As told by WB Tom Stone, WB Steve Pennington, and WB Roger Barnstead..
The old Edmonds Opera House, later a skating rink, now home to the Edmonds Masonic Lodge, stands majestically in the center of the block of Dayton Street between 5th and 6th Avenues. The building serves as a symbol of the town’s history and of its present-day significance.
The building and its members are a ‘Who’s Who’ of Edmonds history. George Brackett, several members of the Yost family, Ray V. Cloud, former mayors, business leaders, decorated military members, and a host of interesting characters. See our Officers and Past Masters page for some of our historical individual members.
The Masonic meeting room, without a doubt is our most opulent room in the building, is redolent of spirits of famed past Masons like Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and George Washington. One can almost hear strains of Mozart’s symbolically Masonic Magic Flute hanging in the air. It’s awe-inspiring.
Like all traditional Masonic Lodges, ours is situated due east and west. This has its roots in The Tabernacle of Moses and King Solomon’s Temple. In the meeting room, officers sit in chairs according to direction, Our chairs, which look like theater seats, are all remnants from the Opera House. There’s a special seat for the Secretary. The grand piano remains, although the harmonium organ which was once there has been removed.
Our Masonic education, like all Blue Lodges, is divided into 3 degrees, and functions like a Master/Apprentice program and reflects the values and beliefs of Masonic philosophy. Our Apprentices are given lectures by our Masters. One lecture deals with an arrangement of 12 steps, has it’s roots in Philosophy and Sciences. There is a hierarchy of importance starting with Hearing and ending with Astronomy. We’re incredibly indebted to the Greeks, Romans, and the Egyptians.
Edmonds’ entrepreneur Allen M. Yost build a facility especially for the Edmonds Athletic Club. Mr. Yost built a large building on the site of the old Socialist Hall, on the north side of Dayton just east of 5th Street. The facility was named as Edmonds Opera House. The building went on further than its use as a facility for the athletic club. Mr. Yost installed gymnasium equipment and a basketball court, billiard and card tables. On Christmas night 1909, The building was dedicated. The following May, Mr. Yost expanded by adding installed two lanes for bowling. The athletic club remained successful, and for several years, the local basketball teams brought fame to Edmonds. In addition, popular boxing matches in the building were known.
Through its many years of existence, the Opera House became a very versatile building. it served a number of functions including an athletic club including basketball, bowling and boxing, an auditorium, a movie house, a roller-skating rink, a dance floor and a banquet hall. Perhaps most famously, it was an Opera House. Edmonds Masonic Lodge #165 acquired it in 1944, with dedication in 1950. It has served Edmonds Masons and the community of Edmonds since then.