A Samurai with no group and no horse is not a Samurai at all. -Yamamoto Jin'-emon
Ōkamihata-ban (狼旗班), collequially known as Clan Ōkami, is the collection of Samurai in the Kingdom of Ealdormere. Their goal is to promote the SCA through the reenactment of the ways of the Samurai of Japan.
The name Ōkamihata-ban means “Wolf Flag Guard” in Japanese. This represents the fact that Ōkamihata-ban styles itself the Japanese Wolf of Ealdormere, as the Ealdormere populace symbol is of the wolf. Ōkamihata-ban therefore always flies the banners of the wolf and of Ealdormere, as they hold allegiance to the kingdom and to the King and Queen, until the Emperor calls them back home to Nippon.
Activities the Ōkami include Armor Making Woodworking, Way of the Bow, Chanting, Story Telling, Sewing and Garment Making, Calligraphy, Poetry, and, of course, Sake Brewing. Plans are afoot to add Taiko Drum Making, Metalworking, Tent-Making and other activities of the Medieval Japanese.
What began as armoring sessions at Lord Yamamoto's house quickly evolved into a collection of Japanese persona that wanted to fight and learn the arts of Japan. Started in A.S. 44, Clan Ōkami has quickly grown to one of the biggest households in Ealdormere. With over 22 official members and numerous “Friends of the Clan” members, Clan Ōkami started out as a fighting household as a way to collect Japanese persona in Ealdormere and give a path to follow for future Japanese samurai. The clan follows the seven Tenets of Bushido and official “belted” members take an oath to these during a private ceremony.
Lord Yamamoto led the clan for eight years. In A.S. 52, Lord Yamamoto Morikazu and his Lady Mi'namoto Natsume were recalled by the Emperor. They may return one day to honor the folk of Ealdomere. Ōkami is currently led by Lord Yamagata Tokim'une and his Lady Yamagata Yukiko with the help of the trusted retainers of the Ban.
Rank in the Ban is reflected by the achievements of its members in the Society, to progress in Ōkami members must participate in the service and skills prized by the SCA. There are official “belted” members who wear an Obi, a belt that reflects rank in the clan and in the SCA. For example white obi represents a member of the Order of the Chivalry, a Red Obi represents a squire, and so on. Some members of the Ban wear a necklace or token to show their dedication to the Ban .
Full Members (with Obi):
Honorary Members (Friend's of the Ōkamihata-ban):
Entry into Ōkamihata-ban is by invitation only; as they say, “You can not ask to be part of Ban, they will ask you.” However, generally speaking the Ban asks that prospective members choose a Japanese persona, respect the tenets of Bushido and want to have fun. Once they have gotten to know a prospective member a little more (and have made sure that they get along with everyone) they will consider making the applicant into ban.