History of  the Shriners

The Shriners of North America is a fraternity that grew out of Freemasonry over a century ago. Because of this, the Shrine is dedicated to Masonic principles.

The Shrine fraternity provides to Masonic brothers a means to widen the fellowship first enjoyed in the Masonic Lodge.
The Shrine offers men, their ladies and their families an opportunity to meet new friends who have similar interests, tastes and feelings.

For more information
e-mail membership@shrinenet.org or write to:
Shriners International Headquarters
Office of Membership Development
2900 Rocky Point Drive
Tampa, Florida 33607-1435

You can also contact Nile Shrine Temple.
Learn more about the Shrine and Shriners Hospitals by visiting our Web site at http://www.shrinershq.org.

Because Shriners are men who enjoy life, fun is a large part of the Shrine. Shriners, along with their ladies, their families and friends, have many opportunities to enjoy the fun the Shrine has to offer. Activities such as football games, parades, dances, circuses, and parties offer something for every member of your family. Many of these fun activities help support the Shrine's philanthropy ...

Since the first Shriners Hospital opened in 1922, The Shrine has supported 22 Children's Hospitals throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico. The annual budget for the hospitals in 2000 was over 500 million dollars. It has become known as the "Worlds Greatest Philanthropy".

The best known symbol of the Shrine is the red fez that Shriners wear to official functions. Most Shrine Centers sponsor Shrine Clubs and special units, such as the motorcycle and mini-bike patrol, Band and Oriental Band, clown units and many other units of special interest. They share in the camaraderie, deep friendships and good fellowship that are all part of being a Shriner.

History of Nile Shrine and KPSC

Masonry followed the logging industry to the Pacific Northwest in the 1850’s.  In Kitsap County, the Franklin Lodge at Port Gamble Mill was established in 1859.  Soon after, in 1860, the Kane Lodge at the Port Madison Mill was established.

By 1908, Afifi (Tacoma) Shriner membership in the Seattle area had increased to 487 members and they felt that they could support a temple of their own. On July 15, 1908, Ernest B. Hussey, Past Potentate of Afifi Temple, was elected as temporary Nile Potentate and held that office to the end of the year.

By 1916, the Seattle Masonic Temple was completed with Nile Temple being one of the investors and owners. This provided us with a more appropriate meeting place in the “Shrine” auditorium, which had been lavishly and authentically decorated in an Arabic motif employing stencils, highlighted designs, and murals.

In the early 1920’s, when Nile Temple had a growing membership of over 4,000, after considerable study and inspection  the present Lake Ballinger site waterfront, ultimately totaling 135 acres was purchased. By the mid 1950's Nile had a clubhouse, golf course, dining rooms, and office space for the Divan.

Today, the Nile property consists of over 3,000 feet of choice waterfront on Lake Ballinger, an 18-hole golf course, a warehouse with storage for equipment plus the original clubhouse and banquet areas.

The Kitsap Peninsula Shrine Club was chartered by the Nile Shrine Potentate in November 2007 upon merger of the Kitsap County Shrine Club of Bremerton and the Viking Shrine Club of Poulsbo. These Shrine Clubs have a long history going back to the 1960s. Shriner’s from these clubs have participated in managing the local Shrine Circus appearances, as well as participating in parades, and holding Shrine Clinics for admitting children into the Shrine Children’s Hospitals. Many fund raising events have been held over the years to support the Shrine Hospitals and to support the operation of the Nile Shrine Center. Shriners from the Kitsap area have fun: picnics, tours to the Hospitals, parades, dinner events, and other social gatherings are common events.

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