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Around The Grange
The Grange Advantage

By By Michael Martin, National Grange Leadership Membership Director (The New Grange 4/25/13)

  MAY 7, 2013 --

Why did you join the Grange? What do you get out of the Grange? Why should others join the Grange?

Why did you join the Grange?

Think back to the beginning of your Grange journey. It may have been earlier this year or perhaps it is several decades removed. What was the appeal to you at that time? Did your grandmother simply give you an application with instructions to complete and return it? Did your father say it was now time for you to come “inside” the meeting room instead of doing homework in the Grange kitchen? I joined because a group of friends my age joined together. We subsequently worked together, played together, attended Grange camp and conferences together. And we met others our age from across the state and region. Eventually, my Grange family spanned the nation.

What do you get out of the Grange?

 Last week, The Boston Globe featured an article, “Grange continues to attract a faithful flock.” I encourage you to read it (printed in this issue). In it, their president said, “The big thing is family; there aren’t many family organizations out there.” As I travel the nation on behalf of The National Grange, I continually meet multi-generation Grange families. Where else, besides your church, can all members of the family, without regard to age or gender, participate fully in a meeting where each has the same voice and vote?  Equality within the Grange is one of our hallmarks.

Why should others join the Grange?

Massachusetts State Grange Master, Matthew Johnson, says, “People have decided that they like the Grange again.” They like the sense of history the Grange represents and they respect what the Grange stands for.

Last week I spoke at a well-established Grange, Keystone Grange No. 2 in Trappe, Pa. They recently celebrated their 100th anniversary, but not as a Grange. They celebrated 100 years of conducting Grange business in their current hall. The Grange was chartered in 1873. As I spoke with folks around the hall I met Golden Sheaf members; I met former National Grange delegates; I met active youth. Later in the week, the Grange hosted a Red Cross Blood Drive and filled all 43 donor slots. In a couple months they will host their annual Grange Country Fair; a good ole-time country fair they have conducted for several decades. In the fall they hold a Farm City Dinner. They are actively seeking new members and competing to bring in the most members in the state.

People are joining the Grange in Trappe to network with the community. They know the Grange members are “plugged into” the pulse of the community and they want to become a part of this active, caring organization.

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