Explore the campus of the Masonic Village at Elizabethtown!
The Masons of Blair County first funded a memorial at the Masonic Village at Elizabethtown in 1911, which was designed to represent a Doric temple. In 1920, Robert Burns Lodge No. 464, Harrisburg, contributed funds for the planting of 268 oak trees around the memorial, as a living representation of the Pennsylvania Masons who died serving our country during World War I. Additions were made to the Memorial Grove over the years as a tribute to those brethren for their supreme sacrifice. With the turning of the 21st century, Masonic Village updated and enhanced the area into the renamed Veterans Grove.
The memorial encourages reflection of wars past and the continuing potential for peace and freedom. The stone pathway leading up to the monument displays the various conflicts our nation fought, beginning with the Revolutionary War through current conflicts. The entrance proclaims the inspirational words of those who have led our country during times of unrest, beginning with Thomas Jefferson’s bold declaration: “Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.” The central focus is on the Word of God, upon which our country was founded.
The walking paths, picnic area and restroom facilities are provided for family and friends to take time to remember, honor and pray for those currently serving in our Armed Forces and pay respect to all veterans, especially those who have given the ultimate sacrifice to preserve the freedom we enjoy each day.
The Eternal Flame monument was dedicated in 2014 in tribute to all military and veterans. It is inscribed with the words “All Gave Some – Some Gave All.” Pavers surrounding the monument are engraved with names of those who have served or are serving as designated by loved ones who have purchased them to support the construction and maintenance of the monument.
The Formal Gardens comprise 6 1/2 acres featuring more than 52 varieties of evergreen trees, dozens of varieties of ornamental shrubs and constantly changing displays of annual and perennial flowers. Magnificent water features include a 40 x 76 foot reflecting pond and a fountain that leads to a cascading waterfall at the lower end of the gardens. Pergolas with climbing roses, tables, benches and walking paths invite visitors to enjoy the pristinely-maintained gardens. Constructed during 1930-1933 as a beautiful and peaceful getaway, the Formal Gardens won the Pennsylvania Horticulture Society’s Distinguished Garden Award in 1970.