Oban Masonic Lodge hosts fun day helping raise thousands for charity
A WEEKEND fun day organised by Oban’s Masonic Lodge has so far raised £ 5,215 for two charities.
Saturday’s fun day, run by Oban Commercial Lodge No. 180, sported games such as a bungee run strewn with lollipops, beat-the-goalie, and even an old fashioned coconut shy, alongside craft and burger stalls, a bouncy castle, face painting, and a generous raffle.
Sporadic downpours at times cleared the field at Oban Lorne Rugby Club on Glencruitten Drive, with hundreds of adults and children diving for cover in the clubhouse during the afternoon, but the play quickly resumed.
Three teams from the Oban and Taynuilt Masonic Lodges also competed in a football tournament, won by Taynuilt’s Lodge St Moden No. 985.
All the attractions and tickets raised money for the Lodge’s two chosen charities: the Special Baby Care Unit Endowment Fund at the Royal Alexandra Hospital, Paisley, and the St Andrews University Alternative Format Suite, which produces audio books and Braille prints for students with special needs, thanks to one paid and 50 volunteer members of staff.
One of the fun day’s organisers, Kenny Pearson, said the event follows a successful fun day five years ago, which raised thousands of pounds for the Oban Hospice, and he hoped this year’s would do the same for the Special Baby Care Unit.
He said: ‘My son was born earlier this year and he needed a lot of treatment, which spurred me on to ask the lodge if we could put an event on again this year.’
Mr Pearson was joined by fellow organisers, Scott and Karen MacAllister, whose son Rian, a former Oban High School pupil and talented student at St Andrews University, tragically died last year aged 21.
Rian, who was blind due to a condition called optic nerve hypoplasia, had just graduated with a degree in mediaeval history and Middle East studies.
Karen explained: ‘The St Andrews University Alternative Format Suite made a huge difference to his life – it made work accessible. It was really crucial to Rian’s university life.’
Speaking on Saturday afternoon, Scott added: ‘ So far the day’s raised £ 3,000, which will be split between the two charities.
‘There’s still the ceilidh this evening, so we’re hoping to raise more.
‘The community and the Masonic Lodge have been fantastic and very supportive.’
The Oban Commercial Lodge’s Right Worshipful Master, Brother Kenneth Stewart, praised everybody’s ‘excellent effort’, and ‘the large number of quality donations, and people who came out to support, despite the weather’.
The fun continued at a ceilidh in the Masonic Lodge on Albany Street, Oban, with music by George Noble Disco, and Kenny Pearson and friends.
Photographs clockwise from top left: Ellie MacNiven and, behind, Emma Roxburgh, of Oban Lorne Ladies Rugby Club demonstrate the bungee run 15_T34 Fun Day - bungee run; Robbie Dewar, 3, celebrates with his auntie Caroline Reardon and cake in the clubhouse, after winning a coconut at the shy 15_T34 Fun Day - cake; Two year- old Paloma from Oban met Mickey and Minnie Mouse at the fun day 15_T34 Fun Day - mice; Ellie MacNiven and Emma Roxburgh are in the zone 15_T34 Fun Day - skill zone; Left to right, 13-year- old Arran from Dunbeg poses behind his stall with Abbie, 5, and Sophie, 7, from Oban. 15_T34 Fun Day - sponge; 11-year- old Declan Thomson from Oban knocks off his first of two coconuts 15_T34 Fun Day coconut.