Remains of the summer
Incredibly, school reopens next week signaling the end of summer for many of us. Still, some of Maine’s best weather is in September. Recent days have been what a Maine summer is “supposed” to be — clear, nice and warm (but not stifling), fantastic blue sky with puffy clouds, and a pleasant breeze. Cool nights, of course. Perfect ... the kind of weather that’s indelibly imprinted on my brain as a Maine summer — anything short of which is just not normal or OK. So, let’s all get outside and enjoy the remains of this summer.
Minnie Weaver committee fundraiser
A beautiful handmade queen-size quilt is among the items being auctioned and raffled to raise funds for the annual Minnie Weaver Scholarship Fund. The scholarship is awarded annually in honor of the late Minnie Weaver, a Washington teacher. A handmade braided rug will also be raffled. In addition, several theme baskets are being offered in a silent auction that’s under way already. Baskets overflowing with sewing- and kitchen-related items and numerous other themes can be seen at Evening Star Grange with whom the committee works closely. You can look them over and enter your bids during the farmers market on Saturday mornings, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. for the next few weeks. The committee works hard to maintain this scholarship tradition, which has been going on for more than a quarter century. Be sure to check out these unique items.
Hazmat in my tool shed?
Disposing of old, unusable pesticides safely isn’t easy. You can’t just dump it in the back 40 anymore. But, coming in October, there will be an opportunity to get rid of some of those products that are illegal to use and illegal to throw in the trash. The Maine Board of Pesticides Control and the Maine Department of Environmental Protection will collect banned pesticides and those that have become caked, frozen, or otherwise rendered unusable at four sites state-wide. The service — Maine Obsolete Pesticides Collection Program — is free to homeowners, family-owned farms and greenhouses and pre-registration is mandatory. If old chemicals like DDT, lead arsenate, 2,4,5-T, and chlordane are stashed away on your property, now is the time to pull it all together and make a plan to get rid of it safely. BPC’s Henry Jennings is urging people to register and explains that the chemicals go to specialized disposal facilities where they are incinerated or reprocessed. To register or get more details, go to the BPC website at thinkfirstspraylast.org, or call 287-2731.
Enlightened mission remains relevant
The Grange is a national organization officially known as the Patrons of Husbandry which came into being shortly after the Civil War (1867). Evening Star Grange was organized back in 1875, just a year after the Maine Grange was formed. The Maine Grange was organized in 1874 to aid rural families with agricultural and household issues, advocate for banking regulation, form cooperatives to offer insurance and group purchasing power. The Grange encouraged reading, the use of libraries, and served as an adult education resource for many Mainers. Over time, the Grange began to take strong positions on legislative issues and educational reform. By 1907, Maine’s per capita Grange membership was larger than that of any other state. They championed Rural Free Mail Delivery, strong local schools, increased funding for the University of Maine, and worked with state governmental agencies to promote reform in Maine agricultural practices and protect the quality of fertilizer. The Grange supported the direct election primary, recall and referendum, and curbs on monopolies. They developed a close association with the Farm Bureau, the Extension Service, and 4-H clubs. From its earliest days and long before the ratification of the 19th Amendment (1920), the Grange granted women equal voting rights. Families involved in rural, agricultural lifestyles have declined from about one third of the nation’s population around 1900 to less than two percent today and Grange membership is reflecting the change. Still, you can’t find higher community-minded values and goals than those of the Grange. For more information about Evening Star Grange or Grange membership, contact Mildred Melgard at 845-3102.
Boat rescued, thank you
Many thanks to Roger and other neighbors for helping track down our wandering paddle boat.