“The sun was warm but the wind was chill.
You know how it is with an April day.
When the sun is out and the wind is still,
You’re one month on in the middle of May.
But if you so much as dare to speak,
a cloud come over the sunlit arch,
And wind comes off a frozen peak,
And you’re two months back in the middle of March.”
Those words were written by Robert Frost in 1926 (Two Tramps In Mud Time) and, like so much of his work, they capture the essence of spring and are a commentary on life. How quickly things can change–and how suddenly in the midst of change we can advance and retreat! (One step forward, two steps back!)
Last month I reported that the number of site visits was stagnant and “whined” a bit about the lack of news… As a result there has definitely been an increase in submitted events, but news continues to be scarce. In fact, we had less “non-event” posts in March of this year than we did a year ago. (Non-event posts are news items, quick tips or informational columns.)
In case you missed it, I recently offered this quote in a “Quick Tip” — Doing business (or having meetings!) without advertising is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you are doing, but nobody else does. So let’s turn on the lights! What happened at your Grange this month? What are your members thinking? How about a tip for others to consider?
Another aspect of the site I try to monitor is what sorts of searches are bringing visitors to the site–what terms, questions, etc. are people typing into “Google” that land them here. Recently there have been a number of searches regarding what might be considered “traditional skills” — including two questions very recently about repairing barns and “how to set up a barn dance.”
One reason this intrigues me is that I’ve been involved in setting up a collaboration between our local adult education program and the county extension service. In short, we offered a “You Can” series of classes that ranged from how to process firewood to how to can foods to handling livestock and starting seeds. The results were phenomenal! We’re about halfway through the series and people are already crying for more.
This just might be an opportunity for Granges to grab–there is a definite trend that goes beyond basic skills. I recently had an inquiry from a future bride who wanted to be married in a grange hall because of what it represents–community, heritage, and tradition. People are searching and many are looking to the grange for information and answers. When Ann Burns of Maple Grove Grange recently submitted their Green Thumbs of Sebago event, she noted that she’s been reading of all the “green” programs granges are offering and they are “jumping on the bandwagon.” Great idea! We can hitch up the team, pull the bandwagon out of the barn and figure out how to set up a barn dance, right?
Just don’t forget to take a photo or two and submit it to the website!