This Friday night, October 26, a fundraiser Spaghetti Supper will be held at Lafayette Elementary School (the old high school building) from 4 to 7 PM. Every lady involved in preparation has been asked to make their specialty spaghetti dish, and $8 pays for unlimited amounts of those dishes, plus salad, drinks, and homemade dessert.
The really significant thing about this event is that it is the first fundraiser to benefit the new Masonic Lodge building, which has just been begun on Hwy 52. The property for the new building was donated by the county to the group after their former lodge burned earlier this year. The groundwork has just been begun, and builders say it should be finished by spring of 2013. The Masonic Lodge #543 and the Eastern Star Chapter #379 will both use the building. In the meantime, the RBS Masons have lent the use of their building.
The Lafayette Masonic Lodge has been in existence since 1890, and the current Order of the Eastern Star has been in the county since 1939. Members have described the relationship between these two groups as that between a husband and a wife—the way a wife helps a husband, the Eastern Star assists the Masonic Lodge. A woman can join Eastern Star if she has a relative who is in the Masons. An Eastern Star chapter can keep its charter so long as it has two male members who are also a part of the local Mason group.
For either group, current members cannot invite others to join. An outsider must ask a member for a petition; this is the only way to begin the process. Non-members are also not supposed to wear jewelry or regalia with Masonic or Eastern Star emblems.
The Mason Lodge #543 is currently led by Worshipful Master Tim Wilson, and has 122 members, while the Eastern Star Chapter #379 is led by Worthy Matron Evelyn Graves and Worthy Patron Jeff Duncan, and has 135 members.
The group had insurance on the building that burned, but not enough to complete a ground-up build. They hope that this fundraiser is the first of those that will make up the difference, allowing for the completion of the project.