The Meriden Masonic Temple in Meriden, Connecticut has just been put on the market.
From the myrecordjournal.com website today:
The Masonic temple on East Main Street is listed for sale and the lodges that occupy the space are trying to relocate to a smaller location in the city.
Tom Gondek, president of the Meriden Masonic Temple Foundation, said although the 20,250-square-foot temple fulfills the needs of Center Lodge 97 and Meridian Lodge 77, membership can no longer sustain the cost of occupying the space.
“It can house a lot of people. The problem is a lot of people aren’t coming,” Gondek said. “The donations that we use to support the building aren’t nearly enough... It takes about $120,000 a year to run that building and we are probably in a shortfall of $35,000 to $40,000 a year.”
The three-story building was constructed in 1927 specifically for use as a Masonic Temple.The Temple is home to Meridian Lodge 77 (yes, I know, different spelling), Center Lodge 97, the Meriden Masonic History Museum, and several appendant bodies.
Tom Accuosti brought up a program proposed by then Grand Master Simon LaPlace of the Grand Lodge of Connecticut back in April 2014, called Building & Organization Allied Sponsorship (BOAS) to create partnerships with private businesses specifically to find a way to save these irreplaceable buildings. Unfortunately, the plan vanished after Simon left office. That alone is a tragic enough comment.