Last Friday night, Newton Lodge #59 had our first Table Lodge (at least the first that anyone could remember). Our lodge is 153 years old, so I guess it was about time that we got around to it.
We had 23 brothers join together for the evening at the DMACC/Sodexho Conference Center. I asked Bro. John Klaus to serve as our Toastmaster and what an outstanding job that he did (that is why I picked him...because I knew he would do an outstanding job). John explained some of the interesting history behind table lodges and explained the various toasts.
Bro. Jack Butler, Chair of the Committee on Divison & Reference, served as our Orator for the evening. Jack spoke about Masonic heroes and his dad happened to be there and Jack pointed him out as one of his heroes. There were several Masonic heroes there that evening: Bros. Madison Tomfeld, Alvin Rempp, and Francis Needham were certainly three that easily came to mind. Bro. Jay Cole Simser was another.
We toasted on locally produced wines from the Jasper Winery. Our meal was quite delicious.
There were a few snaffus...when I went over to DMACC at 4:00 p.m. (luckily I went over there) the room was set up totally wrong...in rounds instead of in a horseshoe shape and there was no one there to help rearrange the tables, so guess who did some hustling tables around. At 5:00 p.m. our Worshipful Master called and said he was coming as he was ill...okay now what do we do since one of the toasts was going to be to him.
I had wanted to have a table lodge in Newton for quite awhile. I thought it might be something different to appeal to the young guys. I only had two of them there. That was somewhat disappointing to me. I had advertised it in our lodge for the past three months. Do these brothers have hearing loss or have lost their reading abilities. Sometimes folks (including brothers) are a little bit "out there"!
Well, this was something that I had wanted to do. We did it. The next one (whenever that might be, probably after I'm dead) will be up to someone else. I bought my ticket for the one at Arcadia Lodge on July 18th. I'm looking forward to going up and spending a fun evening with the boys from Ames.