Sherry and Jim French–the “Dynamic Duo”

Folks came from far and wide to join Valley Grange’s Community Night Celebration–an annual event that celebrates community and recognizes a Community Citizen of the Year. This year the award went to Sherry French of Guilford for her work throughout the area. Sherry’s projects are many, ranging from supporting Pine Tree Hospice to coordinating fundraising events for a number of causes, to answering children’s letters to Santa Claus. Friends and coworkers testified to the unselfish work Sherry does and to the value of her friendship. This year’s event took on an unusual twist in that Sherry’s husband Jim received the Grange’s Award several years ago, so following Sherry’s honor a special certificate was presented to the “Dynamic Duo.”

The evening’s program was based on “Just Five Minutes” with Lecturer Walter Boomsma pointing out the dollar value of volunteering for just five minutes per day. “If everyone between the ages of 20 and 80 in Piscataquis County did that, it would equate to 188 people working full-time for our communities–an average of ten per town and an equivalent payroll of over six and a half million dollars.” But, Boomsma noted, “the real value comes from the impact we can have on others lives.” Every attendee received at least two lollipops, with the instruction they were to give one to someone who they wanted to recognize as “creating an important moment in their lives.”

Additional recognition during the event went to Grange members celebrating anniversaries. Secretary Mary Annis reported on the recent celebration for Opal Bennett, an 80 year member and then presented her husband Jim with his 25 year certificate joking, “It pales by comparison.”

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Opal Bennett Honored — 80 Year Member!

A team of members recently visited Hibbard’s Assisted Living Facility in Dover Foxcroft where they honored member Opal Bennett for her 80 years as a member. The team included Master Jim Annis, Secretary Mary Annis, Chaplain Janice Boomsma, and Lecturer Walter Boomsma. Opal was joined by a number of her friends and several family members. Master Jim entertained the group with several stories demonstrating that the Grange is still very active and thanked Opal for her many years of membership. The Hibbard’s Staff served refreshments and a good time was had by all!