Dodgeball for Dyslexia 2017

DSCF1048.JPGOn Saturday, May 13th Elizabethtown Chapter, Order of DeMolay, hosted the Dodgeball for Dyslexia III Tournament at Spooky Nook Sports complex in Manheim, PA.  This event to benefit the Scottish Rite Children’s Dyslexia Centers, Pennsylvania DeMolay’s State Charity since 2000, was planned by Elizabethtown’ Past Master Councilor Evan Crawford, who has been organizing and promoting the event since its inception in 2015.

This was the most successful year for the tournament ever, with 13 teams supporting the event.  This included five DeMolay Chapters from Pennsylvania, four DeMolay Chapters from Virginia, an “Old Guys” team made up of Senior DeMolays and Masons, the Scottish Rite Valley of Bloomsburg, Ubar Grotto and Abraham C. Treichler Lodge No. 682.

A total of $3,154.00 was raised and will be donated to five Children’s Dyslexia Centers in Pennsylvania, based upon funds raised by the DeMolay Chapters meeting in the area of the centers in Bloomsburg, Harrisburg, Lancaster, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, and the Southern Masonic Jurisdiction, AASR,  Rite Care Children’s Language Program on behalf of the DeMolay Chapters in Virginia.

Three teams were recognized for winning various aspects of the competition: the Treichler Lodge Dice Gallery was the winner of the Golden Dodgeball for placing first in the tournament; the Valley of Bloomsburg AASR won the Silver Dodgeball for raising the most money for the charity, and the Burnt Toast Team from Virginia won the Bronze Dodgeball for showing the most spirit throughout the four -hour tournament.

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DeMolay Universe Saved at Action Hero Weekend!

The PA DeMolay Universe was assembled at Patton Campus on May 5th to 7th for Action Hero Weekend: Superhero Training Academy. Participants were challenged to save the DeMolay Universe and help find PA DeMolay’s official superhero: Jacques Lightyear. Members had the chance to go through challenges, workshops and activities in order to receive clues that helped lead to the whereabouts of Jacques Lightyear.

So where did the members find our favorite superhero? At the movie theater of course. Jacques Lightyear and the members of PA DeMolay enjoyed a private screening of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. A special thank you to Movi-Etown for making the movie theater experience possible. A great weekend to start a new era in PA DeMolay, with the official start of new Executive Officer, Gregory Schaeffer. Thank you to everyone for making the weekend a success.

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A Message From the E.O.

To my fellow DeMolays and Advisors in Pennsylvania:

Hopefully, the news had reached you that “Dad” Tom Labagh, who has been serving as Executive Officer for 17 years, decided to step down, and chose me as his replacement.  I thank “Dad” Labagh for his many years of leadership, and hope he continues to serve DeMolay in a different capacity!

For those who may not know me very well, I wanted to introduce myself (don’t worry, I won’t rattle off a laundry list of honors and awards!)

The main reason that I agreed to accept this position was because of how much DeMolay meant to me as a young man.  When I joined Elizabethtown Chapter, I was a shy 13-year old, who had a fear of public speaking.  Because of Advisors like “Dad” Berry, “Dad” Freedman, and “Dad” Ray, I learned how to overcome that.  I went to college in Ohio, so I never had the opportunity to serve as a State Officer, but even so, the DeMolay experience was incredible.

Since I turned 21, I’ve done everything in my power to make sure DeMolay continues to grow and thrive.  When I graduated from college, I took a job with IBM as a software engineer, which required me to move to upstate New York.  For 12 years, I worked with Orange-Rockland Central Chapter, as their Ritual Advisor, then later Chapter Advisor, then later Chairman.  Hands down, my most satisfying work has been those years working at the Chapter level, because I got to mentor DeMolays for a long period of time, seeing them mature and improve just as I did!

I’ve always tried to remain active with Pennsylvania DeMolay, and that includes an active streak of 19 years being on the Key Man staff, and helping out as an Advisor with Elizabethtown Chapter as best I could.

I’m very thankful to be taking on this role with a strong support system in place.  Pennsylvania DeMolay has an incredible set of dedicated Advisors, and unparalleled Masonic support.  We are already one of the strongest Jurisdictions!  My vision as Executive Officer is to change some policies, and rework the state-level staff organization, to ensure that every Chapter gets the help it needs, and that we provide the best possible support to the DeMolays and Advisors.

Over the next couple of blog posts, I’ll be announcing those staff changes, and I strongly encourage you to attend Convention, where I will announce my policy changes.  For the Advisors, there will be a Q&A session with me at Convention after those changes are announced, so I can hear your feedback.

Each one of us — whether a DeMolay or an Advisor — is a volunteer, working towards a common goal: to help Pennsylvania DeMolay grow, and to make sure it is around for the next generation of young men!  I hope to do exactly that, with your help.  Thanks for everything you have done, and will continue to do, in that spirit!

Fraternally, “Dad” Greg Schaeffer, Executive Officer

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Templar Does Airsoft

Templar Chapter, located in Pittsburgh, hosted an Airsoft Party for their DeMolay Month Activity. Yes, airsoft… DeMolay’s shooting other DeMolays! Don’t worry, no one gets hurt. The sport is similar to Paintball, except instead of paint, airsoft pellets are used. It was a two-hour event hosted by Master Councilor Bro. Mitch Holmes and the members of Templar Chapter. Chapters that also attended the event were Lincoln Chapter and Westmoreland Chapter. Rainbow Assemblies that had attended were Hope #186 and Irwin #42. In total, 40 people attended the event and had a great time. Templar plans on doing this event in the future, as this proved to be an excellent regional activity!


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The Quest for the Holy Grail

DSC_0102On March 17 to 19th, Pennsylvania DeMolay hosted a spectacular event called Movie Mashup Weekend: Quest for the Holy Grail. The weekend was based around the well known film, Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Members and sweethearts were divided into groups and created knights. Throughout the day, each group participated in challenges and activities that lead to the Quest for the Holy Grail, an escape room with the main goal being to find the grail. Participants dressed the part with knight costumes and NERF swords.

On Saturday night, because of the overwhelming efforts of the members to raise money for the Children’s Dyslexia Center, each Elected State Officer and the State Sweetheart were pied in the face by a member. Advisors “Dad” Joe Pullin and “Mom” Angela Lennox were also talked into “taking one for the team.” On Sunday morning, the members of Allentown Chapter performed an excellent Chapel Service to observe their annual Devotional Day Observance. Thanks to everyone for making this an incredible weekend.

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