May 312017
 

By Walter Boomsma
Communications Director

After research and testing, we’re ready to roll out a new way for Grangers and friends to subscribe to the Maine State Grange Website. Here’s the why and how!

The Why

The subscription service we’ve been using (Feedburner by Google) has served us well but is not particularly user-friendly. More importantly, we have almost no access to the data—I truly have no idea how many subscribers we have and who they are!

Our new service is available through MailChimp. In addition to being very user-friendly, we gain some flexibility in how posts are sent–for example, you’ll now receive excerpts instead of complete posts. That’ll make your emails shorter and more manageable.

The How

If you are not currently subscribed, this is very simple. Subscribing is a two-step process. First, you click this link (also found at the top center of the Maine State Grange website) to open a form asking for some basic data. When you click “Subscribe” an email will be sent to the email address you entered on the form. You must confirm your subscription by clicking the link in that email. That’s it!

If you are currently subscribed, please subscribe using the new system as described in the previous paragraph. Unless you want to continue to receive two emails, there is one additional step required. You’ll need to “unsubscribe” to the Feedburner service. This is easily accomplished by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any email you receive listing Google in the footer at the end of the email.

Optional Detailed Instructions

I’ve prepared a one-page document with illustrations that describes these steps in detail. You can access it with this direct link or by visiting the Program Books and Information Page. If you have questions, you can email the webmaster or comment on this post—chances are others will have the same question! (Click the comments button in the upper-right corner.)

Know also that once all the fundamentals are in place, we will continue to adjust and tweak the service. I hope you enjoy it and find it helpful.

May 302017
 

By Rick Grotton,
Master, Maine State Grange

If there is any Grange out there that needs staves, implement cases, ballet boxes, older manuals, cloths, and sashes, etc. there are plenty of items available at Headquarters. Please let me know what you need and when to arrange to pick up.  June 24, 2017 is our yard sale so that would be a good time for pick up.

May 302017
 

Hello Grange Brothers and Sisters,

Hopefully by now everyone has had their fill of snow and rain, for those that have tried contacting me for the last two months, I apologize for not being available as Mike and I bought a new home and it took almost two months to get an address, phone and mail it is was very surprising how quickly one can be out of touch.

I would like to mention that there will be a yard sale at State Grange on Saturday, June 24, 2017. CWA will be having a table with many new Craft Kits plus baked goods if anyone would like to donate any items, they can either call me or a Committee Member or drop them off at State Grange as long as you call first.

As in previous years,any Grange or person that makes a ten dollar donation to the New England Grange Building, House in the Woods, State Grange or Maine Children’s Home for Little Wanderers will receive a Certificate signed by the State Master and the CWA Director if you choose to send your donation directly to the organization ,that is fine but a certificate will not be sent.

I am enclosing all of the information received from National Grange about the Quilt Contest if you would like to bring the finished block and /or any other entries to State Session in October with the submission form attached then I will mail them the following Monday please be sure and read the directions thoroughly as they have included information for 2016 that I did not know about their are also different age groups included.

I’m not sure if everyone is aware that we have Certificates of Appreciation to be given to non-members for any items that they make for any of the Organizations that we support. The certificates were designed by Laurie McBumie of Nobleboro.

Enjoy your summer, I look forward to seeing you at the Conference on August 26th.

Sincerely,

Karen L Flagg , DWA
3 Jeanie Drive
Leeds , Maine 04263
207-524-2011
flaggkaren52atgmaildotcom  (flaggkaren52atgmaildotcom)  

Webmaster’s Note: You can find the 2017 Quilt Block Contest information on the Program Books and Information Page. The packet includes the rules, a pattern and submission form.

May 302017
 

By Heather Retburg,
Ag Ed Committee Member

While the farm spring rhythms beat louder and stronger each day, the work to fully realize food sovereignty grows to a fevered pitch just now, too.  Last weekend, the small town of Greenwood, Maine, in Oxford County adopted the Local Food & Community Self-Governance Ordinance, making it the 19th town in eight counties across Maine to do so.  And, this, just before the vote in the Maine Senate to require the state to recognize these ordinances!  Such nice timing.  When the vote on LD 725 (An Act to Recognize Local Control Regarding Food Systems) happened last Wednesday afternoon, the tone had changed considerably for the better.  With all the outreach from people across the state, with all the work done under the dome by our legislative allies to bring more of the opposition on board, with a LOT of dialogue and several drafts of an helpful amendment, the vote on Wednesday, that we expected to win or lose by one or two votes, was unanimously in favor of LD 725!  This was a moment long in the making. We’re not over the finish line yet, but I have learned to celebrate the moments of victory–each one a monumental undertaking of sorts!  The food sovereignty bill proceeds to the house this week for a vote. If it passes there and is subsequently enacted by both chambers as we expect, it will head to the governor’s desk for a signature, another unpredictable hurdle.   Meanwhile, the food freedom bill, LD 835 An Act to Promote Small Diversified Farms and Small Food Producers sponsored by Rep. Ralph Chapman, is tabled in the Senate awaiting enactment before it goes to the governor’s desk.  So much as we can tell from out here,  the Senate is waiting to see what happens with LD 725 before it passes Rep. Chapman’s bill in final enactment to the governor.  We are urging them to enact both and send both to the governor’s desk. If any of our Grange brothers and sisters across the state have the governor’s ear, now would be a great time to ask them to bend it in the direction of small farms and our community’s local control of food systems!

 

May 282017
 

Just about a year ago, we posted a request for information:

Tim Wilson is seeking information and a photo of his great-great-grandfather, James A. Grover (1848-1932) who was for many years a member of Riverview Grange in Lisbon Falls.

Good things come slow… and with thanks to the Lisbon Historical and Mert Ricker, a photo has been found! But Tim is “lost” — the email address for him does not seem to be working. Tim, if you see this, please contact us… and, if anyone knows Tim, please let him know! (Understand that we’re dealing with a fairly common name–there’s a Granger named Tim Wilson in Bangor–this is not him!

Check the “In Search of…” Page to view all searches.

May 272017
 

Members of the Ocean View Grange #463 replaced American flags on Veterans’ graves at the Ridge Cemetery in Tenants Harbor, Maine on May 20, 2017. We had help from some members of the Port Clyde Sailing Club. This is always a somber and rewarding function to honor those who served us and our country.

May 272017
 

Hello Grangers,

We need your input.

I serve on the board of the SAY Project (Safety in Agriculture for Youth) whose purpose is to increase safety and health resources for youth working in agriculture.

Agriculture is a broad industry with a variety of regions and commodities, and Grange members have unique insight and information which is invaluable to the SAY project.

Since the youth experience in agriculture is invaluable, we want to keep them working, but working safely. However, existing safety and health resources can be outdated or limited. The SAY project has created a central clearinghouse of these resources for the agricultural industry and we need your help to develop more materials or update existing ones.

In order to develop national training materials, we need to know what tasks youth are performing on the farm or ranch and what kind of resources are available to them. To help us get this information, we created two short surveys for farm and ranch families and employers to complete. The links below are to surveys that simply ask what types of tasks youth are performing on the farm or ranch, which safety and health resources are available to them, and how effective these resources are. The information we are looking for involves the 12-15 age range. One survey is for parents or employers of youth who work or have worked on a farm or ranch, and the other is for adults 18-25 years of age who worked on a farm or ranch while they were in the target age range.
No personal information is required, and all data will be aggregated to ensure anonymity. If you have any questions or concerns, you can contact the researcher Alexander Whipp at Ohio State University, whippdot6atosudotedu. In order to keep youth safe, we need to know what they are doing and what kind of resources are available to them. A short amount of time spent taking the survey will go a long way to keeping our future agricultural professionals safe and injury-free.

Thank you for your time and assistance.

Farm and Ranch Employer Survey
Parents or employers of youth who work or have worked on a farm, ages 12-15:

Farm and Ranch Employee Survey
Survey for 18-25 Year Olds Who Worked on a Farm or Ranch While 12-15

Fraternally,
Betsy E. Huber, Master
The National Grange

May 262017
 

On May 16, Mill Stream Grange members (l to r) Pat Rawson, Jill Sampson, Lisa Goucher and Carole O’Connell helped Gordon Webber (far right) place flags on veteran’s graves at the Franklin Cemetery in Vienna as a community service project. Note: If any family member or friend notices that their loved one who served was missed, please contact Gordon at 293-2275 or Jill 293-4960 and they will place the flag and add the name to the list for the future

May 232017
 

Communication Bullets are short but big news!

by Walter Boomsma
Communications Director

Some important changes and notes:

The ODD (Officers, Directors, and Deputies) Directory has been updated… a current copy is available for downloading: ODD-Directory-05-17. There has been a minor change in deputy assignments to reflect recent changes in Pomona alignments and two positions are now listed as “TBD” (to be determined)–the chairperson of the Ag Ed Committee and a Youth Director.

The Journal of Proceedings 2016 has been updated with a minor correction at the request of MSG Secretary Sharon. Action on Resolution #12 was missing from the original copy posted. A corrected copy is available for downloading: Journal-of-Proceedings-2016-Convention

Several “In search of…” requests have been added recently… please check the page and see if you can help!

Over the next few days, I will be testing a new method for subscribing to the website and you may notice some “weirdness” at the tope of the home page. Once testing is complete, I hope to announce a major change that will be of great benefit to everyone!

Remember to check the Conferences Page occasionally for information about upcoming national, regional, and state events. Those responsible for events should especially check the page when scheduling events to avoid conflicts. Also, those responsible please make sure you email me information about the events you are planning.