Jun 212016

As in the past, we will be happy to list Officer Installation Teams that are available throughout the state. If you are leading a team, please email your contact information and a short description of your availability and willingness to travel.

Rolf Staples’ Team can be reached by emailing Rolf  (swederolfataoldotcom)   or calling him at 207-973-3976. The team is based in Bangor, Penobscot Pomona and is willing to travel “a couple of hours each way” but requests those interested make their arrangements early so plans can be made!

Christine Hebert’s Team can be reached by emailing Christine  (christinehebertatoutlookdotcom)   or calling her at 207-743-5277.

Vicki Huff’s Team will be attempting a few installations this year as she gains her strength back. Reach the team by emailing Vicki  (Granger1atmainedotrrdotcom)   or calling her at 207-699-2830. (Please note that Vicki’s team is currently fully booked.)

We will also briefly list planned installations below. Interested Granges should contact the person listed to explore the possibility of participating and confirm details.

Monday, August 22, Cumberland- Oxford Union Pomona and any other Granges at Mt. Etna Grange in Baldwin by Vicki’s Team. Potluck supper at 6:00 PM, 7:00 PM installation.

Thursday, August 25, Fairview Grange in Smithfield. Potluck supper at 6:00 P.M. — bring a dish to share, 7:00 P.M. installation. Contact Fairview Master-elect Rick Watson.

Continue reading »

Aug 262016

By Amanda Leigh Brozana,
National Grange Lecturer
Reprinted from The Patron’s Chain, the e-newsletter of National Grange

home-economicsRecently I caused quite a stir – surprise, surprise – by sharing a video on Facebook that suggests schools include in their curriculums things previously taught in what was known as shop and home ec classes.

Many of my friends – hopefully that includes many of you – argued that teaching things like cooking and sewing and finding a stud to hang a picture are the responsibility of parents and other family members.

Yes. Yes, I agree.

But there was much more in those classes that I, as a member of one of the last classes of students in my district to have them under these titles, learned (and a few things I wish I would have).

Sure, most kids can learn how to cook the basics through observation of our parents or grandparents but formally teaching young people how to prepare food in nutritious, safe and appetizing ways is still important. Food safety is second hat to those who cook frequently, but for time-strapped individuals who are just learning, it’s so easy to worry about less dishes and choose to use the same cutting board for raw chicken and cucumbers for salad, not knowing the risks.

You can watch someone change a tire and learn or figure out how to sew a button by finding a YouTube video, but more complex subjects you often can’t learn just by seeing – like balancing a checkbook, understanding interest rates or planning an investment strategy. These are vital for youth to know, especially before signing for that first college loan or taking out that first credit card. However, many parents – of young kids, teens and beyond – don’t understand these topics in detail themselves.

These are the things modern home ec classes were starting to teach as I entered and exited my high school years. But most schools have since done away with these type of classes because of reduced budgets, lack of teachers in their area in that subject, focus on academic areas covered by standardized testing and many other reasons. This is the same for many districts that have cut agriculture education (and FFA) programs.

And with those cuts, there is certainly a noticeable void. People who lack these skills and training often ignore problems because they do not know how to deal with it, or they spend money they often don’t have to fix a problem they could have easily taken care of with a little knowledge and training. In the long run, it may help the local economy for someone to call out a plumber to fix a leaky sink for $100 rather than go to the hardware store and buy a $1 rubber washer, but there are $99 fewer dollars for that individual to spend on healthy food, paying down credit card debt, or giving to your Grange Hall fund.

Still, the argument that all of the personal, home and life skills necessary should be taught by parents, or the larger parenting community, and not the burden of already stretched public school budgets is valid.

So, maybe there is a call to action for Grangers to fill this void.

Instead of asking schools to provide this type of instruction on the backs of taxpayers, or expecting parents who sometimes graduated out of schools and homes that did not prepare them in these fields, our Grange members who have an area of expertise could share their knowledge as part of an ongoing Lecturer’s series on “Life Skills.”

In the coming months, I will be seeking assistance in creating programs in this area and hope Granges will put on their own programs, then share them with me for further distribution. It’s time to return to the lives of our community members as educational hubs we were meant to be, and what better time than as we prepare to celebrate our founding and prove our relevance in this new age.

Won’t you consider providing ideas for Life Skills Basics and Advanced Lecturer’s Programs that could be offered at meetings or on weekends by your Grange? Email your ideas or completed programs, in the form of a Lecturer’s Program in a Box, to lectureratnationalgrangedotorg  (lectureratnationalgrangedotorg)  , or call 202-628-3507 with suggestions.

Lecturer’s Program in a Box Standard Form

Program should be completed on PowerPoint or similar presentation software and must include

  • A title slide
  • At least 10 informational slides
  • A closing slide with author’s name, contact information and basic details (ex. Larry Smith has been a licensed contractor with his own business in Hartford, CT, for more than 20 years).
  • A handout/stand alone document that includes either a step-by-step guide, tip sheet, frequently asked questions, resource list, comparison guide, activity or other tool or activity to engage the audience and reinforce your instruction

If you are unable to use a presentation software, you can create a speech script with attached photos or illustrations in addition to the stand-alone handout.

Aug 262016

By Pete Pompper
National Grange Community Service Director
Reprinted from The Patrons Chain–the e-newsletter of National Grange

community service imageThe community service works that our Granges do never cease to amaze in their diversity and scope.  These programs show that Granges are active and relevant in their communities nationwide. We encourage all Granges to make community service a cornerstone of their Grange and know that if you do, you will see it as a key tool in your kit to making your Grange grow.

 Highlights of some Grange community service projects:

Five Mile Prairie Grange (WA) held a community dinner and then had a speaker give a presentation on the American flag.

Gardner Grange (KS) has for many years holds a Veterans Appreciation night where they invite members from the local VFW to the Grange Hall for dinner.  They then ask each veteran to discuss their time in the Armed Forces and play the anthem for each branch.

Bangor Grange (ME) will be hosting its sixth annual Veterans Tribute Show and their fourth annual fundraiser for the House in the Woods which is a veterans retreat in Lee, ME.

Florissant Grange (CO) hosted a Heritage Day where the town celebrated the heritage in that area of Colorado.  At the hall they had food, kid’s games and crafts along with historic displays of the town.  This is a wonderful way to open the Grange Hall to the community and get individuals and families to learn about the Grange.

Concord Grange (NH) borrowed a community service idea from Harmony Grange (NH) a Meet, Greet, and Eat project where they served good Grange food and presented several awards to deserving people and community organizations.  One of the groups was a local band who then gave a free concert.  I really like to hear Granges that borrow ideas from other Granges, great job Dick.

Pennsylvania State Grange at the PA SG annual Family Festival the members donated money. Gift cards and other items that were then donated to a local Ronald McDonald House by Ruth Vonada, PaSG Community Service Director.

Burns Grange (MI) hosted a Meet the Candidates night, one of many Granges, where they had not only a good turnout of candidates but also community members.  This is an excellent way this time of year to open up our Halls to the community.

Little Lake Grange (CA) has started a local radio station at their Grange Hall with coverage in the local community.  It is a 100-watt low power FM station KLLP-LP 97.9.  Think of the possibilities this Grange now has to serve their community.  Job well done.  For more information, you can contact Larry Cotler, Gen Mgr., at lannyatkllgdotorg  (lannyatkllgdotorg)  .

Aug 252016

The National Grange is seeking to learn more about our members so we can provide better programming and services. Today is a focus on our farmers.

Please tell us if you or a member of your Grange is a farmer (large or small scale). Please provide their name and contact information (if permitted) and the type of farming they do. Also, if you or if you know your farmer member uses precision ag, drones, and other new innovations that rely on networks and a solid internet connection, we would appreciate you noting that.

You can reply to this email or send the information to lectureratnationalgrangedotorg  (lectureratnationalgrangedotorg)  .

Thank you so much!

Amanda Leigh Brozana
National Grange Lecturer
For more valuable news and information, please join our mailing list.

Aug 252016

Reposted from an announcement from the Maine Farmland Trust

Join us for a late summer evening to remember!

Featuring sweet tunes from farmer/musicians Adam Nordell & Johanna Davis, wood-fired pizza, local brews and good times, guaranteed.

Deering Grange / Portland / August 25
The Hub / Unity / August 26
Halcyon Grange / Blue Hill / August 27

Tickets for each dinner concert are $20 / bring the whole family — kids 10 and under get in free!


** we will have a limited number of tickets available at the door — first come, first serve! **


6 PM – doors & dinner
7 PM – music!

VERY TASTY PIZZA made with Songbird Farm grains & veggies

  • Zucchini + Sweet Corn
  • Pesto + Cherry Tomato
  • Onion + Peppers
  • Roasted Beets + Greens
  • Simple Margherita
  • + salads & dessert

special thanks to Maine Grain Alliance for lending their mobile wood-fired oven to the event!

CASH BAR with local wine/beer/cider from the likes of:

  • Norumbega Cider
  • Oyster River Winegrowers
  • Oxbow Brewing
  • Marshall Wharf Brewing
  • Whaleback Cider, and Strong Brewing Co.


Adam Nordell is a Maine-based roots-folk songwriter and organic farmer. Together with his partner Johanna Davis, he cultivates thirteen acres of south facing field at Songbird Farm in Unity, and travels coast-to-coast performing high-energy, place-based folk music on guitar, banjo and fiddle. Drawing imagery from the rolling hills of Maine farm country and his native-born Montana mountains, Adam writes lyrics etched with a clear sense of place and steeped in folk music tradition. His new album is centered around the title track, Walk These Fields, and celebrates the beauty and stillness of rural landscapes, the struggle to make due with limited resources, and the forever surprising resilience of hope.

Adam will be joined onstage by Johanna Davis, as well as friends William Joseph Jiordan in Portland and Blue Hill, and Putnam Smith in Unity.

More info & tickets HERE.

Aug 242016

mmhp_logoBy Peter Nelson, Steward

On Sunday, August 14, Halcyon Grange in North Blue Hill jumped at the chance to open its doors to the Maine Migrant Health Program. The MMHP is a non-profit 501-C, licensed by the Federal Government to provide vital health services to farm laborers throughout Maine. The mobile van travels the agricultural regions of the state with over a dozen volunteers, drivers, doctors and assistants to set up their screening clinic to provide free health services covering the gamut, including dental. According to Executive Director Lisa Tapert, whose office is in Augusta, the MMHP has spent 25 years providing this vital volunteer service to farm labor. The MMHP contracts with many clinics and hospitals throughout the state to allow them to refer patients in need of medical care. For the farm workers, the mobile clinic is basically open from 6:00 to 11:00 PM. Volunteers spend hours shuttling farm laborers to and from the unit.

The Halcyon Grange Hall was filled with collected donations for the workers: clothes, toiletries, food items and more, free for the taking.

We are excited to broaden our support to local farms by providing our facilities for the use of the MMHP, and look forward to their return next season.

For more information about the Maine Migrant Health Program, visit http://www.mainemigrant.org/.

Aug 232016

by Glenys Ryder, Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Maine State Grange

At the request of the state officers, I am sending the following reminder.

October will soon be upon us, and with its arrival, the Maine State Grange session will soon be here on October 20, 21, and 22 in Skowhegan.  It is of vital concern that EVERY Grange in the state of Maine should have a voice during this convention.  Many important issues will be discussed and decided upon, one of them being the sale of the Maine State Grange Building.

If the Master of your Grange and their spouse cannot attend this convention, then two of your members should be elected to attend the session to represent your Grange.  Their names should appear on the form that you send in to register your delegates.  This form will soon be on its way to your secretary!  Without a representative, it is as if your Grange doesn’t exist, and it is short-changing your members and purpose for existence!  EVERY Grange needs to take an active part in the state session!  Please send someone to present your viewpoints on the resolutions.

Whether you are a delegate or not, you do not have to be a Sixth Degree member to attend.  Any Subordinate Member, having had the first four degrees, may attend.  I hope that you will consider coming to this session.  Many people return from State Grange Convention with new enthusiasm and purpose, ready to take on new projects and increase interest in their Grange!

I hope to see you and your Grange members in Skowhegan!  Plan now!

Webmaster note: My apologies are due. In my haste, I changed the word “convention” to “conference” and should not have done so… while it seems to me a relatively small matter, I’ve been corrected in the past for using the word “conference” to describe state session. Folks who saw or received the original post should know that it was my error, not Glenys’. For some reason my brain got it backwards this morning. Sorry!

Aug 192016


Quick Tip

Quick tips are ideas for making Granges more effective and efficient. Submit yours today!

An email from the IFW, reposted…

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and the Maine Forest Service will be hosting a statewide clean-up event Sunday, September 18, 2016. This is your opportunity to show the private landowners of Maine just how much you really appreciate them!

There will be a contest again this year with prizes awarded to the group or organization that is able to clean-up the most trash. Your club or organization can sign-up to participate in the event by calling (207) 287-5240 or emailing virginiadotvincentatmainedotgov  (virginiadotvincentatmainedotgov)  

Please provide the following info:

  • Club /organization name, (amount in group that will be participating)
  • Area of the state where you will be willing to help
  • Contact person & phone number, e-mail address
  • Clean up sites that you will be working on (towns, locations, landowners, etc.) Maine Warden Service and Maine Forest Service staff will have some sites available as well

For contest purposes, all loads of trash will be measured by pick-up truck load at one of the designated drop off locations (by Warden Service or Forest Service personnel).
Kittery Trading Post has graciously agreed to sponsor the prizes again this year.

  • 1st place prize $1000.00 gift card to KTP
  • 2nd place prize $750.00 gift card to KTP
  • 3rd place prize $500.00 gift card to KTP
  • 4th place prized $250.00 gift card to KTP

Additional information will be provided to groups/organizations who register to participate in the event.

For more information about the Outdoor Partners Program, please contact Landowner Relations Specialist Corporal Rick LaFlamme at rickdotlaflammeatmainedotgov  (rickdotlaflammeatmainedotgov)   or visit our website at www.mefishwildlife.com 

Aug 172016

By Christine Corliss

It has come to my attention that individuals are looking a little more explanation on the volunteer fair this coming Saturday, August 20, 2016 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.  This Volunteer Fair is an opportunity for Grangers and non-Grangers to understand just one of the aspects of Grange and some of what we do.  The Junior and Youth Committees will have an activity for people to participate in.  Membership and Agricultural Committees will be there to speak about the ways you can become involved, Community Service/Family, Health & Hearing will be there with raffles, scavenger hunt, and information on worthwhile causes as well as CWA with quilt tying and some speakers on different topics.  This is to show that Maine State Grange is trying to make a difference “One Project at a Time.”

See the flyer…


Aug 172016

by Rick Grotton, State Master

There are a few things I wish to share. First, all 990’s have been submitted. If you receive a letter from the IRS concerning the 990 being due, it has been taken care of.

Next, The updated officer information from each Grange for the next roster must be sent in by November 1, 2016.Please send in early!

Thank you to those Granges who sent in their resolutions before the deadline! They will be sent out in time for all Granges to review before State Session. Make sure your Grange sends delegates to State Grange in Skowhegan October 20-22. Your Grange vote is important!!!

Some Subordinate Granges have not sent in their quarterly dues for the quarter ending June 30. These need to be in ASAP. Don’t risk losing your Grange the chance to vote at State Session!

Some Granges are making changes to meeting dates and times without updating their by-laws. Whenever changes to by-laws are made, they need to be voted on at your Grange and sent to State Grange for approval. Check your Grange by-laws to see if they are up to date. It is difficult for visitors to attend if the meeting dates and times have changed without notification.

Come visit the Volunteer Fair on Saturday at Headquarters beginning at 9:00 a.m. Several events are scheduled at various times in the am and the directors will each have a table for their committee. Bag lunches will be served for $5. Sounds like a fun day!

Last, make sure to inform all with computers to go to mainestategrange.org and hit the subscribe button to receive posted information concerning state events. directors and state officer columns, information for various committees and other good Grange stuff!! For those who do receive the information, please share at your next Grange meeting!