Widows Sons Ride For Charity

Widows Sons Ride for Charity

reprinted from Freemason Magazine, Spring 2022 edition

Members of the Pennsylvania (PA) Widows Sons Masonic Riders Association enjoy riding their motorcycles and giving back to the community.

They accomplish both through the annual Grand Master’s Charity Ride. All proceeds from the event go to Masonic charities within the state, mainly the Masonic Children’s Home of Pennsylvania.

The goals of the Widows Sons Masonic Riders Association are to contribute to the aid and relief of Masonic widows and orphans and to introduce Freemasonry to the world of motorcycling. The group also supports various individual charities in the community through motorcycle events, rides and raffles.

The Grand Master’s Charity Ride is the largest fundraiser for the PA Widows Sons. Last year’s event, held on July 17, raised a record $14,000 for the Masonic Children’s Home, said Brother Jonathan DeLuca, state President of the PA Widows Sons and Past Master of Mozart Lodge No. 436, Philadelphia.

More than 100 Pennsylvania members, as well as members from out-of-state chapters, participated in a large rally following the ride. Nearly 200 bikes were represented in the ride, which lasted about an hour and a half and took participants through downtown Harrisburg and past the Fort Indiantown Gap Military Base.

“Last year was a stellar year – it blew everything we’ve ever done out of the water by thousands of dollars,” Jonathan said. “Everything stopped [in 2020] for COVID. Last year, people wanted to come out because they hadn’t seen anyone in a while. We had 50/50 raffles and charity baskets. It was just amazing.”

The PA Widows Sons presented the check for $14,000 to the Masonic Children’s Home in Elizabethtown in November 2021.

Each year, the Grand Master’s Charity Ride is held in the town where the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania resides. Last year, the ride was held in Philadelphia in deference to R.W. Past Grand Master Thomas Gamon IV.

Brother Mike Rosenberry is President of the PA Temple Guard Chapter (Harrisburg) of the Widows Sons, which sponsored the charity ride last year. A 33° Mason, Mike is a member of Harrisburg- Snyder Lodge No. 629, which has about 50 members. He called the event “a huge success.”

“Our chapter members and state officers helped out a great deal with the event,” he said. “It was more money than we ever dreamed we’d be able to raise. So, the bar is set. I hope this year it will be even better.”

The Widows Sons Masonic Riders Association was established in the late 1990s. Today, there are chapters across the globe.

The PA Widows Sons was founded in 2001 in Philadelphia. Currently, there are 16 recognized chapters throughout the state. Each chapter holds a monthly meeting to conduct business and plan upcoming events. All Master Masons in good standing, under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, who are motorcycle riders, are welcome to petition a local chapter. For a chapter locator and more information on the Pennsylvania Widows Sons Masonic Riders Association, visit pawidowssons.org.