History

The First Line of Officers

Merritt Island Lodge No. 353 was formed by a group of Master Masons at meetings with RW Fred Baker, DDGM, on 12 January and 9 February, 1965. Brother J.A. (Al) Johnson and Mel Ezell were the guiding forces for this beginning. The Merritt Island Lodge UD petition was submitted at Grand Lodge in April 1965 to MW Clyde Gleason, Grand Master, who appointed the task of examination and certification of the officers to RW Charles B. Finney. The certification was accepted by the Grand Master as recommended by RW Bro. Finney. The Grand Master journeyed to Cocoa on 31 July 1965 to set Merritt Island Lodge to work as a UD lodge. The first installation of officers occurred on June 4, 1966 at Brevard Lodge No. 113 in Cocoa. WM Grand Master William M. Hollis, presiding.

  • Melvin Ezell, Treasurer
  • Kelly L. Brinson, Junior Warden
  • Louis S. Scott, Worshipful Master
  • John T. Livingston, Senior Warden
  • Kenneth E. Knell, Secretary
  • Paul R. Whitaker Jr, Senior Steward
  • Alfred W. Paronto, Junior Steward
  • Bruce R. Cummings, Tyler
  • Elmer L. (Lank) Green, Junior Deacon
  • Douglas N. McLain, Senior Deacon
  • Bill J. Everage, Chaplain

Meetings were first held at Kiwanis Hall in Cocoa. In 1973 a small, one room school house located on about 2 acres of land was donated on South Tropical Trail. The school house dates back to the early 1900s and has undergone a series of renovations, the most recent starting in 2014…

… to become what it is today. The brethren have added a kitchen, preparation room, dining and fellowship area and modern lavatory facilities – not to mention air-conditioning!

The fellowship and dining areas offer a great place to relax, listen to some music or watch a video, have cup of coffee or enjoy one of our great Friday night steak meals, which are prepared in a world class kitchen by our Junior Warden and staff. The Junior Wardens over the years have taken great pride in the kitchen. A variety of meals are prepared here for the brothers and guests – come on by and enjoy one! Steak dinners are served starting at 6:30 on the 2nd Friday of he month. Dinners are served at 6:30 before all stated meetings.

After a great dinner, assemble into the lodge room proper. The lodge room occupies the area of the original schoolhouse and, predictably faces due East and West.
Candidates and degree recipients are prepared in a comfortable preparation room that includes a small library of select masonic reading material.

While the lodge has changed over the years into it’s present form, we still grow and change, as the needs of the brethren change. Merritt Island, however, has not lost it’s small home roots. Whether you are member of the lodge, a brother of a surrounding lodge, or just passing through, we invite to you to come by, enjoy the southern hospitality and “sit a spell.” Check the calendar for events and meeting times.