OUSA Board Welcomes Faye Doria

At its meeting on Monday, December 21st, the Orienteering USA Board of Directors voted unanimously to elect Faye Doria to fill an open position on its board. Faye will fill the remaining one year of a three year term in the position previously held by Susan Grandjean who stepped down this fall. Faye has been an active orienteer with Up North Orienteers (UNO) and the New England Orienteering Club (NEOC) for over 20 years both as a competitor and volunteering as course setter, meet director and registrar at many meets over the years at both the local and national level.

Recently retired, Faye also brings a lifetime of experience in financial services to the board including 30+ years as a personal financial planner, tax planning and preparation, financial support for healthcare non-profit and two years serving her local community as town treasurer. I am sure OUSA’s financial committee will find her expertise invaluable.

You can read Faye’s complete candidate bio from the OUSA library here.

2021 US Nationals Postponed.

Orienteering Cincinnati (OCIN) will be postponing the 2021 OUSA Nationals originally scheduled to be held at the Flying Pig on March 19-21, 2021. At this time, it is unlikely that we would be able to use at least one of the parks, and we cannot be reasonably certain that people from around the country would be able to travel to and from the Cincinnati area without restrictions. OCIN is presently discussing specific options and expects to have an update about this postponement by early January.

Puzzle Friday: Oak Ridge NRE

Today’s puzzle takes us to the National Ranking Event at held Oak Ridge in the Prince William Forest Park in Virginia this past weekend. Thanks to Quantico Orienteering Club for hosting the event and providing the media used to create the puzzle. Have a great weekend everyone!!

Board Meeting Rescheduled

The Orienteering USA board meeting previously announced for December 14 has been rescheduled to December 21 to allow more time for preparation of the annual budget proposal. Details are available on the Agenda.

Orienteering Development Model

Did you know that Orienteering USA has a long-term development model to describe the development of orienteers over their lifetimes? From that first spark of interest to becoming a senior mentor, the Orienteering Development Model (ODM) describes the evolution of orienteers as athletes and specialists in the sport.

First introduced in January 2020, the ODM is a living document that continues to evolve, and is an essential component of OUSA’s coaching curriculum. We are currently working to reflect the alignment of OUSA programs with the framework on our website. You can learn more about the ODM on the OUSA Education Portal.  Do you have something to add to the resources for one of the ODM stages?  Email vpyouth@nullorienteeringusa.org.

Graphic of the Five Stages of the OUSA Orienteering Development Model (ODM)

Puzzle Friday: Auburndale Park

Happy Friday everyone! Today’s puzzle brings us another look at the December Map of the Month from the OUSA Youth Mapping Program – a mashup of the full Auburndale Park map along with photos shared with us by Channon Ames of the Newton Parks & Rec department. Some of the images were part of their Photo-O while others are of initial users of the new map. Have fun!!

YMP Map of the Month – December 2020

From inception to running programs in just two months – that is the whirlwind story of this month’s YMP Map of the Month – Auburndale Park in Newton, Massachusetts. Back in September Newton Parks Recreation Manager Channon Ames was investigating options for socially-distant, outdoor activities that could be offered by the city when she received a timely email from OUSA member Navigation Games. While meeting with Navigation Games president Barb Bryant she learned about the Youth Mapping Program and its associated grant program.

Channon was paired up with YMP’s Andrea-Ingrid Schneider to remotely map the park with Channon serving as ‘eyes on the ground’ to assist Andrea in the map making process.

Channon says Andrea “was amazing to work with.  The information she was able to pull together using online resources from half-way across the country was incredible.  Andrea was able to guide me through the process of field checking areas and correlating images to the map in order to produce our map.

By late October the map was complete and recreational programs were quickly underway. As of mid-November the park has already:

  • Run a 4 week introduction to orienteering program at Auburndale Park for 21 children in grades 2 – 6 with Navigation Games
  • Run a photo scavenger hunt at Auburndale Park for 30 children in grades 6 – 9 using the pictures from the map checking process.   
  • Installed a permanent orienteering course at Auburndale Park with the help of a local Eagle Scout and his troop. 
    • The permanent course includes posts with control signs, punches and QR codes. 
    • The signs give information about the history, features and native species of the park, making the courses fun for orienteers and the general public. 
    • 9 of 11 permanent markers are wheelchair accessible and plans to make trail improvements to the remaining 2 markers will make them fully accessible as well.      

There is still much more to come for orienteering in Newton. Channon and the Newton Parks Department are in the process of getting maps created at Cold Spring Park, Kennard Park, Nahanton Park and Edmand’s Park in the spring.

Eagle Scouts from local troops have been lined up to add additional permanent courses in those parks as well. Channon is planning to share her experiences via a zoom meeting with the Metro West Regional Massachusetts Recreation Association in early December to hopefully get orienteering into even more metro Boston area park programs.

“I can’t wait to offer more programs in our parks to youth, families, scouts, summer day camps, after school programs, middle and high school clubs, adults and others to help teach and promote the sport of orienteering.”
Channon Ames, Recreation Program Manager 

Interested in getting involved with the Youth Mapping Program as a remote mapper? Fill out the form here.

We will leave you with this fun online jigsaw puzzle of the Cove section of the Auburndale map for your enjoyment. Click on the ‘Reload’ icon in the lower left to shuffle the puzzle if necessary and have some fun.