Who can be a member?
- Just about anyone who is at least 14 years old and who subscribes to basic traditional values that include building strong communities and individuals! One way to check us out is to attend a meeting… usually on the third Friday of the month. Our Bookworm and Meeting Schedule is usually published by the first of every month.
What are the benefits of being a member?
- The nature of the Grange is such that to a large extent, members can create their own benefits. Most enjoy the fraternal nature of the Grange and our meetings that include time honored traditions like saluting the flag of our country. The Grange offers opportunities to learn and grow. We have the facilities and structure that allows members to further (non-partisan) causes based on your personal interests and values. Many members seem to enjoy that the amount of time and effort required is very discretionary. Meeting attendance isn’t mandatory and you can choose your level of participation. Grange members even enjoy free use of the Grange Hall for their own personal events!
How much does it cost?
- Very little… Valley Grange dues are currently set at $25 per year per person, payable in December.
What are the requirements to becoming a member?
- Members must fill out and sign a very short application and receive a vote of approval. Once approved, new members are asked to participate in an “obligation ceremony” which will reinforce the basic values of the organization.
I’ve heard the Grange is for farmers. Is that true?
- The Grange has a rich agricultural heritage and tradition, but has evolved over the years with a greater focus on community service. While the Grange in general tends to be a rural organization, there are cities with Granges. By it’s grassroots nature, local Granges determine their own focus.
Is the Grange a “secret” organization?
- An important part of the beginnings of the Grange was a commitment to protecting the interests of farmers and those early days included a “secret” aspect to insure meetings were held where farmers could speak freely and other interests could not dominate. This included the use of a password for admittance to meetings. Some Granges have totally abandoned this. Valley Grange (along with many Granges in New England) has chosen to keep the use of the password as a reminder of our heritage and roots. We do not, however, ask people to leave if they do not know it!\
What is the organization of the Grange?
- The basis is a local, community (also called “subordinate”) Grange. These local Granges unite in a “Pomona” or district. Valley Grange is part of Piscataquis Pomona which includes Parkman, Dexter, Garland, East and South Sangerville Granges. There is also a state and national umbrella. Your dues and membership include the state and national levels and benefits.