Once again it is time for our annual newsletter recapping the goings on down at the Redlands Mesa Grange during the past year.
2012 has been an excellent year for the Grange, we started the year off with the election of officers, Corrine Holder was elected as Secretary, Bill Crank as Treasurer and yours truly Jim Cazer as Master yet again, I still am holding out hope that some willing soul will come forward and relieve me of this position, I never realized it was a lifetime commitment. I will say that the addition of our two new officers Corrine and Bill have made my job much easier and they have helped moved Grange business forward in an efficient and successful manner.
The first big chore they accomplished was the annual membership drive, which resulted in an increase of 23 members from last year’s 11, the Grange in 2012 had a total of 34 active members, many old members and a few folks that are new to the Grange this past year. Welcome to all new and old, I hope that we can continue to grow in 2013.
One other huge endeavor that the new officers and members undertook in 2012 was a request for donations from the community in order to pay off the Grange’s debt. In 2008 the Grange took out a bank loan of $10,000 in order to complete the construction of the new kitchen and bath rooms (the bulk of that project was paid for by grants and donations) we had been slowly whittling away at the balance over the years and by July of 2012 we had it down to $5825. The officers and members decided that this needed to be resolved and so evidently did the community because 45 of you dug deep in your pockets and donated $5541 which combined with income from other Grange fund raisers, I am happy to report was enough to retire the loan in time for Christmas. Thank you all that donated for this wonderful gift to the whole community.
During the past year the Grange building has provided a venue for many activities including:
- Annual and monthly meetings for the 2 irrigation water companies on the mesa.
- The Overland Ditch and Reservoir Company, and the Redlands Mesa Water Company.
- 3 family gatherings and 1 wedding reception.
- An information presentation by the Delta County Sheriff.
- Leroux Creek Cattle Pool dinner.
- Chess Club tournament.
- We rented our commercial kitchen 36 days to local farmers for processing their produce to sell at market, and to a start-up potato chip company. (Note)The kitchen now has window blinds thanks to the generosity of Jerry and Kay Adams.
- Weekly Tai Chi classes.
- The Grange monthly meetings and pot luck dinners. These gatherings have been well attended and have featured great food, lively discussion and we actually managed to take care of Grange business to boot. Thanks to all who participated in this year’s meetings. They have been the best yet.
- Friday Market and Grange Café – Beginning in late July the Grange hosted a local farmers market and dinner every Friday thru the end of September. This event provided local farmers, artists and crafty folks an outlet for their products while creating a wonderful opportunity for the rest of us to do some quality shopping without having to leave the Mesa. The Café served great meals during the market and was a big hit especially with the Mesa’s bachelor population.
Both the Market and Café created some income for both the venders and the Grange along with a lot of action and interest in the Grange. I hope we can do it again next year. It should be even better.
- Annual Holiday Ball and Community Dinner - To put the finishing touch on a successful year we invited the community over for a traditional holiday meal with turkey, ham and all the trimmings, desserts and side dishes were pot-luck and once again everyone pulled out the stops by preparing their most delicious offerings . After dinner we all danced to the calorie burning sounds of Mike Gwinn and the North Fork Flyer trio. A great time was had by all of the 100 plus diners and dancers and for the first time in years the Grange actually made money on this event. Thanks to all of you who’s hard work helped make the
Holiday Ball a smash.
Starting off the New Year we will once again be conducting our yearly membership drive, dues are $55.00 per member, please enclose your check in the envelope accompanying this letter and return it as soon as possible to our Treasurer Bill Crank at 12767 Alon Rd. Hotchkiss, CO.
Half of the money we collect for membership dues goes to help maintain and improve our Grange Hall and keep it functioning as the wonderful community gathering place that it is, the other half goes to help support the Colorado State and National Grange’s many programs.
The Grange organization was founded in 1867 to provide assistance to small farmers who were devastated by the Civil War and has been a force in support of agricultural and rural communities ever since. The organization has active programs and legislative lobbying in support of their grass root policies on agriculture, citizenship, public affairs, conservation, natural resources, education, health, labor, judiciary, taxation & transportation.
For example, the Grange in recent years has been active in keeping rural post offices & airports open & bringing broad band communication technology to rural communities. If you would spend a little time looking at the National Grange web site I believe you would be proud to be a member of this valuable and historic organization.
Also if you would like to receive updates and news letters from the Grange, contact the state Grange Secretary, Marge Sasman, at firstname.lastname@example.org and ask to be included in her emails.
Well I hope you all found this letter to be informative and look forward to another great year at the Redlands Mesa Grange.
Wishing all of you a joyful new year, Jim Cazer wm.
As the Owner & Publisher at Over The Hill Media,LLC and a Grange supporter, I was drafted to make sure that Redlands Rumours have the i's dotted and the t's crossed AND that they contain at least some modicum of local fact. I'll do my best ;)