The Freemasons’ history has often been veiled in secrecy, but the Matinecock Masonic Lodge in Oyster Bay recently opened its doors to the public for a special fundraising event. Approximately 65 attendees, including Masons and their guests, gathered to enjoy games such as billiards, darts, cornhole, and more, all in support of Ryan Obes, a lodge member’s son who is battling multiple polyps and related complications.
On August 2nd, Masons from across New York State traveled to the lodge to support the Obes family and partake in an evening filled with games and camaraderie. Steve Boerner, one of the event’s organizers, expressed satisfaction with the evening, emphasizing that the goal was to raise funds and increase the lodge’s community engagement.
Boerner worked diligently on the promotion and logistics of the event, and he was pleased to see everyone enjoying themselves. He noted that the fundraiser was particularly significant because of the close relationship with Warren, Ryan’s father.
A highlight of the evening was a pool tournament played on a recently donated billiards table, replacing the old one destroyed in the early 2000s. Guests also had the opportunity to play darts and poker in the lodge’s recreation center and participate in a cornhole tournament on the front porch.
Boerner explained that the event aligned with previous discussions about expanding the lodge’s community involvement. This includes attracting guests and potential future Masons and emphasizing the importance of community outreach.
The underlying purpose of the event was to raise funds for Ryan Obes’ medical treatments. Diagnosed with multiple polyps in 2018 during his freshman year in college, Obes has undergone several surgeries to combat the disease but continues to face medical challenges. The family aims to raise $150,000 for a small bowel transplant, and they have collected over $68,000.
The lodge’s event contributed an additional $2,000, and Boerner mentioned that more events are planned to further assist Obes and integrate the lodge into the community. Several lodge members, including those who count Theodore Roosevelt and his son among their ranks, expressed enthusiasm for playing a more active role in Oyster Bay’s community life.