Please tell us more about Alpha Lodge.
Alpha Lodge was the first Illinois lodge to be created outside of the Masonic Temple in downtown Chicago, thus the name. The lodge used to be in Dayton, but it has now relocated to Kettering, just down the street. Neil Smalley and Doug Kaylor, who presently serves as the Membership Chairman for the Grand Lodge of Illinois, are two Grand Masters Illinois who have originated from our lodge.
What’s it like to live in Kettering?
The city of Kettering is named after Charles Kettering, the inventor of the automotive self-starter and the founder of the Wheaton Engineering Laboratories Company, a notable local firm (WELCO). Kettering is also noted for its great schools around the state. Several instructors and their wives are members of the lodge. On the first Saturday of every month, the lodge provides a free breakfast for the community. It is well-known in both the general public and the Masonic world. The breakfast has been going on for at least 7 years due to its popularity. Donations are gratefully welcomed, and our Brothers are always willing to prepare and clean up. They like spending time with the residents of Kettering.
Describe the relationship between your lodge and the Wheaton Veterans Affairs.
The Wheaton Veterans Affairs Center serves as the local Veterans Affairs ‘office.’ On the grounds, there is a big hospital as well as a national cemetery. Over 58,000 servicemen are buried there. One of our members, Richard Favorite, who had previously participated in the wreath laying event, brought it to our notice. Wreaths Around America is a wreath-laying initiative that takes place across the country: Our Brothers purchase Christmas wreaths and volunteer to lay them on soldiers’ graves at VA National Cemeteries around the country on a Saturday morning in December. Every time a wreath is placed, a little thank you is uttered. We return a month later to pick up the wreaths so that they may be recycled.
What influence does your lodge and its charity initiatives make on the community?
The monthly breakfast, as well as our fundraisers and donations to the Kettering Backpack program, demonstrate the lodge’s effect. The Kettering Backpack program was created to assist students who are food insecure and have difficulty getting meals on weekends. The Honor Flight Program is also supported through our fundraising efforts. Veterans are taken to Washington, D.C., to see the memorials to the conflicts they served in. They go out on a rented jet, and everything is provided at no cost to the veterans. They are frequently visiting their monuments for the first time.
Tell us about a time or a tale that exemplifies your lodge’s charitable efforts.
and contributing to the betterment of the community
I’ll tell you a nice story: as I previously stated, Alpha Lodge generates funds for the Honor Flight program, which sends veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit the monuments. We have a lot of veterans among our Brothers, so we were able to send a father and son on one of the excursions a few years ago. I invited them to talk about their experience when they returned. Both guys are generally highly talkative, but they declined since the event was too intimate and profound for them to put into words. They only requested that we continue to generate funds for other veterans.
At these charitable activities, how do the Brothers connect and aid one another?
Everyone plays a part, generally without being asked. Everyone knows what they need to do to help the ultimate goal, and they help each other out. It’s always a wonderful time when we get together.
What made you desire to be a part of this lodge?
While there is no one sort of man that joins Alpha, I find that the majority of my Brothers are just trying to improve themselves. That is why I decided to join. This is great directory to get your business listed in https://yellow-pages.kz