WAKEMAN More than 275 Wakeman residents are set to rededicate themselves to making good men better.
The Wakeman Gibson Masonic Lodge No. 301 will hold a reconsecration ceremony on April 5, marking the 150-year history of the lodge. All of the State Grand Lodge Officers will be in Wakeman for that event.
Free masonry is the oldest and largest world wide fraternity dedicated to the Brotherhood of Man under the Fatherhood of a Supreme Being.
"We try to get good men in there and hopefully through our teachings, they will become better men," said John Hooper, a lodge member since 1990 and currently its education officer.
The lodge has more than 275 members, making it fourth in its district in membership. The group belongs to the 16th Masonic District, which comprises Crawford, Erie, Huron, Seneca and Wyandot counties.
The 16th district belongs to the State Grand Lodge of Ohio, which is celebrating its 200th anniversary this year.
Hooper said he thinks people are drawn to the group because of its caring, active members. Each Christmas, the men assemble about 80 Christmas baskets for senior members and widows of members. They do similar charitable acts on Easter and Valentine's Day.
This fall, lodge members donated $500 to the Erie County chapter of the Special Olympics, and another to the $500 to the Huron County chapter. The lodge raised the money by selling pumpkin rolls.
The Special Olympics is an international, nonprofit organization dedicated to enabling people with intellectual disabilities to become physically fit, productive and respected members of society. The organization tries to accomplish this through sports training and competition.
The Wakeman Masonic Lodge also maintains candy machines in the area, with proceeds going toward scholarships for local students.
"It's just a great bunch of guys," Hooper said.