Keeping Warm This Winter!

Valley Grange is a proud supporter of the “Keeping Our Communities Warm” project sponsored by The JD Foundation in Abbot ME. This is an opportunity for area kids and families to secure winter clothing at little or no cost. The event is run much like a “yard sale” but the prices can be as little as a smile. This year the “sale” will take place on Saturday, October 13th at 107 Main Street in Abbot (right at the four corners). If you’d like to help us get the word out, you can download and print the Keeping Warm Flyer.

Donations are of course needed and accepted… hats, coats, mittens, boots, ski-pants, scarves… in all sizes and for all ages. Let’s all work together to get ready for winter and keep our communities warm! For more information visit the JD Foundation website.

Thanks for helping with keeping our communities warm!

Wicked Huge Yard and Bake Sale!

Keeping Our Communties Warm — Winter Clothing Available

Reprinted from the event page on Facebook, The location for this is right at the four corners in Abbot… and the home of Vic and Cheryl Morin. The date is Saturday, October 8th and you can come anytime after 8 AM until dusk.

This project was started by the JD Foundation to try and help our community in the cold months. We save coats, boots, warm clothing, blankets and more to donate to those in the area that needs them.These are either new or gently used items. We also have plenty of mittens, hats, etc… We do not man the tent. We only put a donation bucket out. If you can and want to donate, that is great. If you can’t donate and need things, please take them and leave with a smile. We all need things especially when we have children.

If you have a coat that you no longer need, especially for younger children, please drop them off or give us a call.

We will also have a tent with Christmas items and some brand new items that you can purchase for Christmas presents. Most items are by donation. PLEASE pass this on to all of your friends,& neighbors.

FMI call Cheryl 207-876-2295 or 207-343-1732

Hooting Heard!

While it was admittedly a bit subdued because of the heat, there was still some hooting at the Valley Grange Hall on Friday as a number of people braved the heat to participate in our supper and music program. We do appreciate the support of those who agreed it was “too hot to cook” — we even had one take out order!

A special thanks goes to all those who helped put this event together… we had a number of food donations and lots of willing workers. One featured item was a  home baked pie featuring handpicked raspberries. Don and Eileen Ebbling provided it and rather than serve it we auctioned it off before the music… for $20!

Other than the pie, our leftovers were donated to the volunteer crew at the JD Foundation Yard Sale… an amazing bunch of people who aren’t letting the heat stop them from raising record funds for their suicide awareness and prevention program. If you want to brave the elements today, a trip to Abbot would be supportive and there are plenty of treasures left for your shopping pleasure.

Also thank to North Country Strings players Susan, Ruth, and Paul for a great performance as always. They even opened with the “Grange Welcome Song!”


Grangers Have Busy Weekends!

Starting tonight… at 5 PM, Valley Grange members decided move our meeting to Dover Foxcroft and show our support of Pinetree Hospice by joining their 25th Anniversary Celebration on the grounds of Mayo Hospital.

Tommorrow we travel to Garland Grange for a “degree day” beginning at 3 PM. (This event appeared in several local newspapers as being at Valley Grange–my mistake! The correct location is Garland.) We’ll be joining other granges from around the area in a special program that officially installs new members. Attending members are encouraged to bring a salad or dessert to accompany the “bean supper” Garland will serve at 5 PM.

Don’t forget next weekend Valley Grange has a public bean supper and and Hootenanny on Friday July 22. Supper is from 5 – 7 PM… Hootenanny featuring North Country Strings starts at 7 PM… and the JD Foundation Yard Sale  will be  going on Friday (22), Saturday (23) and Sunday (24).

And we’ll see you at Piscataquis River Festival on Saturday, July 30th!

And don’t forget… we’re collecting school supplies for the Smart Starts for Students Program at all these events.

Volunteer Opportunity

There’s just two weeks left until Valley Grangers Vic and Cheryl Morin hold the annual JD Foundation Yard Sale… they are looking for help from the 13th through the sale… 2 hours, 4 hours, any amount of time will help. Cheryl says, “We are doing things different and setting up clothing in the barn… We will be cleaning everything out of the barn this week and starting to get the clothes out to hang, or put on tables. And which one of us doesn’t like dealing with clothes? We have a ton, and I mean a ton. All nice things…” During the sale they still need people to sell gift basket tickets, 50/50 tickets and run the ice cream station!! We have Butterfield’s ice cream again this year!!! Give Cheryl a call if you can help. You’ll of course be raising money for suicide awareness… call Cheryl at 876-2295 or 343-1732.

The Yard Sale runs from 8 AM until 4 PM on Friday-July 22, Saturday-July 23, and Sunday-July 24… right at the four corners in downtown Abbot!

Coming VERY soon!

Thursday, July 7–Pomona Picnic

We’re still on for Thursday… come any time after 5 PM—the grill will start at 6 PM… our auction promises to be fun… and we’ll finish up with the traditional marshmallow roast. Right now the weather forecast is “scattered thundershowers.” Let’s hope they are scattered somewhere besides Abbot! Complete details are posted here.

Friday, July 15–Monthly Meeting

In lieu of a traditional meeting, we’ll be supporting Pine Tree Hospice as they celebrate their 25th Anniversary from 5 – 8 on the Mayo Hospital Grounds. It’s a free family barbeque, entertainment and silent auction… should be a fun evening! We’ll meet there. If you have any questions about our participation, call Jim and Mary at 564-0820. This could end up being one of our “easiest” meetings this year!

July 16 Pomona Degree Day

This starts at 3 PM at Garland Grange and will include all granges in the area. New members who joined this year are especially encouraged to come… If you are part of the “degree team,” make sure you’ve reviewed your part in the manual. There will be a paid supper – we are being asked to help with desserts. Call Bill at 924-3537 or Jean at 924-3504 to see what’s needed.

July 22 Supper/Hootenanny

Summer fun! Enjoy a traditional baked bean suppah and some great music by Susan Ramsey and The North Country Strings… Supper starts at 5 PM, music starts at 7 PM. Come to one or both! Everything is by donation so this is definitely affordable family fun. Complete details are coming soon!

July 23-24 JD Foundation Yard Sale

Congratulations to Vic and Blaine for completing the bike ride across Maine for Suicide Awareness… They pedaled some 538 miles and made contact with a lot of people. After finishing up, Vic said, “In bicycling there’s always one more hill to climb and for people suffering from mental illness and depression I feel this is also true. Blaine and I were able to climb those hills because we were well prepared with great equipment. We as a society need to provide the needed tools and equipment to those suffering from these diseases so they too can climb their hills.” That is, of course, one of the points of the annual yard sale—to raise funds so they can provide tools and equipment to help people climb their hills. You can obviously help by attending and buying stuff, but note also that Vic and Cheryl could use some help getting ready, during the sale itself and after… their Yard Sale is “wicked huger” than Valley Grange’s! Send Cheryl an email with your offer to help and check out this post!

July 30 River Festival

Grange members and bookworm readers will be at the Valley Grange Information Booth… Come by and say “Hi!”

Wicked Huge Yard Sale Was Wicked Huge!

There was a "wide assortment for your shopping pleasure."

We raised over $850!!! Special thanks goes to EVERYONE who helped in some way… hauling and sorting… baking… talking it up… picking things up… negotiating with customers… buying things… buying things and saying “Keep the change…” Heck, we’re even glad it rained because we think that might have helped! This by no means makes us a “rich” grange, but we’re feeling solvent again!

We were totally mobbed for the first hour… and stayed busy most of the morning… even had a couple of people show up while we were packing up and cleaning up! The clean up crew did an incredible job… the only way you can tell there’d been a sale is we have seven or eight televisions and computer monitors left. This is an “ugh,” because we have to figure out a way to get rid of them! (They will work with a  DVD player or VCR.) We tried some  creative marketing techniques… “Buy a pair of boots for $2 and get a free TV!”  

Transfer stations charge at least $10 each  and there really is almost no market for older models.  We think there are “free days” occasionally and if you hear of one, please let us know! If you live in a town that allows residents to dispose of one free, maybe you could take one for us?

Suicide Awareness Bicycle Tour Starts Monday

Cheryl and Vic Morin

Grange Member Vic Morin and his friend Blaine Burhoe completed a cross country bicycle tour in 2004 and vowed to do something similar every couple of years. Unfortunately Vic and his wife lost a son to suicide the following year—a tragedy that was to change their lives in many ways and put those rides on hold.  The loss started Vic and Cheryl on another path that resulted in the formation of the JD Foundation which is dedicated to suicide awareness and prevention.

Vic and Blaine still love to ride and they are now starting a ride across the state of Maine to help raise funds and bring attention to the need to prevent suicide through training and awareness. They will follow a north south path that runs along Route 1 and hope to cover 40-60 miles per day, connecting with people along the way. They start in Van Buren on Monday and plan to arrive in Kittery on Saturday, July 2. You can find their itinerary and follow their progress on Facebook.

Valley Grangers are proud of fellow members Vic and Cheryl  and we admire their compassion and dedication. We’re hoping brother and sister Grangers across the state will help show their support for this ride. While the primary goal is to create awareness, they are also raising funds so donations are welcome. In addition, they are looking for places to stay (and an occasional shower) along the way. If your Grange is located near the route, why not make their passage something of a Grange event?! Don’t forget to invite the local media!  If you’d like to help in some way, you can email Cheryl at or visit the Facebook page.

Vic said they were hoping to find somebody with an ice cream truck to accompany them because “Blaine pedals a lot faster if there’s ice cream in his future.” They are also carrying squares of cloth bearing the names of suicide victims. After the ride, the squares will be made into a quilt that will be displayed at future JD Foundation events—including their HUGE annual yard sale scheduled for July 22 – 24 in beautiful downtown Abbot Maine.

Wicked Huge Yard Sale Update

Yard Sale coordinators Nathalee and Floyd Marsh have been busy busy busy and we’re looking forward to another WICKED HUGE Yard Sale on June 18th. Assisted by sorters and taggers Janice Boomsma and Roger and Judy Ricker, they’ve been working over the last few weeks handling generous donations from Grange members, The United Methodist Church in Guilford, the Senior Citizens in Guilford, Malcolm and Lee Marsh, the Thomas family estate, and a number of individuals throughout the area.

Look for our advertisement in the Piscataquis Observer and be sure to plan to visit the Grange Hall during the morning of June 18th… we’re located on the corner of Butter Street and Guilford Center Road and the sale will be held “rain or shine” as we have indoor shopping comfort.

We haven’t stopped collecting… if you have items to donate, just contact any Valley Grange member… or call Nathalee Marsh at 876-3343. Note we’re looking for goodies for our bake sale as well!

Thanks to the many who support this project every year! See you at the sale!