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  • W:. Pete Matthews

What a long, strange trip it’s been…


What a long, strange trip it’s been, indeed… from one of the best attended years in my time at Clio to an empty lodge room from March on. The year seemed to be all highs until COVID-19 brought it to a screeching halt. I'm still mourning the loss of our planned St. Patrick's Day corned beef dinner and the program on Irish Masons.


My year as Master was finally brought to a close on August 4th when we were able to convene for the first time since March, hold elections and then install Past Master, W.’. Brett DeHollander for his second (and a half) go ‘round at the job. I am sliding over to the left to become secretary. Good luck, Clio!


The meeting went well, considering. We all stayed 6 feet apart, wore masks, didn’t shake hands but got the job done in a succinct, orderly fashion. My thanks to Very Worshipful Harry DeHollander for his great job as Marshal, Worshipful Jack Ehrlich for his glorious job as Installing Chaplain, and to Worshipful Mike Postilli for his always masterful job as Installing Master, as well as all the brothers that braved the pandemic and showed up to be installed.


Our new officer line-up is as follows:


Tyler:  Craig Frances

Marshal: Harry DeHollander

Steward: Bayard Burch/ Rob Polatas

Sr Master of Ceremonies: Jeremy Mensing

Jr Master of Ceremonies: Jeff Ross

Sr Deacon: Scott Harter

Jr Deacon: Shawn Booth

Chaplin: Blake Keller

Trustees: Mike Postilli/ Bill Hunn/ Brian McVaugh

Secretary: Peter Matthews

Treasurer: Matthew Scheffer

Jr Warden: Devon Nolan

Sr Warden: Larry Vaccarelli

WM: Brett W. DeHollander


Although I was negligent in writing articles during our down time, we weren’t totally idle at the lodge. When we heard the news that Apple Fest was canceled, we started having casual officer’s meetings to figure out how to move forward in the new Masonic year.


We decided to do a series of Chicken BBQs, one of which is this weekend, Saturday August 22nd. We start serving at noon, but if any brothers reading this article care to help out, we’ll start showing up at 9:30.


Our dedicated chicken-flippers, Shawn Booth, Matt Cook, Mark Shapiro and a huge dude known only to me as Big Mike will be there bright and early to get the chickens started. With luck, our chicken supervisor, Brother Bill Hunn, who recently underwent colon-cancer surgery, will be feeling up to attending.


The one held last month was very successful. We went with a conservative 150 dinners to sell and sold out in an hour. We’re bumping the number up to 200 and may the Supreme Architect deliver us similar success.


We have a barbecue planned for Saturday, Sept 19 as well and are batting around ideas for an October event.


Aside from chicken, not sure what the following Masonic year will bring. I know we will have meetings, one probably in September, to vote on a budget. W.’. Brett will be forthcoming with that information. I can understand if the meetings are sparsely attended due to the Coronavirus, but we’ll trudge along as best we can. Brother George Washington made it through a revolutionary war and Brothers Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman and Winston Churchill got us through WWII, so through this pandemic, Freemasonry will march on.

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Clio Lodge No. 779 F. & A.M.

287 East Ave. Hilton, NY 14468