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When a new Chief of Skyuka Lodge is elected, he is entrusted with the Chief’s Painting. The painting is signed on the back by all of the Lodge Chiefs of Skyuka Lodge dating back to 2008. The tradition started when Lodge Chief Andrew Strasburger (2009-2010) wanted to have something that would be passed down from Chief to Chief. So Andrew commissioned Gib Kohr to paint a painting for the Lodge, that would become what we now know as “The Chief’s Painting”. The first time the painting was passed down was on February 7th, 2011, at the Lodge Banquet when Taylor Thomas (2010-2012) was elected to serve as the Lodge Chief of Skyuka Lodge. Gib Kohr was Taylor Thomas’s Scoutmaster as well. From the beginning, the painting had a tremendous amount of sentimental value behind it.

The painting shows a Native American Family sitting by a campfire in an open field, with a tipi in the background that has the Skyuka Double Headed Thunderbird painted on its canvas. It also has a plaque on the bottom of the frame that features a famous quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson,

“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”

This quote and painting reminds our Lodge Chiefs to think independently and to leave a path of their own. Not to follow what their predecessors have done or what current traditions may be, but to do what is best for Skyuka Lodge.

Below you can view the painting and some photos of it being passed down from Chief to Chief.

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