Over the years I have thought about forming or at least requesting to be able to form a Sacramento chapter of the American Pilgrims on the Camino (APOC). We have a chapter in the San Francisco bay area, actually, now there are two chapters the old northern California chapter is now called the East Bay chapter and just recently a chapter was formed in the Silicon Valley. Although it is nice to have those two chapters close they are still over an hours drive from Sacramento.
Forming a Chapter of the American Pilgrims
Fortunately a few months ago a brave sole stepped forward and began the process of setting up a Sacramento Chapter. Kerry Daniels contacted the American pilgrims and asked what it would take to establish a Sacramento chapter. She was told that it would take interest at two meetings and then the approval of the board of directors of the American Pilgrims. So, with the help of another pilgrim Michael McClatchy she scheduled a meeting and sent out an email to anyone on the list of the American Pilgrims notifying them about the meeting and the possibility of setting up a new Sacramento chapter. It was required that a minimum of 12 participants show up at the meeting to qualify for establishing a chapter. We had 45 past and future pilgrims join the meeting. The meeting was awesome. We had pilgrims that had walked in the 1990’s (pre movie) all the way up to many who were getting ready to walk in the next month or two all the way to next year and beyond. It was so fun talking to everyone. Once you have walked it’s like we are all family. After a few minutes we were all just gabbing away. We all lined up in chronological order as to the date you first walked the Camino. We introduced ourselves and talked about when we walked and what route or routes. As the meeting was coming to an end Kerri asked if anyone would be willing to volunteer as a third co-coordinator. Frankly, this was something that I was hoping would happen and jumped at the opportunity.
Our next outing was an 8 mile hike. We needed 12 participants to qualify as our second event so that we could be voted on and ratified as an official chapter. We had over 50 people and it was a great walk. a few weekends ago Michael led a walk in Lafayette, CA of about 10 miles. It was a good up and down walk. He is getting ready for Camino number 2 with his brother. They are off in a few weeks.
Next week we will have a Packing tips and tricks presentation at REI in Sacramento. There are 6 of us bringing our fully loaded packs so that we can unload and discuss what we bring on our Camino’s. This should be a blast as, of course I carry way more than I should. My favorite advise I have ever received comes from a pilgrim who at the time had walked 11 times. Herbert Medina, he said “There are many ways to pack for the Camino and many different choices to make. There is no right or wrong answer just the choice that you make. The most important thing is to OWN THE CHOICES THAT YOU MAKE”.