Young Farmers at Marys River Grange

November 1, 2011 · 9 comments














The Marys River Grange is holding its November monthly meeting tomorrow (Wednesday, November 2) with a potluck at 6:30 and business at 7:00. I tell you this because I really want you to come and be a part of this unusual and fun group.

I wrote about the Marys River Grange back in April after our hugely successful pancake breakfast, but here’s a little recap…

  • The National Grange of the Order of Patrons of Husbandry was founded in the 1860s as an organization that advocated for the rights and opportunities of farmers and rural communities.
  • The Marys River Grange in Philomath, Oregon was built in the 1930s and became a community hub for families and neighbors to gather and do charitable work while enjoying each others’ company.
  • The popularity of fraternal organizations began to decline and members grew older or left the Grange.
  • The Marys River Grange was on the verge of being demitted (dissolved) due to lack of members and activity.
  • Neighbors and community members rallied to support the Grange and its founding principles. The Marys River Grange had a large upsurge of new participants including several farmers, farm workers, cheese makers, chefs, and enthusiastic eaters, many of whom were in their 20s (me and Henry included).

A couple weeks ago, the Marys River Grange hosted a party for young and youngish farmers and food producers with a screening of The Greenhorns new documentary about today’s young farmers.














There was a big spread of food donated by local farms and food producers including soup (with ingredients from Gathering Together Farm), bread (from The Bread Board), butter and mozzarella (from my friend Lisa), homemade chevre (from me), jam (from Kings Valley Garden), and sausage (from Burnheimer Meat Company).

Brutal Bridges Backporch Band was the opening act.

The food was great. The decorations were great. The crowd was pretty hip and enthusiastic.

Sadly I had to bail to pick up my kids halfway through the movie, so I can’t offer much of a critique, and I missed the Gathering Together Farm crew’s debut performance as Alegria Musical. (So bummed that I couldn’t cheer for my friends on stage.)














There was a fair bit of head scratching, beard scratching, and chatting in general. It was the Grange at its best.

That’s Hank in the blue plaid. He’s the current Grange “Master”. Tomorrow night at the meeting, however, he’s stepping down, and unless someone else really wants to fill his shoes, Yours Truly will likely be elected Master of the Marys River Grange.

The Grange would love to host more farmer and farm-advocate filled parties, workshops, or conferences, but we’re in need of more members willing to offer up some time, energy, and/or ideas. That’s where YOU come in. If you’re a local and this kind of thing sounds interesting, please consider joining the Grange. (There is a membership fee to officially join, but we’d rather have your presence than your money, so don’t let that keep you from coming.)














Next Meeting: Wednesday, November 2, 2011

24707 Grange Hall Road
Philomath, Oregon

Potluck at 6:30 (I’ll bring the goat cheese.) and business meeting (with elections) at 7:00

See you there!

A note for all you grammar nerds:
Back in high school, I learned that early settlers in this area actually named our local river the “Marys River” with no possessive apostrophe. I realize that’s incorrect punctuation, but it’s the official name. I’m carrying that on to “Marys River Grange”, so you’re just going to have to live with that.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Miranda November 1, 2011 at 11:40 am

Please, please PLEASE lend me your chevre recipe. It was so good.
We’ll try and make it tomorrow, but as we’re total hoomebodies i can’t make any promises. We should though. :)


Camille November 1, 2011 at 3:19 pm
Erika November 2, 2011 at 8:13 am

Looks awesome. When I look for a permanent farm I will keep this in mind that philomath is has a strong grange.


Alicia November 2, 2011 at 10:04 am

I’m going to try to come -but I have a meeting at 5:30 — if I’m running late – how late is the cut off where it won’t be worth it to come by?


Camille November 2, 2011 at 3:06 pm

We’re usually there until 8:30 or 9. Come when you can.


Cara November 3, 2011 at 9:29 pm

That’s great that such an organization exists these days! So are you a Master now? P.S. This grammar nerd thanks you for the “Marys” clarification- I’ve seen it both ways and just thought people couldn’t spell.


Camille November 3, 2011 at 9:33 pm

Yep, I’m a “master”, and I didn’t even have to spend an extra two years in school to earn the title.

The “Marys” thing throws me off every time, and I often end up proofreading out a bunch of apostrophes. I wish they just got it right the first time.


mark meyer November 7, 2011 at 7:30 pm

It makes me wish we were still living out that way. Oh well, we are up in Lewisburg now, and it’s a bit of a stretch for it. But congrats on getting the momentum up and running. Good luck!


Camille November 7, 2011 at 9:12 pm

You can come down for the big events. It’s worth the trip.


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