Thursday, June 27, 2013

Bikers Cause Overflow

As we get closer to Convention 2013, to be held in Erie, PA, July 19 – 21, 2013, I find myself managing the last minute details and issues that come with running an event of this size. As I have said before, transparency in the Convention program is important to me. In keeping with that theme, I want to update everyone on Convention.

Planning this kind of event is a learning experience, no matter how long you’ve done it. Three years ago we signed the contract with the Bayfront Erie Sheraton to act as the HQ hotel for the event. At that time, we had to anticipate how many rooms we were going to use for the event. As a rule, it’s always easier to add rooms to the count rather than to subtract them. In fact, if we booked rooms that we didn’t use, we still would have to pay a portion of the cost. For those reasons, we low-balled the number of rooms we booked, expecting to be able to up the number later. That plan has worked every year for the past decade, so we weren’t too concerned. Then we got jumped by Bikers.

More specifically, Erie is playing host to a major biker event the same weekend as Convention. Titled “Roar on the Shore,” the event brings thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts to the Gem City for a weekend of riding and tourism. Those people need somewhere to stay and naturally started snapping up rooms at our hotel. When the day came that we had our final room counts, we discovered that we needed more rooms than we had booked. Uh oh. Sadly, the HQ hotel was out of rooms because of the bikers. So, the search was on for an overflow hotel. Thankfully, we managed to book another excellent option for the overflow rooms – the EconoLodge on Peach Street, which is directly across the street from Splash Lagoon Indoor Waterpark (our Saturday night activity) and is only 8 miles from the main hotel. The rooms at the EconoLodge are well apportioned and, as a bonus, each one comes with a whirlpool bathtub (that’s a Jacuzzi!) The hotel also has a pool and offers free shuttle service  to the waterpark.
So, the question that most people are asking is “Seth, who is going to be in the overflow hotel?” As “Dad” Berry and I discussed this, our first rule was that the DeMolays come first, as it is their organization. Therefore, more than half of my Convention staff is staying at the overflow hotel. Also, several members of the EO’s Leadership Team will be housed there. The Sweethearts will be staying at the overflow hotel as well. This left us with only a few DeMolays and Advsiors that would be affected. They have been informed of this change and we appreciate their cooperation and understanding.

I still firmly believe that Convention 2013 will be the best yet and I thank everyone for their support.
Frat! ~ “Dad” Seth C. Anthony

Monday, June 24, 2013

A Creative Jolt

Coming from a creative workplace and mindset, I have always scoped out books, the internet and other places for different ways to keep me motivated on a certain project. I've come to learn that a lot of these techniques can be used to motivate the creative person inside of you - to help you reach a goal.

Check this link out from one of my favorite creative blogs to get an idea how to give yourself a little jolt of creativity!

"Dad" Matt Blaisdell

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Archival Quality

The other day I posted about our attempts to complete the PA DeMolay Archive's collection of Cordon magazines. This stirred a lot of interest, as it appears people are really clamoring for this kind of information. As I stated in some of the comments, it is our long term goal to have all of the Cordon magazines available for download from PA DeMolay in .pdf format. This project is a huge undertaking and probably will not be finalized until next year.

But, we also realized there was a smaller project we could tackle that would give us a chance to test how this kind of online archive would work. Here at the PA DeMolay office, we have a (nearly) complete set of Keystone Crusaders. The Key Cru, as we call it, was started in 1934. It took a break from 1942 to 1961, but has been published continuously since. That is nearly 70 years of newsletters! This represents a huge resource for historians and interested Brothers. Over the summer, we will be posting the Keystone Crusader archive, all 70+ years of it, as part of a bigger plan (which you'll find more about in future posts.)

In the mean time, we I'll post this here as a little treat to get you excited about what is coming down the pipe. This is the front page of the an issue of the Keystone Crusader that comes from March of 1942. (Click the image to make it bigger.)

Now, let's look at the significance of that date." December 7, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy." Those were the words spoken by President Roosevelt upon the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Four months later, we find this issue of the Key Cru, wherein the Executive Officer for Pennsylvania and his Deputy are announcing that PA DeMolay will "postpone" the Conclave scheduled for 1942. It would be "postponed" for nearly a decade. Bro. Robert D. Griewahn would be the last State Master Councilor of PA DeMolay until the Chapters met in 1951 to elect Ernest O. Famous to that office. PA DeMolay would only exist as a support mechanism for local Chapters for that 9 year period.

Think about it? How would PA DeMolay handle a war of that magnitude now? Some people may not find history all that exciting, but when you put it into perspective and uncover stories you can relate to, it makes it much more personal. That is why we are making this effort to preserve the history of our organization electronically.

Frat! ~ "Dad" Seth C. Anthony

Monday, June 17, 2013

DeMolay and the Knights of Pythagoras

This past weekend, Bro. Isaac Holtzer, State Scribe, represented Pennsylvania DeMolay at the 46th Annual Sessions of the Knights of Pythagoras of Pennsylvania. Many of our members know of the Knights thanks to our unity weekends, but many more haven't heard of our "brother" organization.

Bro. Holtzer with (from left to right) the Grand Master Councilor of the Knights of Pythagoras of New Jersey; Bro. Arrin Stallings, Past Grand Master Knight of the Knights of Pythagoras of Pennsylvania; and the Most Venerable Grand Master Knight of the Most Venerable Grand Council of the Knights of Pythagoras of the District of Columbia.

In Pennsylvania, the Knights of Pythagoras is a youth group for boys 12 to 20 years of age who believe in the Supreme Being and are of good character and reputation. The order is devoted to the Christian principles of freedom, justice, and equality under law for all human beings. The order promotes these ideals, together with love of God, parents and country.
The Prince Hall Grand Council of Pa Order of Knights of Pythagoras is a youth organization sponsored by The Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, F&AM. The Knights of Pythagoras is not a junior Masonic organization but is only overseen by Master Masons with outstanding dedication to the order. The Cardinal Virtues of a Knight are Adoration and Reverence for God, Love of Parents, Righteous Thinking, Purity, Patriotism, Toleration, Courtesy, Friendship and Constancy. If those traits sound familiar, they should! "Dad" Frank S. Land assisted with the formation of the Knights of Pythagoras.
The Prince Hall Grand Council Order of Knights of Pythagoras was organized in the jurisdiction of Pennsylvania in 1960. Grand Master A. William Hill, Jr., successfully started the Order of the Knights of Pythagoras in Pennsylvania in 1960. The following three years  twelve youth councils around the state were established. The state body was organized as the Keystone Grand Council of Pennsylvania. By the year 1968 eleven of the twelve active youth councils became dormant. In 1968, the Order was reorganized  by the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania.

Grand Master Thomas W. S. Logan appointed Worshipful District Deputy Master Leo .S. Holmes as the Worshipful State Director of Youth (essentially the Executive Officer.) The state body was then renamed The Prince Hall Grand Council of Pennsylvania. The International body re-chartered the Order of the Knights of Pythagoras. State officers were elected and presented later with silver metal collars containing the jewels of their of office.

New councils were formed and inactive councils reactivated. Herbert E. Millen No. 8, sponsored by Campbell Washington Joppa Lodge No. 37, is the only council to remain active from 1961. The Annual Grand Sessions from 1968 to 1982 were held in hotels and college campuses around the state. Donald U. Dade served as Worshipful State Director of Youth 1972 to 1979. He started presenting special designed Past Grand Master Knight aprons to the outgoing Grand Master Knight.
Grand Master Thomas Scipio appointed Edward Lindler as the Worshipful State Director of Youth along with Edward W. Perrine as the Director of Youth (East) in 1979. Since 1979 we have been enlarging the youth order and building its program base. Installation of Officer Service, Service of Light, and the Legion of Honor Service has been added to the order. Since 1983, Annual Sessions have been held at Patton Campus in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania, except for one year which was held at Thiel College. A Brotherhood Retreat Fellowship with the Order of DeMolay of the Right Worshipful Grand Lodge and the Order of the Knights of Pythagoras started in 1984 has become an annual event.

In 1997 Grand Master Thomas A. Jackmon, Sr. appointed Kevin D. Mahoner Worshipful State Director of Youth, a position which he holds to this day. The Prince Hall Grand Council Order of the Knights of Pythagoras now have an office on the second floor of the Masonic Complex at 4301 North Broad Street in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Help the PA DeMolay Archive

One of our summer projects at PA DeMolay is the archiving of the Cordon Magazine. What's the Cordon, you ask? The Cordon was published for several decades by DeMolay International. It was the official magazine for every member and advisor of DeMolay. Now, in an effort to preserve our history, PA DeMolay is archiving our copies and scanning them. Our goal is to make every issue of the Cordon available for download by any person researching DeMolay history.

Thankfully, some members of PA DeMolay kept their old magazines, which helped us to build up an archive. However, we are missing several back issues. If you are in possession of any of the following issues of the Cordon, we'd love to hear from you to arrange a donation to the archive.

We need the following issues:
  • 1959 - 60: Volumes 1 through 9
  • 1961: Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, May, June, July, Aug, Sept, Dec
  • 1962: All except April
  • 1963: All
  • 1964: Mar, June, July, Aug, Sept, Nov, Dec
  • 1965: Feb, Mar, Apr, May, June
  • 1968: Feb, Apr, Aug, Sept, Nov
  • 1981: July, Aug, Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec
  • 1982: All
  • 1984: Fall, Summer, Winter
  • 1986: Summer, Winter
  • 1985: All

You can email me at and I'll work with you to secure the back issues.

Frat! ~ "Dad" Seth Anthony

Monday, June 10, 2013

DeMolay International to Meet

Thanks to "Dad" Peter Brusoe, of Nation's Capital DeMolay, for this blog post!
This week DeMolays from around the world  will be gathering in Minneapolis, MN, for the annual DeMolay Congress and Supreme Council Session.  At session, the delegates and supreme council members will be discussing legislation and the future direction of our Order.  It's a jam packed few days; in four days they will be electing their new international leaders - the International Master Councilor and the International Congress Secretary, volunteering at a service project, meeting in focus groups, listening to important speakers, and even going to a baseball game (Phillies versus the Twins, lets go Phils!) Andrew Prescott, our good friend from New Jersey, will be presiding over the congress session.  He has done a number of things to open up the Congress session to everyone.
First, we have opened up the pool of people who can ask questions for our future international leaders you can complete your question on this form and submit it to see if it is asked during the candidate caucus. What things are you looking for from your international leadership?

Second, a list of details and profiles of candidates seeking elected office, feedback on pending legislation and some essay responses have been put up here. Previously, Congress Applications were not shared:

Finally, Andrew knows a good thing when he sees it.  This year, PA's very own Senior DeMolay, Matt Blaisdell, was commissioned to develop the session logo, the volunteer shirt for Thursday morning.
See you at Session!

Passing of Patty Palo - DeMolay Advisor

This past weekend, PA DeMolay lost one of their own - "Mom" Patty Palo. "Mom" Palo was a beloved friend and Advisor of Erie Chapter. Both of her sons were DeMolays and members of the State Officer Corps - Bro. Jake Palo, PSMC, and James Palo, PMC of Erie Chapter.

For those who are interested, we have published Patty's obituary below. You can click the image to see a larger version.


Thursday, June 6, 2013

Beating Burn Out

The DeMolay program is an amazing innovation that has been around for nearly 100 years. During that time, many members and Advisors have spent decades involved with their Chapters. Any time a person is engaged with an organization for that long, burn out will inevitably happen. It might be something minor, like not wanting to go another meeting; but, it could also be a much larger feeling - like the person feels like they are no longer making a difference. Either way, it can spell trouble for the program.

One of the most popular articles on our website is entitled "77 Tips Beating Burnout" and was put together by "Dad" Brent Richards. Perhaps you could use some of these tips to help with your everyday stress and beat that feeling!

  • 1. Deal with problems when they occur, if you can. Don't let them pile up.
  • 2. Go to bed to sleep, not to worry or brood. If you find you're in a bad mood at bedtime, take a walk, read a chapter of a book that you enjoy, talk to someone you love about the good things in your life, watch David Letterman or Jay Leno. 
  • 3. Find a tension outlet that works for you, and use it when you need to. Consider crossword puzzles, card games, running, dancing, playing in the town band. (But stay away from those outlets that work only at the moment, that only add up to bad news, like eating, drinking and drugs.) 
  • 4. Build fresh air and exercise into your daily life. Park a half mile from work or get off at a bus or train stop a half mile from work and walk the rest of the way. 
  • 5. If you don't own a dog to take for a walk, borrow one. Your neighbors will love you for it and it will do you more good than the dog. 
  • 6. Stay away from the coffee pot. 
  • 7. Turn on the radio to some zippy music when you're alone, and dance around to it. Don't look in the mirror - just let yourself feel good. 
  • 8. Study something far afield from your subject - take a course or just use the library. It doesn't have to be useful, although it can be, as long as you find it engrossing and fun. 
  • 9. Try not to get caught up in daily exchanges of complaints with colleagues. It doesn't do any good and makes everyone feel worse. 
  • 10. When you get home after a bad day, get into a hot shower and sing. It's almost impossible to feel rotten when your voice sounds so great. 
  • 11. Practice good nutrition by eating balanced meals and by avoiding too many sweets, too much junk food and foods that don't agree with you. 
  • 12. Volunteer to be a guide at your local museum or historical attraction.
  • 13. Take a good book into the library at lunch time. Choose a comfortable, isolated seat and enjoy the peace and quiet. 
  • 14. Clean out your attic, your basement or that overloaded closet. 
  • 15. Spend more time with your own children. Don't just chauffeur them around; learn about the activities and sports they enjoy by staying to watch that soccer practice or attending that band concert.
  • 16. Get in some big-muscle action: saw wood, dig up the garden, chop down trees, scrub the floor. 
  • 17. Breathe slowly, and pay attention to the air going in and out. 
  • 18. Take a hike; ride a bike. 
  • 19. Keep a diary faithfully, focusing on the positive aspects of your life and on your positive plans for the near future. 
  • 20. Walk in the rain or snow without worrying about getting your shoes wet or catching cold. 
  • 21. Never eat dinner while you're still stewing about work. 
  • 22. Schedule a time for airing grievances; stick to it. Don't talk about your grievances at other times. 
  • 23. Be especially good to your spouse. 
  • 24. Keep in touch with your friends. 
  • 25. Make a list of all the things you can't stand about your job. Put it away. A week later, write it again. Do this for four weeks and find out what the real problems are. Then try to find ways to overcome them. 
  • 26. Start a support group among your colleagues - not to gripe, but to share ways of coping. 
  • 27. Consider your alternatives. If you think you're trapped, look for a way or ways out, and figure out how to get out. Then figure out if you want to do it. If the answer is yes, do it. If the answer is no, look for ways to change your daily work environment. 
  • 28. After work on a cold day, enjoy a mug of hot cocoa (with marshmallows, of course) while taking a steaming hot shower. On a hot day, sip a glass of cold lemonade or juice while you sit in a tub of cool water. 
  • 29. Try to keep other people's problems separate from your own. 
  • 30. Go to a newsstand once a week and buy a different magazine each time. You will expand your horizons and find lots of new topics for conversation. 
  • 31. Learn more about your ethnic heritage. Join your nationality organization and become involved in traditional activities and festivities.
  • 32. Be careful not to schedule all your leisure hours. 
  • 33. If you see the need for change, figure out how to lead others toward that change. Work in the local chapter of your professional organization, get involved in politics or run for the school board. 
  • 34. Don't stew. 
  • 35. If you're popping aspirin, antacids or tranquilizers, cut down on the number you take, stop taking them, or get some professional counseling. 
  • 36. Think about what you can control in your work life and what you can't Let go of the things you can't affect. 
  • 37. Laugh. 
  • 38. Go see a sad movie and let yourself cry a lot. Then figure out why you cried a lot. 
  • 39. Try not to take a lot of work home with you. 
  • 40. Smile and speak to everyone you see on the street. See how they smile back! 
  • 41. Go to a bookstore and buy a novel you've always wanted to read. Take your time reading it and enjoy every page. 
  • 42. Take up that hobby you've been thinking about for years. Set up that aquarium; teach yourself to develop film; research your family tree; learn to weave or refinish a piece of furniture. Start off small, though, so you don't get discouraged too quickly. 
  • 43. Join a community pool and go to it often. Set a reasonable goal of the number of laps you'll swim each time and do them all. Increase your goal by a few laps each time you go. 
  • 44. Look for things to praise in yourself and others. 
  • 45. Find people you can like and care about. Keep in contact. 
  • 46. Develop the skill you had as a kid -- selective inattention -- and use it to keep from drowning in a sea of petty irritations. 
  • 47. Bring a picnic lunch to work to share with others. Take it outside to a secluded grassy area to eat. Try not to talk about work-related matters. Take turns preparing the lunch whenever convenient. 
  • 48. Go out to dinner at one of your favorite restaurants with a friend, a relative or your spouse every Friday night for a month. 
  • 49. Clean out your desk or the cabinets in your office if they need it. If they're already spotless, let them get messy for a week or two. 
  • 50. Get up 15 or 20 minutes earlier than usual in the morning to read the newspaper, jog, take a short walk or give your garden a little special attention. 
  • 51. Be honest with yourself about your work. If it's rotten because you feel rotten, set some goals and get going on them: daily ones, weekly ones, then longer periods. 
  • 52. Take up a new sport. Learn how to play tennis, take scuba diving lessons, join a community softball team or start ice-skating. 
  • 53. Schedule time to be alone. 
  • 54. Schedule time to be with people you care about.
  • 55. Create a new bulletin board display just for fun. Make it big, bold, and colorful. 
  • 56. Take a weekend excursion to the mountains, the beach or your favorite hideout. Make sure the place you choose is relatively free from everyday hassles. Leave after school on Friday, and come back on Sunday afternoon in time to relax before Monday. 
  • 57. Choose a quiet, calm environment with as few distractions as possible in which to relax. Close your eyes and concentrate on relaxing all your muscles, beginning with your toes. Doing this for 10 to 20 minutes a day can do wonders for a tired, overworked mind and body. 
  • 58. If you live in an urban or suburban area, plan a day trip into the country. Bring a picnic lunch and go fishing, explore a historical town that's off the beaten path or browse through a flea market. 
  • 59. Don't fret silently if you don't get a particular task completed by the time you planned for it to be done. 
  • 60. Reward yourself for all the good work you've been doing. Buy a record or a new outfit; go to the theater or a baseball game. 
  • 61. Take an exercise or dance class in the evening. Really put an effort into stretching and movement. If the weather's bad or you feel too worn out to even make it to the class, force yourself to go anyway. You'll be glad you did. 
  • 62. Write a letter or send a card to a faraway friend who you haven't heard from in awhile. 
  • 64. If you have a disagreement with someone you work with, look at the situation from both sides. Remember that the other person may be having a bad day. Try to work out the problem instead of letting it bug you. 
  • 65. If you live in a rural area, go to the city for a day to shop, visit museums and galleries or take in a show. 
  • 66. Go to your local library and leisurely explore alternative careers you've been mulling 
  • over or that you once considered. Find out about the salaries, opportunities for advancement, and working conditions. Talk to people in those fields. 
  • 67. Get a new hairstyle; shave your mustache or grow a beard. 
  • 68. If you feel you can't face the same job every morning, try to do something else. 
  • 69. If you feel that no one cares about anything you have to say, try to find out what they really do care about. Meet them where they are. 
  • 70. Get out and look up some Senior DeMolays. Find out what they're doing. 
  • 71. Take a day to straighten out your personal filing system. Then schedule the same time every day to keep up with paperwork. Don't let it become Mt. Everest. 
  • 72. Avoid going home and sitting in front of the TV or lying on the couch. 
  • 73. Get up early enough to prepare a healthy breakfast every day before work. 
  • 74. Experiment with some gourmet recipes - try making a soufflĂ©, egg rolls or baklava. If the dish turns out a flop, just laugh and try it again some other time. 
  • 75. Volunteer some of your time to be with someone who needs you. You'll feel good about making others feel good. 
  • 76. Take three long breaths, hold, and let them out slowly before you begin work. 
  • 77. Invite some of your friends to your home for dinner or a barbecue sometime. Talk to them - find out about their hobbies and interests, their dreams and goals. Tell them about yours, too.
Frat! ~ "Dad" Seth Anthony