June 2013 Health Beat

Karen’s Kolumn is written by Karen Dolley, R.N. and Grange Friend… we appreciate her knowledge and her willingness to share! 

hikers_400_clr_9598School is almost out for the summer. Many parents are planning various summer activities for their children. One of these activities might be a summer camp. Parents should research prospective camps for their children and then talk with and meet with camp officials and staff. Make sure adequate supervision will be provided. Find out how you will be notified if your child is ill. Find out how the camp will care for your child if he or she is ill.

To help prevent injuries pack protective gear like helmets and life jackets if the camp does not provide these items. Pack insect repellent containing DEET and sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher to protect against mosquitoes, ticks and the sun. A check list of things to pack is helpful and should include things like sleeping bags and bedding, extra blankets, hats and sunglasses, healthy snacks and water, hand sanitizer, and any needed medical information.

Teach kids to avoid wild animals that can carry diseases that are harmful to people. Teach kids to avoid hair to hair contact, to avoid sharing combs and brushes, and to avoid sharing hats to prevent head lice.

Campers may get sick during their time away because of the close living conditions at camps. Make sure your kids vaccinations are up to date. Getting vaccinated is one of the best ways to keep your child and other campers healthy at camp. Teach kids to wash their hands frequently with soap and water and to use a hand sanitizer. Tell children to notify camp staff if they become sick or if they notice that another camper is not feeling well. Keep your child home if he/she is sick.

Homesickness is very common. Try to involve your child in choosing a camp and in preparations for camp. Be positive about the camp experience but also be honest about homesickness. If your child has not had many sleep-overs, do practice sleep-overs with friends and family before your child goes to camp.

For more information visit www.healthychildren.org, www.cdc.gov/family/camping, or www.vaccines.gov.

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Valley Grange Celebrates Community and Honors Two

Valley Grange celebrated community with a potluck supper and program on Friday night that seemed to be all about time. The program included some thoughts on the value of five minutes of community service every day. Noting that if every citizen in Piscataquis County between the ages of 20 and 80 gave 5 minutes per day to his or her community, Lecturer Walter Boomsma pointed out ”this would equate to 188 people working full time in our communities–an average of ten per town. Using the median income from 2011, the value of those five minutes would be the equivalent of an annual payroll of over six and a half million dollars per year.” Boomsma also noted “but there’s more than just dollar value, explaining how his association with Valley Grange has allowed him to discover his passion for working with kids–a passion that sees him now substitute teaching at the elementary school level and having his book Small People –Big Brains published recently. “Were it not for my association with Valley Grange, I might not be where I am today,” he admitted.

Mark Putnam, editor of the Observer, “a successful and effective community newspaper is a direct reflection of its community.”

The Grange recognized two news organizations for their community service: local newspaper The Piscataquis Observer, and Bangor-based WABI – TV 5. Both organizations were praised for their “boots on the ground” involvement in local communities and their willingness to work with local organizations such as the Grange. Dover Foxcroft Historical Society President Mary Annis offered testimony and an additional award in acknowledgement of both organizations’ contributions. Representatives from UMaine Extension, Kiwanis, Center Theatre, and other Granges in the area added accolades for both organizations’ local emphasis and their responsiveness to individuals and organizations. Piscataquis Community Elementary School Principal Julie Orton noted that the school genuinely appreciates the recognition students receive for their accomplishments and the kids value that recognition and find it rewarding and motivating.

In his response thanking Valley Grange for the honor, Observer Editor Mark Putnam spoke about how the digital age is changing media, but also noted that “our paper truly belongs to the community” adding “there’s no way we’d be celebrating our 175th Anniversary if that were not true… Much like the Grange, our newspaper wants to be relevant and essential in what will be known as the Digital Age.”

WABI News Anchor Terry Stackhouse noted that there was a certain irony to the fact that he is a “six month employee accepting the award on behalf of a sixty year station.” In reporting the story later, he noted that “everyone was very kind and even sent me home with leftover food.” (You can see his report on the WABI Website. )

As part of the celebration of community, Valley Grange also honored members Herb Dunham for 55 years of Grange Membership and Carolyn Campbell for 65 years of membership.

Observer Staff Mark Putnam, Stu Hedstrom, Jeanette Hughes, Linda Kain, and Keri Foster

We’re Ready for Community Night!

Party 3 (640x464)Well, almost! While this photo doesn’t show it (you’ll have to come see), the stage is painted and looking great! Members are reminded we still have some “primping” to do… and those who can are asked to stop by Friday (17th) afternoon and find a project–sweeping, dusting, setting tables, etc. Our celebration of community begins at 6 PM with a potluck supper… and continues with a 7 PM program that’s sure to please as we honor the Piscataquis Observer and WABI-TV 5 for their service to our communities.

Remember, this is a family friendly event and the price is right–all it “costs” is a few hours of your time! (If you can, bring a dish to share for potluck.) In exchange, you’ll get a great meal, a warm sense of community, some laughs and a chance to see friends old and new.

An audio-visual presentation will surprise you when you discover the value of “Just Five Minutes.” Look for a traffic jam at the corner of Butter Street and Guilford Center Road on Friday-because that’s where Valley Grange is located!

“I can write!”

SeDo drwIn case you hadn’t heard, we’re “hitting the schools” again… this time with thesauruses, rhyming dictionaries, and workbooks for the third grade classrooms where we placed dictionaries last fall. This has been possible thanks to the hard work of Janice Boomsma who heads up our annual “Meat or Heat Raffle” to raise the funds we need to place a dictionary in the hands of every third grader in SAD 4, SAD 68, and SAD 41. This year we had some money left over so we decided to purchase these classroom reference books. A recent packet of thank you notes brought a number of smiles… one scholar promised to “use the books for the 25 days of school we have left.” (Yeah, but who’s counting?) and third grade teacher Mrs. Kennedy advised us “…this is their first time writing an entire letter (or anything) in cursive.”

It is truly exciting and rewarding to be part of the kids learning and development! And, did I mention it’s fun?!

Bookworm Schedule, May 2013

Reading is fun!“He  that loves reading has everything within his reach.”

 William  Godwin

It’s May! It’s May! Lots of school activities as kids and teachers finish a big year full of accomplishments! Bookworms are encouraged to attend and see your readers in action! We are also hoping Mrs. Erwin’s foot gets better soon so she can come back to school! Please note a schedule change–instead of scheduling on Tuesday and Thursday, we will have two bookworms at school on Tuesday for three weeks. And don’t forget, Arts Alive is coming fast!

Tuesday, April 30  – Mr. Boomsma will be at school to read, 9 AM.

Thursday, May 2 – February Pomona Meeting will be held at Garland Grange–supper at 6 PM, meeting at 7 PM.

Friday, May 4 – Valley Grange Painting. Pruning, Primping Pizza Party! Come any time after 4-5 PM… bring tools, Pizza served at 6 PM.

Monday, May 5 — It’s Teacher Appreciation Week! Say and do something nice for a teacher!

Tuesday, May 7 –  Mrs. Bosworth & Mr. Boomsma will be at school to read, 9 AM.

Tuesday, May 7 – Mr. Boomsma and Mr. Annis will be at school starting at 1:30 PM to visit with third graders about dictionaries and other resources… we will be bringing several reference books for third grade classrooms!

Thursday, May 9 – PCES Concert featuring grades 4-6 chorus and band, 6 PM at PCES.

Tuesday, May 14 – Mrs. Bosworth & Mr. Boomsma will be at school to read, 9 AM.

Thursday, May 16 – PCES Art Show featuring the work of Kindergarten through grade 6, 5 PM to 7 PM at PCES

Friday, May 17 – Valley Grange monthly program will be a celebration of community and honor to our annual Community Citizens… Potluck supper at 6 PM and our program at 7 PM

Tuesday, May 21 – Mrs. Bosworth & Mr. Boomsma will be at school to read, 9 AM.

Thursday, May 23 – PCES Performing Arts Demonstration offered by energetic and talented third graders, 6 PM at PCES.

Tuesday, May 28 – Mrs. Erwin will be at school to read, 9 AM.

Thursday, May 20 – Mr. Boomsma will be at school to read, 9 AM.