Apr 252012

Norman Davis, Assistant Steward Cynthia Maxwell, Community Service Committee Person Joyce MacDonald

Over fifty people recently attended the Open Meeting held at Danville Junction Grange #65 in conjunction with National Grange Month. Delicious refreshments were served prior to the meeting.

Master Maynard Chapman opened the meeting and turned the program over to the Lecturer Glenys Ryder. The featured speaker for the evening was Norman Davis, who has worked at Morin Brick Company in Danville for many years and is now an owner. He gave a very interesting talk about how the company has grown, and it is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. It was awarded the Community Service Award by the grange.

James Merserve of the State Executive Committee presented a 60-year membership certificate to Glenys Ryder. Unable to attend were three other certificate recipients: Helen Hammond (70 years), Beverly Lashua (70 years), and Gleason Sturtevant (50 years). These certificates will be awarded at a later date.

Certificates of appreciation were presented to Sharon Wheeler and Simone Morin for their many contributions to the grange. Last fall these two women were responsible for holding a fund raiser where $600 was raised to go toward the window project, which replaced all the windows in the hall.

Mitch Thomas entertained us at the piano, singing one of our favorite songs about the love affair between a cow and a moose, which was based on a true story.

Many granges were represented as well as many other people from the community. A great time was had by all!!

Master Maynard Chapman. Sharon Wheeler, Simone Morin, Lecturer Glenys Ryder


Apr 222012

by Walter Boomsma

New members are fun! Degree Days are fun! And the recent Degree Day conducted by Bangor Grange was no exception. After taking a group photo for our website I asked for volunteers who would be willing to talk about why they joined the grange and what the day meant to them. A lot of hands shot up! When I mentioned I’d also be photographing them individually a few hands went down… but most were anxious to share. Here are three folks who are very excited and enthusiastic about their grange membership.

Rebecca Wentworth

“The whole thing was… WOW,” according to Rebecca Wentworth, a newly degreed member of Halcyon Grange following the Day at Bangor Grange. “There was this sense of unity… age didn’t matter, what community we were from didn’t matter… we just came together for a common purpose.” Rebecca also explained that her interest in joining the grange was based on her ongoing interest in agriculture. (Halcyon Grange has been very active in farming issues at the local level.) She’s also been involved with the 4-H program and sees grange membership as a way of bringing small farmers together and creating a sense of community.

Devin Kent

Devin Kent was part of a group of six initiates who travelled all the way from Benton Grange to receive their degree instruction. The nineteen year old said that he expected the day to be meaningful, but he “enjoyed it even more than he expected.” For him, an important part of the day’s experience was meeting new friends and how the activities brought people together. Devin is a self-admitted technology geek who said one of the reasons he decided to join the grange is he wants “different views and outlooks.”

Representing Bangor Grange, Denise Sears admitted that her introduction to the grange was a result of her managing an organic farm and selling products at the Bangor Grange Farmers’ Market. Like many of the candidates, Denise was obligated some time ago and actually holds the office of Lady Assistant Steward.

Denise Sears

For her, the degree day was helpful because it “broke everything down” and taught the meaning of the offices and activities. As a farmer, she noted that she especially enjoyed the “meaning and beauty” of the lessons of the four degrees. Denise loves “growing things” and we won’t be surprised if she grows the grange with her enthusiasm.

Bangor Master Rolf Staples eavesdropped on the interviews and summarized with an important point. “If you were to talk to all of these candidates, I’ll bet you’d discover they most of them joined the grange for exactly the same reason—somebody asked them!”

For these twenty people, there were probably at least that many reasons for their interest in joining. And while people join the grange for their own very distinct (and interesting!) reasons, ultimately they join simply because someone asks them.


Apr 222012
No one left hungry!

During the hectic “pre-degree” moments of organizing, Bangor Grange Master Rolf Staples could be seen scurrying about whispering to himself… “I’d hoped for a crowd, but…” With over 60 people and 17 granges represented there may have been a moment or two when Rolf also reminded himself to “be careful what you wish for because you just might get it!”

Nevertheless, the day ran smoothly and included lots of smiles and laughs—and plenty of food during the fellowship break!  Even the weather cooperated with a bright sunny and day and promise of spring.

Degree Masters included Rolf for first and second, Phil Parsons for third, and Walter Boomsma for fourth.  Rolf later admitted it is “hard to describe what it feels like to stand at the Master’s Station and see the hall literally filled.”

Twenty candidates received instruction—twelve of whom were from Bangor Grange. Candidates came from as far away as Benton and Blue Hill to participate in a way reminiscent of “days of old” when granges would travel from near and far for Pomona Meetings and other opportunities to join with like-minded friends.

Welcome, Patrons!

In a follow-up email message to members after the labors of the day were complete, Rolf wrote that he was “really impressed and pleased with the way the afternoon went. Thank you to all who participated and helped put on the degrees. Without all of you it would not have been the success that it was… What a great bunch of Grangers! Now we get to take a well-deserved break until our May 1st meeting. Busy, busy, busy is the life of a Granger.”

Bangor Grange has also been chosen as the host grange for the “northern half of the state” for the National Master’s visit in May, so it’s a good thing they know how to handle a crowd!

Apr 192012
Quick Tip

Several news organizations use our site as a resource… one in particular is Mainely Agriculture published by Wally Sinclair. This great little  newspaper includes a special “Grange Column” that often features upcoming events. Wally asks if we could “…coming events to you much sooner for publication.  A quarterly plus summer issue Mainely Agriculture needs to know every 1-14 weeks ahead of time of events occurring, to get them squeezed into the newspaper, circulated all over Maine.  There are two Spring issues, the first before Maple Sunday, the second usually before Livestock Expo, mid May; the third issue is the Summer Fair Extra, having to be out by July 4 and the fall deadline after Labor Day and the Mid-Winter pre Christmas for the Agricultural Trade Show event, second week in January.”

While it’s great that the Internet allows us to publish information fairly quickly (I try to post events within a day or two of receipt), there is huge value to long-range planning. This is not just about publication schedules; it’s also about personal planning… I know my calendar fills up quickly and in many cases it’s “first come, first served.” Sometimes I learn about things too late–I’ve already committed to being somewhere else. So please consider planning your events (at least the basics) well in advance and send them in  (webmasteratmainestategrangedotorg)  !
And don’t forget to include all the basic information: date, time, place (including location of your grange hall), costs, and who to contact for more information with a phone number or email address.
Apr 172012

Bangor Grange #372 had an extremely busy weekend. Saturday we had our third supper and show of the season. It was an excellent Grange supper of Ham and baked beans and very yummy deserts then was followed by the excellent music of Zevulon. It was a great time for all in attendance. Thank you to all of the Brothers and Sisters who helped with everything.

Sunday we hosted our 3rd Annual Bangor Grange talent show produced by Sister Pam Martin. With 17 acts it was probably our best one to date. Our winners were for 1st place we had a tie between Sister Mary Hunter and the Berry Family with Grandmother Dianne, Mom Sharon, and 5 year old Nathaniel. 2nd place went to Danny Turner and 3rd place went to Barbie Cleveland. Thanks to all of our participants and to Sister Pam because without you our show would not have been the hit that it was. We hope you will all be back next year.

Now we get a short break before we host our upcoming Degree Day next Saturday the 21st. Busy, busy, busy is the life of a Granger…


Apr 162012

Bob Spear

Willow Grange in Jefferson welcomed Bob and Janet Spear of Spear’s Farm to the April 12 meeting. The Spears spoke of their farm operation and Willow members were impressed by the extent of its production. Known for their local vegetable farmstands, Spear’s Farm has expanded in recent years to include wholesale to numerous supermarkets such as Hannaford, sales at farmers’ markets, and sales to local schools. Their vegetable production has continually expanded and supplemented by innovative machinery such as a squash peeler and cutter, and green bean picker and new items such as microgreens.

The Spears have operated their family operation for many years. Bob, who has served as the State Agriculture Commissioner, oversees the much of the daily farm operations while Janet runs the farm stands and farmers markets. Both are members of Meenahga Grange.

Janet Spear


Apr 152012

Tim and Terry (Peale) Wilson tied the knot Saturday during a ceremony conducted at Golden Harvest Grange in Carmel. It was a perfect day for a wedding and they were joined by family and friends for a celebration of their love. Tim’s home grange is Queen City and Terry’s roots are in Golden Harvest, but both are well-known and active throughout Penobscot and Piscataquis Pomonas and we wish them many happy years together.

Apr 132012
Karen Flagg
flagg_karenatyahoodotcom  (flagg_karenatyahoodotcom)  

As many of you are aware, the 150th Session (2016) and the 150th Anniversary of hte National Grange are rapidly approaching. One way we are going to commemorate these events is through the making of quilts by using the blocks that are submitted by each state. The idea is that the blocks entered this year will be kept and used to make a quilt. Then next year that quilt will be displayed and the quilt blocks enterested next year will be made into a quilt, and so on and so on. THe plan is to have all quilts on display at the 150th Anniversary in 2017.

The Executive Committee and I have spent a lot of time discussing this and trying to make sure we have as many of the bases covered as possible to avoid confusion (I know, good luck on that one). Here is the plan: we will introduce a new pattern and color scheme each year so there will be some continuity for the person who gets the job of piecing the quilt together. For the first four years, the theme will be the seasons of the year, with an appropriate pattern and color scheme. Here is the information for the quilt blocks that will be judged in Boise this year (2012):

Log Cabin Quilt Pattern (download)

Size: 10 1/2 by 10 1/2 finished– 10″ block with 1/4″ on each side for piecing together.

Pattern: Log Cabin

Colors: Fall colors

Any member can make a square with the above guidelines and they will be judged at the Needlework Contests in August. Please note that squres will not be returned. They are going to be kept and put together for quilts for the Linus Project.

Apr 132012
Sherry Harriman, Lecturer
280 Kennebunk Rd Sanford, ME 04073-5515
Phone: 490-1029 Fax: 490-0111
E-Mail: sherryhatgwidotnet  (sherryhatgwidotnet)  

March 31, Skit Writing and Story Writing entries are due to my home address. Entries will be judged during April or May and winners announced. Performances will be September 15 at Lecturers Conf. There will be NO Talent Contest in April. It will be in September 15 at the Maine Lect. Conference. All are welcome.

APRIL IS GRANGE MONTH!!! Order your Community Service Awards from National Grange! Get Certificates of Appreciation from me or state office.

North East Lecturers Conference (Information comes out in May and is sent to the Grange Secretary.) July 10 Registration Deadline. (Send form & conference fee to host state) (Send registration card & $10.00 fee to State Lect.)

July 20, 21, 22 Family Campout Weekend Silver Springs Campground in Saco. Note: This is a change of dates and week. Call campground for reservations.

July 30 – Aug 2 North East Lect. Conference— NH Hosting Note change of dates / week! (Rivier College, Nashua, NH App. $240.00 & $10.00 regis.)

POETRY CONTEST JULY 1 Deadline Date sent to Lect. home

AGE GROUPS: All Subordinate Members; And Juniors 5–9 , 10–14 (Age as of Jan 1)


Three (3) prizes will be awarded in each category to each age group. Awards will be given Sept. 15 at the Lecturers’ Conference.


1. The poem(s) must be written by a Grange member.

2. There is no restriction on length of poem.

3. Entries are to be sent, e-mailed or faxed to the State Lecturer’s home address by July 1, 2012.

4. There is no limit on number of poems submitted, however, you can receive only one prize per category.


6. Put your title, name and all the following information at the top of each poem:



This article was sent to me. I thought this would be an excellent idea for us to participate in our areas around the state. I am certain any of the food pantries would appreciate the help.

“Spread The Love: Peanut Butter & Jelly Drive” In these hard economic times, more Maine families are facing hunger than ever before. Today, 200,000 Mainers, including 1 in 4 children, struggle with hunger. Bangor Savings Bank is excited to launch its first-ever Peanut Butter and Jelly Drive. During the month of March, join Bangor Savings Bank in the fight against hunger by donating peanut butter and jelly. Stop in at your local Bangor Savings Bank branch and drop off a jar of peanut butter, jelly, or both. All donations will help families right in your community through your local food pantry.

Why peanut butter and jelly? Peanut butter is among one of the most expensive foods for food banks to purchase in large quantities. However, it is in high demand because it is rich with protein and also has monounsaturated and polyunsaturated oils, the “good fats.” And what’s peanut butter without jelly?

Christine Force, Good Shepherd Food-Bank’s Vice President of Fund Development and Strategic Initiatives says, “… thanks to this peanut butter & jelly drive, more families will have access to a protein-rich, non-perishable food, and it will make a big difference in their daily lives.” For more information or to find a branch nearest you, visit www.bangor.com.

Thank You, Bangor Savings Bank Community Matters More.”