Lodge resumes community events
The Masonic Temple Porter-Chapman Lodge, 1103 Sixth St., North Catasauqua, emerged from its COVID-19 pandemic dormancy Oct. 31.
Essentially silenced for about a year and a half due to the pandemic, organization members were excited to sponsor an event they dubbed “moolah bingo” that included a basket raffle and a variety of food for sale. The social hall in the basement was filled with participants listening intently, hoping to hear a number on their bingo card.
Before the pandemic, the group held bingo for about 10 years. Additionally, it has held numerous diverse fundraising activities, such as sandwich sales, breakfasts, veteran events, spaghetti dinners and assistance for the Catasauqua Community Food Bank.
Bingo reached North America in 1929. The game was initially called beano. It was first played at a carnival near Atlanta, Ga. New York City toy salesman Edwin Lowe renamed the game bingo after he overheard someone who won a game accidentally yell “bingo” instead of “beano.”
The Porter Lodge 284 of Freemasons was constituted in 1854. Freemasonry is a fraternity of brothers who share one common goal - to help each other become better men. The lodge was named after James Madison Porter, district deputy grand master of Easton. The Chapman Lodge 637 was constituted in 1905.
Bill Mason and Bryan Fritz staffed the entrance table at the recent event, selling bingo cards and tickets for the basket raffle.
“We are trying to get back to some sense of normality,” Mason said.
He and Fritz added they are grateful for the full house of attendees at the event and hope for a total elimination of the COVID-19 virus.
A full team of kitchen workers, led by Ed Kutz, served up delicious picnic-type food. There was a palpable buzz in the kitchen as these men were delighted to return to a social event.
Kutz and his team commented they look forward to re-engaging fundraising and community-strengthening events over time.
“We have to walk before we can run,” Kutz said regarding the number and frequency of events.