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Masons award bikes to elementary students

posted Jul 1, 2019, 4:24 AM by Michael Richards
On June 13th, Masonic Ocean Lodge 142 of Wells delivered 54 new bicycles, helmets, and t-shirts to Wells Elementary School students whose names were randomly selected from their participation in the annual Maine Masonic Charitable Foundation’s Bikes for Books literacy program.   Along with the Foundation, twenty-three local business, and 17 individual sponsors also contributed to the purchase of the bikes for the students. 

This was WES’s fourth year participating in the program which is coordinated at the school by Literary Specialist Bonnie Esty.   Over a designated period of time in the spring, K through 4th-Grade students selected extra books that interested them for reading.  Every book completed allowed each an entry into their classroom drawing for a bicycle; the more books read, the greater the chance they had of winning when names were drawn by classroom teachers during a school-wide assembly on the 13th.   Masonic members at the assembly included Allen Martin, Wayne Smith, Mike Cataldi, Ken Creed, Jim Wiggin, John Howarth, and Clair Tusch.  Absent was Master of Ocean Lodge 142 Lance Smith. 

Currently, roughly 90 Masonic lodges in Maine participate in Bikes for Books.  According to Maine Masonic Charitable Foundation’s website, the goals of the program are “to increase student reading and comprehension skills, to recognize positive student achievements, (and) to provide an attainable goal, with life-enhancing results.”   The program is not only believed to encourage children to read more but to participate more in healthy outside summer activities, away from the computer, phone and tablet screens. 

2019 Bikes for Books
Wells Elementary School students who received bicycles for their participation in Maine Masonic Charitable Foundation’s Bikes for Books for 2019.

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