Bob and Sara Frock have been involved with the Waynedale Masonic Lodge for so long, they knew exactly how great the group’s annual cookouts and picnics are.
The Fort Wayne couple was parked at one of the long, stretching tables inside the Waynedale Masonic Lodge No. 739 on Saturday, August 17, to enjoy the annual event.
Originally, the Masons had planned this Saturday for a rib cook-off, with several barbeque chefs competing to see who could prepare the most tantalizing ribs, but the event evolved into a more laid-back cookout and picnic, according to Christian Skordos, a Senior Deacon with the group.
“The rib cook-off thing didn’t quite work out, but this is still really just a chance to get together and socialize,” said Skordos, a Fort Wayne attorney, who’s been a Mason about one and a half years. “And this is really just a fellowship event, getting together.”
The group usually has a picnic or cookout of some kind each year about this time of the summer, Skordos explained.
Mason Senior Warden Brian Eiler said the picnics are not just a great way to relax and enjoy some food, but to show members’ families exactly what goes on at their lodge.
“Through these events,” said Eiler a Fort-Wayne based IT instructor who’s been a Mason about five years, “we can connect our families to the kind of things we do. And it’s a good time for Masons and their families.”
The cook-out, free to the public, featured on its menu: brats and burgers (plus all the toppings); baked beans; pasta salad; chips; cookies and cakes, among other munchies.
The group also hosts monthly breakfasts at its Masons Hall, located at 7039 Elzey Street, which are free and open to the public.
As for the planned ribs? Only one member actually was working the grill, cooking ribs, although the group’s parking lot was full of tangy, delicious-smelling smoke.
Tobin Bradley was the lone Mason working the grill, and was a shoe-in to win the group’s first official rib-cook-off award, “unless he poisons someone,” Skordos joked.
None of that mattered to the Frocks – Bob a Mason for 51 years, and Sara, a member of the chapter’s Eastern Star for just as long – said they love how the event brought the group together. And their clean plates said they enjoyed the grub, too.
“We love the fellowship and what it stands for,” Sara said. “It’s charitable, and it’s good food.”