Dec 092016
 

You may recall some posts a while back regarding Mary Quinn Doyle’s educational outreach project called Unique Maine Farms. The project has been growing over the past three years and includes a comprehensive website, traveling photo exhibit, and a slideshow and discussion program. A primary goal of the project is promoting all types of agriculture throughout Maine.  Mary says that she hopes to visit, profile, and promote many additional unique farms throughout Maine. For more information and to explore some unique Maine Farms, visit the website. Some of the farm names are unique in and of themselves!

 

May 052016
 

Corliss

By Christine Corliss, Community Service/FHH Director

Community Service Corner

I would truly like to commend all the Granges who during the month of April promoted Grange Month as well as Community Service Awards. It was an awesome month and a great way to promote Community Service and Grange. Give yourself a rising vote of thanks at the next Grange meeting you have and please accept a big thank you and congratulations from the Community Service/Family, Health & Hearing Committee

August is fast approaching and we at State Grange will be putting together a Volunteer Fair on August 20 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. ALL ARE WELCOME! Grangers and potential new Grange members, everyone is welcome to attend.  This event is free of charge, there will raffles, speakers and more. Information postings will be coming soon.

FRIENDLY REMINDER: Community Service Books and/or activity sheets are due August 1, 2016. Please let’s get 25% of Granges to participate. They can be mailed directly to me at Christine Corliss 162 Center Road Lebanon, ME 04027.

Family, Health & Hearing

July is National Park Month, National Picnic Month, Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month, & Cord Blood Awareness Month just to name a few.  Have you ever planned an event by asking yourself the 5 W’s of writing?  WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE AND WHY!  Ask yourself these questions before starting any event and watch the ideas come rolling in.  EX:  National Picnic Month – WHO will be invited?  EVERYONE – Grangers and Non-Grangers, WHAT will we do? Go to the local park and plan a picnic.  Invite the public to attend, host family games, scavenger hunts and just some conversation over a nice picnic lunch.  WHEN can we plan this event?  During the summer.  WHERE should we advertise?  Newspapers, radio, flyers all over town, word of mouth, Facebook.  WHY should we do such an event?  To promote Grange and show individuals we can have fun to and we welcome young, old, single, married, families because we are alive and well and here to stay.

REMEMBER:  Always have fun!!!!!

REMINDER: Family, Health & Hearing Contest is still running. Please check the community service packets for information  and please submit the form by August 15 for a chance for your Grange to win $50.00.

Maine State Grange Community Service making a difference “ONE” project at a time!

Apr 042016
 

Corliss

By Christine Corliss, Community Service/FHH Director

Community Service Corner

Community Service can be compared to the parable of the mustard seed.  It can be the tiniest seed in the garden but once cared for, loved and grown it can turn into the biggest plant in the garden.  Your Grange should be the farmers and your community the garden in which to plant your seed.  The more seeds you plant out there the more plants will grow.  Take your time and choose carefully where the ground is good and plant that seed and watch your community service grow.  Remember all aspects of growing your community service are important from soil, seed, water, sunshine & fertilizer.  We need to all band together to help the seeds grow.

FRIENDLY REMINDER:  COMMUNITY SERVICE BOOKS & ACTIVITY SHEETS ARE DUE AUGUST 15.

Family, Health & Hearing

June has many awareness items, just to name a few it is National Dairy Month, National Safety Month & Adopt – A – Cat Month.  Combine with community service and start helping to plant that seed, invite in a Dairy Farmer to discuss Dairy Awareness, talk to someone from Maine DOT to speak on traffic safety, invite the local animal shelter in with some of the strays they have available for adoption to show the community what is available and what the shelter might need for supplies to help them run.  Remember this is helping to plant the seed and get it to grow.  Work Together, but always remember to have fun.

FRIENDLY REMINDER:  FAMILY, HEALTH & HEARING CONTEST IS STILL RUNNING THEIR CONTEST, PLEASE CHECK COMMUNITY SERVICE PACKETS FOR INFORMATION AND MAKE SURE TO SUBMIT BY AUGUST 15 FOR A CHANCE AT YOUR GRANGE TO WIN $50.00.

Maine State Grange Community Service making a difference “ONE” project at a time!

Mar 022016
 

Corliss

By Christine Corliss, Community Service/FHH Director

Community Service Corner

May is fast approaching – that means nice weather, sunshine, planting and time outside.  While you’re thinking about planting, why not start a Grange garden?  Grow vegetables and make some great meals for Grange suppers or how about donating them to a local food bank?  Make this garden a community garden, pair up with a local day care or after school program and have the children come and weed, pick and care for the plants.  Depending on the area you have to grow maybe you can grow a bigger surplus of vegetables and have a farm stand to sell these products, use the money to support other community service projects.  Maybe even put this money towards a scholarship program for the local high school seniors.  Just remember always have fun!

Family, Health & Hearing

May has many different awareness items:  National Bike Safety, Arthritis Awareness Month, Mental Health Awareness Month, & Ultraviolet Awareness Month.  How about inviting a local police officer to the Grange and host an open afternoon to discuss local bike safety with the public.  Contact local Arthritis foundation and bring in a guest speaker on things people can do to help cut down on the pain and stiffness of arthritis.  Make a large poster board for different topics and laminate it, put it somewhere outside your Grange hall.  Let the community know that Grange is still alive and well and willing to help bring awareness to the community.

Maine State Grange Community Service making a difference “ONE” project at a time!

Sep 102015
 

–based on a release from UMaine County Extension

This October, the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry’s (DACF) Board of Pesticides Control (BPC) will team up with the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to help Mainers dispose of banned pesticides or unusable pesticides.

This free disposal program is open to homeowners, family-owned farms and greenhouses. Collection will occur at sites located in Presque Isle, Bangor, Augusta and Portland. To qualify, people must register by September 26, 2015.

Governor Paul R. LePage is urging Mainers to take advantage of this opportunity to protect the environment and save money through this once a year collection event that highlights cooperation between government agencies. “This is an opportunity for Mainers to dispose of unusable pesticides properly and at no expense,” said Governor LePage. “By consolidating collections into four central locations and using in-house resources and expertise, we can reduce disposal costs to about $2 per pound. That’s a great value for Maine taxpayers.”

It’s not unusual for homes and farms to have unintentional hazardous waste-banned pesticides or pesticides that have become caked, frozen, or otherwise rendered unusable-sitting around in basements, garages, or barns. These chemicals can be difficult and expensive to dispose of; DACF Commissioner Walt Whitcomb stressed the importance of proper disposal of banned or unwanted pesticides.

“It’s important for the protection of public, wildlife, and environmental health that these products are dealt with properly and not thrown in the trash or down the drain, where they can contaminate land and water resources, including drinking water,” said Commissioner Whitcomb. “People holding these chemicals should contact the BPC as soon as possible to register for the October collection.”

“Providing an easy and no cost solution for Mainers to properly dispose of pesticides is a win for the environment and public health,” said Maine DEP Commissioner Patricia Aho. “The collection events cover the State and are held in Presque Isle, Bangor, Augusta and Portland, providing accessible methods of collection and future disposal.”

The collected chemicals go to out-of-state disposal facilities licensed by the federal Environmental Protection Agency where they are incinerated or reprocessed.

Registration by September 26, 2015, is mandatory-drop-ins are not permitted. To register, get details, and learn important information about the temporary storage and transportation of obsolete pesticides, go to the BPC Web site at http://www.maine.gov/dacf/php/pesticides/public/obsolete_pesticide_collection.shtml , or call 207-287-2731.

The Maine Obsolete Pesticides Collection Program, jointly sponsored by the BPC and DEP, and paid for entirely through pesticide product registration fees, has kept more than 90 tons of pesticides out of the waste stream since its start in 1982.

Aug 062015
 

McBurnieby Laurie McBurnie, Junior Director

Junior contests have been judged; it wasn’t an easy task and the Junior Committee appreciates Bobby Faulkner and Richard Harriman for their work. Regional and National entries will soon be sent to the next level. The other entries will be used for the Junior Grange display at the Litchfield Fair in September.

The Junior Committee will be running the kitchen again at the State Grange session. Donations of food (sliced ham, sliced cheese, mayo, chips, cookies/bars, etc.) and beverages (soda, water, coffee) are much appreciated. Please let Junior Director Laurie McBurnie, 563-5347 or by email  (lmcb293atgmaildotcom)  , know what you are planning to bring so items aren’t duplicated. (We are all set on paper goods for this year.)

Junior-made bird houses--from soda bottles!

Junior-made bird houses–from soda bottles!

The Junior Committee will also be having its traditional raffle table. Donations for this have already started coming in! Items in new or good quality used conditions are welcome.

Judging of the squash growing contest will also be held during State Grange Conference. This contest is open to all ages so bring your entry on the morning of Thursday, October 22.

The 2015-2016 Maine State Junior Grange program will be available at State Session.

Junior Grange hand fans ($1, Baker’s dozen – $12), Grange Memorial Flags ($7) and a limited number of Grange Flag Holders ($30) are still available. These items will also be on sale at the Junior table at State Grange.

If you know of any youngsters who would like to be involved as junior members, please contact Junior Director Laurie McBurnie and let her know.

 

Jul 052015
 

McBurnieby Laurie McBurnie, Junior Director

Junior Camp is in the history books. It was an excellent session with campers ages 6 to 13. State Master Vicki visited on Saturday for our picnic and hike. The Juniors kept busy with their ritual work, craft contest entries, an educational piece on Lyme Disease, and a community service project. A big thanks to all the adults who helped make everything run smoothly.

Crafts will be judged at the Family Campout, and I am glad I am not a judge. The creativity of these youngsters is amazing.

The Juniors made cat toys from toilet paper tubes and dogs toys from strips of fleece. Tyler, Sophie and Delia from Riverside Grange will help Community Service Director Chris Corliss deliver these to an animal shelter.

The Juniors made cat toys from toilet paper tubes and dogs toys from strips of fleece. Tyler, Sophie and Delia from Riverside Grange will help Community Service Director Chris Corliss deliver these to an animal shelter.

I hope you have planted some winter squash (any kind) in your garden so you will have that perfect entry in October for the Junior Department’s vegetable growing contest. This contest is open to all ages and will be judged at the State Grange session.

I have signed up to do a booth at the Litchfield Fair to show off the items the Juniors have made and to promote Junior Grange.

The number of Junior Grangers is growing, but every couple years a couple move up to subordinate Grange. If you know of any youngsters who would like to be involved as junior members, please contact Junior Director Laurie McBurnie for additional information.

Grange Memorial Flags ($7), Grange Flag Holders ($30) (just a few left) and Junior Grange hand fans ($1, Baker’s dozen – $12) are available from Jr. Director Laurie McBurnie and Jr. Committee members Norma Meserve, Roberta Meserve and CJ Stinson-Roy.

Warm weather has actually arrived here and those Junior Grange hand fans ($1, Baker’s dozen – $12) will come in very handy at many Grange halls. They are also available from Laurie, Norma, Roberta and CJ.

Jun 122015
 

McBurnieby Laurie McBurnie, Junior Director

As you are working on your garden, I hope you have planted some winter squash (any kind) so you will have that perfect entry in October for the Junior Department’s vegetable growing contest. This contest is open to all ages and will be judged at the State Grange session.

The other contests are open only to Junior Grangers and will be judged on July 18 at the Family Campout. Categories include Bird Feeder, Photography, Decorated Cookie, Duck Tape Craft, Creative Art – draw a picture that shows what this year’s theme – Join Us Now In Our Red Shoes! – means to you, Creative Writing – write a story about where you would go in your red shoes and who you would take with you, and Mini-Scrapbook – Create scrapbook pages plus a cover page showing Junior Grange activities; can be paper or digital display. Details for all the contests can be found on the Maine State Grange website and by contacting the Junior Director. Judging is by age: 5-7 yrs.; 8-11 yrs.; and 12-14 yrs. (as of 1-1-2015). Entries can be turned in at Junior Camp, brought to Family Campout (by 9 a.m. July 18), or mailed to Laurie McBurnie, 293 East Neck Rd., Nobleboro 04555-8608 in time to be delivered before July 15.

If you know of any youngsters who would like to be involved as junior members, please contact Junior Director Laurie McBurnie for additional information.

Now is the time to honor those Grange members who have passed. Grange Memorial Flags ($7) and a limited number of Grange Flag Holders ($30) are available from Jr. Director Laurie McBurnie and Jr. Committee members Norma Meserve, Roberta Meserve and CJ Stinson-Roy.

The flyer for the Memorial Bricks, the 2015 Maine State Junior Grange program, the National Jr. Grange program and the National Jr. Merit Badge programs are posted on the state grange website.

Warm weather has actually arrived here and those Junior Grange hand fans ($1, Baker’s dozen – $12) will come in very handy at many Grange halls. They are also available from Laurie, Norma, Roberta and CJ.

Mar 282015
 

WABI GrowME 2015

by Walter Boomsma

Third graders at PCES in Guilford were already pretty excited because Valley Grange volunteers and bookworms Mrs. Boomsma and Ms. Erwin were coming to help them make “dirt babies” as part of the GrowME Collaboration. But they became even more pumped when they saw WABI’s Caitlin Burchill and a camera operator headed their way. One teacher asked us to pop in and say “Hi” to the kids… and a third grader came rushing up to Cait with a quickly made card for the “wether woman” that said inside, “I love you!”

The resulting video can be viewed on the WABI TV 5 website.

GrowME is a collaboration between Valley Grange, PCSWCD (Piscataquis Soil and Water Conservation District) and UMaine Piscataquis County Extension designed to build a truly local program of agriculturally themed, hands on activities for kids led by local volunteers. The program was developed three years ago as an outgrowth from Valley Grange’s program with PCES (Piscataquis Community Elementary School). Teachers and students had been enjoying and learning from activities conducted by the Grange and it was thought expansion of the program might be possible by forming a collaboration. This year’s volunteers included Grangers, Master Gardeners, 4-H Club Members, and community citizens interested in GrowingME, growing kids, and growing plants. These volunteers will visit six schools, approximately fifty classrooms and 700 students, kindergarten through third grade.

Kindergarteners complete a graph showing the class’s favorite farm animal, first graders taste and sort apples provided compliments of Rollins Orchards in Garland, second graders make butter, and third graders assemble dirt babies. Volunteers often have some great stories to tell about their experiences with the teachers and kids and often report learning themselves. For example, when asked what the difference is between a horse and a “horsey,” one kindergartener explained, “Horsey’s are smaller.”

For additional information about the GrowME Project:

Visit the GrowME website.

Visit the Valley Grange website.

 

Jan 022015
 

Ag Show LogoThe 74th annual Agricultural Trades Show will be held at the Augusta Civic Center on January 13-15, 2015.  Admission is FREE!

Show hours:

  • Tuesday, January 13 open 9 am – 5 pm
  • Wednesday, January 14 open 9 am – 8 pm
  • Thursday, January 15 open 9 am-3 pm

This show provides an atmosphere to walk through, observe, and educate the public about different areas of agriculture.

For more information and a program visit Get Real. Get Maine! Be sure to visit the Maine State Grange Booth! Check out last year’s story.