Bruce Lester and Beverly Glenn: Grange grateful for boost
Golden Empire Grange No. 806 would like to thank the Nevada County supervisors and the Relief Fund founders for their $5,000 grant. This award allowed us to meet our financial obligations throughout the COVID-19 shutdown.
During this period all of our rentals and events came to an abrupt halt, leaving us with no revenue. The grant supported us — we were able to meet all of our financial obligations during this difficult period. We are now in a position to resume booking rentals and events.
What is the Grange, you ask? The Grange is an organization that began in 1857, rising from the destruction of the Civil War to rural fields and farmland. The South’s farms were in despair. The transportation infrastructure lay in ruins with little railroad service to move crops and animals to market as rails, bridges and rail yards were destroyed.
An era began that encouraged farming families to band together on common ground to promote the well-being of the community and agriculture, and to rebuild farmlands, restore the railroad system, and establish a rural mail delivery system. Hence, the Grange organization was created.
The Grange is unique as it’s a nonprofit, nonpartisan, grassroots, service organization that has a path to legislature. Being a Grange member opens the door to interact with legislators to advocate on behalf of rural agriculture.
As the Grange is a grassroots organization, policy recommendations are adopted in local Granges, passed by California State Grange, and moved to the National Grange who advocates for them in Washington, D.C. with Congress and other federal agencies.
While originally founded to serve farmers and agricultural interests, the modern Grange advocates for a wide variety of issues, such as infrastructure concerns, growing climate solutions, clean water, broadband, transportation infrastructure, the agricultural workforce and the funding of extensive agriculture research.
Today Granges have broadened their interest to meet the needs of their surrounding community. Our particular Grange Hall has been active for 58 years.
During that period we have made donations to Hospice of the Foothills on behalf of Grange members for whom they cared. We have waived rental fees for the Bridge Club as they played in the Longest Day event, which occurred every year on June 21 with all of the donations going to an Alzheimer’s research foundation.
In recent years we have awarded $4,000-plus in scholarships to graduating high school seniors who were pursuing a college degree in the field of agriculture.
We have been able to financially sustain our building by renting out our hall to local organizations such as several bridge clubs, country dancing, the Nevada County Gem and Mineral Society, the Gold Country Horse Trails Council, the Goldancers Square Dance Club, Weber Gun Safety training and classes, Blue Fusion Dance, and a recently added line dancing group.
In addition, our Grange is rented out for one-time events such as meetings, birthdays, anniversaries and wedding receptions. Our occupancy is 161-plus. We have ample parking and WiFi available.
Our prime mission is to offer our local community a safe, clean environment for the events listed above. For rates and availability, contact Bruce Lester at 530-273-9859.
Bruce Lester and Beverly Glenn are longtime members of the Golden Empire Grange. For more information, visit https://www.goldenempiregrange.org.
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