The Prince Hall Shriners, who filled downtown Cincinnati in August 2011 with 25,000 members, spouses and family, liked the experience so much they are bringing their national convention back in 2015.
The Ancient Egyptian Arabic Order Nobles of the Mystic Shrine – better known as the Prince Hall Shriners - is the oldest African-American fraternal organization in the world , founded in 1893 with 35,000 members in 227 Shrine Temples around the country.
Several Shrine leaders joined officials of the Cincinnati USA Convention and Visitors Bureau and local government officials Tuesday morning for an event announcing their 2015 return to Cincinnati.
“Cincinnati was an extraordinary host for us in 2011 and that experience left such a positive impression in the minds of our members,’’ said Homer Buchanan of Trotwood, Ohio, who is Imperial Potentate, the highest ranking official of Prince Hall Shriners.
“The community was warm and welcoming,’’ Buchanan said. “The hospitality staff and the local ambassadors made us feel right at home.”
The Shriners support many philanthropic activities, including raising money for diabetes research and providing annual educational grants to economically deprived youth.
The Prince Hall Shriners – along with their auxiliary, the Imperial Court Daughters of Isis – are contracted to use more than 15,000 hotel room nights and spend nearly $6 million at area hotels, restaurants and attractions during the August 2015 convention.