E-Newsletter January 18, 2013

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Issue 7 – January 18, 2013

California Grange named new Junior Director

By Amanda Leigh Brozana | [email protected]
National Grange Communications Director

Lillian Booth, of Paradise, Calif., was recently named the new National Junior Grange Development Director.

The announcement, made by National Grange President Ed Luttrell on Jan. 4, comes with a renewed focus on leadership development and resources for Junior Grange directors and further program development for the Junior Grange.

“I will definitely be working to create and provide guidance for Junior Directors that will help them work with the kids and develop their leadership potential,” Booth said.

Juniors, boys or girls ages 5 through 14, complete activities and challenges that teach life skills, civic engagement, leadership, good stewardship and community service, public speaking, good moral values, and much more. These children can also compete in local, state and national-level competitions related to public speaking, creative arts, and more.

Booth said she believes Junior Grange can play an essential role in the lives of young children today, just as it did when she joined in 1966.

“The kids coming up now have always had the ability to have instant information and being connected, but at the same time, they want something solid, tradition, and structure,” Boot said.

Booth, who is a current member of Paradise Grange No. 490, and the wife of past California State Grange President Bill Booth, previously held positions as California State Lady Assistant Steward, Musician, Secretary and youth director.

Booth said her experience as a National Delegate from 1989-93 while her husband was State President, and as a state officer and director herself, have prepared her well for the new job as Junior Director.

From Junior Grange, Booth said, we learn the most basic principles of the Grange and life.

“This is where it all starts,” Booth said. “Qualities that I learned in the Junior Grange, along with FFA, Job’s Daughters, school and church make up who I am right now. You never know what you’re going to spark.”

Because of this, Booth said it is important that the National Junior department focus on developing programming that “will bring out leadership qualities in the Junior members … who will be the leaders of their communities and the Grange in years to come.”

Booth also said she hopes to unveil a redesigned National Junior Grange website in the coming months.

Booth and her husband have three daughters, Amanda, 31, of Chico, Calif., LoRee Lampke, 29, and KayLynn, 26, both of Paradise.

Booth can be reached by email at [email protected].

Grange releases never before published book examining Grange in New England as e-book

By Austin Miller | [email protected]
National Grange Programs Assistant

On Jan. 4, the National Grange released, for the first time ever,  “The Granger Movement in New England” as a Kindle download available through Amazon’s Kindle Store.

The 1960 book, a thesis written by then-Harvard student Laurence Michael Hager, explores the impact of the Grange in New England while staying insightful and interesting, National Grange President Ed Luttrell said.

“This is a fascinating history and what is more exciting is that it has never before been available to the public,” Luttrell said. “Mr. Hager was thorough in his research and writing and generous in his willingness to allow the Grange the publishing rights.”

The digital version is 64 pages, including index, prologue and footnotes.

“This book [The Granger Movement in New England] paints a picture of the bleak social and educational conditions existing in the rural areas of New England and how the Grange was able to improve on those conditions,” National Grange President Ed Luttrell said Friday. “Mr. Hager challenges preconceived notions on New England and Grange history with this work.”

The National Grange has signed a 90-day exclusivity deal for “The Granger Movement in New England” with Amazon and the Amazon Kindle Store. The e-book will be added to the Barnes and Noble Nook Store after the exclusivity deal expires.

This is the seventh e-book the National Grange has released. Previous releases include “Friend of the Farmer,” “Legal and Economic Influence of the Grange,” “Notes and Quotes,” “Proud Heritage,” “First Century of Service” and “People, Pride and Progress.”

“These books tell a very interesting history of the American people, spirit and culture,” Luttrell said.

Luttrell said the organization continues to seek treasures like Hager’s book that tell the story of the Grange in communities and states throughout the nation as it prepares to celebrate its 150 anniversary in 2017. Any authors wishing to share their work with the Grange should contact National Grange Communications Director Amanda Leigh Brozana by email at [email protected] or by calling (888) 4-GRANGE ext. 102.

The Granger Movement in New England” is available for $4.99.

Reaction: National Grange frustrated with Farm Bill extension

By Amanda Leigh Brozana | [email protected]
National Grange Communications Director

The National Grange has worked with about 100 other agriculture groups over the past few months to lobby for a new Farm Bill as the 2008 bill expired Sept. 30, 2012.

During the fiscal cliff negotiations around the turn of the new year, Congress passed as part of the American Taxpayer Relief Act on Jan. 1, an extension of the 2008 Farm Bill, a disappointment to many in the agriculture community including the Grange.

Specifically, National Grange President Ed Luttrell expressed severe disappointment with the move, saying the extension lacks input from agricultural leaders in Congress, fails to address the hardships experienced by rural constituents, and provides no alternative for several expired programs.

“While the Grange understands the importance of avoiding a tax increase for 99 percent of Americans, those same Americans need the Farm Bill most to ensure a safe and reliable food supply,” Luttrell said. “The Farm Bill protects our growers and producers, expands opportunity in rural America, and provides one in 12 jobs in this country.”

Among other things, the extension does not include provisions for the Dairy Security Act, funding for the energy title, specialty crop and organic provisions, or beginning farmer and rancher programs. It also continues the direct payment method, despite its removal in both the House and Senate versions of the 2012 Farm Bill.

The extension gives Congress until September 30, 2013 to pass a new Farm Bill, allowing them another nine months to address this mounting issue.

Luttrell said the most frustrating part of the extension is the time Congress has had to put in place a new Farm Bill.

“Congress has had nearly six months to address this issue, with the Senate passing their version of the Farm Bill in June and the House passing theirs in July,” Luttrell said. “Congressional leaders are not giving rural constituents the attention and assistance they require to continue feeding our nation and the world.”

Luttrell said despite frustrations, the Grange will continue to work with other agricultural groups to ensure passage of a new Farm Bill in the coming months.

Since the statements Luttrell made on Jan. 2 were released, several media outlets have interviewed Luttrell as well as Legislative Director Grace Boatright.

Luttrell presents charter to new Riverside Grange in California

By Hayley Tonner | [email protected]
National Grange Intern

On Sunday, Jan. 6, National Grange President Ed Luttrell traveled to Colton, Calif., located about 60 miles east of Los Angeles, to present a charter to the newly formed Riverside Grange.

The Grange’s 15 charter members elected Donna Hickman as its president recently.

Hickman, along with seven other charter members, was on hand to accept the charter from Luttrell and called it an exciting moment for the group.

Riverside Grange was organized Sept. 27 after several of the new members visited Rubidoux Grange’s Youth Fair.

After several of Riverside’s charter members spoke to members of Rubidoux Grange the interested Riverside families decided they would like to start a Grange in their community.

The Grange is looking to expand quickly through good work in their community and informing others about both the Grange and the possibility of forming a Junior Grange.

Luttrell said the group has already garnered great interest from the community and is on the right track for success.

“This is a group that will make a very positive impression of the Grange on people around them and grow with their good works and positive attitude,” Luttrell said.

Riverside Grange Secretary Chantel Menzie-Williams said, “We are very excited to be a part of something so historical, wholesome, fun, and family oriented; and to be able to bring it to this area for others to benefit.”

New recognition program announced by Youth Department

By Charlene M. Shupp Espenshade | [email protected]
National Grange Youth Director

Growth of the youth program depends on the successful programming and efforts of our state, Pomona and community Granges. The National Grange Youth Department unveiled a recognition program at the National Session for outstanding youth programs.

Designed like the Distinguished Grange program, department activities are scored on a points system. A minimum of 100 points is needed to qualify as a Distinguished Grange Youth Program. Points can be earned for hosting youth contests, youth activities, community service projects, or participating in regional National Grange events. The application year is July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2012.

Each Distinguished Grange Youth Program will be recognized at the 2013 National Session in Manchester, N.H. and receive a certificate of recognition.

The application deadline is Aug. 17.  Program guidelines and applications are available in the 2013 National Grange Youth Handbook.

For more information, contact National Grange Youth Director Charlene Espenshade.

The Question is Simple: “Has Anyone Asked Yo uto Join the Grange Lately?”

By Avery Williams
Easton Grange #196, Mass.

I don’t know who asked me to join the Harmony Grange in Easton, Mass., in 1947, but I did.

I enjoyed the usual youth activities and my membership until 1950 when I went to work at Harco Orchards and Poultry Farm.

I let my membership lapse and was re-instated in 2008.

The Grange at the other end of town was still extant, and I was looking for a place for the hometown Lions Club to hold a Thrift Store.

My timing could not have been better.

Easton Grange #196 was about to give up the ghost.

They were unable to roust a quorum and total membership of 18 showed most of them either living out-of-state or were over the age of 80 and too infirm to attend meetings. Those attending were all more than 80-years-old. In fact, after a consolidation of three Granges in the area, only three of the remaining members that were now part of the Easton Grange actually lived in Easton.

I have been recruiting new members to other organizations for years, so I went to work talking friends and neighbors into joining the Grange as I set up the Lions Thrift Store.

Several members of the Lions Club joined the Grange, and we have brought up our membership to 48 at last count.

Four years into existence, the thrift store now brings in about $50,000, with proceeds split equally between the Lions and the Grange.

Easton Grange is building up a war chest to repair and restore its old Grange Hall, while simultaneously putting good contributions into local agricultural pursuits like providing portable toilets for the Farmers’ Market and underwriting costs at the Community Gardens. We recently sent a check in to the Connecticut Grange’s Newtown “Angels Fund,” and we put people to work at the New England Exposition selling chowder and lobster rolls.

My special phrase in recruiting new members: “Has anyone asked you to join the Grange lately?”

Of course most people I ask don’t join, but that never bothers me. I take rejection with a smile and just say, “we want you to know you are wanted.”

Every time I get a “no” answer, I know I am one step closer to the “yes” response that’s out there.

So be sure to have a couple good projects going when you bring a prospect to a meeting. Have fun like me recruiting new members.

I have signed up 10 in 2012 and plan to do the same again in 2013. Our goal is to be at 100 members by the end of 2014. What about you and your Grange?

Trees displayed at 146th Annual Convention find homes with vets, retirees

By Samantha Johnson | [email protected]
National Grange Programs, Benefits and Sales Director

Decorated Christmas trees, representing the Western Region States, Youth, Juniors and National Grange, were donated after display at the 146th Annual National Grange Convention to veterans homes, retirement centers and assisted living facilities to brighten residents’ holidays.

The 10 trees, adorned with many homemade ornaments by Grange members, were on display in the Boise Centre lobby for Grange members from across the country to enjoy Nov. 13-17.

From there, the trees were taken by Western Region members to Hope House in Marsing, Idaho; Applewood Assisted Living; Park Center Assisted Living; Trista Wolf Assisted Living all three of their locations; Hillcrest Retirement Home in their two locations; and the last three trees went to the Idaho State Veterans Home.

National Master Ed Luttrell said the Christmas tree tradition at National Session is reflective of the values of our organization.

“We are so happy to share these homemade items with all our Brothers and Sisters and with those outside the Grange who come to benefit from the decorated trees, lifting their spirits during the holiday season,” Luttrell said.

New car rental discount benefit offered for all members

By Samantha Johnson | [email protected]
National Grange Programs, Benefits and Sales Director

The National Grange is happy to announce that along with our hotel benefit provided by Local Hospitality, we have an all-access pass to rental cars.

Grange members can now access more than 550 car rental suppliers at more than 28,000 worldwide locations.

“This is a great benefit for our members it gives them more access to more savings,” National Grange President Ed Luttrell said.

Members can save up to 35 percent off standard pricing.

To take advantage of this benefit, go to the Members-Only section of the National Grange website at grange.org and start saving today.

Chocolate Chip Cupcakes

2 c. sifted flour
1 tsp. Baking powder
½ tsp. Soda
1 tsp. Salt
½ c. shortening
½ c. white sugar
½ c. brown sugar
2 eggs
½ c. crushed pineapple
½ c. water
1 tsp. Vanilla
1 7oz. Pkg. Semisweet chocolate bits
Sift flour, baking powder, soda and salt together. Cream shortening; gradually add white and brown sugar. Cream well. Blend in eggs, one at a time. Add crushed pineapple. Add water alternately with flour mixture. Add vanilla and chocolate bits. Bake in cupcake pans in 350 degree oven 20 to 25 minutes. Yield: 18 servings.Submitted by Phyllis Gleason, Adams Grange #391, Adams, NY, as appears in “The Grange Cookbook: Desserts,” 1967.