Celebrate and Spread the Word

Temples Get Creative on Shriners International Awareness Day

group of Shriners with patient

Shriners come from every place and from all walks of life. One thing they have in common is a delight in telling others about our fraternity and philanthropy. So while, in a sense, every day is awareness day, as an organization we celebrate Shriners International Awareness Day annually on June 6.

Temples mark the day in different ways, but all celebrations include a pride in the fraternity and a goal of increasing membership. Plans for this year’s Shriners International Awareness Day are in full swing. If you aren’t sure what your temple is doing, check with your Potentate or membership chairman. Maybe they need your help!

Last year, Shriners International Awareness Day took on a new meaning. The coronavirus pandemic forced most everyone to cancel their plans for the day. Some temples were able to connect online. The Imperial Potentate at that time, Imperial Sir Jeff Sowder, held Zoom calls with many temples and associations. “Nobles were looking to connect to other nobles/brothers more than ever,” he said, adding that COVID had helped many nobles truly realize how much they value the brotherhood. Therefore, the awareness that was shared on June 6, 2020, became more internal and reflective.

This year, temples are hoping to get back to more outward-facing events. Aloha Shriners in Honolulu, Hawaii, held a memorable and successful Aware-ness Day event in 2019. Although hopes to replicate it last year were dashed, Noble Marty Alexander said, “I would like to pick this event back up. I want to approach 2021 with a ‘the sun’s gonna come out tomorrow attitude.’”

Aloha’s 2019 event was held at the Shriners Hospital in Honolulu. There were about 20 people in attendance, and in the end, about four new nobles were created because of the event, said Member-ship Chairman Marc Rubenstein. (That’s an impressive 20% conversion rate, by the way!) The evening included ice breakers, videos, and speakers on Masonry, appendant ladies' organizations and “Why I’m a Shriner,” as well as a short hospital tour.

“It was a good first year,” Rubenstein said. “I learned a lot, and would have liked to do it again, but COVID had its own ideas. Perhaps we can do a 2021 version with an online component – we could do it via Zoom!”

male patient

A Special Milestone

On June 6, 1876, the Imperial Council, the original governing body of the Shriners fraternity, was founded. To honor this historic event, Shriners International celebrates June 6 as Shriners International Awareness Day. On this day, nobles everywhere are encouraged to celebrate their great fraternity and raise awareness of its impact in their communities.

What You Can Do

  • Wear your a fez (when appropriate), hat, shirt, lapel pin, or other item with our logo
  • Tell your neighbors, friends and colleagues about the fun and fellowship you enjoy as a Shriner
  • Organize or participate in events at your temple, in your community or online
  • Reflect on why the fraternity is important to you personally and why you became a member

Tell Your Story

For consideration in a future issue of Shriner Magazine, let us know how your temple celebrates Shriners International Awareness Day. Send an email to marketing@shrinenet.org.