Arrowmen fill, then evacuate, MSU’s Spartan Stadium for emergency drill

Michigan State University and East Lansing have been generous hosts to the thousands of teenagers and adults from the Order of the Arrow in town this week.

On Friday morning, it was time to give back.

More than 15,000 Arrowmen gathered inside Michigan State’s football stadium for what organizers called the largest emergency evacuation drill in Spartan Stadium history. It benefited MSU Residential and Hospitality Services and MSU Police.

Attendees at the National Order of the Arrow Conference, officially called guests, are staying on campus. So what better time to test the university’s emergency evacuation procedures than with thousands of willing, service-minded Boy Scouts?

Officially, the drill was the first big service project for #DareToDo, a new initiative that dares you to share your daily Good Turns with your friends and followers on social media. (Why keep them to a yourself when sharing them could inspire someone else to do a Good Turn, too?)

So yes, the drill was a huge service project that required everyone to give up their morning, but the Arrowmen who participated seemed to see it more as a fun way to spend a couple of hours. Especially once TV star and Eagle Scout Creek Stewart took the mic to pump them up.

Creek, the host of The Weather Channel’s Fat Guys in the Woods, said there are two types of people in this world. Those who get up and think about what needs to be done and those who get up and do those things that need to be done.

“Arrowmen,” he said, his voice booming through the cavernous stadium, “are you the type of people that actually get up in the morning and do the types of things that need to be done?”

The response — “yeah!” — was great. Someone walking by might’ve thought the Spartans had just scored the game-winning touchdown.

The service project, in words and pictures

Learn more about this morning’s happenings with these photos from volunteers Jim Brown and Robbie Rogers.

The Arrowmen waited patiently for the gates to open.

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Then they started filing into the stadium.

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And got a special patch.

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They found their seats. Each seat had a card taped to it.

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They filled the stadium …

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And filled the stadium …

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Once seated, they heard from Eagle Scout Creek Stewart.

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Who issued a challenge and posted about it online:

Then it was time for the card stunt …

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They first formed the OA’s 100th anniversary logo.

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Then they flipped the cards …

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And created the NOAC theme.

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It was a great moment. One worth texting about!

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More NOAC coverage

See my other NOAC 2015 stories here.

About Bryan Wendell 2800 Articles
Bryan Wendell, an Eagle Scout, is senior editor of Boys’ Life, Scouting and Eagles’ Call magazines.