Flint (WJRT) - (11/30/17) - For more than 100 years the Masonic Temple has stood in downtown Flint. It features an auditorium, meeting places and a restaurant. But the Masons say the building is for sale because they can't keep up with expenses.
For years thousands of dinners have been served in the dining room here. But its future is not certain. The Masons have listed the building with a Grand Blanc real estate firm. The asking price is $500,000.
"It has so many memories for so many people. It just comes down to the money part of it, the crunch of doing the repairs," said Judy Jones, building manager.
The temple opened in 1911 and has been visited by numerous community leaders through the years. GM founder Billy Durant and other automotive giants spent time here. A state of Michigan historic plaque stands outside. At its zenith five Masonic lodges were based here but now there's only one.
"It's getting harder to maintain the heating, the plumbing and the electrical," said Jones.
The temple is well known in Flint for its lunches and chicken dinners. Customers are concerned about what could happen if the building is sold.
"I think it's going to impact Flint because they always have been a part of Flint. I've been here on several occasions and I've been to a play upstairs and the food here is amazing," said Janet Crossnoe of Swartz Creek.
"It would be sad because this is a place we can come to for meetings and it's convenient. The history here is amazing," said Mike Herriman, of Flint.
Through the years many Masonic lodges have called this place home but interest in the Masons has dwindled and they just can't keep up with costs.