Masons serve up oyster stew

<I>PATRICK WEBB photo</I><BR>Dobby Wiegardt served oyster stew at a Masonic Lodge dinner in Ilwaco last week.

ILWACO - Ilwaco's Occident Lodge No. 99, Free and Accepted Masons of Washington, hosted the annual oyster stew feed before the monthly lodge meeting Thursday, May 6.

Longtime Long Beach Peninsula oysterman Dobby Wiegardt and his assistant, Ed Cox, cooked three and a half gallons of oysters for the event, which attracted 30 guests from the Long Beach Peninsula, Warrenton and Seattle. Wiegardt has been coordinating the event for about 20 years and it precedes the May meeting each year.

Wiegardt was coy about his exact recipe, but said the oysters are boiled separately then added to three and a half gallons of milk which has been heated but not boiled. The whole process takes two hours in the kitchen. "Of course, you've got to use Willapa Bay oysters," he said.

Masons meet at the lodge in Ilwaco on the first Thursday of each month. For details about activities, contact Michael Carmel at 642-3636.

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