Monday, August 3, 2015

Good Morning All and Welcome to August!
Congratulations go out to our Sovereign Prince, Bro. Russell Combs, 32° MSA for a fantastic Valley Family Picnic this past Saturday! Great job Russ!
Our High Priest and Sovereign Prince-in waiting, Ill. Harry Rutter,33° has already booked next year's Picnic with the folks at the Canstatter. The date will be Saturday, 30 July. Hmm. That date seems familiar to me for some reason???
So, what's next up for the Valley of Philadelphia? Why our Fall Reunion of course!
No Reunion can start without Degrees being selected and Casts assigned and rituals being sent out. Done. Well, almost done. We still have to have the Cast Kick Off meeting for the 4°. As soon as our Degree Master, Bro.Brian Skoff , 32° gets his date to me for that event, I will send a letter out to the members of our Spring Class to encourage them to take part in this project.
Now as you know in recent years we've given the 4° to our newest members as an opportunity for them to jump right in and get their feet wet so to speak in our Degrees. But, if you've been a member for a number of years and have thought about getting involved but haven't had the time, were shy or just didn't know why you didn't, you too are welcome to attend the Kick Off and take part in the 4° Cast. We'll make room for you!
Our Fall Reunion begins on Friday, 16 October. That evening we will present the aforementioned 4°, along with the 14° and the for the very first time in the Valley of Philadelphia, the new ritual of the 31°.
Our Thrice Potent Master, Bro. Douglass Hocker, 32° and the other Officers, including all the new Guards appointed following the Officer's Conference, will present the 14°, which is back as part of our 'Traditional' Fall Reunion plan.
The new 31°, 'My Brother's Keeper' will be presented by a team of Valley Brethren who are also members of Thomson Lodge No. 340. Thank you to Bro. Frank J Lorine, 32° who stepped up to volunteer to recruit a Cast from his Lodge and to serve as Degree Master for this Degree.
Bro. Frank tells me our Thomson Brethren are very excited about performing the Degree and representing their Lodge. Well, we're excited too to see this first time conferral of a new Scottish Rite ritual!
If you have a number of Valley of Philadelphia Brethren in your Lodge and are interested in putting a Cast together for a future Degree conferral. Let us know. As of right now, we have requests from Lodges No. 51, 67, 115 and Lodge No. 506 is eager to return for another run. Please note that the ONLY Degrees that will not be Lodge Casted are the 4°, 14°, 18° and 32°.
For your calendar: The Fall Reunion will continue on Friday, 20 November with the conferrals of the 15° and 18° and conclude on Friday, 18 December with the presentation of the 32° only. BUT, that will be a BIG evening! As our Fall Class is named in honor of our Veteran Members of the Valley of Philadelphia, our Commander-in-Chief, Ill. Clay Melson, 33° MSA has arranged for 2015 Miss Philadelphia, Julie Rae Schluchter to be present that evening. She will sing the National Anthem and 'God Bless America' to honor our Veterans and Nation. She will be backed by a USAF Color Guard. Miss Schluchter will be the special guest for the Ladies Program while we're up in Gothic Hall for the 32° conferral.
Following the close of the Consistory, everyone, and that means Ladies and Brethren will be invited to Corinthian Hall to hear an address in honor of our Veterans, by Brother and General Wesley Craig, U.S. Army (Retired).
BUT WAIT THERE'S MORE! Yes, there is. Our Valley's Holiday Party happens on Saturday, 28 November at the Lazaretto Ballroom in Essington. Anyone who went last year will tell you that they had a great time and no doubt we will again this year. Watch the next issue of THE DOUBLE EAGLE for a ticket order form or you can download one RIGHT NOW by visiting:
Shhh. I shouldn't say this, but as you're all Brethren and Valley Ladies, I'm feeling a level of trust here: Our Commander-in-Chief, has sworn me to secrecy, but he has a REALLY BIG AND VERY EXCITING ANNOUNCEMENT that he will be allowing me to share with you very soon. Stay tuned to this blog, the Valley Website and THE DOUBLE EAGLE for more information. I can tell you this much, you'll read about it here first.
Well that'll fill you up for now. Have a great Monday everyone and an even better week ahead!

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Good Morning Everyone! It's Picnic Day!
This is a ticketed event; which means,
A. If you do not have a ticket, please do not just show up.
B. Having a ticket means you're in the count and that there will be food available for you.
C. Just showing up and sitting down to eat means, you've taken from a Brother who reserved before the final count went in; and that wouldn't be of a Masonic character.
For those of you that have never been there before, Canstatter's picnic grove is shaded in most of the tabled area. Be sure to bring a table cloth unless you don't mind being on the bare wood.
Beer and mixed drinks are sold on sight. Please do not bring a cooler with your own, it is prohibited. And, no, these items are not included in your ticket price.
If you're bringing a Master Mason guest, please be sure to introduce him to myself or Bro. Dan Scheetz so that we can be sure that he is part of our 'short' Scottish Rite Membership Program.
If you ordered tickets and are paying for them at the event. Please see me upon arrival.
Your lawn chairs are welcome.
The Rainbow and DeMolay folks will be running games and activities throughout the day, Participate and have fun. Be sure to thank them for doing this for us. That small gesture goes a very long way,
Other than all of the above, have a great time and we'll see you there!