Although some say the best time to travel is when you’re young, members of the Masonic Village Travel Club know a secret: traveling, like wine, gets better with age.
The Masonic Village Travel Club in Elizabethtown meets bimonthly, is open to “all residents who can get on a bus,” according to current president Jack Heinze, and has about 125 members.
Besides having the opportunity to build and strengthen new friendships with peers who share a passion for seeing new places, one benefit of joining the Masonic Village Travel Club is that they make all the arrangements ahead of time – all you have to do is pack and go. The group travels by coach bus because, as Jack states, “people don’t like to fly.”
Resident Roberta Ewing started the Travel Club 10 years ago when she saw a need for more extended traveling opportunities. “I was the head of the travel club at my church for 15 years, and then I came here. There were just day trips then,” she said.
Over the many years she ran the Travel Club, Roberta and other members have traveled up and down the East Coast. Some of her favorite excursions include traveling to Woodloch Pines Resort in the Poconos every January, staying in the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island in Michigan and visiting West Virginia.
“The men loved the trains in West Virginia. They were like little boys,” she said.
Although Jack calls himself a “train buff,” a more recent trip overtakes West Virginia as his favorite: seeing the Virginia International Military Tattoo this year in Norfolk. One reason this trip was particularly meaningful to him was because of the 21 years he spent in the Army – a period where he traveled frequently, and spent a lot of time in Europe.
“My favorite place was Copenhagen,” he said.
Today, Jack’s travels are strictly stateside. He would like to have adventures further west – New Mexico, Arizona and even Alaska. The club’s next trip will be to Indian Head Resort in New Hampshire. After that, they will be enjoying a Maine train and cruise tour next summer.
“The Masonic Village Travel Club brings people together. There’s more diversification than day trips, and it’s an opportunity for people who haven’t traveled much. We have lots of devoted people,” Jack said.