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From The Lecturer's Desk
From the Lecturer’s Desk: Having Fun in Your Grange

By David Roberts, CT State Grange Lecturer

  August 1, 2022 --

Last month, I was able to attend the National Grange Eastern Regional Leadership  Conference at our National Headquarters in Washington, D.C. The theme for this conference was “A Monumental Experience in the Nation’s Capital”. I decided to drive down to our Nation’s Capital and had a great time. Our hotel was located at Tyson’s Corner, an area which I didn’t even recognize since I had lived in the area in the late 1980s and 1990s. A whole new metro subway extension has been built out to the Tyson’s Corner area which took us easily and cheaply into the Capital City. Being my first regional conference, I didn’t know what to expect, but I must say I had a very productive time. It was great to chat with National Officers, National staff members, and Grangers up and down the eastern seaboard. We had very informative classes and I am inviting some of the presenters to virtually present to all of our Connecticut Lecturers on ideas that might work for your Community Granges. We played games together, I was asked to judge a speech contest, we worked on a community service project for foster children for the upcoming National Convention in Nevada, and I even was able to serve as a “hand model” to hold open some very historic Grange books to be photographed showcasing the history of individual Granges in each state. The number of young people attending was exhilarating and gave me hope for the future.

Our next Connecticut State Grange Lecturers Roundup #3 is scheduled  to  be  held  on  Sunday, August 21st, at 7:00 PM using Zoom virtual technology. Pennsylvania State Grange Lecturer Jenn Naus will be our keynote  speaker.  I met Jenn at the Eastern Regional Conference recently in Washington, D.C., where she gave an excellent presentation for lecturers. I asked Jenn if she would present her presentation virtually to all of us in Connecticut as I think you will find it useful, and she agreed!

And now for the fun. Our program for July at my community Grange was titled “How to make an award- winning dessert”! It was organized by a newer Grange member, Judy Doyle, who has agreed to serve as our Riverton Grange Acting Family Activities Chair. Judy prepared the  rules,  the  ingredients,  and set up a very fun program. She randomly divided attendees into three teams. Each team had 5 minutes to understand the rules, review provided cookbooks, select at least 3 ingredients, and then return to their team  table.  For the second 5 minutes, each team member had to prepare their own dessert. Desserts  were  going  to be judged on appearance (25%), taste  (25%),  texture  (25%),  and

originality (25%). So my team (#2) consisted of my daughter (Junior Grange Member) Natalee Roberts, Immediate Past President Sue Belle Isle, Pomona Laura Marek, and me. Once each team member created their own dessert, we had to judge each other’s dessert and select one dessert to represent the team. Well my team selected my dessert; one reason was because one member didn’t want to create a dessert, another reason was that I ate Laura Marek’s whole dessert, and my daughter was just having too much fun. So my team sent my dessert as the Team #2 entry. Our judge, Chris Wright, a non-Grange member had to then judge the 3 desserts not knowing which team created which dessert. When the results were announced, Team #2 was declared the “Riverton Grange 2022 Award Winning Dessert Champion”! We even beat out State President George Russell!

This activity proved to be so popular, we may reprise it at a future event. Many of our attendees loved the group competition, working with food, and just having fun. Now isn’t that what being a Grange member is all about?

As you read this column, many of our Connecticut State Grange Lecturer contests for 2022 should have occurred on Sunday, August 14, at Hillstown Grange. I will be sharing the winners in my next column, but I hope many Granges will participate.

The final two contests will be: “Complete  Program”  for  your

Grange with the 2022 subject being “The Grange of the Future”. Deadline for entries to me is October 1st.

State Grange Essay Contest will be held with the 2022 essay title being “My Grange Family”. Deadline for entries to me is October 1st.

The purpose of all these contests is first and foremost to HAVE FUN and secondly to encourage your Grange members to get involve in a friendly spirited manner. If you have any questions, or would like me to visit your Grange, please drop me a note at dave@daveroberts.org or call me at 858-775-9241.



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