Competition – Group


  1. Group dance teams shall be made up of 4 or more (at least three of whom must be dancers). All team members must be from the same lodge. A team may perform a maximum of two (2) specific group dances.  However two dances for presentation are not necessary; it is an option.The judges look for quality rather than quantity. Also, consider that if a single dance is done it should be long enough for the judges to properly evaluate the presentation.
  2. The dance(s) must be historical group dance(s) of specific tribes~ therefore northern plains or pueblo are not appropriate because they are culture areas, not tribes. Inter-tribal is even less specific. The dance(s) and costuming should represent one particular tribe during a particular time in their history.
  3. All team participants must be younger than 21 at the time of the conclave, be registered members of the Order of the Arrow, and registered conclave participants.
  4. Team dancing is a coordinated group effort. It is not a series of solos grouped under one title
  5. No preference is given to large or small teams and there is no reason to separate them. The judges look for quality of presentation and the selection of dance(s) suitable to the lodge dance team and the resources available to them.
  6. Dance competition.


In choosing the dance(s) to perform, consider the following:

  1. Dances must be NON-RELIGIOUS and in good taste.
  2. Society, clan, or family dances are acceptable ONLY if written permission is granted by the Tribal Council, society, clan or family of the specific tribe from which the dance comes. Note:Such typewritten permission must be included in the bound packet required for registration. Therefore, permission must be requested far enough in advance to meet the registration packet deadline. Without permission the dance will not be allowed.

  3. Tribal councils have asked that Scouts refrain from performing the following dances (These dances are not acceptable for Conclave competition):

    1. Masked dances of: Pueblos, Apache, Iroquois, Creek, Cherokee Creek, or Northwest Coast tribes. A mask is defined as anything that covers the face of the wearer, hiding his true identity.

    2. The Ghost Dance, The Pipe Ceremony, The Pipe Dance, The Sun Dance, The Hopi Snake Dance, and the Peyote Ritual.

  4. Dances that are kept so secret that information on them is incomplete should be avoided. The team must have accurate information.

  5. No parts of any protected species are permitted on any outfit. Violation of this rule will result in automatic disqualification. Please be aware of any federal and state laws regarding endangered species parts. (See Chapter 4, Section Conclave.)

  6. Within the guidelines found in the US. Code pertaining to the American Flag, flags is not to be used as wearing apparel with this in mind no type US flag(s) will be permitted as a part of dance attire. lf a dancer has these items on his outfit, they must be removed prior to the conclave. Flag motifs in quillwork and beadwork are acceptable.

  7. National Order of the Arrow Face Paint Policy: National Order of the Arrow conferences and activities conducted beyond the individual lodge will not permit face paint, body paint or wigs to be used in social or competition dancing competition dancing or in ceremonies. (See Chapter 4 Section Conclave)

 The Boy Scouts of America policy regarding weapons will be followed.


Fifteen (15) minutes is the total time permitted on stage. Total time begins with the announcement by a team member. Total time includes prop/scenery set up (if any), narrative, dance(s) plus costume changes (if any), and the removal of any props or scenery.

NOTE: Scenery is not necessary.  No score will be reduced for lack of it.  Some teams have enhanced their score for general effect and impression with the creative use of Scenery produced and moved by other lodge members who want to participate in a different way in the presentation. The is fine however if the team does choose to use scenery, keep it simple.  Set-up and take down of scenery will reduce team dance time since, as stated above, everything must fit the 15 minute time slot.  Without scenery top scores can be earned with excellent dancing, spacing, regalia, and hand props.

NOTE: All team members should be prepared to talk with the judges (if askedafter their presentation.


In order for a lodge to participate, the following information must be submitted in advance (late submissions will result in a deduction of scoring points):

  1. A description of the dance(s) as they will be performed.
  2. The historical background of the dance(s).
  3. The historical background of the song(s) used in the dance(s).
  4. A clear description of the props used (include pictures and/or drawings)
  5. A clear description of the outfits to be worn for the dance(s) (include pictures and/or drawings).
  6. A description of the music and accompaniment that will be used (see 3, above).
  7. A complete bibliography of references used to research the dance(s),( Le. , books, publications, eople).
  8. A copy of the letter of permission from the tribal council, society, clan, or family as required for certain dances.
  9. Name, address, and phone number of a contact person representing the team.
  10. NOTE Xeroxed pages from any published works are NOT acceptable Due to a lack of VCR equipment videotapes are NOT acceptable.
  11. Research booklets should be a minimum of 8 typewritten pages, not to exceed 15 typewritten pages. Photos and drawings/diagrams are not part of this limit.


Awards may be given to the top finishing teams according to the judges’ discretion.

    •  Awards for authenticity may be given
    •  Certificates may be awarded to each entering team.
    •  The top team may be given the opportunity to perform at the evening show.