County farmers question new agricultural regulations, changes


52f72ca4d8395.preview-300Frederick County farmers told federal, state and local elected officials Saturday that they can’t take any more regulations.

About 100 farmers and agriculture leaders attended the Annual Legislative Day for agriculture, hosted by the Catoctin and Frederick Soil Conservation District, Frederick County Farm Bureau, and Frederick County Pomona Grange at the New Midway Fire Hall just north of Woodsboro.

Regulation and taxes, as always, were the biggest issues the farmers shared throughout the day, said Charles Brault, president of the Frederick County Farm Bureau.

County Commissioners gave updates on new storm water management requirements and impact fees. Farm owners are held to the same standards as developers for both. They must manage the water flowing off their buildings and other impervious services, and must pay impact fees when developing portions of their land.

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Soup Bowl feeds about 75 people


Bob Pasero, left, dishes up a steamy bowl of navy bean soup for longtime Orland resident Kay Larsen at the fourth annual Soup Bowl on Saturday.

Bob Pasero, left, dishes up a steamy bowl of navy bean soup for longtime Orland resident Kay Larsen at the fourth annual Soup Bowl on Saturday.

The day before Super Bowl XLVIII was officially known as “No Cook Saturday” in Orland.

The Victory in Christ Community Church hosted its fourth annual Soup Bowl, feeding about 75 people lunch at no charge.

The Soup Bowl was held in the basement of the Grange Hall.

“The soup was great,” said Kristy Rumble. “I started at one end and didn’t stop until I tasted each one.”

The annual Soup Bowl featured more than a half-dozen soups and desserts and was planned to coincide with the annual Orland Fire Department’s Spaghetti Feed.

Washington-Yamhill Pomona Junior Grange helps food bank, seeks more members


The new Junior Grange members of Washington-Yamhill Pomona Grange #2 are off to a productive start after forming as a group last fall. Rosalea Peters, who chairs the program, said the group recently held a fundraiser for the Oregon Food Bank, raising more than $200 by selling home-baked treats.

“These kids are interested in helping their community and having a good time,” said Peters. With the youngest member of the group just 5 years old and the oldest 13, Peters said meetings are a “great opportunity for all ages to work together” planning activities that work for everyone. She said a typical meeting involves an activity like a game or craft for the first hour, with the second hour dedicated to running the meeting and deciding on community service events.

Nationally, the Grange is known for advocating for rural America and agriculture and for its emphasis on grassroots activism, family values and community service.

The Washington-Yamhill Pomona Junior Grange meets from 2 to 4 p.m. the second Sunday of each month at Leedy Grange, 835 N.W. Saltzman Road. Peters said the group needs several more members to officially become part of the Oregon state Junior Grange. Being part of the larger program means members can participate in Grange activities statewide.

Junior Grange is open to children ages 5 to 14. Contact Peters at or 503-593-0110 for more information.

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Greenwood High School FFA, Perry Valley Grange will hold ‘Hunger Event’


The Greenwood High School FFA will partner with the Perry Valley Grange at 7 p.m. Jan. 31 to host a “Hunger Event” at the grange in Millerstown, Perry County.

Snow date is Feb. 1

When guests arrive, they will be seated at random. They will be assigned to a high-, middle-, or low-income tier, based on the latest statistics of people living in poverty.

Each income level will receive a corresponding meal.

When the meal is finished, guests will discuss hunger issues and receive information to inform, enlighten and inspire.

Although not all participants will leave with full stomachs, they will possess a greater understanding of hunger and poverty issues in Perry County, Pennsylvania, the United States and beyond.

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York County Grange volunteers serving milkshakes since 1954


20140102_100455_image_500Chocolate or vanilla?

It’s one of the most important choices made every year at the Pennsylvania Farm Show.

Long lines snake through the food court of the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex & Expo Center in Harrisburg as customers line up to buy one of the most famous offerings at the state’s annual display of agriculture: the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association milkshakes.

Because they’re so delicious, Janet Eppley has worked the booth since 1954.

The 83-year-old Lewisberry resident said the chocolate flavor is why she’s volunteered for the majority of the last 60 years.

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Grange just keeps going


Sally-McKay-Granger-web-300x277Grange is a fraternal organization that was started in 1867 after the Civil War as an advocacy group for farmers who were concerned about the prices of their produce.

Fast-forward to 2013. Besides agricultural interests, Grange is playing a role in communities in a variety of ways. Just ask the members of Ohop Grange.

The Eatonville-area Ohop membership sends representatives to yearly state conventions and is active in lobbying for legislation to raise awareness of property taxation issues. Closer to home, the Ohop group supports schools by donating dictionaries each fall to every third-grader in the Eatonville School District and, as the winter break nears, provides gifts for students at one of the elementary schools, Columbia Crest.

A bazaar and bake sale in November, with proceeds supporting Grange activities, is another annual highlight. Ladies such as Sally McKay, an Ohop member since she was 16 years old and who is known for her fruitcake, get together a few days before the bazaar to make homemade pies from scratch. For fruit pies, they peel apples and even pick the berries.

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South Middleborough Grange observes 100th anniversary


MIDDLEBORO — Members of the South Middleboro Grange #337 observed the organization’s 100th anniversary during two events held earlier this month. South Middleboro Grange was organized on December 6, 1913. The records of the secretary read as follows: December 6, 1913 “A new grange was instituted by Deputy William T. Herrick in South Middleborough Church known as South Middleborough Grange Number 337.”

A 100th anniversary celebration banquet was held on Friday, Dec. 6 at the Boston Tavern. Representatives from the Massachusetts State Grange and many subordinate (community) granges were represented along with members of South Middleboro Grange. The master of ceremonies was Shawn Gaudette, treasurer of South Middleborough Grange, who welcomed the guests in attendance and introduced Frank Jefferson, master (President) of South Middleboro Grange for opening remarks.

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Local Granges find balance in tradition, progressive thinking


“We have a habit of keeping an eye on people who have had a hard time.”

That’s how Richard Felt sums up the work of Franklin Grange #124 in Bryant Pond. Like the other Granges in the area—Alder River #145 in East Bethel and Pleasant Valley #136 in West Bethel—Franklin Grange organizes benefit suppers, contributes to social service agencies, and provides regular opportunities for its members and guests to gather and enjoy food, fellowship, music, and the sharing of ideas.

The Grange has a rich history in Maine. Stan Howe of Bethel, who serves as historian for the Maine State Grange, says that in the early 1900s Maine had more Grange members per capita than any other state, participating in over 500 local, or subordinate, Granges.

The National Grange of the Order of Patrons of Husbandry was founded after the Civil War to encourage rural farming families to join forces in order to bring about social, political, and economic changes.

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Burns Grange hands out 10,000th dictionary in Words for Thirds program


BYRON — The Burns Grange No. 160’s Words for Thirds project came full circle this week.

The group has been giving away dictionaries to third-graders for 11 years. The program started in the Byron and Durand school districts, eventually expanding to include all third-graders in Shiawassee County.

Grangers Return to New Hampshire for First Time in 100 Years


ed_speechMANCHESTER, N.H. — This year, Grangers recreated history, gathering in Manchester, N.H., for the first time in a century. More than 500 Grange members gathered at the Radisson Hotel last week for the 147th annual National Session.

National Master Ed Luttrell talked about former National Master Oliver Wilson, who addressed the membership at that 1913 session. The topics of the day focused on Grange growth, conservation of natural resources, agriculture, highway improvement and other important issues.

Some things have not changed, Luttrell said.

Luttrell laid out his goals during the annual address to the delegates on Nov. 12.