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Apple Harvest 2007 – Week 2

October 11, 2007 Leave a comment

What a difference a year makes! Last year Friendship Lodge finished up one of the best Apple Harvest fund raisers in recent memory, all the while dodging the rocks and ruts of the construction going on at the front of our building. This year we sold slightly more fried apple wedgies than last year – by 5:30 pm on Sunday we actually sold out of the 1,000 Cortlands that we’d bought. The word it definitely getting around about our delicious, tasty apple treats. We had an impressive number of repeat customers – some of them within a half hour of their first purchase!

Unfortunately, we had quite a bit of chopped steak left over, both cooked and defrosted. Ironically, we think that this is because the weather on Saturday was so nice – as in warm in the mid-80s – that people were too hot to eat regular food, and instead merely snacked on apple treats. Since the meat had already been paid for, some of the brothers on clean-up detail took it home (I’ve got a couple of bags in the freezer, just waiting for me to add it to a nice tomato sauce), and some of it was donated to the soup kitchen that uses our lodge hall during the day. This is the first year that we haven’t donated any healthy apples to them.

Although our profits weren’t as high as they were last year, we’re pleased that our expenses for the year are more under control. We’ve done a lot of repair and maintenance work, both inside and out in the last year, and the little bit that we have to go requires more time and sweat than actual money, so overall we’re in pretty good shape.

 

Apple Harvest 2007

 

Here are some pictures of the 2007 Apple Harvest, along with a nice shot of the completed front of the building.

And once again the thanks go out to the unsung (‘cos I’m not singing) heroes of the annual festival. We’d get nowhere without the usual dozen or so people who come down every morning to open up or stay until late to clean up. Again, great work and I’m sure that all of the members of Friendship Lodge thank you and your wives and/or partners for the hours that you put in. We certainly could not have made it a success without you.

Upright Regular Steps

October 8, 2007 Leave a comment

This past weekend we had a party for my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary. It turned into a family reunion as the hordes of out-of-town relatives descended on the small town of Woodbury, Connecticut and took over an inn for the weekend. I made a few notes on it elsewhere, so I don’t need to repeat it here.

But I did want to mention that on Saturday morning, while some people were nursing hangovers and others were antique shopping or visiting the local flea market, I took the opportunity to get a little quiet time to myself. Having been on a fitness kick since early summer, I had brought my road bike with me, and took a nice spin up and down historic Rte 67 from Southbury up through the center of Woodbury and headed out toward Watertown. 67 and US 6 run together at these points, and people not familiar with New England may not realize that US 6 is an old pre-Revolutionary War highway. Frankly, after seeing how many famous “Founding Fathers” and other early patriots slept along the route, it’s a wonder that we managed to rouse the troops at all, let alone win our independence.

That said, as I rode through Woodbury, just near the center of town I saw a huge 2-story high rock cliff with a rickety stairway bolted and supported along the side of the rock itself. A glance at the top of the stairway showed a plain white building with the familiar square and compasses. Without even seeing the sign I knew I was in front of the legendary King Solomon’s Lodge No. 7. The “lodge with the stairs” as it’s sometimes called by people in the Northeast corner of the state, and while I’d passed by it dozens of times, that was before I was a Mason, and so never really noticed it.

Lodge Photos

I’d heard stories about these stairs which are decidedly not to the local handicapped access building codes. In fact, a closer view of the stairway made me wonder how in the world a bunch of seventy-year old brothers could even manage this in the dark when I was hesitant to get close to them in broad daylight. The stairs are blocked off with boards and a Private – No Trespassing sign, but my guess is that the sight of thin boards and skinny metal pipes braced against the rocks would deter all but the most stout-hearted of interlopers.

Not realizing that the foliage and other scenery would be so pleasant during my 20-odd mile ride through the area, I didn’t pack my regular digital camera. These pictures were only taken with my phone camera, which really doesn’t do justice to either the building or the beautiful autumn scenery along the road. But I’m glad that I managed to at least get a glimpse of Masonic history over the weekend.

King Solomon No. 7 is one of the oldest lodge buildings in the state, and there is a fascinating history behind the stairway which can be read on their website here.

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