Gulf Beach Lodge Awards 2023 Scholarship

(L-R Joe Sosa, Master; Alexis Winter; Steve Johnson, Chairman)

Gulf Beach Masonic Lodge presented its annual Albert T. and Tupper MacMillan Scholarship, supported by the Ernest J. Freeman Jr. Memorial Scholarship Fund. The Scholarship was presented to Ms. Alexis Winter a graduating Senior at Hollins High School in St. Petersburg. Ms. Winter will be attending the University of Florida in the Fall where she will begin her studies in Psychology. Her future goal is to earn her degree in Psychiatry. Ms. Winter has volunteered over 161 hours in the community, including many service hours for Keep Pinellas Beautiful. Ms. Winter has been active several service clubs at Hollins High School, including being President of the Interact Club as well as belonging to the Book Club, Crochet Club (which crocheted baby hats and blankets for babies in Sierra Leone), Garden Club (which worked towards beautifying the school grounds), and the Academic Team.

Scholastically, Ms. Winter earned Valedictorian this year and was repeatedly on the Principal’s List and Honor Roll, graduating with a 4.697 weighted GPA. She earned a Cambridge Diploma and was recognized with an ‘Outstanding Cambridge Learner Award with Merit’ in 2022. Ms. Winter has been recognized with a ‘Rotary Youth Leadership Award’ and received a ‘Congress of Future Medial Leaders Award of Excellence’.

Ernest J. Freeman Jr., Master of Gulf Beach Lodge in 1984, had a vision. This vision was to create a scholarship program that would grant deserving local students funds to assist in their college tuition. It was also his vision to create a program which would be self-perpetuating thereby being a source of assistance well into the future. After the passing of Ernest Freeman the Scholarship program was renamed in his memory and has helped support four college students each year since its inception. The annual Scholarship winner receives $2,000.00 to assist in their College or University expenses.

Gulf Beach Masonic Lodge was chartered in 1950 and has been an active presence on the Gulf Beaches since that time. The Masonic Lodge has been a part of the Adopt-a-Highway program and is a strong supporter of many charitable organizations such as the American Heart Association, PARC, the American Lung Association, the St. Petersburg Free clinic, and many others.

Categorized as Events

Wonderful Past Master Night

Gulf Beach Lodge Welcomes our newest Master Mason, Brother Stan Silverstein, who was Raised a Master Mason last night by the Past Masters.

The evening began with a wonderful meal prepared by our Junior Warden, Brother Buck Owens, assisted by brothers Jim Tizzano and David Marrs. Following the meal, the brothers retired upstairs for a wonderful Master Mason Degree.

47 Masons were in attendance for this degree, including 21 Past Masters, from this and other Lodges. The most senior Past Master present was W∴ Don Harriott who was Master of his Lodge in New Jersey in 1963. The most senior Gulf Beach Lodge Past Master in attendance was W∴ Mark Niceley, Master in 1988.

The Lecture was delivered by R∴W∴ Howard Knapp, the Charge by W∴ Mark Sawa-Szostak, and the bible presentation by W∴ Don Harriott.

Tampa Bay Lodge No. 252 presented Brother Silverstein with the District 18 Unity Gavel, which is presented from the newest Master Mason to the next Newest Master Mason.

Brother Jim Tizzano presented Brother Stan with an heirloom Masonic ring.

Categorized as Events

Bikes Presented at Madeira Beach Fundamental Elementary School

Gulf Beach Masonic Lodge began a “Bikes For Books” program in 2017, which has been named the “Bob Meeks Bikes For Books” program in honor of the Lodge member who began the program five years ago. This program provides a boy and girl from each grade level (K-5)  at a chosen elementary school with a new bicycle purchased by the Masonic Lodge. The winner is the student who read the most teacher approved books throughout the school year. The winners at Madeira Beach Fundamental Elementary School were announced and presented their bikes on Tuesday May 16th at the school. Freemasonry supports public education and the teachers who are tasked with educating and molding the minds of our children.  Madeira Beach Fundamental Elementary School works to academically challenge, stimulate creativity and increase student achievement. They do this by working collaboratively with parents and community partners and by fostering a safe and nurturing environment where students are encouraged to reach their maximum potential.

Categorized as Events
Gulf Beach Masonic Lodge, No. 291, F & A M