Brotherhood honor.  And what Wild West-themed weekend would be complete without root beer?!

On Sunday morning, members were treated to a Paul Bunyan breakfast.  The lodge also inducted the last two Vigil honor members for this year: Nick J and Jen Folkman—congratulations!

Join us on Saturday, February 1, to celebrate a fantastic 2019 at our Winter Banquet!

Super Summer Induction

posted Sep 10, 2019, 6:12 PM by Erielhonan Lodge

Great weather and fantastic fun capped off the most attended lodge event in our history thus far! Over 150 Arrowmen came out to Beaumont Scout Reservation for our Summer Induction Weekend from August 23-25.

As members gathered Friday evening, they participated in activities including a new 9 Square in the Air game constructed by Larry Andrews and donated to the lodge—thank you, Larry!!

Saturday morning members did service along the trails at camp, included building stairs along the Beaumont Trail.

The OA circle was jam-packed with current members who witnessed the induction of 37 new Ordeal members in the afternoon.

Music filled the air as Arrowmen enjoyed the Beaumont pool, water slides, corn hole, and a cookout on Saturday afternoon.

19 Arrowmen sealed their membership in the lodge by completing their Brotherhood Saturday evening. Everyone enjoyed casino games that night before a viewing of Back to the Future II.

Thank you to Vice Chief of Program Owen and his team for putting together a tremendous weekend program!

Don’t miss our Fall Fellowship for more fun, the final installment of Back to the Future, celebrating the last two Vigil recipients, and the last opportunity to earn Brotherhood this year. See you there!

Vigil Weekend 2019 Recap

posted Jun 16, 2019, 5:04 PM by Erielhonan Lodge

Warm temperatures and clear skies set the stage for this year’s Vigil Weekend at Firelands Scout Reservation.  Dozens of current Vigil Honor members joined ten of this year’s candidates for their service project and overnighter.

This year’s Vigil class voted to make benches for our council camps.  With the assistance of skilled woodworkers like Larry Andrews, the team cut all the 2x2s, 2x4s, and 4x6s they needed for their bench design.

Upon completing as many benches at the afternoon hours allowed, everyone gathered for a filling dinner before preparing for the evening activities.  Evening ceremonies began as the sun set and with the sunrise, Vigil Honor candidates became Vigil Honor members.  Family members, guests, and fellow Scouters joined those already at camp for a delicious breakfast and celebration.

Congratulations to Erielhonan Lodge’s newest Vigil Honor Members:
  • John Boksansky ~ Machque Mawenemen ~ Bear Who Unites
  • Adam Bryski ~ Leke Elangomellan ~ Steadfast Friend
  • Kaleb C. ~ Ika Ntatu Mechelgik Ntaxesem ~ Wearer of Many Skins
  • Sean Fahnestock ~ Nkeme Mikemosu Kumhokunk ~ He Who Works in the Clouds
  • Caden H. ~ Kikinhet Nkekeleksi ~ He Who Guides With Laughter
  • Evan R. ~ Nikanixit Naxisemes ~ Leader of Young Brothers
  • Roger Simpson ~ Ulhatenamu Hemptet Ehashentesit ~ Cheerful Cloth Trader
  • Nathan S. ~ Schachachgelendam Pemtunhet ~ Determined Speaker
  • Steve Volk ~ Gischelenclamen Amangi Tkuwe ~ He Who Makes Big Waves
  • Steve Wysong ~ Anatschiton Mexelkik ~ One Who Cares for Many People

Thank you to all of the Vigil sponsors as well for their support throughout the weekend!

(Photos courtesy of Christy Howard—thank you!!)

Philbreak 2019

posted May 21, 2019, 2:30 PM by Erielhonan Lodge

By Paul L. Hiszem

This past March I spent a week at Philmont participating in the Order of the Arrow sponsored Philbreak. Over several weeks of spring breaks, approximately 120 Arrowmen participated in a week of service at Philmont. Going from Saturday to Saturday we provided much needed assistance helping Philmont both recover from the devastating fires of last May/June and prepare for possible future fires on the property. Each week there were between 30 to 50 Arrowmen who assisted workers from the Philmont Conservation department. The Conservation staff provided supervision, ran the chain saws, and help us complete our various jobs.

The week I participated, we worked at two different job sites. The first was just off Beaubien Road below Lovers Leap camp. We worked at burning a wide swath of land on both sides of the road. We were basically creating a fire break for possible future fires. Our fire break would help provide a safe evacuation path in the event of a future fire. We cleared all of the trees and brush, creating stacks of logs that were made available to the public. We also created large, ten feet tall burn piles of brush that will be burned safely next winter when there’s snow on the ground. At our other work site near Ute Gulch we worked on a mountainside creating log barriers helping to prevent erosion. The barriers resembled a gigantic Plinko board, shunting water off to the side and slowing it down greatly to prevent erosion.

It is the intent of the Philmont Conservation department to offer another round of Philbreak weeks next year during spring breaks. This year the cost was $100 plus transportation. I took the Amtrak from Sandusky to Raton, New Mexico. My transportation costs were around $400. During the week I spent at Philmont we stayed in lodging at the Philmont Training Center. We had two beds in our rooms with bathrooms. We at in the dining room at the Training Center for breakfast and dinner. We packed our own lunches from food that Philmont supplied. Participants on my week ranged from high schoolers, college age students, and adults into their 60s and early 70s. We had Arrowmen from all over the country. 

Think about spending some time next year out at Philmont. Whether you’ve been there before or don’t have the time/money to do a trek, the week was well worth it.

An Elangomat’s View of Spring Induction Weekend 2019

posted May 6, 2019, 6:44 PM by Erielhonan Lodge

By James Webb
“Great Scott!” – Doc Brown

Erielhonan went “Back to the Future” to see and experience many firsts! It was our Lodge Chief’s first Induction weekend. Erielhonan invited and received the first 27 new Erielhonan Ordeal candidates of the year (and then made them members). Our first female youth were inducted into the lodge. These are just a few of the firsts that created a weekend of fun times. 
The Lodge Chief had a lot on his hands this weekend. Chief Evan did a fantastic job and delegated and enabled Owen, Vice Chief of Program, and Spencer, Ordealmaster, do their jobs. The Lodge Chief also saw his mother become a new member of the Lodge as she was a candidate this weekend…that is a first for Erielhonan and very rare event from our historic lodges and the Order of the Arrow’s 104-year history. It was great to see the Lodge Executive Committee work together and have a successful event. 

“The way I see it, if you’re gonna build a time machine into a car, why not do it with some style?” – Doc Brown

A beautiful sunrise greeted us Saturday morning. Not knowing much of what the day had in store for the 27 candidates, the day started pretty early. There was wildlife that scurried throughout camp and into the night starting about 2:30 AM—the first irksome item that some experienced. This caused most of the members to be up and going about 6:00 AM, or about an hour earlier than required. We were at least treated to a beautiful sunrise…for those of us that were awake. After breakfast, the work began.

“If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything.” – Marty McFly

It was interesting to see the work detail breakouts. Some of the tasks were very irksome and not just for the new members but also for the Elangomats and members of the lodge that were left with a little extra white paint on gear and uniforms. All remained positive and tasks were completed for Firelands Scout Reservation.

Erielhonan welcomed our first three female youth into our Lodge this weekend. They are the first few of many more to come this year and in the future! Welcome! It was an honor to serve as your Elangomat. I hope the experience is one you will not forget. Continue to remember the teachings, continue to practice them and grow from them. They will serve you well in your Scouting adventure and in future career paths. 

“Whoa, this is heavy!” – Marty McFly

“Look! There’s a rhythmic ceremonial ritual coming up!” – Doc Brown

We held a Brotherhood ceremony to conclude the official events of Saturday. This was a first for eight new Brotherhood members. It was not a first for the Ceremonialists, though, who did an outstanding job! Even though this was not a first event for these members, it was a first Brotherhood event for them. A little rain moved it under a pavilion but the ceremony was still an amazing induction. Welcome to the Brotherhood! Continue to serve Erielhonan Lodge and others!

To wrap up the weekend event, we went “Back to the Future” movie watching! It was a great event. It was great to see old friends and make new ones. Here is to achieving “1.21 GIGAWATTS!!!” (Doc Brown) and making it to the Summer Induction at Beaumont Scout Reservation! See everyone there!!

Congratulations to Jordan S. on being presented the Founder’s Award!

2018 Fall Fellowship Recap

posted Oct 27, 2018, 6:42 PM by Erielhonan Lodge

Wet, windy weather couldn’t keep the intergalactic fun of our fall fellowship grounded! Over 100 Arrowmen came together at Camp Avery Hand at Firelands Scout Reservation for a weekend of fun, service, and celebration.

On Saturday morning, several works crews headed out across camp to perform trail maintenance, clean up gutters, weed areas, fix trail signs, spread stone, and split wood.


Following our service to camp and a delicious lunch, we enjoyed a variety of activities including rock climbing, tomahawk throwing, archery, and of course gaga ball!  The afternoon wrapped up with an epic game of space-themed lodge Jeopardy.


Our evening started with lodge and chapter elections.  Congratulations to all of our 2019 lodge officers:
  • Lodge Chief Evan R.
  • Executive Vice Chief Nathan S.
  • Vice Chief of Program Owen W.
  • Vice Chief of Membership Adam B.
  • Vice Chief of Native American Traditions Clinton S.
  • Vice Chief of Communications Jackson L.
  • Vice Chief of Finance Kaleb C.
  • Chippewa Chapter Chief Ian T.
  • Kittan Chapter Chief Aaron M.
  • Naxa Sipu Chapter Chief Tyler Y.
  • Wewoapisak Chapter Chief Andrew S.

After elections we had an epic party complete with a bounce house!


13 Arrowmen sealed their membership by completing brotherhood, even in the midst of a crazy windstorm that had a tree fall nearby!

As our program wrapped up Sunday morning, we celebrated the presentation of the Vigil honor to Don Vartorella who kept his Vigil the night before.

Thank you to Music 911 Inc. and First Choice Photography for their support of the weekend!

2019 Lodge Officer Elections

posted Aug 27, 2018, 5:47 PM by Charles Nusbaum

Lodge officer applications are now being accepted for 2019. The election will be held at Firelands Scout Reservation on Saturday, October 20 during our fall fellowship.
  • The application form as a fillable PDF is available at http://bit.ly/2MzOEUA. This form is required for anyone who wishes to run for lodge-wide positions or chapter chief. Applications are due by October 6, 2018, by 11:59pm Eastern.
  • An information sheet with information on duties and responsibilities of officers is available at http://bit.ly/2MxEXpI.
  • A lodge organization chart showing responsibilities by office is available at http://bit.ly/2oeb2UN.
  • And a position description for lodge chief is available at http://bit.ly/2odme49.

Applications require signatures of the member, one of his parents, his unit leader, and the lodge adviser (or chapter adviser if applying only for chapter chief).

Applicants may run for up to three different positions, which should be numbered from 1-3 in order of preference on the application form.

Questions may be directed to Lodge Adviser Joe Wollet at LodgeAdviser@erielhonan.org. (Responses from August 28-September 2 may be delayed due to travel.)

Once again, applications are due by October 6, 2018, by 11:59pm Eastern.

April Lodge Chief's Update

posted Apr 7, 2018, 6:47 PM by Erielhonan Lodge


For most of us, spring break is now in the rear view mirror and we’re eagerly looking ahead to Spring Fellowship and hosting the Section C-4A Conclave. All members are invited and encouraged to sign up for both events. They both offer fun, fellowship and food--the things that fuel Arrowmen!

The vice chiefs and I would like to update you on the success of your Lodge.
  • Vice Chief of Program: We had such a great turnout at our inaugural Lodge Banquet in February (247 members signed up!) and would like to thank everyone for their help and attendance. We are looking for people to help with the upcoming Spring Fellowship, to be held April 27-29 at Beaumont. Be sure to sign up for the fellowship before early bird pricing closes on April 14.
  • Vice Chief of Membership: We are currently on pace to meet our membership goal. We have more than 552 dues-paid 2018 members. This is already 61% of last year’s members. Elections to date have resulted in 130+ new candidates and climbing. If your unit hasn’t conducted an election yet, please email us at elections@erielhonan.org.
  • Vice Chief of Native American Traditions: The totem pole committee is hard at work creating new poles and restoring old ones. We have many exciting things planned for this year, including getting a drum team started. We’re going to have our ceremonies teams competing at section and national events, and we’re working on writing our lodge’s history.
  • Treasurer: Before the banquet, the lodge treasurer sent out a survey asking what new products you would like to see in the trading post. We are pleased to announce we have added water bottles, belt buckles, sweatshirts, and more. New items will be available at Spring Fellowship and Conclave.
We have had a great start with an enthusiastic Lodge Executive Committee (LEC). Our next LEC meeting will take place during Spring Fellowship.

Every lodge member is invited to join us for breakfast on Sunday, June 10 at Firelands as we congratulate our inaugural class of Vigil Honor members. Eight of your brothers have been selected for this high honor. A link to sign up for the Vigil breakfast--and all other lodge events--can be found on our website, www.erielhonan.org.

Next, I would like to encourage every active Arrowman to branch out and meet other people. We’ve got a big lodge, so come to our events, meet new people, and have fun!
Finally, make it a personal goal to have at least one other individual who is not active become active once again. 

I am happy to be serving as the first lodge chief of Erielhonan Lodge. It has been a remarkable experience and I would like to thank all of those who have helped along the way. Always remember: “Those who chose you need you.”

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