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Leitersburg Moose lodge disbands

March 21, 1998|By LISA GRAYBEAL

Leitersburg Moose lodge disbands

LEITERSBURG, Md. - Lack of participation and interest by members of Leitersburg Lodge 2451 of the Loyal Order of Moose forced its closing just two years after organizing.

"We just didn't have enough interest by our members," said R. Wayne Taylor, governor of the former lodge.

The lodge started in December 1995 with 96 charter members and grew to almost 130 members.

But participation thinned and activities, like dances and dinners, were poorly attended, Taylor said.

Organizing and running the activities and meetings fell on a core group of members, he said.

The lodge officially closed at the end of December and turned their charter in to Moose International, Taylor said.

"It's too bad. We put a lot of hard work into it," he said.

The Leitersburg lodge met in rented space at the Knights of Columbus hall on Leitersburg Pike.

It was one of three lodges that sprung up after Hagerstown Lodge 212 was closed and stripped of its affiliation to Moose International in February 1994 for violating rules governing the organization's charter and because the lodge was having financial trouble.

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The other two lodges organized around the same time as Leitersburg - Williamsport in April 1996 and Funkstown in February 1995 - as a result of the closing of Lodge 212.

Both lodges are reportedly doing well.

"We're alive and kicking," said Dick Moser, administrator for the Funkstown lodge.

The approximately 400-member lodge bought five acres of the Artz Farm property on U.S. 40 south of Funkstown and construction of a building may start within the year, Moser said.

With the purchase of land and plans to build a lodge, the biggest difficulty for the Funkstown lodge has been financial, he said.

"It's a slow, painful process," Moser said.

It's likely membership will grow when Funkstown has a home they can call their own, he said.

An estimated 200 members belong to Lodge 2462 in Williamsport and the organization is running well, Moose officials said.

Lodge officers signed a seven-year lease in April 1997 on the two-story River Inn in downtown Williamsport, with option to buy. The lodge became the first in the county to have a home since Lodge 212 closed.

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