[Darkwood-SCA] An annoucement from the Baron and Baroness of Darkwood

Katherine ni Cheallaigh of Skye purpleviking at sbcglobal.net
Tue Aug 19 11:42:00 PDT 2008

Good Gentles of Darkwood,
Baron Sebastian birthed the Barony of Darkwood, Baron Wilhelm and Baroness Elizabeth raised it and gave it personality, and Baron Erich and I guided it in its maturity. Over the last six years we have dedicated our love, time, energy and, yes, dollars to ensure Darkwood would remain the finest Barony in the Kingdom of the West.  
We have seen to it that all the diverse aspects of the Society are served in our Barony.  We have encouraged dance, choir, and bardic arts with the Baroness’ Masked Ball; arts and sciences with the A&S Baronial Collegiums; exhibitions of martial skill with our Archery Tourney; and feasts and fighting with our renowned White Shield event -- the latter holding lists as large as those of some Kingdoms.  
The Barony has not only continued to field heavy fighters but has added a Rapier unit as well.  Our Ranger program has had several graduates and more applicants are working on completing their tasks before the year is out. We as a group autocrat at least one or two Principality- and Kingdom-level events each year, and we have seen many of our members join the Order of the Pelican.  
Darkwood’s name is synonymous with success and we are a model of how to do things well.  We have a reputation as a fun Barony that excels in hospitality, welcoming people from all over the Kingdom to come and play.  Our cantons are very active, with full slates of officers and numerous events attracting participants from throughout the West.  
On the material side, Darkwood's wealth is considerable -- besides our well-earned reputation for keeping event finances in the black, we have a castle and trailer that have gone to many events both for war and for vigil in our Kingdom and others. We have an impressive amount of regalia from sunshades to full feast ware.  Like our large events, our bank statement frankly outshadows those of some Kingdoms. 
Alas, the time has come for your Baron and Baroness to give all of this up and step down.  This has been one of the hardest and saddest decisions we have ever had to make.  At the next Twelfth Night, our successors will step up as the fourth Baron and/or third Baroness of Darkwood.
The procedure for choosing a new Baron and/or Baroness will follow the tradition set by Baron Sebastian and upheld by Baron Wilhelm and Baroness Elizabeth. 
Applicants must submit a resume of their qualifications via email to the Baron, the Baroness and the Baronial Seneschal (include all three recipients). All resumes must be turned in a week before Masqued Ball -- but we strongly request they be submitted earlier to give the populace a chance to ask questions beforehand. Resumes turned in by the deadline will be posted in the "Drum," the Darkwood Armory and the Darkwood Yahoo! group. 
Please do not post your own resume. 
The minimum requirements are as follows:  All applicants must be paid members in good standing of the SCA; must legally and physically reside within the boundaries of Darkwood; and must be currently active in the Barony, the Principality of the Mists, and the Kingdom of the West. 
Further, anyone who aspires to the office should be aware that the Barony will take on the personality of the new Baron and/or Baroness. Darkwood changed when Erich and I succeeded Baron Wilhelm and Baroness Elizabeth, and it will change when our successors take over. 
This position demands a lot of love for the populace and much self-sacrifice.  The new Baron and/or Baroness should have a good support group already established. The job requires a lot of tact in dealing with many different personalities, both individually and in groups. Fringe groups as well as established, by-the-book groups must be treated equitably and fairly. Phone calls will come at all hours regarding matters that, while seemingly frivolous, are extremely important to the caller. 
If you are chosen for the honor of representing the Barony, you must be prepared to live strictly by the laws of the SCA, no matter what your personal desires may be. You will be a representative of the Crown and of the Coronet and must support them regardless of your personal beliefs. You must be willing to reach out to other groups and support your Principality and Kingdom. 
You should be sound in your personal finances. Expect to spend about $3,500 per year on SCA activities. Be prepared to make the SCA your second job (and it is a job) during your time of service. Well more than half of your weekends during the year will be SCA-oriented, including all Darkwood events. You will also be required to attend weeknight meetings, various practices, event planning, and problem-solving nights out. You must commit to supporting all aspects of the SCA within the Barony, even if your own interests lie elsewhere.
Lastly, there will be many times the Baron and/or Baroness will end up bringing the sunshade or other regalia to events. The new Baron and/or Baroness must also find a new place to store the Baronial Regalia, which consists of sheds, the Baronial castle and trailer, and all the personal regalia too precious to keep out in a shed.
At the Baroness’ Masqued Ball during the day we will host an Althing at which each applicant will present their qualifications and platforms. The floor will then be opened to questions from the populace.  Following the Q&A, applicants will retire to a separate, private area so that the members of the populace may speak their minds. The discussion will be moderated by Baron Wilhelm, who will use a Speaking Staff to give each member of the Barony a fair chance to speak.
Everyone who considers themself a member of Darkwood will be given an equal say, whether living within the borders of the Barony or a member of the Great Unwashed, and regardless of current SCA membership.  Anyone who has gone to canton or Baronial events and helped out, has held an office within Darkwood or her cantons, or goes to meetings or generally participates with Darkwood as an active member may vote. The only stipulation is that you call Darkwood your home and do not primarily affiliate yourself with another group. 
The vote will be by show of hands and tallied by the Baron, Baroness, and Darkwood Seneschal. Only in the case of a tie will the Baron, Baroness, and Seneschal each cast a vote to break the tie. 
Please understand that while this is the closest thing to a Baronial "election" in the West, it is not a vote in the democratic sense; its purpose is to inform the current Baron and Baroness which candidate(s) the people of Darkwood prefer. 
Because only the King and Queen can create a Baron and Baroness, the populace's choice will be communicated to the King and Queen of the West as the wishes of the Barony of Darkwood. When Their Majesties have made their decision, the populace will proclaim their support for the new Baron and Baroness at the court of Their Majesties at Twelfth Night.
While Erich and I plan to keep a low profile for the first year or so to give the new Baron and Baroness time to establish themselves, we will have some time before Twelfth night to train our successors and hand over the Regalia.
If you have any questions about the position please call us.  
Yours in Service,
Baroness Liesl
Baron Erich
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