Members of the Order of the Eastern Star are holding a fundraiser this Saturday to aid several charities, local and worldwide.
Members of the Order of the Eastern Star are holding a fundraiser this Saturday to aid several charities, local and worldwide. Men and women in the organization are busy this week preparing for a bake sale, a garage sale and a silent auction. This will be the their fourth garage sale. It is the second year for their silent auction. OES Associate Conductress Donna Gunter said they’ve done well with all their fundraisers, but the silent auction has been their most successful. “Last year we made more money with the silent auction than the garage sale and bake sale,” Gunter said. “We’re hoping to do that well again this Saturday.” The money raised this Saturday will go toward helping nine different charities, which include the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, multiple sclerosis, alzheimer research and the Shriner’s Transportation Fund. Every year, the Worthy Grand Matron for the state of Louisiana, selects a cause that other members are encouraged to support. Gunter said last year, the cause that was supported was helping disabled veterans who were handicap due to lost limbs or other misfortunes. Members of the OES, throughout the state, held fundraisers to purchase specially trained dogs that greatly helped their disabled owners. Gunter said the organization also takes care of their own when one of them is in need. “When one of our members goes into a nursing home or becomes a shut in, we have a committee that goes out and checks on them,” she said. “If someone is hurt or too sick to pay their bills, we’ll help them. We are a family taking care of one another.” In their quest to help this year’s designated charities, OES has made donations at several local levels. In November the Sunny South #12 collected and donated canned goods to the Crisis Ministries in Bastrop. Last week they donated 18 pillows to the Ronald McDonald House in Monroe. They’ve also collected thousands of soda top tabs which they’ll take to the RMH this week. “We collected and donated crayons, pens, pencils and poster board for a local autistic class recently,” Gunter said. “We don’t want recognition or rewards for what we do. We do these things because we want to.” The Order of the Eastern Star has existed in Bastrop for almost 100 years, with a purpose to help their fellow man, and the world around them. Although both men and women can belong, it is the largest fraternal organization in the world, with over 500,000 members under the General Grand Chapter. The upcoming OES fundraiser in Bastrop will be on Nov. 17 at the Mt. Gerizim Lodge, located at 10506 Boswell St., behind the Cherry Ridge Nursing Home. The silent auction will be from 7 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The bake sale and garage sale will be from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. The garage sale will include items such as dishes, a stereo, a large gas heater and clothes. The silent auction will include items such as crystal pieces, hand-painted kitchen decorations, a two-piece glass tray serving set and a 16-piece wine set. The bake sale will offer desserts such as assorted cakes, cheesecake, pecan pie and mini pumpkin loafs. According to the General Grand Chapter OES website, concrete evidence of the charitable nature of the organization is the millions of dollars raised within its membership to support national, jurisdictional and local charities. Gunter said she’ll be thankful for any amount of money that’s raised during Saturday’s fundraiser. She said she was proud of the members in Morehouse Parish because, “for us to be a small organization, we do a lot.”