Nov 292010

(From the Maine Grange Bulletin)

WM Jim Owens

Congratulations to Grace Dunderdale who was recently named Junior Grange Ambassador at the National Grange Session in Charlotte, North Carolina. Also at the National Grange we were very excited when Valley Grange #144 of Guilford received first place in Community service for the nation. We should all be very pleased with the honors that Sister Grace and Valley Grange have brought to the State of Maine.

Upton returning from National, I received more good news; the paperwork for the reorganization of Princeton Grange #293.

A conference for the Pomona Grange members will be held on Saturday, January 29, 2011 starting at 10:00 AM. I hope to see many in attendance at State Grange Headquarters in Augusta that day.

Several of us will be attending the Northeast Leaders’ Conference in Latham, New York from January 7th through January 9th.

I look forward to seeing each of you on the Grange Trail in our travels.

Nov 272010

Submitted by Ann Burns

Ready to read! Mt Etna third graders show off their dictionaries.

Sixteen more third graders are now proud owners of a personal dictionary, thanks to Mount Etna Grange #147 in North Baldwin. Members, Norma Haines and Ann Burns donned their respective regalia and visited Baldwin Elementary School for the fourth year of “Words for Thirds” participation. Classroom teacher Janet Sherburne introduced the Grangers before Haines explained their sashes and told of a few offices and activities of the Grange. With enthusiasm the youngsters participated with their ideas as Haines introduced some of the purposes of the Grange and how they related to the local area. The two most relevant to the students being the RFD mail and the use of railroads for transportation of products and produce. As Baldwin was a farming and lumbering area, the Mattocks Station in Baldwin was very important to the families,many of whom belonged to one of the two Granges in town. As each student receved their dictionary from Burns, they began to inspect the possibilities of its value.

When Thank You letters were received ,it was apparent the dictionaries have been used for checking spelling, recognizing parts of speech, introduction of unfamiliar words and for definitions. The most impressive Thank You came from the teacher with this comment.”even my most reluctant readers are opening them and pouring over the words.” This is a program well worth continuing!

Nov 262010

From the Maine Grange Bulletin

A new statewide search for historic painted?scenery is now underway in Maine. These local treasures were created between 1890 and about 1940 during the heyday of vaudeville and are still found in town halls, grange halls, opera houses and community theatres. They often contain richly pained drapery, countryside or street scenes. They are usually “roll drops” on wooden or metal rollers and they often feature advertisements for local businesses such as dairies, piano movers, car dealers, and beauty parlors. With the arrival of movies and then television, the use of town halls and grange halls as cultural centers declined and, after WWII, the tradition of creating painted roll drops simply disappeared.

However, much of the historic scenery remains either on state or in storage–sometimes in good condition but more often neglected, torn and very dirty.

Many of the same intinerant painters and scenic studios that created scenery in Maine also sold scenery in New Hampshire and Vermont where 185 pieces have been found through a similar search.

In Maine, more than a dozen historic scenes have been stabilized by Curtains Without Borders, a team of conservators who developed their survey and conservation skills in Vermont. The Gardiner Library, the Granges in Benton and Windsor, and the Searsport Town Hall are examples where restored scenery is now on display.

The search is a joint project of Curtains?Without Borders and Maine Preservation which supports local efforts to presever and revive the buildings that house historic scenery. Funding has been provided by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and?the Maine Community Foundation. Another partner in this effort is to locate and document Maine’s historic scenery is the Maine State Grange. For more information and to contribute any information, please call Christine Hadsel at 802 598-5867 or email curtainswithoutbordersatgmaildotcom.

Nov 242010

Got no check books, got no banks.? Still I’d like to express my thanks

I got the sun in the morning and the moon at night.?

~Irving Berlin

Happy Thanksgiving to All!

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life.? It turns what we have into enough, and more.? It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity.? It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.? Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.?

~Melody Beattie



Nov 242010

This might be just the community service program you’ve been looking for!?Developed by the Maine Agriculture in the Classroom organization, the program involves volunteers reading and giving out agriculturally themed books to Pre K to 4th Grade Classrooms. This all takes place during Ag Week, March 14 –?18?2011.

The MAITC folks have an ambitious schedule that includes getting schools and classes signed up December 1st. In the past sign ups have continued into January so don’t let that date scare you off.

In many counties the local Soil and Water Conservation District is coordinating the project so you might want to start by calling that office. You could also check out?the MAITC site where there’s preliminary information about the program and forms for classes and volunteers.?This program?is huge fun and it’s only one day a year so being a volunteer just makes sense!

Nov 232010

As noted in my website report, one of the pages that will be created soon will be about “member benefits.” In the past that meant things like discounts… and it still does, but what about those “soft” benefits? Let’s face it, most people do not join the Grange to get a discount on hearing aids, do they?

I’ll bet there are several thousand reasons… as interesting as it might be to collect them all, I’ll be satisfied with a few dozen. So the question is:

What is the biggest benefit you (personally and individually) have received from being a Granger?

You can share it by commenting on this post (see the button up at the top right?) or be sending an email  (webmasteratmainestategrangedotorg)  . Just to get you started, Continue reading »

Nov 232010

In case you didn’t notice, we’ve added another Subordinate Grange Facebook Page. The latest one is for Highland Lake #87… and I’ve asked them to provide a little “write up” on how they went about it. I’m not personally a big user of Facebook, but it does seem to be quite “user friendly” and a fairly easy way for Granges to create a “web presence.” With 147 Granges throughout the state, there’s got to be more than a handful with something on the Internet…? so submit your link!

One important web site accomplishment that you probably won’t notice is the installation of a “plugin” that promises to protect email addresses on the site from being “harvested” by spammers.

I’ve also started building the “About” section of the site. Some features you’ll find there soon include a State Grange Officer List and a list of benefits that come with Grange Membership. (You’re going to help with that!)?

Our biggest need continues to be NEWS! We are getting lots of requests to publicize events and that’s great… but how are those events turning out? Write a paragraph or two with some highlights and submit them… where are the “old” Maine Granger correspondents? You used to send news in monthly…

No matter what you are submitting, don’t forget to send complete information–especially when listing events. The simplest method is to include everything right in the body of the email (or attach a document file). When I can simply copy and paste your information life is good! Also, please attach photos to the email–do not insert them into the body of the email. Photos that are inserted require multistep processing that is very time consuming!

Thanks to those who are submitting and offering encouragement… and a Happy Thanksgiving Holiday to all!

Nov 202010

Jim and a very surprised Mary Annis accept National Community Service Award from Terry and Harriet Spencer.

At the first annual Valley Grange Hootenanny, State Officers Terry and Harriet Spencer surprised Valley Grange Members with the news that Valley Grange had placed “first in the nation based on their recent community service report.” In presenting the certificate, Terry Spencer noted that this is a “big honor not only for Valley Grange but for the state as well.”

A shocked Mary Annis, Community Service Chairperson, accepted the award admitting she “never dreamed we’d really win.” While Valley members are justifiably proud of their community service program, the competition for the national honor is fierce with over 2,000 granges in 37 states vying for the coveted award and first prize stipend of $400.

Asked to give some examples of the sorts of things that earned Valley the honor, Annis quickly listed off a number of programs that keep grangers involved with the schools and children: Words for Thirds, Bookworm Readying, Newspapers in Education… adding “these are the programs most people know about, but we do lots of other things too like helping with benefit suppers and collecting for food pantries…” She also confessed she’s already started on next year’s entry prompted her husband Jim to comment on how hard Mary works at the scrapbook-like report but “the only problem with it is all the holes in my newspaper when I try to read it because she’s cut out all the news articles about Valley Grange.”

We are number one!

Lecturer/Program Director Walter Boomsma noted that to a large extent the “work is the reward” and he thought perhaps next year’s theme would be “practice random acts of community because it really is about just that: community.” Earlier in the day he and Grange Master Jim Annis had completed this year’s Words for Thirds” program by traveling to Lagrange, Milo, and Brownville handing out dictionaries. “So there’s a lot to celebrate,”?Boomsma said as he turned the program over to Susan Ramsey and her “accomplices” for some fine foot-stomping fiddle tunes as well as popular songs from country, folk, and gospel genres with a sprinkling of fun back-and-forth banter and educational snippets. Thanks to Susan’s remarkable talent, the audience discovered that fiddle can imitate a bagpipe and, if you close your eyes, you might not know the difference!

During intermission the annual raffle was drawn with the result that Cheryl Ricker of Wellington will receive her choice of whether her prize check will be made out for “meat or heat.” Grange bakers donated a number of pies for an old fashioined?pie auction and thanks to the able assistance of the Homachuck Children from Dover Foxcroft an additional $65 was added to the proceeds from an evening meant to be “tons of fun” while raising much-needed funds to keep the Grange solvent and successful.

Nov 182010

Submitted by Sue Hackett

Grace Dunderdale, a member of the Maine State Junior Grange, received her 2010 National Junior Ambassador sash while at the National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina November 10 to 13. Her duties included mentoring of the younger junior grangers, helping with workshops, overseeing junior crafts and activities, going on the junior tour to the Levine Museum of the New South, and planning outdoor activities including a scavenger hunt. On Saturday morning the Junior Breakfast was held and Grace gave a speech about her time in the Junior Grange. She then helped the Junior Director give out awards and did the manual spelling which she presented at the Northeastern Regional Youth Conference. Grace was an excellent representative of the Maine State Grange. We should all be proud of her.

Nov 182010

Submitted by Sue Hackett

The Junior and Youth Departments are continuing the collection of UPC’s from Campbell Soup Products, Pepperidge Farm products, SpaghettiO’s, Swanson Broth, V8 Items, Wolfgang Pucks, Bic Products, and Pop Secret products.? Many items are “NEW” this year, so we will be sending out a new list in our next junior/youth newsletter.? Please make copies and share them with your members.? Also check out the Campbell’s website… you’ll find the URL in the links section of this site!

Webmaster note:

You can download?the 2010 – 2011 Labels for Education Product List?right here! Bic pens and Post cereals are now added products!