Grange Notes by Tim Swartz, President (with everyone’s help) for May 2, 2018
Our annual Baking Contest brings out the good stuff.
A wide variety challenged our judges
Our panel of judges was smaller than we expected, pairing Lynn Spencer, the Berlin Elementary Art teacher who judged cinnamon rolls for us last year, and last-minute “pinch eater” Viveka Fox, who has often enlivened our stage as a fiddler and bodhran musician with Atlantic Crossing and Frost and Fire. She came to dance on April 7th, but was quite willing to judge muffins! Lynn & Viveka developed a testing protocol, did some careful division of muffins, and…came up with winners!
Blue Ribbon went to Sascha Gerschfeld, who came to the Grange meeting for the first time, and went home with prizes…and a membership to our Grange!
Red Ribbon went to Erin Barry, organizer of the popular Kids Trade ‘n’ Play monthly clothing and toy exchange at our Hall.
Green Ribbon went to our Vice President, Phyllis Skinner, who brings delicious desserts to our potluck dinners, as well as educating us on health issues at every meeting.
Congratulations to Sascha, who will repeat her winning recipe at the Grange Center in June, competing for the Vermont State Grange championship, and to Erin & Phyllis. Thanks to our judges, and to the potluck dinner attendees who selflessly disposed of the remaining muffins.
Blockchain: a beginner’s guide at our May meeting
Imagine my surprise when I heard that the VT Legislature passed a law in 2017 recognizing Blockchain technology as a way to “authenticate artwork and precious stones”, and that a bill is being considered this year to use the same technology to protect state and private data.
Since the CCG is encouraging civic involvement in the communities of which we are a part, we have asked Jeremy Hansen, who is a professor of computer science at Norwich University, as well as being a Berlin Selectboard member and the organizer of Central VT Internet, to give us a brief and non-technical introduction.
Join us about 5:30 PM on this coming Saturday, May 5th, to learn more about how this seemingly esoteric technology could help Vermont to safeguard data and increase confidence in electronic transactions.
Remember, you can chew these ideas over at the Community Potluck right after the program!
And after the meeting–it’s the monthly Community Potluck.
Neills celebrate a long-lasting partnership
The Neills invited their many friends and family to their home on Wednesday, April 25th for a 65th wedding anniversary get-together. Merry and I were honored to be invited, and enjoyed meeting many children, grand-children and great-grandchildren, as well as acquaintances and friends. Congratulations on a long, warm, giving and productive partnership!
Grange votes to support the Mess Hall to Dining Hall project
This support by the Grange is part of the Grant Application which was submitted Sunday April 29th, by the team from the FCCGH–many thanks to Nancy Turner, Patty Giavara, Joanne Garton (and yours truly), who put together the research, plans, quotes, budgets, support letters, and much more to allow us to apply. The Vermont Arts Council administers the “Facilities Improvements” grant program, which gives matching funds to non-profit organizations like ours, which provide performance/display/creation spaces, and promote the arts in Vermont. We won’t hear until August 1st whether the Friends get the approval.
Many thanks also to the many Grange members and friends who have contributed their knowledge, opinions and money to the FCCGH–we have to raise half of the project cost (estimated to be about $55,000) ourselves, to match the 50% of that which the Arts Council grant could potentially provide.
People who have given donations to the Friends and the Grange over the years have helped to fund over $102,000 of improvements to the Grange Hall, including the new entrance and ADA bathroom in 2008, before the Friends were incorporated!
The Friends will need to ask for more financial help to get this project done, even if we get the grant, but the Grange and the Friends are confident that we can make this next investment happen, and that it will pay off.
If you want to make a tax-deductible contribution, just click theDONATE button on the Grange website.
Property Lines–moving forward on an agreement
Luckily, Greg has no desire to stop using part of our parking area. At the meeting, he explained his proposal to have his lawyer draw up “quitclaim” deeds, which would be signed by both him and the Grange, to do two things:
- acknowledge the legal property line as matching the surveyed ones.
- agree that the Grange can continue to use the parking area as long as the property is owned by the Grange or a non-profit community successor organization.
Coming in June: an Indian cooking workshop!
Checking the history….archives available
Remember, you can comment on the website as well–and I’ll be happy to get articles contributed to the Notes–I know there are other ideas and viewpoints out there!
–Tim Swartz, President (with everyone’s help)
Capital City Grange #469