October 9, 2013

Chebeague Island Residents:

The Chebeague Island Grange #576 was once a vital part of this island community.  Regular meetings, suppers, fairs and community projects were well supported by a group of husbands and wives, the only island organization of social order that welcomed them together.  The membership now consists of 6 (50 year) members who do not pay dues and 6 dues paying members who pay $25 a year.  We still support our State and National Grange with part of the dues and whatever activity asks for our help, but it is evident that the present membership must make some serious decisions – shall we close this Grange? 

If we close what becomes of the building – what becomes of the income that comes from the Thrift Shop and what becomes of the Thrift Shop itself which has become a very important part of summer island life.  Because it is managed so well as an outlet for clothing, etc. and as a source of the same, it serves the island well.  We hope it can continue to do so.

The building itself is island history as it was built as a high school and served as a grammar school.  Are any of the present island residents interested in reviving the Grange by joining, electing officers and conducting meetings?  Are any island non-profit organizations interested in taking over the building?  Or is the present management (Sarah Van Fleet and crew) willing to continue with the Thrift Shop?  These are issues that need discussion so we will hold an Open Meeting in the Grange hall on Saturday, November 2, at 11:00 am and everyone is welcome.  Remember the date and time.  State Grange Master Victoria Huff will be in attendance that day. 

At present, Frances Calder is the Master, Dianne Calder is the Secretary, and Martha Hamilton is Treasurer of the Chebeague Island Grange.