Apr 202017
 

We’ve made some minor updates and changes to the ODD Directory (Officers, Directors, and Deputies) and uploaded it to the website! Please download and print some copies for yourself and your members: ODD-Directory-04-17.

Also, note that we’ve added a new section to the “Program Books and Information Page” for the soon to be officially announced Agricultural Education Committee. There are already a few resources listed under this heading!

Happy Grange Month! If your Grange did something special, send us a report for featuring on the website! Photos are great–just attach them to an email to the webmaster. (Smaller file sizes are really helpful. If you are using a photo program that allows you reduce resolution and file size, please consider doing so before sending!)

Communication Consideration:

Talking and eloquence are not the same: to speak and to speak well are two things. A fool may talk, but a wise man speaks.

Heinrich Heine

Mar 072017
 

Communication Bullets are short but important news!

by Walter Boomsma
Communications Director

Two additions to the website this morning:

Hope you are counting down to Grange Month–just a few weeks to go! Remember to send us photos and stories of your programs. Be a DO-er!

Mar 012017
 

It’s finally here… an updated directory of Granges in Maine, based on the 2017 Roster! We’ve sorted the list of Granges so you can sort by Grange name, Town Name, or Zip Code. You’ll find it on the Program Books and Information Page or you can open the file 2017 Directory of Granges directly for downloading and printing.

Speaking of finding a Grange, one observation I would make as a result of working with this data: Many Granges do not have an actual 911 compliant street address. By my estimation, over 40% of the listings could be considered non-compliant or incomplete from this perspective. This raises several important concerns.

More than ever, people are using GPS systems to locate places. (A long term project for the website may one day include adding a locator option with mapping options.) When we invite people to our Grange, we should be making it easy to find. (I could tell an embarrassing story on myself back in my early Grange member days. I actually drove to Lincoln Maine looking for a Lincoln Pomona Meeting!)

Perhaps even more important than visits, this is a potential safety concern. There are documented instances of emergency services not arriving in a timely fashion due to the lack of an adequate EMS address. If you have an emergency at your Grange Hall, calling 911 and saying “We’re next door to where the school house used to be…” is not likely going to be very effective. Many times the 911 dispatcher is located miles away and unfamiliar with the area where the emergency is taking place. Cell phones will often report the location automatically, but it just makes sense to take this precaution.

Usually all that’s required to get a street address is a visit to the town/municipal office.  Once you have it, another important step would be to display the street number prominently on the building or a post where it is visible from the street.

Feb 252017
 

Communication Bullets are short but important news!

Ag Day at the legislature is Wednesday, April 5, 2017.  Once again, the Grange will have a booth at the State House and fudge is needed–our legislators look forward to this every year. Please consider making some fudge and getting it delivered to Maine State Grange Headquarters before 8:00 a.m. April 5, 2017. If you’d like to drop it off before that day, call to make sure someone will be at the office. Thanks!


We’ve recently added some important documents to the “Program Books and Information Page.” Among many other resources you’ll now find:


Don’t forget the clock is ticking down to Grange Month! There are many promotional resources available on the website… you should have your celebration fairly well planned and be starting a publicity program that includes press releases, posters in local businesses, churches, etc., and personal invitations to local dignitaries. You could have a Grange Birthday Party–just be careful lighting 150 candles!

Feb 082017
 

Communication Bullets are short but important news!

We’ve been asked to announce:

Because of the expected nor’easter, Enterprise Grange #48, 15 Alexander Reed Road, Richmond, ME is postponing our February meeting which is scheduled for 2/9/17. According to our by-laws, if we have to cancel, then we meet the following Thursday, same time. We will meet Feb. 16, 2017, with supper at 6:00 p.m. and meeting at 7:00 p.m. We’ve had a change of officers and will have an Installation of our new officers. Guests are welcome!! FMI – Marilyn Stinson 737-2611 or beedlehill@roadrunner or check us out on Facebook!


Note that we’ve added a new In Search of… regarding Pittston Grange #214… see if you can help


Thanks to Rolf Staples for noticing we had the wrong name for one Grange Hall for sale! It’s fixed!


We’ve also uploaded the VA Wish List for February 2017 to the Community Service Section of the Program Books and Information Page.


Congratulations to Fairview Grange #342–for partnering with local volunteers resulted in raising just about $4,000 on behalf of a deserving young family. That’s what “doers” are all about!

Feb 062017
 

by Walter Boomsma, Communications Director

Check out the Miscellaneous Section on the Program Books and Information Page! You’ll find two new documents:

Grange Hall Insurance was researched and created to assist those Granges having trouble finding insurance for their hall. This will be an on-going project, so if your hall is successfully insured with a company or agency, please let me know  (webmasteratmainestategrangedotorg)  . I will contact them and see if they would like to be listed.

Grange Halls for Sale addresses a fairly frequent question we get by listing vacant Grange Halls that are currently available for purchase.

I will do my best to keep both of these documents current, but I will need everyone’s help. If you find an inaccuracy or know that something should be added to either page, please let me know  (webmasteratmainestategrangedotorg)  . Thanks for your help!

Remember to check the Program Books and Information Page occasionally–we’re constantly adding and updating resources as they become available. Some additional items you may find helpful:

A copy of the current month’s Bulletin is uploaded–usually by the 16th of each month. You’ll also currently find information and documents supplied by National Grange regarding Grange Month 2017. Make the Maine State Grange website your “goto” place for resources and information!

Feb 012017
 

by Walter Boomsma, Communications Director

I’m pleased to announce that your communications department of one is working on more resources for Granges and Grangers. We’ve recently added a Roster Order Form for copies of the 2017 Roster. Please note there are a limited number of copies available and they are only available to Grangers for Grange business.

I’ve heard some folks say they are having trouble finding insurance for their Grange Halls. I have been researching this and finding agencies and companies who may be able to help and will be posting a list soon! You can help with this. Contact the agency currently insuring your Grange Hall and ask if they would like a listing on the Maine State Grange Website. If so, have them (or you can do it for them) send me basic information  (webmasteratmainestategrangedotorg)  : company/agency name, person to contact, phone number, email address and website address if they have one. Several folks have already been very helpful with this… thank you!

One of the more frequent inquiries we receive through the website comes from folks interested in purchasing Grange Halls. We are very close to being able to post a list! Special thanks to State Master Rick for helping assemble this information.

Lastly, I am working towards updating the Grange Directory posted to the site (currently 2014) based on the most recent Roster Information.  This is a “limited” directory–it only includes Grange Name, Address, Pomona, and meeting schedule. If your information is either missing from or incorrect in the Roster, this is your “one-time” opportunity to get it corrected in this directory which, unlike the Roster, is made available to the public. (This directory is often used by people seeking a Grange in their area either to attend or rent a Grange Hall.)

Do you have suggestions for additional resources? Let me know!  (webmasteratmainestategrangedotorg)   Speaking of that, please note that the “midmaine” email address listed for me in the roster is not a working email address. Also, I am having a long-standing issue getting email delivered to those who have TWC (Time Warner Cable) email addresses. In Maine, this includes addresses ending “roadrunner.com” and “maine.rr.com.” TWC has not been at all cooperative in resolving this, but I haven’t given up. If you do not get a reply to an email you send from those addresses, it’s not for lack of trying on my part.

Jan 142017
 

A mug WBBy Walter Boomsma,
Communications Director

One of my ongoing goals as MSG Communications Director goes beyond keeping members informed to providing you with resources—both internal (Grange “stuff”) and external (resources from other organizations and individuals that may have value to Grangers.

Grange month is coming! For several years now, National Grange has not mailed information packets but has rather made material available on the National Grange website. This year, I have added that Grange month material to our Maine State Grange website to make it readily available. It really is time to start planning your Grange Month celebration!

Officers and directors are certainly encouraged to submit information and documents we can make accessible. Visit the “Program Books and Information” section of the site and check out what’s there! You’ll be amazed!

In terms of “external” information, I am always on the prowl for articles, information, websites, etc. that may hold interest and have value for our members and site visitors. Recent examples of this include a wish list from the VA with community service opportunities in Maine and a link to a free fifty-page book regarding personal finance (lecturer’s program? Family health and hearing material?).

This was an extremely busy month for our “In search of…” feature. Not only have there been several requests for Grange information ranging from cookbooks to history, we’ve also had a number of requests for information regarding using Grange Halls for personal and community events. One that is particularly rewarding involved some volunteers who wanted to sponsor a benefit for a young family whose unborn child has a severe medical issue. In short, we were able to facilitate an exciting connection to Fairview Grange #342 that is resulting in an informal partnership an opportunity for the folks at Fairview to support the family and the community. The Communications Department even got involved, helping with promotion.

Shared events like this are just plain awesome. Not only do they increase the likelihood of success, they also introduce new people to the Grange, increase the visibility of the Grange in the community, and demonstrate what the Grange is all about. Just make sure your hall looks good and your Bulletin Board is current—filled with lots of positive information about your Grange, your members, and your needs.

While we were on vacation this past summer, we attended a concert in a rather large church. Their foyer area was truly amazing—it communicated a sense of welcome and demonstrated opportunities and needs. They freely used small, topic-specific bulletin boards, clipboards with sign-up sheets and small tables with brochures and flyers. There was one corner with several comfortable chairs where one could sit and review material. For someone interested in communication, it was close to nirvana! Admittedly, they had a large area to work with, but the ideas can certainly be adapted.

Find someone in your Grange and offer him or her an opportunity to create at least one “communications area” and see what he or she can come up with! When it’s finished, take a photo and send it! If you’re not feeling particularly creative, you could start with a welcome mat at the front door!


Grange Month Clarification

If you find Grange Month information a bit confusing at first, the idea is to base the celebration on the National Grange Program called “I’m a doer.” The Grange Month material appears to follow a line of,  “When the do-ers are gone…”  Unfortunately, (in my opinion) that sounds like a prediction unless you read the details explaining that Grange Month celebrates “do-ers.” This could make a great link to the community citizen award many Granges present during Grange Month. Your headline for a press release might be “Local Grange Honors a Do-er…

Jan 112017
 

Maine State Grange Historian Stan Howe of Bethel was recently named to the Distinguished Members List of the Organization of American Historians, the largest professional society dedicated to the teaching and study of American History in the United States. Founded in 1907, the mission of this organization is” to promote excellence in the scholarship. teaching and the presentation of American history, and to encourage wide discussion of historical questions and the equitable treatment of all practitioners of history.” The OAH includes more than 7800 historians working in the United States and abroad as university professors, teachers, archivists, museum curators, public historians, students and other practitioners of history. Howe was encouraged to join the OAH as a graduate student at the University of Connecticut in 1966 by his advisor Professor A. William Hogulund.

In addition to possessing a wealth of knowledge about the Grange in Maine, Stan is a frequent contributor to our “In search of…” Page and responds promptly to requests for help with research. We congratulate him on this accomplishment and thank him for his contributions!

Jan 092017
 

Communication is the real work of leadership. (Nitin Nohria)

By Walter Boomsma, Communications Director

Check out the Program Books and Information Page! We’re adding resources including:

  • In the National Grange Section, you’ll find Grange Month 2017 resources such as this year’s proclamation, cover letter from National Master Betsy Huber, flyer/poster… all downloadable and ready for your use! It’s not too early to start planning! We’ll have more information, details, and ideas for you, coming soon!
  • Preliminary information about the Distinguished Grange Program has also been added to the National Grange Section.
  • In the Community Service Section, we’ve added the VA’s January Wish List, replacing December’s.
  • In the Ag Committee Section, we’ve added the minutes from the committee’s December meeting and information/agenda for their February meeting.

But wait, there’s more! Have you checked the “Searching for…” Page recently? There’s a successful find and a request for information regarding Grange Cookbooks…