History of the O-Shot-Caw Lodge

Take a look at the impressive accomplishments of O-Shot-Caw Lodge 265!

South Florida Council of Miami, Florida has had two Order of the Arrow Lodges.

On June 20,1944, our local lodge was chartered by the National Lodge, Order of the Arrow, WWW under the name Ala-Paw-Tah Lodge 265. Unfortunately, very little is known about our early lodge. No minutes, patches, neckerchiefs or insignia have been found. On September 8, 1949 our Scout Executive disbanded the lodge seemingly for excessive adult involvement.

For six years, we had no OA lodge. Former OA brothers moving to Miami lobbied for a new lodge here. Finally in April 1955, Tom Gato, Camp director of Camp Snapper Creek was instructed to visit the Area Meet (Section Conference) and report back to Scout Executive McFarland. The report had a positive effect and Mr. McFarland approved a new lodge. On June 28, 1955 the National Office chartered O-Shot-Caw Lodge 265. On August 5, 1955, 22 candidates gathered at Camp Snapper Creek for their first Ordeal. The Aal-Pa-Tah Lodge 237 ceremonies team came down to induct our first candidates.

By 1956 we had grown to over 125 brothers and our first 3 vigils were inducted at the National Order of the Arrow Conference. Richard Galeano, Joseph Galeano and Harold Hollis were these first vigils.

The Galiano brothers were Indian hobbyists and encouraged the lodge to become active in Group Indian Dance – a tradition that continues until today.

O-Shot-Caw 265 has won first place in Section Group Dance in the following years: 1958, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1968, 1970, 1971, 1973, 1974, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, and 2007. This is a total of 28 times on a Section level. O-Shot-Caw has won first place in National Team Dance in 1961, 1963, 1969, 1986, and 1990. In recent history, O-Shot-Caw has placed second in the National Team Dance competition in 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998, 2002 and 2006.

View movies of our current Dance and Drum Teams:

Dance Team

Dance Team

Drum Team

We are not just a dancing lodge, however. We have won the coveted title of Best All Around Lodge in our Section for a total of thirteen times: 1973, 1985, 1986, 1993, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2010. Notice that nine of those victories are consecutive.

At the 2000 National Order of the Arrow Conference, the NOAC Special Events Committee established the NOAC Spirit Award. The award is a glass acrylic flame with the NOAC patch engraved on it. Lodges that demonstrate, spirit, teamwork, and leadership for a common goal are considered for this award. O-Shot-Caw was a recipient of the NOAC spirit award at both the 2000 and 2002 National Conference.

O-Shot-Caw Lodge has received two nationally recognized lodge awards since our founding. In 1969, O-Shot-Caw Lodge was one of the first recipients of the E. Urner Goodman Camping Award Its purpose is to encourage and challenge Order of the Arrow members and lodges to increase their effectiveness in promoting and increasing Scout camping in each council.

National Service Award

In the summers of 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020, O-Shot-Caw became a recipient of the coveted National Service Award. The National Service Award was established to recognize lodges in each region that have performed outstanding service, both in a qualitative and a quantitative sense, to their council.

In 1959, just 4 years after our reorganization, we hosted the Section Conference. Art Tate, our chief from 1956-58, and later a decorated Vietnam Veteran, recalls his fondest memory of that conference, its theme. “A man who can lead 10 others is better than the man who can do the work of 10”.

We hosted the Section Conferences in 1959, 1963, 1971, 1979, 1987, 1996, 2005 and in 2016. In 1975 we hosted the first Section Seminars training event held with the Council of Chiefs. We have hosted the section seminars again in 1977, 1978, 1985, & 1995.

We have an honorable record of service to the Order of the Arrow beyond our lodge, with 1 brother serving as a National Officer and 26 brothers serving as Section Officers, including 9 Section Chiefs.

O-Shot-Caw Lodge National Officers
Alex Gomez – Southern Region Chief – 2007
Section Officers from O-Shot-Caw Lodge:
Jim Rogan
Historian – 1957
Tom Davis
Treasurer – 1959
Doug Kirk
Vice Chief – 1961
Bill Partridge
Treasurer – 1962
Tom Watts
Chief – 1963
Rick Louden
Treasurer – 1963
Dan Newall
Vice Chief – 1965
Buddy Marker
Historian – 1967
Wes Griffin
Vice Chief – 1968
Don Graham
Treasurer – 1970
Larry Cook
Treasurer – 1971
Larry Cook
Vice Chief – 1972
Mark Wilson
Treasurer – 1974
Mark Wilson
Treasurer – 1974
Bill Cowles
Chief – 1975
Tim Caster
Vice Chief – 1977
Barry Ekle
Chief – 1979
Gary Nolan
Vice Chief – 1985
Mike Weinthal
Vice Chief – 1986
Phil Engelmann
Chief – 1986
Jorge Mederos
Historian – 1986
Jason Wolz
Vice Chief – 1994
Jason Wolz
Chief – 1995
George Michna
Vice Chief – 1995
Devang Desai
Chief – 1996
Alexander Rubin
Treasurer – 1997
Alex Gomez
Vice Chief – 2005
Alex Gomez
Chief – 2006
Geoffrey Landau
Chief – 2006
Geoffrey Landau
Chief – 2007
Jamie Nelson
Secretary – 2007
Frank Gamez
Secretary – 2010
Frank Gamez
Chief – 2011
Allan Randall
Secretary – 2011
Tyler N.
Vice Chief – 2020
Carson E.
Chief – 2021
Noah C.
Vice Chief – 2021


Three of our Brothers have served or are serving as National OA Committee Members – Thomas Tatham, Ron Bell and Alex Gomez. Twelve have received the Order’s highest honor, the Distinguished Service Award: Thomas Tatham (1988), Phil Engelman (1988), Ron Bell (1988), John Rotruck (1996), Devang Desai (1998), Robert Kuntsman (2002), Paul Anderson (2004), Stan Hoff (2004), Geoff Landau (2009), Alex Gomez (2009), Jason Wolz (2012) and Barry J.F. Ekle (2015). Three times we have had national conference vice chiefs: Jason Wolz, conference vice chief of Indian Events at the 1995 Philmont Retreat, in 1996 at NOAC with Devang Desai serving as conference vice chief of Indian Events and again in 2012 with Frank Gamez serving as the vice chief of Founders Day at Michigan State University.

In 1975 we formed a joint contingent with Echockotee Lodge 200 of Jacksonville to attend NOAC and in 1985 we formed a joint contingent with Osceola 564 for the OA Philmont Trek.

We are justifiably proud of our service to the Section, but service to our Council is our greatest pride. In 1992, following the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew, O-Shot-Caw launched a program of Brothers helping Brothers to rebuild the troops destroyed by the hurricane and we mounted a monumental effort to restore the two South Florida camps heavily damaged by this storm: Camp Everglades and Camp Seminole. Thousands of man-hours were donated to scouting by the O-Shot-Caw lodge.

Following a tragic accident and the loss of a brother’s life in 1991 we established the Joseph Aaron Abbott Campership fund to aid Scouts in need to go to summer camp. Yearly our Haunted Forest and now the Scout Youth Expo have donated thousands of dollars to this cause. So far over $106,500.00 has been raised and distributed to our fellow Scouts.

In 1999, O-Shot-Caw noticed a problem with Brotherhood retention among lodges around the nation. In response to this problem, O-Shot-Caw Lodge created the First Year Arrowman Program. The First Year Arrowman Program has been such a success that it was featured in the National Lodge Program Resource Book, and the National Bulletin. Moreover, dozens of lodges around he nation have contacted our Lodge Executive Committee for more information on the First Year Arrowman Program.

For O-Shot-Caw Lodge, we “find the greater beauty in the life of cheerful service”. Brotherhood, Cheerfulness, Service!

O-Shot-Caw Lodge Chiefs
Clell Coleman
Joe Galeano
Art Tate
Art Tate
Phillip Barnett
Aaron Todd
Doug Kirk
Bill Partridge
Rick Louden
Bruce Minger
Bob Rowe
Ed Partridge
Ron Bell
Charles Marker
Wes Griffin
Chris Lane
John Howard
David Blackard
Bill Cowles
Bill Cowles
Joseph Spoto
Tim Caster
James P. Durden
James E. Keener
Steve Servais
Jorge Rodreguez
Mark Janofsky
Mark Manley
Gary Nolan
Phil Engelmann
Phil Engelmann
Phil Engelmann
Mike Adams
Marc Stewart
Marc Stewart
Chris Miller
Chris Miller
Rick Duley
Devang Desai
Devang Desai
Devang Desai
Tony Licuidine
Bobby Kunstman
Ivan Lopez
Ivan Lopez
Sean McKnight
Josh Levenson
Josh Levenson
Josh Levenson
Brian Polino
Brian Polino
Geoffrey Landau
Chaz Pinna
Michael Worley
Mark Jelincic
Brad Schmidt
Jonathan Yost
Kyle Senzig
Matt Crowe
Mike Brignola
Wyatt E.
Jordan B.
Keanu O.
Carson E.
Benjamin J.