Grange Notes by Tim Swartz, Grange President (with everyone’s help), September 6, 2019
September meeting & potluck: 3rd Saturday this month
Regular Grange meetings start up again in September, on the third Saturday, Sept. 21st. I’m shifting the meeting from the first Saturday because the VT State Grange is having its Fall Festival on Sept. 7th–and will be holding their own contra dance that evening, at the Grange Center in Brookfield! I’m hoping some Capital City Grange dancers will join me to dance with the State Grange members, at the VT State Grange summer camp, in Brookfield on Sept. 7th. Get in touch with me if you can join us. The dance will be starting about 7:30 PM; the VT State Grange Center is at 308 West St., Brookfield VT 05036. Robin Russell will be calling, with music by David Carpenter (fiddle) and April Werner (piano), plus other “sit-in” musicians.
Our September meeting on the 21st will be a “regular” meeting, as we start our new schedule alternating regular Grange meetings with extended programs. We’ll have the first of those on October 5th; it will include a shortened “Executive Meeting” from 4:30 to 5:00, followed by a program from 5-6:00, with more time to have questions and discussion. We will spread the news about the specific program as soon as we have it confirmed.
And the next Community Potluck Dinner will be on Sept. 21st, starting at 6:00!
Arts Council grant approval–planning
The Friends of the Capital City Grange Hall are hard at work, doing the detailed planning that will get us started on using the grant support for our “Second Stage” project. Regular readers of these Grange Notes will remember that the FCCGH got approval for our grant proposal on the second try, with notification in early August. This project will be a major upgrade for an under-utilized part of our Grange Hall–the basement level, which stays cold in the winter, and has moisture problems including fairly regular water-leaks through the foundation, and mildew, especially in the summer. A major component of our project is the improvements to indoor air quality to eliminate moisture and mildew, as well as insulating our concrete walls and the rim joists above them, for significant savings in our heating bills.
The FCCGH will be meeting with contractors next week, to figure out the exact scheduling for the work that will happen, starting in 2019 and finishing up next year. We are working on ways to get the work done with minimal disruption for Grange Hall renters. One example–insulating the stairway, and installing the new, durable & cleanable wall surfaces will require temporary removal of the landing and lower stairs. That will be one impact, which we’ll minimize by getting that part done quickly.
We’re also going to be doing more detailed design for the best ways to create warm and welcoming spaces downstairs. We plan to include a smaller “Second Stage” in the alcove next to the kitchen, which we think will be attractive for meetings and performances that don’t need the upstairs hall, or will be more intimate and comfortable in a smaller space. See the drawing below for more specifics on the project, and the Second Stage space.
We will also be looking for volunteer help–the grant requires contributions from the grantees equal to the grant amount, in dollars and in-kind contributions including volunteer labor. We’ll be looking for help removing ceiling tiles and supports around the outside walls, where the new insulation and wall surfaces will be installed, for example, plus painting of newly constructed trim and wall surfaces. We will also replace all the old ceiling tiles with new, more attractive ones. We will welcome volunteers for both skilled and unskilled work. Please contact me if you’re interested in being on the list when the time comes!
It’s Challenge Fun-raiser time!
Every year, the CDU joins with the Friends of the Capital City Grange Hall to raise money for improvements to the Grange Hall. Generous folks who can afford it have pledged nearly $2,000 this year, for the Grange and dance communities to match.
The FCCGH is the 501(c)(3) group that partners with the Grange to plan, fund-raise for and carry out projects. In past years, they have replaced the floor in the dance hall, upgraded all the windows, and built new bathrooms and fire exits. They’ve also put up acoustic panels in the Hall to improve the sound clarity! This is all in addition to the upcoming project discussed above.
How did we raise the money to match the grant money for this project, and the others the Friends have carried through? By asking for contributions from all the people who use the Grange Hall, and the organizations that call it home!
All during September, the FCCGH will be collecting tax-deductible contributions, culminating in an especially festive Fun-Raiser Finale at the Oct. 5th dance. There, the excitement will mount as the tote board shows our progress to match the challenge donations. There will be a great “dessert potluck” at the break, including Ben & Jerry’s ice cream and lots of tasty home-made treats–contact Dana Dwinell-Yardley if you want to contribute to that!
During September, you’ll also have the opportunity to donate in exchange for the beautiful house-plants grown by Rob Nichols–see below for examples from last year.
All the donations go to meet the challenge, and will be used for more hall improvements–we’re looking at door improvements, acoustic improvements, a wheelchair lift to the basement and stage, and more. You can bring cash or checks to the dances, or donate online. All contributions can be tax deductible!
The Grange and the Friends keep improving with everyone’s help! Learn more at the Grange Website.
Kids Trade and Play: Saturday, Sept. 14th!
CCG’s monthly clothing and gear exchange for kids–not to mention social exchange for parents–will be happening Saturday, September 14th, from 9:30 to 11:30 AM. Before the opening, lead organizer Erin Barry and her volunteer crew will
have sorted the large amount of clean, ready-to-wear clothing for kids,
infant to Junior size, plus shoes, into bins covering all the cafeteria tables,
and will have literally hundreds of toys set out. Families can take
anything they want! Snacks, coffee and information about local support
services for families are also provided.
Erin charges $3.00 per family to cover overhead costs, but no one is turned away. This is also the only time when donations are welcomed–there will be volunteers to sort and store them. Please don’t leave donations at the Grange otherwise! If you have questions about donating or anything else, contact Erin at firstname.lastname@example.org.