Tonight I headed up to Upper Sandusky and attended the inspection in the Mark Master degree. This is the home chapter of MEC Jim McDonald and he was present in addition to REC Ken Foy. Their Secretary is MIC Ron Pool who helps to keep everything running smoothly. They did a good job with a little help from a couple Chapters. It was nice to be able to start back early as I was able to make it home by midnight.
Monday, February 27, 2017
Tonight I learned something, whether you have gone to a place many times or not the GPS doesn't always help. I have been to the Canton temple probably 40 times and tonight the GPS failed me so I had to rely on myself to find the temple. I then had trouble trying to find out how to get into the building ... so much for trying to be early. They were being inspected in the Most Excellent Master degree and the DDGHP reported that they did a fine good on the ritual work (which I thought was appropriate as well). MEC John Gartrell and REC Ross Black were also in attendance along with RIC Wesley Webber Grand Council Sentinel. The degree really moved along well and was finished at a good time which allowed me to go downstairs for some fellowship before hitting the road.
Sunday, February 26, 2017
What an exciting 3 days! Around 15 years ago, Laura met a girl from Pennsylvania at one of the competitions she entered at Pre-Teen America and they became immediate friends. When the other girls dad died unexpectedly shortly afterwards, she started calling me dad. We have been there with her and her family at all their major life events. She is about 5 years older than Laura and is ready to have a (second) baby. We decided to surprise her and show up at her baby shower this weekend. The drive over was about ten hours long so Laura was going to meet us at our house and we would go from here. Very late Thursday those plans changed as Laura's car had an issue and had to be taken into the shop so I got to drive 5 hours to Knoxville to pick her up and bring her back and then drive 10 hours over to the baby shower all on Friday, arriving at the party by 10AM Saturday. Needless to say we did surprise her but had a great day with her Saturday. Sunday we met for breakfast and then started the 10 hour track back to Dayton. Luckily we have a spare car that Laura will drive to Knoxville and use until her car is ready and we can pick it up from her at the end of March. Proof positive... I don't reserve my crazy driving habits just for Masonic events.
Thursday, February 23, 2017
Tonight was my Lodge's Inspection in the Master Mason Degree. We were privileged to have the Grand Master, MWB Doug Kaylor in attendance. Also joining him was the Junior Grand Deacon RWB Paul Weglage and Grand Tyler RWB Walt Barner. It was obvious that they had practiced for the Inspection and overall per the DDGM did a good job on the work. Unfortunately with it being a stated meeting night it ran a little bit late. We had close to 50 of our members including 14 of our Past Masters in attendance and around 30 visitors.
Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Last night, I had planned to head up by Youngstown for Ashlar's Inspection but some last minute Masonic work kept me busy at home until after the time I needed to leave to make it to the Inspection. Tonight, I headed over by Cambridge to Pleasant City for the Mark Master Lodge Annual Chapter Inspection. RIC Dave Mourer was present and we now have a special method for him to introduce me when he is doing the introductions in the 14th Capitular District. I won't elaborate here but let's just say it involves Grand Council... They did a nice job on an actual first time candidate. They also kept things moving and I was able to leave to get back home early enough to make it all the way back home by midnight.
Monday, February 20, 2017
Tonight I headed up north to Bowling Green Ohio to attend the Royal Arch Inspection. Our Grand King, Keith Green, was also in attendance and I learned will be presiding at the Inspection at Oak Harbor Thursday as their High Priest Larry Ellison passed away unexpectedly. One of their members is RIC Steve Hill who is in the Grand Council line.They had three candidates for the degree tonight and the Crystal Chapter High Priest had put together an all-star cast to ensure the candidates received the best degree possible. The evening moved along quite well and I was able to be headed home around 10 PM.
Saturday, February 18, 2017
Well I had a big day planned today: Chapter School, Scottish Rite, Commandery Inspection and Lodge Inspection but all were cancelled not by them but by me. I first woke up this morning to head to the Chapter School and even got up to try to get ready but was so exhausted I just went back to lay down for a couple minutes. The next thing I knew it was 11:30. So much for Chapter and Scottish Rite. I then went outside and did a couple of things before I needed to get ready for Commandery Inspection. When I cane back in to get ready for Commandery Inspection in Norwood I sat down to rest a minute and fix some lunch but never got back up to fix lunch and must have fallen asleep again as I awoke after I would have needed to leave for the Lodge Inspection north of Columbus. As Pam said when she got home, sometimes maybe you just need to take a day to rest.
Friday, February 17, 2017
Tonight around 250 folks came down to Antioch to enjoy our first Fish Fry of the year. For the past couple years the Past Potentates have hosted this evening. The main issues was for folks was to find enough parking. They had plenty fixed for all in attendance and afterwards some went upstairs to play our own Antioch version of the newlyweds game. We had a tie for winners but one team was a brother sister twins. Maybe there is something to the wonder twin powers. The saddest part of the game was two guys who decided to be a couple for the game and have their wives sit on the sidelines who won the first round!
Thursday, February 16, 2017
Tonight was the Chapter Inspection in Garrettsville in the Mark Master Degree in the 17th district. MEC John Gartrell was the visiting Inspector for the evening and REC Ross Black was also present. For anyone who hasn't been here, it is a must to go to this Chapter as the business under them (in the next building over) is a saloon with a jukebox. Tonight as is with most times I have been there they have played it. Without giving away anything too much from the ritual work I was wondering if this would correspond to music for the work of the evening as the jukebox started playing a few times. When they went to the Senior Warden the first time it played "Drunk On A Plane"; during the obligation when they were finishing it played "Drink On It" and when searching for something lost it played "Another One Bites The Dust". Ok no correlation....
Tuesday, February 14, 2017
Tonight I went to the Inspection in Bucyrus (yes I know it is Valentines Day but Pam was working so I got a free pass) in the Past Master Degree. This is in the 10th District which is part of my region. Due to several conflicts, the turnout was small and I got the opportunity to be the candidate for the evening. I was sweating all evening the question they would give to me but luckily they must have had pity on me as they gave me an easy question. It was also nice that I got to spend some time with the Companions after the Inspection and was still able to be on the road by 9:30.
Monday, February 13, 2017
Sunday, February 12, 2017
Today we had two more shows of collecting money at the circus. We had plenty of help and the weather was fairly nice today. Per a couple of folks, yesterday while we were at the Grand Family meeting the weather was so nice they didn't have to wear coats. I guess that makes up for the times we have been collecting in weather below zero. The best part is that we are now done raising money for another year. I guess it also means I can meet up again with Willie Nelson and be "on the road again...."
Saturday, February 11, 2017
Today, we had two Chapter events at the Lyndhurst Temple near Cleveland. First we had the Grand Family meeting where we discussed several Grand Chapter items among the DDGHP's Grand Officers and PGHPs. We also worked between the DDGHPs and the Regional officers to help see if we could resolve some problems. After the meeting our GHP MEC Jeff Addis' Chapter held their inspection in the Past Master Degree. There were a number of distinguished guests in attendance and the DeMolay posted colors. Since Pam and I had to leave before 6AM and didn't return home until around 11 PM, it made for a very long day.
Friday, February 10, 2017
Tonight was day one for our Shrine Circus parking effort for the 3rd District. This is our one and only fund raiser for the year our District has a Grand High Priest and to help our our District. We also have 2 shows tomorrow and 2 on Sunday. The weather was fairly nice tonight (nice as can be expected for February). Several brave souls from our District come out to help me out this evening. We had to dig a little deeper this year as around 25 I normally count on were tied up with a Council Inspection, at my Council. With the District officers out in force and a few others we made it through tonight. REC Greg Clatterbuck will be heading up the work crew on Saturday as I have to go to Cleveland for the day for a Grand Chapter meeting but will be back for more on Sunday for both shows.
Thursday, February 9, 2017
Tonight we met to discuss the long term future of Sidney Chapter and Council. The Grand Illustrious Master along with Arch Inspector were present for Council and for Chapter we had the DDGHP, PGHP Keith O'Dell and myself as Regional Officer. Right away it went in a positive direction as the members thought if they could survive over the next 4-5 years, with several younger members joining the Lodge they could survive if they got them into the York Rite. We discussed several creative ideas outside of the traditional thoughts and finally they decide they would move the Chapter and Council meetings on the same night as Blue Lodge only starting at 6 PM for a while. They also discussed the possibility of having light refreshments and inviting the lodge. The good part with this would be at least 3 officers in Blue Lodge agreed they would start coming to Chapter if they met prior to the Lodge meeting. So we ended up that we will be trying out some new ideas and getting some help from the District and Arch to hopefully save both groups.
Wednesday, February 8, 2017
Today was a busy day after heading to Knoxville Saturday after the OGA meeting to see and help out our daughter and just returning back to Dayton late last night. Today Unity Chapter called a special meeting to vote on several petitions. Some were for Dual membership and some for Reinstatement along with a new petition but all noted meeting during the day was their reason for becoming a member of Unity Chapter. After our meeting today, I headed north to Wakeman Ohio which is up by Lake Erie. We had snow, which at times seemed like a blizzard it was blowing so hard, but I safely made it for their Royal Arch Degree on 3 candidates. REC Ross Black was the guest Inspector and a couple other appointed Grand Officers were also in attendance and traveling with our Grand High Priest MEC Jeff Addis. MIC Bill Laughlin was present as well. They did a nice job on the work and as always had some good refreshments afterwards. I tried to get started back as soon as possible as the snow was still blowing hard and the roads were icing over so I wanted to make it to the highway and home safely (which I did).
Saturday, February 4, 2017
Today I attended the Ohio Grotto Association Meeting in Springfield. As I am the new Secretary for our Grotto, I needed to attend to find out how to handle a few outstanding situations we have at our Grotto. I got some good advice and think we are now moving forward at our Grotto. They had a great turnout with almost 50 in attendance which is probably the greatest number at any State Association Meeting in the country. Since most of our Grottos are 50 members or less, the attendance at most meetings is fairly limited. The Grand Monarch, Mark McCombs, who is from Ohio was present. We also had a second Past Monarch from Ormus in attendance which is great since most times I am the only one from our Grotto in attendance.
Friday, February 3, 2017
Tonight was the final leg of the 3 day tour over by Mayfield Heights in Cleveland. During the day, I went over and MEC Robert Thomas gave me the $5 tour of the Grand Chapter office (don't worry I didn't take any souvenirs) after which we had lunch. Mt. Olive's Inspection included a visit from the Grand High Priest, MEC Jeff Addis, and few other Grand Officers and Past Grand Officers. This is the home Chapter for MIC John Hall, MEC Charles McCarty and REC Don Van Horn who were all in attendance. They did a really nice job on the Past Master degree (per the DDGHP ... I'm not there to Inspect rather just enjoy the fellowship and ritual work). After the Inspection, I started the 3+ hour journey back home.
Thursday, February 2, 2017
Tonight I headed up to the 20th District at Rock Creek which is almost to the lake and the Ohio Pennsylvania border. Since I stayed overnight, I had plenty of time during the day to do some exploring in the area and got some shots of the lake. (It was quite windy and the water was coming fairly heavily over the breakwater.) REC Jim Streeky come up tonight with some members of the 19th District and Jim helped them out with the Captain of the Host in the opening. MEC Robert Thomas was also present. The High Priest for the evening was the actual Chapter Scribe as the High Priest was out of town for work. For his first time sitting in the position, he did a very good job. This is the home Chapter for REC Doug Doolan. After finishing up here tonight, I headed west about an hour for the next overnight stay.
Wednesday, February 1, 2017
Tonight was the start of something a little different. I decided to do a 3 day overnight trip up north in Ohio to attend three Inspections in 2 different districts but which were somewhat close. The first stop was to Toronto Ohio in the 14th District which you can't get to from most places in Ohio. It is only a few miles from both Pittsburg, PA and West Virginia. It took over 4 hours for me to get there but took the DDGHP almost 2+ hours as well. They did the Mark Master degree and passed out two 50 year pins. After the meeting,they had their famous hot sausages which I had again and then started the trip up the road around an hour before stopping for the night.