News + Public Announcements

Category: General News & Information

Dodgeville Masonic Lodge Helps Others

By Kenyon Bennett , The Dodgeville Chronicle  Freemasons, also known as Masons, are members of the world’s oldest fraternal organization that was begun as a guild for stonemasons, skilled builders, in Europe during the Middle Ages. Tracing the organization to a specific date is futile. That knowledge has been lost to history. Secret practices, such as symbolic handshakes and greetings that Freemasons use, are often shrouded in mystery. Dodgeville has its Masons, perhaps best known for trying to help others in

Read More »

“Stick it to Bruce” campaign raises $2100 for Whitewater, Palmyra food pantries

St. John’s Lodge Freemasons Lodge (No. 57) continued their annual “Stick it to Bruce” fundraiser for local food pantries. Each year in December, Brother Bruce Eshelman challenges the members of St. John’s to donate money for this purpose. He matches the donations, thus allowing the Brothers to stick it to him! Above: Brother Eshelman presents a check for $1400 to volunteers of the Whitewater Community Food Pantry. From left: Barbara Koch, Pat Chaput and Kathy Bolchen. He also presented $700

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Milwaukee Valley Scottish Rite supports Street Angels

In November and December 2023, our Valley of Milwaukee held our second annual collection of items to be donated to Street Angels Milwaukee Outreach to benefit and support Milwaukee’s homeless community. Street Angels Milwaukee Outreach is a mobile outreach program, dedicated to bridging the gap between homelessness and housing in the greater Milwaukee area. Their mission focuses on support, advocacy, and community collaboration. Operating three nights a week, Street Angels volunteers travel throughout the Milwaukee community providing essential services and

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Students at St. John’s Northwestern Academy read books, raise money for Dyslexia Center

Brother Michael Stadler, a member of the Valley of Madison Scottish Rite who teaches high school English at St. John’s Northwestern Academy in Delafield, recently presented a generous check to the Children’s Dyslexia Center of Madison. Brother Stadler is the advisor for their Chapter of the National English Honor Society which held a read-a-thon as a fall fundraiser. They have graciously donated the funds raised during that read-a-thon for the Dyslexia Center. Pictured above, from left: accepting the check is

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PetSmart and District 1 Masons Provide Stuffed Animals for Kids 

District 1 Masons recently distributed stuffed animals donated by PetSmart to the Iron River First Responders and Iron River Fire Department. Animals were also provided to the Iron River VFW at Christmas time, giving Santa and his elves a little help during the busy holiday season.  Brother Don Miller and District 1 Deputy Danny L. Bourassa (pictured above with Santa and a lucky stuffed animal recipient) were on hand for assistance.  These donations are in addition to the Brothers dropping

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New sign on Crivitz Masonic Center

A $500 grant was received to build a 16” x 10’ sign on the front of the Crivitz Masonic Center. Total cost of sign and installation was $2285.  Your Wisconsin Freemasonry Leadership Team and the physical media committee are proud to offer your Lodge a one-time “Physical Media Grant.” Much like the “Acts of Kindness” program, these are matching dollars – up to $500 – that will go towards helping you publicize and promote Freemasonry in your community.  What qualifies?  •

Read More »

Hartford Freemasons support Washington County youth

Hartford Masonic Lodge (No. 120) recently donated $1,000 to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Washington County. The funds will be used to support the mental wellness of the youth of Washington county. Visit www.namiwashingtonwi.org for more information. This was made possible by matching funds through the “Acts of Kindness” program which was provided by the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation. Pictured, from left: Brother Kyle Richards, NAMI Board President Suzanne Milkus and Hartford Masonic Master Jim Hunt.  Submitted by

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Milton Freemasons support Milton Food Bank

Above, Kyla Wilson and Tom Westrick of the Milton Food Bank received an $850 donation from Milton Freemasons Lodge Master Brian Duoss (pictured on the right) on December 20th. The funds were collected throughout the year – along with proceeds from the Lodge’s annual “Stick it to Bruce” campaign.  Submitted by DR Patrick Garvin

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Hartford Freemasons support Personal Emergency Lifeline

The Freemasons of Hartford Masonic Lodge (No. 120) recently donated $1,000 to the Medical Center Foundation of Hartford to support the Personal Emergency Lifeline program. The Program offers a 24-hour connection to highly trained professionals, advanced personal monitoring technologies, and peace of mind for over 180 elderly or disabled individuals living alone in our community. Visit mcfhartford.org for more information. This was made possible by matching funds provided by the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation. Pictured above, from left: Sarah Grotelueschen, Executive

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Grand Master’s Message – February 2024

     Being a Mason can mean many different things to many different men. Masonry often means different things to the same man. So how do we reach out and meet the needs of our Brothers? There is only so much that can be done in the time of a lodge business meeting. The education piece given in lodge may stimulate some while leaving others bored. The education given may have seemed too basic for the older Mason or conversely over

Read More »

Crivitz Masonic Lodge supports special education

During a recent Lodge breakfast, the Brothers of Crivitz Masonic Lodge (No. 218) collected funds to support the Special Education Department at Crivitz Schools. This collection is in response to the Grand Lodge of Wisconsin’s special goal of supporting the Dyslexic Centers of Wisconsin. The Funds will be used to purchase manipulatives, which are specialized books and games to support students who learn in unique ways. Pictured above, from left: DR4-3, Douglas Morrison; Crivitz Schools special educators Mrs. Emler, and

Read More »

Freemasons and PetSmart partner up for kids’ smiles

District 1 Masons donated approximately 30 stuffed animals to the pediatric department nurses at Essentia Hospital in Duluth, Minnesota. The stuffed animals were donated by PetSmart and distributed by Freemasons of Wisconsin. This is the second year of the project. Brother Pete Berkland from Landmark Freemasons Lodge (No. 244) in Frederick facilitated and coordinated the event. Approximately 30 stuffed animals were also donated to Becky from the St. Lukes’s Foundation, those animals will be used for the pediatric department along

Read More »

Waukesha Freemasons have breakfast with Santa

The Freemasons of Waukesha Masonic Lodge’s recently held their annual “Breakfast with Santa” before the Christmastime holiday. Pictured above, Brother Jacob Ward played the role of Santa Claus.  Submitted by Brother Gary Ebert

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Reedsburg Freemasons Support Local Boys & Girls Club

Reedsburg Masonic Lodge (No. 79) Brothers Kyle Tennison and Bryant Clements recently presented a $400 check to Hailey from the Reedsburg Boys and Girls Club (top photo). This money helped buy Christmas gifts for those less fortunate children. A few weeks ago the Lodge presented the Boys and Girls Club a check for a $1,000 – bringing their level of support for this incredibly important community support organization to $1,400 for the year! Submitted by Brother Jon Fuhlbohm

Read More »

Sheyboygan Freemasons create backpacks for needy 

Sheboygan Freemasons Lodge (No. 11) recently put backpacks together which included much-needed items for the homeless in Sheboygan County. Each backpack contains a fleece blanket, a mylar emergency blanket, knit hat, gloves, toiletry items and a bible. These bags were distributed in early December. The idea for this was brought before the lodge by our newest Master Mason, Tony Bliesner. Brother Tony has volunteered with the Salvation Army for a number of years and shared with us that there are

Read More »

High Honors for Oconto Freemasons Lodge

Pine Freemasons Lodge (No. 188) in Oconto was honored during the joint installation of officers hosted at Marinette Freemasons Lodge (No. 182). District 4 Deputy Christopher “Skipper” Young presented the Brethren of Pine Lodge with a beautiful bronze plaque commissioned by the Scottish Rite Bodies Valley of Green Bay, proclaiming:  “The Supreme Council of the Sovereign Grand Inspectors General of the Thirty-Third and Last Degree of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry for the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction of the

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Phillips Freemasons Support Phillips AMVETS

The Freemasons of Phillips Lodge (#225), with matching funds from the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation, donated $200 to the AMVETS Phillips Post 50 Ladies Auxiliary to support local blood drives. Top photo: Check presentation from left: Josh Upson, Tony Budaj, Frank Dennee, Dolores Gradinjan, Al Cummings, Don Meetz, Jesse Tihlarik and Master Sawyer Ladenthin. Below: Brother Al Cummings donating blood. Standing: Linda Schweikert, Dolores Gradinjan, Carol Lapp and Etola Foytek.  Submitted by Brother Al Cummings

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Wisconsin Rapids Freemasons bring spirit of the season to all

A “Santa’s Special Christmas” event was held at the Wisconsin Rapids Freemasons Lodge on December 14th for children with special needs. The Lodge had a great Santa Claus who goes only by the name of Kris Kringle. The event was well attended by 86 parents and children of special needs. A children’s book on “beware of strangers” was given to each child along with candy canes and Christmas cookies. The excitement was truly evident in the look on the children’s

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Ripon Freemasons ring bells to raise money

Freemasons from Prairie View Masonic Lodge (No. 95), Ripon, rang the Salvation Army Bell at the Walgreens in Ripon on December 9th. Pictured is Tiler Phil Wepner ringing the Bell. Also taking a turn at ringing the bells throughout the day were Brothers (Master) Greg Frounfelter, Bill Boutwell, (PM) Meade Grim, Tom Archambo, (PM) Wes O’Laire, Kevan Nault, Tom Voight, Mike Brice and (PM) Rick Coles.  This is an annual event for the Ripon-based Brethren, as we proudly reported on

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Manitowoc Freemasons donate $1500 in gifts

With generous donations from the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation‘s “Hiram’s Helper Fund” and a local business, Manitowoc Freemasons Lodge was able to donate $1500 worth of gifts for The Salvation Army’s “Adopt a Family” program. The gifts — which were purchased by the members of Manitowoc Freemasons Lodge — helped to make this Christmas a happy one for three local families! From left: Lisa Stricklin from the Salvation Army, and Manitowoc Freemasons Lodge Brothers (Senior Warden) Aaron Hayon and (Junior Deacon)

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Dousman Freemasons ring in $1,547 for community

Brother Jack Raaths, Chaplain of Dousman Masonic Lodge, arranged for December 16th bell ringing for Salvation Army Red Kettle at Sendiks in Oconomowoc. Dousman Brothers pictured above from left: Tim Behling, Lake Country Lodge No. 42; David Waite, Glenn Shong, and Terry Brown. The Brothers had six teams spread across two-hour shifts from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM – and collected $1,547 for the cause! Submitted by Brothers Glenn Shong and Ryan Broom 

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D1 Christmas party honors Brothers’ service

Freemasons from throughout Northern Wisconsin and their Ladies enjoyed a great evening of good food, fun and fellowship at the District 1 Christmas Party.  Brother John Van Hollen was honored with his 60-year Scottish Rite award. Brother John has been in the hospital lately, so let’s keep him in our prayers! Above, receiving the 60 year award on behalf of Brother John Van Hollen are his children from left: Brother Jim Kman, Peggy Van Hollen Kman, PGM JB Van Hollen

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Onalaska Freemasons help to make the season bright

On December 21, 2023, the vibrant holiday spirit of giving shined bright as the local Masons from the Onalaska Freemasons Lodge joyously presented a generous donation of $500.00 to the Onalaska Food Pantry! Pictured above, the enthusiastic contributors included Master Will Lang, Treasurer Wes Hurlbert, and Junior Deacon David Hendrickson.  Ruth, the Food Basket Manager, and her team gratefully received this heartwarming gesture with immense excitement and appreciation. We are proud of work and generosity of the Brother Masons of

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Brother Tom Ewald Nominated as Time Magazine’s Wisconsin Dealer of the Year for 2024 

Brother Thomas Ewald is one of a select group of 49 dealer nominees from across the country who will be honored at the 107th annual National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Show in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Feb. 3, 2024.  The TIME Dealer of the Year award is one of the automobile industry’s most prestigious and highly coveted honors. The award recognizes the nation’s most successful auto dealers who also demonstrate a long-standing commitment to community service. Brother Ewald was chosen

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Three Pillars receives Fire Suppression Tool

Brother Travis Debban presents a Fire Suppression Tool (FST) to Three Pillars Senior Living Communities. The donation is made possible by the Masonic Wisconsin Masonic Foundation charity, working with local lodges as part of their “Acts of Kindness” initiatives. With an initial donation from the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation, fire suppression tools were purchased and over 370 have been distributed throughout the state. From left: Duane Bunting, Larry Nines, Travis Debban, Dave Renly, and Three Pillars CEO Mark Strautman, Glenn Shong

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Veterans at Three Pillars Honored 

By Brother Dennis Krahn  Brother Frank McKenna pulled together a special program on November 10, for the Masonic Veterans at Three Pillars which was presented in the Chapel of the assisted living center in Dousman. The Masonic Veterans of the Milwaukee Chapter #27 of National Sojourners, Inc., were very proud to honor our Veteran Brothers, Ladies and Widows on Veteran’s Day.  The Sojourners presented the Pledge of Allegiance, followed by the “Toast to the Flag” given by Colonel Brother Robert

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“Meal with a Peel” Rice Lake Potato Dinner Fundraiser

The Brothers of Blue Hills Freemasons Lodge (No. 234) in Rice Lake recently held their first annual “Meal with a Peel” potato dinner fundraiser. The event was held on October 23 at the Blue Hills Masonic Center as a fundraiser for general operating needs and to fund future community activities. Picture above, from left: Brothers Geoff Pederson, Scot Arnold, Mike Richter Russ LaPoint, Jamie Bartz and Pudge Kohel. The evening was viewed as a major success for the Lodge as

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Grand Master’s Message – January 2024

     A new year is upon us. The Badgers are playing on New Year’s Day (maybe not the bowl we wanted but they are playing). The future of Wisconsin Freemasonry is bright. A new year full of the hopes and desires that new beginnings always bring. It is a new start and almost anything is possible. We raised more Masons in 2023 than we did in 2022. Will we be saying the same next year about 2024? We just need

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District 6 Freemasons honor “Man of the Year”

Master Rich Brommer and Senior Warden Mike Hayden, Durand-Pepin Freemasons Lodge (No. 149), present the District 6 “Man of the Year Award” to Sandy Wayne, on behalf of her late husband Rick Wayne. Brother Wayne – a pillar of the Lodge – passed away in September of this year.  Submitted by Brother Mike Hunter, Secretary 

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Milwaukee Scottish Rite, local Lodges donate 4 FSTs to LifeStriders

On November 14th, the Valley of Milwaukee Scottish Rite, Lake Freemasons Lodge (No. 189) and Milwaukee-Harmony Freemasons Lodge (No. 261), in partnership with the Grand Lodge of Wisconsin, presented four Fire Suppression Tools (FSTs) to LifeStriders in Waukesha. LifeStriders is a non-profit organization that provides integrative and nature-based therapies to individuals with physical, emotional, and cognitive disabilities. The organization’s mission is to provide life-enhancing, physical and psychological experiences and services to individuals and families with special needs. LifeStriders’ programs are

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Chetek Freemasons donate $2800 to “Curtie Cares”

Chetek Freemasons Lodge (No. 277) and the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation proudly presented Brother Curt Harrison, founder of Curtie Cares, a donation of $2,800.00. Curtie Cares is a non-profit organization that “offers help and hope to the home-bound by giving them rides, running errands, or really whatever they need at no cost to the participants” (curtiecares.org). A big thanks to the Chetek community for their support of this worthwhile program. Pictured above, front row from left: Brothers Chuck Harrison, Tom Nicolaides,

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Zor Shrine “FEZtival of Trees” makes the season bright

It was a “Christmas Wonderland” featuring decorated trees sponsored by Lodges, businesses and organizations. Guests were welcomed by Zor Potentate Al Brueggen and Lady Penny and assisted by Santa’s helper, Brother Al Coenen. The event featured tree raffles and an opportunity for photos with Santa Claus. The lucky winners in the tree drawings got to pick up their tree, along with all gifts and decorations furnished by the sponsor, to take home for Christmas. Photos and text by Rich Rygh 

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Tosa Freemasons sponsor First Responders Fest

James M. Hays Freemasons Lodge (No. 331) was the lead sponsor of the Wauwatosa First Responders’ Fest at Hart Park in Wauwatosa earlier this year. The Brothers are seen pictured above with their $2,000 donation check. From left: Brothers Bob Skaradzinski, David Bengs, Master John Pettigrew, Tosa Police Chief (and Brother) James MacGillis, Norm Siegel, Charles Desjarlais, Paul Anderley and Chris Niggemeier.  Submitted by Brother Bob Skaradzinski, PM

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Daylite Freemasons make community donations

Freemasons from Milwaukee’s Daylite Masonic Lodge (No. 358) recently made Acts of Kindness Donations to the Ronald McDonald House of Eastern Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Humane Society. Top photo: Brothers Frank Foti (left) and Ron Hack present checks to Laurie Bertland of the Ronald McDonald House. Bottom photo: A staff person from the Wisconsin Humane Society receives checks from Brother Ron Hack.  Submitted by Brother Frank Foti, PM

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Brothers receive Quilts of Valor 

The mission of the Quilts of Valor Foundation is to cover service members and veterans touched by war with comforting and healing Quilts of Valor. It is a nonprofit national organization founded in 2003 by Catherine Roberts whose son was deployed in Iraq. The quilt is meant for healing and comfort and to thank veterans for their service. This is the 20th anniversary of Quilts of Valor, and they are working toward a goal of having presented over 500,000 quilts.

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Hurley Freemasons hold fall banquet

Brothers and their Ladies from Hurley Freemasons Lodge (No. 237) enjoyed their annual fall banquet on November 2nd, at the beautiful Aberdeen Restaurant in Manitowish Waters. The Lodge, which was founded in 1888 in Hurley, is now located in the former Marshfield Clinic building in on Highway 51 in Mercer. Clockwise from left: Ruth Leverson, Margaret and Evert Ellingson, Carol Burton, Julie and David Brach, Steve Botes, Bob Burton, Dick and Ginny Kemplin, Richard Indermuehle and Glen Leverson.  Submitted by

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Sojourners visit NEW Daylite Lodge 

The Milwaukee Chapter #27 of National Sojourners, Inc. made a visit to the NorthEast Wisconsin (NEW) Daylite Lodge in Green Bay on November 9th to honor Masonic Veterans. They presented the National Sojourner “Build the Flag”. Brother Lowell Scott, Past Grand Master Kenneth C. Gorgen, Brother Les Johnson, and President of Milwaukee Chapter #27 Brother Dennis Krahn represented the Sojourners and were honored to present many of the veterans with the Vietnam Commemorative pin. Chili and fellowship followed. Pictured above,

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Lodi Valley Freemasons donate $1000 to local EMS

Our Brothers at Lodi Valley Freemasons Lodge have been busy — again! After recently partnering with the Lodi Area Youth Baseball and Softball to be a GOLD sponsor of the youth athletics group, they have also made $1000 worth of year-end donations to two local Emergency Medical Services (EMS) groups. First, the Brothers Karl Markgraf and Roger Haarklau (in the photo directly above) delivered a check for $500 to the Lodi EMS along with a message of appreciation for their

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Annual Deer Camp Night at Prairie du Chien Lodge 

Members, guests, and family members enjoyed the Prairie du Chien Freemasons Lodge Annual Deer Camp Night on November 15th. There were 32 in attendance, including Grand Master David R. Ritchie and Junior Grand Warden Joseph E. Thompson.  Following a meal of chili, beer cheese soup, cheeses, crackers, summer sausage, and other sides, Brother Lowell Ahrens presented a program of his recent African Safari hunting trip which was enjoyed by all. Submitted by Brother Monte Steiber

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James M. Hays Masonic Lodge Celebrates 100 Years

James M. Hays Masonic Lodge (No. 331) recently hosted a centennial celebration dinner. The Lodge was chartered in June 13, 1923. In the photo above, Past Grand Master Allen E. Iding, a 61 year member of the Lodge, addresses the group gathered to celebrate the occasion. In 1923, another Lodge was needed on Milwaukee’s north side. Among the names proposed were those of Abraham Lincoln, Willard A. Van Brunt and James M. Hays. The organizing group of Masons chose Hays, a

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Blue Hills Lodge Donates to Rice Lake Snacks for Success Program 

By Brother Mike Richter  The Brothers of Blue Hills Freemasons Lodge (No. 234) recently presented a $2,000 check to the Rice Lake Area School District (RLASD) Snacks for Success program.  This is a huge need for RLASD as there are many children who are unable to bring a midday snack with them to school. Being hungry during the middle of the day makes it extremely difficult for children to focus on their studies.  Jackie Healy, Chairperson of the Snacks for

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41 Brothers Raised in Eau Claire Masonic Day of Light

By Senior Grand Deacon Earl Gunderson  Candidates from twenty-seven lodges from around Wisconsin assembled at the Eau Claire Masonic Center on November 4th to be brought to Light. Forty-one new Masons were raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason. The degrees and education were all expertly done under the excellent organization and tutelage of District 2 Lecturer Lester Paulson of Chippewa Falls and Eau Claire Freemasons Lodges. Masons from Districts 1, 2, 3 and 5 combined to make up the

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Square and Compass Run/Walk encourages Brotherly Love

Omro Masonic Lodge No. 168 won the Lodge Challenge trophy for having the most lodge members and friends registered for the Winneconne Lodge No. 186 first annual Square and Compass Run/Walk held on September 23. Master Jack Wirch (right) presents Master Tim Doolittle of Omro Lodge with the traveling trophy.  Submitted by Brother Jack Wirch

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Grand Master’s Message – December 2023

     We are now in my favorite season in the Masonic calendar. Installation time. By our code it is the sixty days either side of the Feast of Saint John the Evangelist celebrated on December 27. It is during the holiday season which alone adds a festive feel but it is more than that.      Watching a man who has spent years going through the chairs becoming Master of his lodge. The nervousness and anticipation barely concealed. The inevitable smile

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District 4 distributes jump bags to State Patrol

Seven emergency jump bags were presented to the Wisconsin State Patrol during the District 4 Fall Meeting at the Beja Masonic Center in Green Bay. These life-saving kits contain an AED and FST. Sgt. Dan Diedrich received these bags, and expressed his gratitude, knowing they’ll be distributed across Northeast Wisconsin. From left: Senior Grand Warden Jeffrey S. Schoenfeldt, State Patrol Sgt. Dan Diedrich and District 4 Deputy Christopher J. Young. 

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Reedsburg’s Annual Shed Lodge 

By Rich Rygh, Wisconsin Masonic Journal Brothers from across the state enjoyed Reedsburg Lodge’s Annual Shed Lodge on September 30. Brother Dan Brylla made his “shed” available for an afternoon of blue jeans, good old Masonic Fellowship and great food. This has truly become a “can’t miss” event for may Brothers.  Brother Leonard Pickett prepared the barbecued ribs and Brother Dan Brylla and his Lady Sue prepared the “fixins” and dessert to go with them.  Brother Skip Blake gave a

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District 2 Draws Large Turnout for Fall District Meeting

By Senior Grand Deacon Earl Gunderson  District 2 held their Fall Meeting on October 5, at the Phoenix Grill & Event Center in Baldwin. More than 80 Masons, significant others and guests attended.  The evening opened with the opening prayer by Brother Burt Hamm of Chetek Lodge. Brother Burt has been recovering from a motorcycle accident and the Brethren were both thrilled and surprised to see him!  An outstanding Tex-Mex meal was then served buffet-style.  Following the meal the presentation of

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Dodgeville Masonic Lodge Helps Others

By Kenyon Bennett , The Dodgeville Chronicle  Freemasons, also known as Masons, are members of the world’s oldest fraternal organization that was begun as a guild for stonemasons, skilled builders, in Europe during the Middle Ages. Tracing the organization to a specific date is futile. That knowledge has been lost to history. Secret practices, such as symbolic handshakes and greetings that Freemasons use, are often shrouded in mystery. Dodgeville has its Masons, perhaps best known for trying to help others in

Read More »

“Stick it to Bruce” campaign raises $2100 for Whitewater, Palmyra food pantries

St. John’s Lodge Freemasons Lodge (No. 57) continued their annual “Stick it to Bruce” fundraiser for local food pantries. Each year in December, Brother Bruce Eshelman challenges the members of St. John’s to donate money for this purpose. He matches the donations, thus allowing the Brothers to stick it to him! Above: Brother Eshelman presents a check for $1400 to volunteers of the Whitewater Community Food Pantry. From left: Barbara Koch, Pat Chaput and Kathy Bolchen. He also presented $700

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Milwaukee Valley Scottish Rite supports Street Angels

In November and December 2023, our Valley of Milwaukee held our second annual collection of items to be donated to Street Angels Milwaukee Outreach to benefit and support Milwaukee’s homeless community. Street Angels Milwaukee Outreach is a mobile outreach program, dedicated to bridging the gap between homelessness and housing in the greater Milwaukee area. Their mission focuses on support, advocacy, and community collaboration. Operating three nights a week, Street Angels volunteers travel throughout the Milwaukee community providing essential services and

Read More »

Students at St. John’s Northwestern Academy read books, raise money for Dyslexia Center

Brother Michael Stadler, a member of the Valley of Madison Scottish Rite who teaches high school English at St. John’s Northwestern Academy in Delafield, recently presented a generous check to the Children’s Dyslexia Center of Madison. Brother Stadler is the advisor for their Chapter of the National English Honor Society which held a read-a-thon as a fall fundraiser. They have graciously donated the funds raised during that read-a-thon for the Dyslexia Center. Pictured above, from left: accepting the check is

Read More »

PetSmart and District 1 Masons Provide Stuffed Animals for Kids 

District 1 Masons recently distributed stuffed animals donated by PetSmart to the Iron River First Responders and Iron River Fire Department. Animals were also provided to the Iron River VFW at Christmas time, giving Santa and his elves a little help during the busy holiday season.  Brother Don Miller and District 1 Deputy Danny L. Bourassa (pictured above with Santa and a lucky stuffed animal recipient) were on hand for assistance.  These donations are in addition to the Brothers dropping

Read More »

New sign on Crivitz Masonic Center

A $500 grant was received to build a 16” x 10’ sign on the front of the Crivitz Masonic Center. Total cost of sign and installation was $2285.  Your Wisconsin Freemasonry Leadership Team and the physical media committee are proud to offer your Lodge a one-time “Physical Media Grant.” Much like the “Acts of Kindness” program, these are matching dollars – up to $500 – that will go towards helping you publicize and promote Freemasonry in your community.  What qualifies?  •

Read More »

Hartford Freemasons support Washington County youth

Hartford Masonic Lodge (No. 120) recently donated $1,000 to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Washington County. The funds will be used to support the mental wellness of the youth of Washington county. Visit www.namiwashingtonwi.org for more information. This was made possible by matching funds through the “Acts of Kindness” program which was provided by the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation. Pictured, from left: Brother Kyle Richards, NAMI Board President Suzanne Milkus and Hartford Masonic Master Jim Hunt.  Submitted by

Read More »

Milton Freemasons support Milton Food Bank

Above, Kyla Wilson and Tom Westrick of the Milton Food Bank received an $850 donation from Milton Freemasons Lodge Master Brian Duoss (pictured on the right) on December 20th. The funds were collected throughout the year – along with proceeds from the Lodge’s annual “Stick it to Bruce” campaign.  Submitted by DR Patrick Garvin

Read More »

Hartford Freemasons support Personal Emergency Lifeline

The Freemasons of Hartford Masonic Lodge (No. 120) recently donated $1,000 to the Medical Center Foundation of Hartford to support the Personal Emergency Lifeline program. The Program offers a 24-hour connection to highly trained professionals, advanced personal monitoring technologies, and peace of mind for over 180 elderly or disabled individuals living alone in our community. Visit mcfhartford.org for more information. This was made possible by matching funds provided by the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation. Pictured above, from left: Sarah Grotelueschen, Executive

Read More »

Grand Master’s Message – February 2024

     Being a Mason can mean many different things to many different men. Masonry often means different things to the same man. So how do we reach out and meet the needs of our Brothers? There is only so much that can be done in the time of a lodge business meeting. The education piece given in lodge may stimulate some while leaving others bored. The education given may have seemed too basic for the older Mason or conversely over

Read More »

Crivitz Masonic Lodge supports special education

During a recent Lodge breakfast, the Brothers of Crivitz Masonic Lodge (No. 218) collected funds to support the Special Education Department at Crivitz Schools. This collection is in response to the Grand Lodge of Wisconsin’s special goal of supporting the Dyslexic Centers of Wisconsin. The Funds will be used to purchase manipulatives, which are specialized books and games to support students who learn in unique ways. Pictured above, from left: DR4-3, Douglas Morrison; Crivitz Schools special educators Mrs. Emler, and

Read More »

Freemasons and PetSmart partner up for kids’ smiles

District 1 Masons donated approximately 30 stuffed animals to the pediatric department nurses at Essentia Hospital in Duluth, Minnesota. The stuffed animals were donated by PetSmart and distributed by Freemasons of Wisconsin. This is the second year of the project. Brother Pete Berkland from Landmark Freemasons Lodge (No. 244) in Frederick facilitated and coordinated the event. Approximately 30 stuffed animals were also donated to Becky from the St. Lukes’s Foundation, those animals will be used for the pediatric department along

Read More »

Waukesha Freemasons have breakfast with Santa

The Freemasons of Waukesha Masonic Lodge’s recently held their annual “Breakfast with Santa” before the Christmastime holiday. Pictured above, Brother Jacob Ward played the role of Santa Claus.  Submitted by Brother Gary Ebert

Read More »

Reedsburg Freemasons Support Local Boys & Girls Club

Reedsburg Masonic Lodge (No. 79) Brothers Kyle Tennison and Bryant Clements recently presented a $400 check to Hailey from the Reedsburg Boys and Girls Club (top photo). This money helped buy Christmas gifts for those less fortunate children. A few weeks ago the Lodge presented the Boys and Girls Club a check for a $1,000 – bringing their level of support for this incredibly important community support organization to $1,400 for the year! Submitted by Brother Jon Fuhlbohm

Read More »

Sheyboygan Freemasons create backpacks for needy 

Sheboygan Freemasons Lodge (No. 11) recently put backpacks together which included much-needed items for the homeless in Sheboygan County. Each backpack contains a fleece blanket, a mylar emergency blanket, knit hat, gloves, toiletry items and a bible. These bags were distributed in early December. The idea for this was brought before the lodge by our newest Master Mason, Tony Bliesner. Brother Tony has volunteered with the Salvation Army for a number of years and shared with us that there are

Read More »

High Honors for Oconto Freemasons Lodge

Pine Freemasons Lodge (No. 188) in Oconto was honored during the joint installation of officers hosted at Marinette Freemasons Lodge (No. 182). District 4 Deputy Christopher “Skipper” Young presented the Brethren of Pine Lodge with a beautiful bronze plaque commissioned by the Scottish Rite Bodies Valley of Green Bay, proclaiming:  “The Supreme Council of the Sovereign Grand Inspectors General of the Thirty-Third and Last Degree of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry for the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction of the

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Phillips Freemasons Support Phillips AMVETS

The Freemasons of Phillips Lodge (#225), with matching funds from the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation, donated $200 to the AMVETS Phillips Post 50 Ladies Auxiliary to support local blood drives. Top photo: Check presentation from left: Josh Upson, Tony Budaj, Frank Dennee, Dolores Gradinjan, Al Cummings, Don Meetz, Jesse Tihlarik and Master Sawyer Ladenthin. Below: Brother Al Cummings donating blood. Standing: Linda Schweikert, Dolores Gradinjan, Carol Lapp and Etola Foytek.  Submitted by Brother Al Cummings

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Wisconsin Rapids Freemasons bring spirit of the season to all

A “Santa’s Special Christmas” event was held at the Wisconsin Rapids Freemasons Lodge on December 14th for children with special needs. The Lodge had a great Santa Claus who goes only by the name of Kris Kringle. The event was well attended by 86 parents and children of special needs. A children’s book on “beware of strangers” was given to each child along with candy canes and Christmas cookies. The excitement was truly evident in the look on the children’s

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Ripon Freemasons ring bells to raise money

Freemasons from Prairie View Masonic Lodge (No. 95), Ripon, rang the Salvation Army Bell at the Walgreens in Ripon on December 9th. Pictured is Tiler Phil Wepner ringing the Bell. Also taking a turn at ringing the bells throughout the day were Brothers (Master) Greg Frounfelter, Bill Boutwell, (PM) Meade Grim, Tom Archambo, (PM) Wes O’Laire, Kevan Nault, Tom Voight, Mike Brice and (PM) Rick Coles.  This is an annual event for the Ripon-based Brethren, as we proudly reported on

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Manitowoc Freemasons donate $1500 in gifts

With generous donations from the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation‘s “Hiram’s Helper Fund” and a local business, Manitowoc Freemasons Lodge was able to donate $1500 worth of gifts for The Salvation Army’s “Adopt a Family” program. The gifts — which were purchased by the members of Manitowoc Freemasons Lodge — helped to make this Christmas a happy one for three local families! From left: Lisa Stricklin from the Salvation Army, and Manitowoc Freemasons Lodge Brothers (Senior Warden) Aaron Hayon and (Junior Deacon)

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Dousman Freemasons ring in $1,547 for community

Brother Jack Raaths, Chaplain of Dousman Masonic Lodge, arranged for December 16th bell ringing for Salvation Army Red Kettle at Sendiks in Oconomowoc. Dousman Brothers pictured above from left: Tim Behling, Lake Country Lodge No. 42; David Waite, Glenn Shong, and Terry Brown. The Brothers had six teams spread across two-hour shifts from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM – and collected $1,547 for the cause! Submitted by Brothers Glenn Shong and Ryan Broom 

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D1 Christmas party honors Brothers’ service

Freemasons from throughout Northern Wisconsin and their Ladies enjoyed a great evening of good food, fun and fellowship at the District 1 Christmas Party.  Brother John Van Hollen was honored with his 60-year Scottish Rite award. Brother John has been in the hospital lately, so let’s keep him in our prayers! Above, receiving the 60 year award on behalf of Brother John Van Hollen are his children from left: Brother Jim Kman, Peggy Van Hollen Kman, PGM JB Van Hollen

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Onalaska Freemasons help to make the season bright

On December 21, 2023, the vibrant holiday spirit of giving shined bright as the local Masons from the Onalaska Freemasons Lodge joyously presented a generous donation of $500.00 to the Onalaska Food Pantry! Pictured above, the enthusiastic contributors included Master Will Lang, Treasurer Wes Hurlbert, and Junior Deacon David Hendrickson.  Ruth, the Food Basket Manager, and her team gratefully received this heartwarming gesture with immense excitement and appreciation. We are proud of work and generosity of the Brother Masons of

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Brother Tom Ewald Nominated as Time Magazine’s Wisconsin Dealer of the Year for 2024 

Brother Thomas Ewald is one of a select group of 49 dealer nominees from across the country who will be honored at the 107th annual National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Show in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Feb. 3, 2024.  The TIME Dealer of the Year award is one of the automobile industry’s most prestigious and highly coveted honors. The award recognizes the nation’s most successful auto dealers who also demonstrate a long-standing commitment to community service. Brother Ewald was chosen

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Three Pillars receives Fire Suppression Tool

Brother Travis Debban presents a Fire Suppression Tool (FST) to Three Pillars Senior Living Communities. The donation is made possible by the Masonic Wisconsin Masonic Foundation charity, working with local lodges as part of their “Acts of Kindness” initiatives. With an initial donation from the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation, fire suppression tools were purchased and over 370 have been distributed throughout the state. From left: Duane Bunting, Larry Nines, Travis Debban, Dave Renly, and Three Pillars CEO Mark Strautman, Glenn Shong

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Veterans at Three Pillars Honored 

By Brother Dennis Krahn  Brother Frank McKenna pulled together a special program on November 10, for the Masonic Veterans at Three Pillars which was presented in the Chapel of the assisted living center in Dousman. The Masonic Veterans of the Milwaukee Chapter #27 of National Sojourners, Inc., were very proud to honor our Veteran Brothers, Ladies and Widows on Veteran’s Day.  The Sojourners presented the Pledge of Allegiance, followed by the “Toast to the Flag” given by Colonel Brother Robert

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“Meal with a Peel” Rice Lake Potato Dinner Fundraiser

The Brothers of Blue Hills Freemasons Lodge (No. 234) in Rice Lake recently held their first annual “Meal with a Peel” potato dinner fundraiser. The event was held on October 23 at the Blue Hills Masonic Center as a fundraiser for general operating needs and to fund future community activities. Picture above, from left: Brothers Geoff Pederson, Scot Arnold, Mike Richter Russ LaPoint, Jamie Bartz and Pudge Kohel. The evening was viewed as a major success for the Lodge as

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Grand Master’s Message – January 2024

     A new year is upon us. The Badgers are playing on New Year’s Day (maybe not the bowl we wanted but they are playing). The future of Wisconsin Freemasonry is bright. A new year full of the hopes and desires that new beginnings always bring. It is a new start and almost anything is possible. We raised more Masons in 2023 than we did in 2022. Will we be saying the same next year about 2024? We just need

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District 6 Freemasons honor “Man of the Year”

Master Rich Brommer and Senior Warden Mike Hayden, Durand-Pepin Freemasons Lodge (No. 149), present the District 6 “Man of the Year Award” to Sandy Wayne, on behalf of her late husband Rick Wayne. Brother Wayne – a pillar of the Lodge – passed away in September of this year.  Submitted by Brother Mike Hunter, Secretary 

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Milwaukee Scottish Rite, local Lodges donate 4 FSTs to LifeStriders

On November 14th, the Valley of Milwaukee Scottish Rite, Lake Freemasons Lodge (No. 189) and Milwaukee-Harmony Freemasons Lodge (No. 261), in partnership with the Grand Lodge of Wisconsin, presented four Fire Suppression Tools (FSTs) to LifeStriders in Waukesha. LifeStriders is a non-profit organization that provides integrative and nature-based therapies to individuals with physical, emotional, and cognitive disabilities. The organization’s mission is to provide life-enhancing, physical and psychological experiences and services to individuals and families with special needs. LifeStriders’ programs are

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Chetek Freemasons donate $2800 to “Curtie Cares”

Chetek Freemasons Lodge (No. 277) and the Wisconsin Masonic Foundation proudly presented Brother Curt Harrison, founder of Curtie Cares, a donation of $2,800.00. Curtie Cares is a non-profit organization that “offers help and hope to the home-bound by giving them rides, running errands, or really whatever they need at no cost to the participants” (curtiecares.org). A big thanks to the Chetek community for their support of this worthwhile program. Pictured above, front row from left: Brothers Chuck Harrison, Tom Nicolaides,

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Zor Shrine “FEZtival of Trees” makes the season bright

It was a “Christmas Wonderland” featuring decorated trees sponsored by Lodges, businesses and organizations. Guests were welcomed by Zor Potentate Al Brueggen and Lady Penny and assisted by Santa’s helper, Brother Al Coenen. The event featured tree raffles and an opportunity for photos with Santa Claus. The lucky winners in the tree drawings got to pick up their tree, along with all gifts and decorations furnished by the sponsor, to take home for Christmas. Photos and text by Rich Rygh 

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Tosa Freemasons sponsor First Responders Fest

James M. Hays Freemasons Lodge (No. 331) was the lead sponsor of the Wauwatosa First Responders’ Fest at Hart Park in Wauwatosa earlier this year. The Brothers are seen pictured above with their $2,000 donation check. From left: Brothers Bob Skaradzinski, David Bengs, Master John Pettigrew, Tosa Police Chief (and Brother) James MacGillis, Norm Siegel, Charles Desjarlais, Paul Anderley and Chris Niggemeier.  Submitted by Brother Bob Skaradzinski, PM

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Daylite Freemasons make community donations

Freemasons from Milwaukee’s Daylite Masonic Lodge (No. 358) recently made Acts of Kindness Donations to the Ronald McDonald House of Eastern Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Humane Society. Top photo: Brothers Frank Foti (left) and Ron Hack present checks to Laurie Bertland of the Ronald McDonald House. Bottom photo: A staff person from the Wisconsin Humane Society receives checks from Brother Ron Hack.  Submitted by Brother Frank Foti, PM

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Brothers receive Quilts of Valor 

The mission of the Quilts of Valor Foundation is to cover service members and veterans touched by war with comforting and healing Quilts of Valor. It is a nonprofit national organization founded in 2003 by Catherine Roberts whose son was deployed in Iraq. The quilt is meant for healing and comfort and to thank veterans for their service. This is the 20th anniversary of Quilts of Valor, and they are working toward a goal of having presented over 500,000 quilts.

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Hurley Freemasons hold fall banquet

Brothers and their Ladies from Hurley Freemasons Lodge (No. 237) enjoyed their annual fall banquet on November 2nd, at the beautiful Aberdeen Restaurant in Manitowish Waters. The Lodge, which was founded in 1888 in Hurley, is now located in the former Marshfield Clinic building in on Highway 51 in Mercer. Clockwise from left: Ruth Leverson, Margaret and Evert Ellingson, Carol Burton, Julie and David Brach, Steve Botes, Bob Burton, Dick and Ginny Kemplin, Richard Indermuehle and Glen Leverson.  Submitted by

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Sojourners visit NEW Daylite Lodge 

The Milwaukee Chapter #27 of National Sojourners, Inc. made a visit to the NorthEast Wisconsin (NEW) Daylite Lodge in Green Bay on November 9th to honor Masonic Veterans. They presented the National Sojourner “Build the Flag”. Brother Lowell Scott, Past Grand Master Kenneth C. Gorgen, Brother Les Johnson, and President of Milwaukee Chapter #27 Brother Dennis Krahn represented the Sojourners and were honored to present many of the veterans with the Vietnam Commemorative pin. Chili and fellowship followed. Pictured above,

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Lodi Valley Freemasons donate $1000 to local EMS

Our Brothers at Lodi Valley Freemasons Lodge have been busy — again! After recently partnering with the Lodi Area Youth Baseball and Softball to be a GOLD sponsor of the youth athletics group, they have also made $1000 worth of year-end donations to two local Emergency Medical Services (EMS) groups. First, the Brothers Karl Markgraf and Roger Haarklau (in the photo directly above) delivered a check for $500 to the Lodi EMS along with a message of appreciation for their

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Annual Deer Camp Night at Prairie du Chien Lodge 

Members, guests, and family members enjoyed the Prairie du Chien Freemasons Lodge Annual Deer Camp Night on November 15th. There were 32 in attendance, including Grand Master David R. Ritchie and Junior Grand Warden Joseph E. Thompson.  Following a meal of chili, beer cheese soup, cheeses, crackers, summer sausage, and other sides, Brother Lowell Ahrens presented a program of his recent African Safari hunting trip which was enjoyed by all. Submitted by Brother Monte Steiber

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James M. Hays Masonic Lodge Celebrates 100 Years

James M. Hays Masonic Lodge (No. 331) recently hosted a centennial celebration dinner. The Lodge was chartered in June 13, 1923. In the photo above, Past Grand Master Allen E. Iding, a 61 year member of the Lodge, addresses the group gathered to celebrate the occasion. In 1923, another Lodge was needed on Milwaukee’s north side. Among the names proposed were those of Abraham Lincoln, Willard A. Van Brunt and James M. Hays. The organizing group of Masons chose Hays, a

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Blue Hills Lodge Donates to Rice Lake Snacks for Success Program 

By Brother Mike Richter  The Brothers of Blue Hills Freemasons Lodge (No. 234) recently presented a $2,000 check to the Rice Lake Area School District (RLASD) Snacks for Success program.  This is a huge need for RLASD as there are many children who are unable to bring a midday snack with them to school. Being hungry during the middle of the day makes it extremely difficult for children to focus on their studies.  Jackie Healy, Chairperson of the Snacks for

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41 Brothers Raised in Eau Claire Masonic Day of Light

By Senior Grand Deacon Earl Gunderson  Candidates from twenty-seven lodges from around Wisconsin assembled at the Eau Claire Masonic Center on November 4th to be brought to Light. Forty-one new Masons were raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason. The degrees and education were all expertly done under the excellent organization and tutelage of District 2 Lecturer Lester Paulson of Chippewa Falls and Eau Claire Freemasons Lodges. Masons from Districts 1, 2, 3 and 5 combined to make up the

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Square and Compass Run/Walk encourages Brotherly Love

Omro Masonic Lodge No. 168 won the Lodge Challenge trophy for having the most lodge members and friends registered for the Winneconne Lodge No. 186 first annual Square and Compass Run/Walk held on September 23. Master Jack Wirch (right) presents Master Tim Doolittle of Omro Lodge with the traveling trophy.  Submitted by Brother Jack Wirch

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Grand Master’s Message – December 2023

     We are now in my favorite season in the Masonic calendar. Installation time. By our code it is the sixty days either side of the Feast of Saint John the Evangelist celebrated on December 27. It is during the holiday season which alone adds a festive feel but it is more than that.      Watching a man who has spent years going through the chairs becoming Master of his lodge. The nervousness and anticipation barely concealed. The inevitable smile

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District 4 distributes jump bags to State Patrol

Seven emergency jump bags were presented to the Wisconsin State Patrol during the District 4 Fall Meeting at the Beja Masonic Center in Green Bay. These life-saving kits contain an AED and FST. Sgt. Dan Diedrich received these bags, and expressed his gratitude, knowing they’ll be distributed across Northeast Wisconsin. From left: Senior Grand Warden Jeffrey S. Schoenfeldt, State Patrol Sgt. Dan Diedrich and District 4 Deputy Christopher J. Young. 

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Reedsburg’s Annual Shed Lodge 

By Rich Rygh, Wisconsin Masonic Journal Brothers from across the state enjoyed Reedsburg Lodge’s Annual Shed Lodge on September 30. Brother Dan Brylla made his “shed” available for an afternoon of blue jeans, good old Masonic Fellowship and great food. This has truly become a “can’t miss” event for may Brothers.  Brother Leonard Pickett prepared the barbecued ribs and Brother Dan Brylla and his Lady Sue prepared the “fixins” and dessert to go with them.  Brother Skip Blake gave a

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District 2 Draws Large Turnout for Fall District Meeting

By Senior Grand Deacon Earl Gunderson  District 2 held their Fall Meeting on October 5, at the Phoenix Grill & Event Center in Baldwin. More than 80 Masons, significant others and guests attended.  The evening opened with the opening prayer by Brother Burt Hamm of Chetek Lodge. Brother Burt has been recovering from a motorcycle accident and the Brethren were both thrilled and surprised to see him!  An outstanding Tex-Mex meal was then served buffet-style.  Following the meal the presentation of

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