Akela Transition Ceremony

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There is no official ceremony for the transfer of Cub Scouts Section Leader position of "Akela", but several Packs have developed their own ceremonies and traditions.

(This page started after a discussion on LinkedIn.)

Here are some ceremony options:

Thumb War with Old Akela

  1. At the outdoor windup, at the end of the night do two grand howls, one for Old Akela to start the ceremony and one for new Akela to end
  2. After first Grand Howl, just when Akela is starting to say "Good Night and Good Hunting!" Baloo cries "Akela! You've led the wolves well for many years Akela and the Pack thanks you for that, but your time is now done and I challenge you for the leadership of the Pack!"
  3. Akela says "This is the Law of the Jungle, a challenge to me must be answered in BATTLE. Come into the circle, Old Bear, so we may settle this!"
  4. Baloo enters the circle, squares off with Akela and the two circle each other around the parade circle, growling. Suddenly, the two stop, yell, and run in the the middle of the circle. They grab hands, and yell "1-2-3-4 I declare a thumb war!" Thumb war ensures, Cubs egged on by other leaders to cheer them on.
  5. Akela lets Baloo win (right?!?) eventually - Akela says "I am defeated! Farewell, pack, remember my days leading the hunt fondly!"
  6. Baloo: "Three huzzahs for the old Wolf! Huzzah! Huzzah! Huzzah!"
  7. Handoff ceremony where Old Akela leads new Akela in the Scout Promise (similar to investiture - gives the Cubs a peek at Scouts as well):
    Akela: "Before I leave you, I must make sure this new Akela knows the Law and Promise. Akela, what do you promise?
    On my honour
    I promise that I will do my best
    To do my duty to God and the Queen
    To help other people at all times,
    And to carry out the spirit of the Scout Law.
    "And what is the Scout Law?!?
    A Scout is
    Helpful and trustworthy,
    Kind and cheerful,
    Considerate and clean,
    And wise in the use of all resources.
  8. Old wolf hands over the totem with a short speech asking the new Akela to take on care of the pack
  9. Old Akela steps out of the circle with "Permission to leave the circle Akela" "Permission Granted, Old Wolf" then the new Akela does a grand howl and sends them on their way "Good night and good hunting!"

Thumb War with Old Akela, Variant

  1. Old Akela/Wolf asks the pack to form Council Rock.
  2. Old Wolf – to the Pack
    “There comes a time when Akela must surrender to the elements of time,
    and let a new leader teach the ways of the Pack,
    so that it can continue to stay strong and endure,
    for I have completed my tasks of the Promise, the Law, and the Motto of the Wolf Cub Pack.
    Today a new Akela ascends to Council Rock”.
  3. A Sixer, without the Second at the flags, takes the wolf head staff, asks permission to enter the circle as usual, and presents the Old Wolf with the wolf head staff, then returns to the right side of the circle (from the Old Wolf’s perspective).
  4. The Sixer then leads the Cubs to do the Grand Howl as a tribute to the Old Wolf.
  5. Old Wolf – “Who comes forth to challenge The Old Wolf?”
  6. Challenger steps up to the circle opening of the Council Rock and says,
    “You’ve done well, Old Wolf,
    the Pack thanks you,
    but today I step up to the challenge”.
  7. The Challenger then begins to circle around the outside of Council Rock, facing Akela the whole time, until he gets to the opening again. The Old Wolf turns to follow his movement around the circle. (This symbolizes the challenge and watchful eye of each and ensuing battle between the two wolves for leadership of the Pack.)
  8. The Old Wolf takes position in the center of Council Rock. The Challenger assumes the position at the opening and asks, “permission to enter the circle”.
  9. The Old Wolf nods his head to oblige and the Challenger steps up to the Old Wolf face to face, a pace apart. (Since the Challenger is challenging Akela to assume the leadership, he can face the Old Wolf directly.)
  10. They both hook right hands and perform a thumb war, growling loudly as they fight, (symbolizing the battle for leadership) with the Challenger winning.
  11. The Old Wolf says to the Challenger, “do you pledge the Cub Law?”.
  12. The Challenger states the Cub Law, “The Cub respects the Old Wolf; the Cub respects him/herself”.
  13. The two let go of their right hand. The Old Wolf, holding the wolf head staff in his left hand, switches it to his right hand and turns the wolf head to face himself. (Because the wolf head staff faces the Old Wolf it is symbolic of his defeat as this symbol of position is facing inward to him instead of outward to the Pack.) He them places his left hand on the right shoulder of the Challenger, the Challenger places his left hand on the right shoulder of the Old Wolf. (This forms a circle and symbolizes the teaching of one generation to the next and the continuity of the ways of the Wolf Cub Pack). The Challenger then takes hold of the wolf head staff. The two of them then rotate counter-clockwise so that the two switch positions, the Challenger now facing the circle opening with the wolf head staff also facing the circle opening. Both then drop their left hands with the Challenger then taking the wolf head staff with his left hand. The wolf head staff is facing away from the Challenger, toward the circle opening.
  14. The Old Wolf steps backward to the opening and asks, “Permission to leave the circle Akela”.
  15. New Akela says “Good hunting” and nods his head in affirmation.
  16. The Challenger is now called Akela.
  17. The Cubs do the Grand Howl to the new Akela in a show of support of their new leader.

Old Akela Absent

With the outgoing Akela absent, two leaders can challenge each other for the position of Akela.