January 2017 Bookworm Schedule

Reading is fun!Welcome to a new year of reading!

Thursday, January 5— Ms. Erwin will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Tuesday, January 10— Mrs. Chadbourne will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Thursday, January 12— Mrs. Lander will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Monday, January 16— No School!

Tuesday, January 17— Mrs. Kimball will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Thursday, January 19— Mrs. Kimball will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Tuesday, January 24— Ms. Erwin will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Thursday, January 26Mr. Boomsma will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Tuesday, January 31— Mrs. Lander will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.


“The book you don’t read won’t help.”

–Jim Rohn

Bookworm Schedule — December 2016


A short but busy month it is!

Thursday, December 1 — Ms. Erwin will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Friday, December 2 is the Fellowship Breakfast at Valley Grange, starting at 6:00 p.m.

Monday, December 5 is the K-3 Holiday Concert at PCSS, starting at 6:00 p.m.

Tuesday, December 6 — Mrs. Kimball will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Wednesday, December 7 is the 4-6 Holiday Concert at PCES, starting at 6:00 p.m.

Thursday, December 8 — Mrs. Chadbourne will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Tuesday, December 13 — Mrs. Lander will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Thursday, December 15 — Mrs. Erwin will be at school to read starting at 8:45 a.m.

Don’t forget to bring canned goods to PCES for the Giving Tree!

Monday, December 19 — No school–unless you’re a teacher! Christmas vacation for students begins… and the first day back isn’t until January 3, 2017! Enjoy the time off, but keep reading!

“Do give books – religious or otherwise – for Christmas. They’re never fattening, seldom sinful, and permanently personal.”

– Lenore Hershey

“My first copies of Treasure Island and Huckleberry Finn still have some blue-spruce needles scattered in the pages. They smell of Christmas still.”

– Charlton Heston

What a bunch of cut ups!

Over twenty “cut ups” met at Valley Grange recently to manufacture blankets under the direction of Pat Engstrom. (The blankets are made by cutting and tying fringe around the borders.) Several dozen blankets have been made and distributed to the Linus Project and the Veterans’ Home in Bangor. A special thanks goes to the group of students from Foxcroft Academy who attended and pitched in. No doubt we’ll be doing this again!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

You don’t have to speak Italian…

You don’t have to speak Italian to enjoy eating it! Family friendly pricing… note also area Granges will be participating in an officer installation program immediately following the supper… the public is invited!

Italian Buffet Postcard

Happy Birthday, Betty!

Betty VanDyke continues to be a big supporter of Valley Grange in as many ways as possible. Betty recently celebrated her 9oth Birthday with a party attended by many friends and Grangers. Those couldn’t attend sent cards and messages. This is Betty’s appreciation and some thoughts about her Grange career.

A Happy Betty is flanked by her daughters Lois (left) and Ginny at her 90th birthday celebration.

I don’t think anyone will ever know how I feel about the Grange and how badly I felt the day I wrote for a demit that I knew I would never use.  Those 28 years were the best years of my life and I miss those days a lot.  The work I did being Lecturer of Valley Grange for oh so many years were growing years for me and grow I did using my brain to prepare the programs that I hoped would be satisfactory for the night.  Being on the CWA committee where my husband had to bring me to Augusta and “cart women  around” was a highlight of my belonging.  Then being asked to be Community Service Director of the Maine State Grange, how proud I was for that, receiving  a Plaque of Achievement for work well done was over the top. I tell you all this not to brag but to let you how much the Grange meant to me.

I was “from away,” you see, and people told me then that I would never be accepted.   But I tell you here and now I have been accepted and you can be too.  The friends I have made through this journey are precious to me because they don’t forget. I have seen this recently on the occasion of my 90th birthday with the cards and Facebook messages from Grangers near and far.

I do hope with all my heart that Valley Grange grows with the community as I try to help out in whatever manner I can.  If you are from away, please don’t try to change these good people, they have a lot to offer to you and you will be happier if you listen  to them. Join what ever Grange is closest to you.  Join to help them, your community and yourself.  And as the Girl Scouts sing, “Make new friends, keep the old, one is silver the other is gold.”  As a member of the Grange you can accomplish a lot.

Best of luck to all Granges everywhere.

I remain your friend,

Betty VanDyke

Painted and Painting

Photo from prep day... what it used to look like!

Photo from prep day… what it used to look like!

Wow… do we owe a big thanks to the “Helping Hands” Team of seven who showed up ready to paint last Thursday! We got a lot done!

As noted earlier, the Grange Team did a great job with preparations that including moving chairs, taking down curtains, scraping and more… our motives weren’t entirely altruistic–we were hoping that we could get the bulk of the painting done in the day we had “Helping Hands.”

Thanks go to Grangers Jim Annis, Roger Ricker, Janice Boomsma, Pat Engstrom and granddaughter Heather for showing up to help on painting day. We tried to be helpful in part by staying out of the way!

So here’s the progress report and another request for some support. By the time the Helping Hands crew had to leave we had the ceiling and walls done plus one coat covering the trim. To our grateful surprise, the Helping Hands crew from the Mountainview Youth Development Program asked if they could come back and finish… and not only finish, but also paint the floor!

Jim, that's a painting cup--not coffee!

Jim, that’s a painting cup–not coffee!

So… we’ve schedule another painting day on Thursday, May 1st. In anticipation, I’ve painted the dear old Glenwood stove and picked up the additional supplies–mostly floor paint–the Helping Hands Crew took all our brushes with them to clean and return!

But I am “forced” to call on our Grange members and friends for some real easy help that doesn’t involve brushes and ladders. We did not budget for lunch for a second day of painting… and we need to feed these guys with HUGE appetites that increase as a result of hard work! So we’re looking for some help with lunch. If you can, please help by providing some sustenance!

Bear in mind, cooking is pretty much out of the question as the kitchen is in total disarray, so we’re looking for sandwiches… baked goodies are a special treat–last time we had brownies by Mary and “Seven Layer Cookies” by Janice… We could consider a crockpot of soup… Unfortunately, both Mary and Janice are not available for this party–Janice took special pride in trying to fill the guys up last time! Can we put on a “Grange Spread” for our willing workers? We’ll probably be feeding seven to ten people and lunch is usually needed around 11:30. If necessary, you can drop food off the day before–use the refrigerator.

Breakfast type snacks are a bonus–donuts, coffee cake, etc. We’ll get the coffee on and I already have “Sunny D.” The crew will probably arrive around 8:30 AM and work until 2:30 PM. Stop by and check out the work, say “thanks,” and offer your encouragement!

A preview of the finished product.

A preview of the finished product.


Newspapers in Education — First Place Ads!

Don’t miss the Newspapers in Education Supplement in this week’s Piscataquis Observer–look for some stories about Valley Grange’s participation and find these two ads!

Third Grade, First Place ad drawn by Julia Rose Munson

Third Grade, First Place ad drawn by Julia Rose Munson

Fourth Grade, First Place Ad drawn by Taylor Folsom

Fourth Grade, First Place Ad drawn by Taylor Folsom

Home on the Grange – Part One

In case you missed the live broadcast… here’s a link to the feature story by Joy Hollowell, WABI TV 5:

Home on the Grange (Part One)

Home on the Grange (Part Two)

Correction to Meeting Schedule

Thanks to eagle-eyed Betty VanDyke for catching another example of my famous date deficit disorder. It seems in the October letter and schedule, I gave two different dates for the November Meeting. The correct date is November 15. (The date in the letter.) I’ve fixed the full year calendar, you can download your own copy: 2013-2014 Schedule or correct the one you have! Sorry for any confusion!

Blue Ribbon Valley Grange!

Fair 2013_022 (640x441)

Bob Carroll’s eye for precision gets applied to the staves during set up

Valley Grange walked away (well, some of us shuffled… it was a lot of work taking the booth apart) with the first place ribbon for our booth display at this year’s Piscataquis Valley Fair! We’d already agreed it was our best booth in recent years and are glad the judges agreed! The booth followed the theme of “Field to Feast” and included step by step instructions and materials for preserving the harvest.  Our judging guidelines also call for us to tell as much of the “Grange Story” as possible, including information and samples of our Community Service, Family Health and Hearing, and CWA work. Community Service Chair Mary Annis turned out an incredible poster with colorful pictures and descriptions of some of our projects.

While we all mutter and complain, we really do enjoy working together to build the booth every year on what usually turns out to be the hottest day we have in August. This year the crew included Mary and Jim Annis, Judy and Roger Ricker, Linda Erwin and Bob Carroll and Janice and Walter Boomsma. We can always count on Roger for some bad jokes and Judy is constantly sweeping… Mary and Janice do most of the preliminary work… and just about everybody gets a turn being sidewalk superintendent.

Congratulations to our closest (and only!) competitor, South Sangerville Grange for a well-deserved second place ribbon. Walter set up the Pomona Membership Booth again this year in an effort to assure fair-goers that the Grange is alive and thriving in the area. Unfortunately, Garland Grange was unable to compete this year, but we hope they’ll be back next year! Space in the Grange Exhibit Hall is always filled. This year we were joined by 4-Hers with their project work–they were great neighbors and added a lot of fun to the hall.

That blue ribbon looks great!

That blue ribbon looks great!