Books for Bikes program now in third year
Three years ago, Robert Parrish, past master of the Edwardsburg St. Peters Lodge 106 F. & A.M. decided to honor the memory of his mother by adopting the Bikes for Books program.
Last Friday, St. Peters Lodge awarded six bikes to three boys and three girls at Edwardsburg’s Eagle Lake Elementary.
“The Books for Bikes program is the brainchild of the Grand Lodge of Michigan, which oversees all the Masonic Lodges within the state,” Parrish said. “I adopted the program locally three years ago in memory of my mother, Marcia Parrish-Horvat, who passed away in 2010. Growing up, my mom greatly impressed upon me the love of reading.
“She lived by example by being a heavy reader herself and never passed on the opportunity to take me to the library or get me a book that she thought might interest me. She was a wonderful mother and I dearly miss her. Learning of this program, I thought it would be a great way to perpetuate her memory. She loved kids, so combining the promotion of reading with children presented itself as a wonderful opportunity.”
The Edwardsburg branch of the Greater Niles Credit Union has joined forces with the St. Peters Lodge to make the awarding of the bikes special. They not only provided pizza for the third grade students at Eagle Lake Elementary, but gave away gift bags for all the children who participated in the reading program. Pizzas came from Captain’s Pizza of Edwardsburg, who opened early and called in additional employees to provide the pizzas.
St. Peters Lodge has been a part of the Edwardsburg community for over 150 years and is a part of the world’s oldest and largest fraternal organization. The fraternity puts a great emphasis on the arts and sciences, so the promotion of reading fits well within its teachings.