From the start of the membership year, there is a grace period to renew your membership. During the grace period, your membership is still in an active status. That means you can register for an event as usual under the "MCFR Member" registration type without having to pay your dues first.
For example, some members prefer to bring a check for their membership dues to the first event of the season. The grace period allows them to register for the event as a member instead of as a guest.