Friday, September 18, 2015

Square Dance, Contra Dance, Building a More Cooperative Economy II, Rodney Miller Concert, Day of Caring, Revised Mission and Goals, Members Quimper Grange Food Bank Garden Tour, Fun Committee

October 10, 8:00 Square Dance with Amy Hofer and Trillium Stringband

Seattle's Trillium Stringband with Portland caller Amy Hofer will be hosting the October 10 Quimper Grange Square Dance and Social! Trillium Stringband features Charmaine Slaven on fiddle, Aisling McCarron on banjo, & Brigid Blume on guitar. Between Amy Hofer and Trillium Stringband, come prepared to knock your socks off! Dancing starts at 8:00.
Amy Hofer can call anywhere!

Amy Hofer will teach all dances; experience is not necessary. Our dances are family friendly, and open to all ages and experience levels. Partners are not necessary, so come by yourself, with a friend, with your family, or the whole block. Dancers are encouraged to bring their own personal water bottle, and snacks to share with other dancers if inclined.. Quimper Grange, 1219 Corona in Port Townsend. $6.00 adults; 16 and under free. For more information, call Dave Thielk 360-301-6005.

Eric Curl dancing at NW Folklife

October 17, 7:30 

Contra Dance with Eric Curl and the P.T. Cruisers!

Come and dance with us on Saturday October 17. The P.T. Cruisers play while Eric Curl calls. We start at 7:30 and end about 10:30. $6.00 fee, $3.00 for those 3 to 18 years, free for under 3. The Quimper Grange is located at 1219 Corona St., in Port Townsend.

October 19th, 7:00 "Building a More Cooperative Economy": Worker-Owned Cooperatives

The second annual “Building a More Cooperative Economy” program at Quimper Grange will focus on the nuts and bolts of starting or converting a business to a worker-owned cooperative. The panel discussion, on Monday,
October 19, honors National Cooperative Month and features Deborah Craig, cooperative development specialist for the Northwest Cooperative Development Center (NWCDC) in Olympia, as well as local representatives from worker-owned cooperatives.

Robert Yourish
In addition to Craig, panelists are Robert: Sunshine Propane chief financial officer, Port Hadlock; and Kippi Waters, chair of the board of directors of the newly forming Peninsula Homecare Cooperative, Port Townsend.
A new cooperative in the making: Peninsula Homecare Cooperative
Panelists will address why cooperatives and why now, as well as outlining the help that NWCDC can provide to start-up cooperative businesses. The suggested donation for this Grange-sponsored event is $5-10. For more information, call Deb Wiese, 360-385-1928.

The Grange is a national organization promoting agricultural and thriving rural communities. In the late 1800s and early 1900s, Granges established consumer cooperatives and continue to promote cooperative businesses. NWCD ( is a nonprofit organization devoted to assisting new and existing cooperative businesses, from daycare centers to credit unions, in Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Hawaii.

October 28th, Wed, 7:30PM


Workshop following day, Oct 29th, 7:00

"Rodney Miller was designated a "Master Fiddler" in 1983 by the NationalEndowment for the Arts. He is widely considered to be the foremost exponent of New England style fiddling, a uniquely American blend of French Canadian and Celtic influences. Over the past 35 years, he has toured the U.S., British Isles, Australia and Denmark, performed and taught at hundreds of music and dance festivals, and recorded over ten fiddle albums."

Keyboardist, Jeff Spero, will accompany Rodney. Jeff is one of the premier dance pianists on the West Coast. Known for his energetic style and creative arrangements, Jeff has brought his talents to dances and festivals throughout the nation. He plays with a number of bands, including the Syncopaths.

Suggested donation for the concert is $20.00. Sliding scale donation accepted as well. Children and teens, free.
This event is cosponsored by Quimper Grange.

The Oct 29th workshop will be held at the home of Libby Reid, at 7 PM. There is limited space so make a reservation now. Cost: $30. Sliding scale donation will be accepted as well. Kids welcome. For reservations and information contact Libby Reid: 360-301-3584


Quimper Grange Food Bank Garden got lots of TLC from United Good Neighbors' " Day of Caring" volunteers on Sept 18th. Fourteen people rolled up their sleeves and got to work. They weeded, built a fence, and spread mulch; they composted plants that had already been harvested and they prepared beds for winter crops. The garden not only looks better but is ready to produce more food. Thank you volunteers!

Quimper Grange Mission and Goals Revised
Three years ago Quimper Grange members decided to define our reason to be and clarify our goals. Our mission and goals have not changed, however we have streamlined the wording:

Quimper Grange Mission:
To foster community connection and resilience through educational programs and social events as well as maintaining our historically significant Grange hall.

·     To provide educational programs.
·     To encourage local sustainable agriculture .
·     To create a vibrant live music and dance community.
·     To support cooperative principles.
·     To collaborate with other Granges and organizations that share our values.
·     To author resolutions and legislation reflecting the collective voice of Quimper Grange members.
·     To build Quimper Grange membership.
Deb Wiese holds sunflower halo for Jo Yount

Quimper Grange Members
Tour Garden 

An addition to Quimper Grange's September business meeting was a tour of Quimper Grange Food Bank Garden with Jo Yount.  Jo has a passion for growing food for the hungry and has been doing so even before combining her efforts with Jefferson County Food Bank Farm and Garden volunteers. Those who attended saw tomatoes, basil and peppers growing in the new hoop house, an irrigation system that was installed earlier this year and a whole lot of vegetables growing. So far this year Quimper Grange Food Bank Garden has harvested almost 2,000 pounds of produce, as much as the entire year of 2014. And there is still more to come: squash, carrots, kale, beets, tomatoes, basil and much more. Thanks for the tour Jo!

Farren want you to have fun!
Quimper Grange President Appoints "Fun Committee" Chair
Just for fun Quimper Grange president Marla Streator has appointed Quimper Grange Vice President, Farren, chairperson of a committee dedicated to dreaming up fun events for our Grange members.  Starting in October she is coordinating themed potlucks for Grange members and invitees. There is also talk of Grange member outings in the future. Stay tuned.

Monday, August 31, 2015

September 2015 - Square Dance, Charmaine Slaven calling; Contra Dance, Nan Evans calling; Dance Floor Shines


Holy shmoly! The Quimper Grange Square Dance and Social is back! Hot dance calling with hot tunes happening at Quimper Grange on Sept. 12 at 8:00 PM. The delightful Charmaine Slaven, along with the raucous Rose Street Ramblers, welcomes all ages and all abilities. Come on down to the Grange, by your lonesome, or with a friend, or with your tribe. All dances taught, all ages and experience levels are welcome. $6.00 admission.


Last Chance String Band
Caller Nan Evans
Come and dance with us on Saturday September 19. The Last Chance String Band (Gary Pascoe, Roger Pick, David T., Carol Hardy) play the tunes while Nan Evans will keep us dancing. We start at 7:30 and end about 10:30. $6.00 fee, $3.00 for those 3 to 18 years, free for under 3. The Quimper Grange hall is located at 1219 Corona St., in Port Townsend.



The Quimper Grange hall now has a super durable, ceramic reinforced finish on the floor thanks to Michael Morrow of Sound Hardwood Flooring. Not only did he volunteer to refinish the floor but showed Grange members how to properly prep the floor and apply the finish in less time than we ever thought possible. This  information will be useful for the next time the floor needs refinishing.  Thanks Michael!

We would also like to thank Edensaw Woods for giving us substantial discounts on materials, Chris Cooper who coordinated the refinishing effort and Quimper Grange members Jo Yount, Janeann Twelker and Marla Streator who rubbed and scrubbed the floor to get it clean and ready for the finish. 

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

3rd Sat Contra Dance, Composting Workshops Jefferson County Public Health, Grange Hall Doors. Second Floor Refinishing this year, Food Bank Garden volunteers needed, Quimper Grange Honored by State Grange

AG 15th  7:30 CONTRA DANCE 

Summer Fun With the Flying Buttresses: This dance is for you – a chance to bring your friends who don’t think they can dance. Saturday, August 15 at the Quimper Grange the famous Flying Buttress Band: Kristen Smith, Otto Smith, George Yount and Jo Yount will treat you to some easy dances that get everyone moving to playful fiddle tunes with no strain or fear. 
You bring your energy, your friends, and we will provide the musical spirit and enthusiasm. You will be surprised by the end of the evening how comfortable everyone is – even dancing with strangers.
The dance starts at 7:30p and will go till your shoes fall off.

For further information, contact George or Jo Yount, 385-0456


Jefferson County Public Health will present TWO composting workshops at Quimper Grange this month. Quimper Grange is co-sponsoring these workshops because they are in keeping with the goals of Quimper Grange: to provide educational programs that honor our agrarian roots and that encourage using methods of growing that build healthy soil and conserve resources. 
There is a $25 fee per workshop. If you participate you will get a free worm bin or backyard composter.  Space is limited so if you plan to attend sign up soon. To apply: email Questions? 360-379-4491


The "door guys" figuring out what will be needed.
This month the floor will be refinished for a second time and the front door will be replaced. In a way needing to refinish the floor is a badge of honor for us; it means the hall is getting used by lots of people. Exactly what we want! 

If you would be willing to lend a helping hand in the Quimper Grange Food Bank Garden please call Jo Yount at 385-0456 or email her at

It is hard to believe that the hoop house that was assembled by volunteers in mid-June is now producing tomatoes, basil and peppers. Hoop hoop hooray! 

In the out door garden there is now a sea of summer and winter squash; as well as carrots, onions, kale, chard, beets, beans, lettuce and much more. With all the produce coming on early this year the gardeners could sure use some more help. 

Quimper Grange is pleased to receive recognition from Washington State Grange for our community service activities. We are proud of what we have accomplished and excited about our plans for the future. If you are curious about our achievements just scroll though the pages of this website.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

July 18th Contra Dance, Quimper Grange Food Bank Garden Hoop House, Greenhouse Tour, Fun Committee

July 18th,  Contra Dance: 7:30-10:30
July 18 Contra Dance will feature one of our favorite callers, NAN EVANS, with one of our driving bands, WILD PHIL AND THE BUFFALO GALS. We are fortunate to have such a great combination for the middle of summer. Join us for a comfortable dance starting at 7:30 --- even if the heat is still with us we have fans that will help cool things off – everything will be cool except our HOT band!!

Quimper Grange Food Bank Garden Hoop House Is Up!
Volunteers assembled a new hoop house by the Grange hall in June.  The garden just keeps getting better and better and the amount of produce that goes to the Food Bank keeps increasing. Earlier in the year a drip irrigation system was installed.

Quimper Grange Members Tour Experimental Greenhouse
Quimper Grange members took a tour of Joe Breskin's experimental greenhouse at Colinwood Farm this past month. Joe said "I set out to solve 3 "high-level" problems: harvest timing and energy required, with a focus on yield." And he has succeeded in solving these problems: The harvesting of cucumbers and big red tomatoes began at the end of May.  Our Grange members appreciated getting to tour a work in progress and have an opportunity to ask questions. Thank you Joe Breskin!

Fun Committee
This fall Quimper Grange is cooking up fun for our members. We have been asking ourselves what kind of benefits we can offer our members besides the satisfaction of community service; the ideas are percolating! Potlucks, outings. Some great ideas are coming together so stay tuned....

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Jefferson County Historical Society Certificate of Appreciation, Rhody Parade, Jefferson County Public Health Composting Workshops, Quimper Grange honored by State Grange


Jefferson County Public Health will present FOUR composting workshops at Quimper Grange this month. Quimper Grange is co-sponsoring these workshops because they are in keeping with the stated goals of Quimper Grange: to provide educational programs that honor our agrarian roots and that encourage using methods of growing that build healthy soil and conserve resources. 
There is a $25 fee per workshop. If you participate you will get a free worm bin or backyard composter.  Space is limited so if you plan to attend sign up soon. To apply: email Questions? 360-379-4491

"95 Bloomin' Years"
Rhody Parade Square Dance
“80 Years and Still Blooming” was the theme for this year’s Rhododendron Festival. Most people don’t know it but Quimper Grange has been around before the Rhododendron Festival existed. It was organized in 1919 and chartered in 1920. That makes “95 Bloomin’ Years!"

Dancers danced and musicians played non-stop from the beginning of the Grand Parade to the end. Quite a feat! Joanne Pontrello who calls and plays music for square dances at Quimper Grange pulled in dancers and musicians from Conway, Bellingham, Olympia and Lopez Island to join with local dancing and music playing friends for the parade. Joanne's mom, Kim Pontrello, was one of the banner bearers.  

Quimper Grange Honored

Quimper Grange president, Marla Streator, and Grange member, Rob Harbour, show off the certificate of appreciation presented by the Jefferson County Historical Society for ongoing stewardship of the Quimper Grange Hall. The awards ceremony took place on May 6th.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Jefferson County Historical Society Preservation Awards, Square Dance, Contra Dance, Grange Month Highlights, San Juan Island Granger's Visit, “ American Meat “ and Local Meat Conversation Follow-up

May 6th (Wednesday) 3:00 PM

Jefferson County Historical Society will present this year’s Preservation Awards on Wed May 6th at the Quimper Grange hall. It is indeed a great honor for the volunteer efforts of Quimper Grange to be recognized at this year’s ceremony.

“The awards honor individuals and organizations that restore original structures and preserve traditions that form the historic fabric of Jefferson County.
Two types of awards are presented. The Mary P. Johnson Award is given to historic structure projects that meet the Secretary of Interior’s high standards for restoration. Certificates of Appreciation are given for a variety of preservation and restoration projects and are not limited to physical structures.”

All are invited to attend the awards event. For more information:

Quimper Grange would like to acknowledge Edensaw Woods and Henery Hardware for generous discounts and advice that have helped immensely with the preservation of our hall. 

Joanne Pontrello calls squares and related sets with rocking old time tunes from the Rose Street
Caller Joanne Pontrello
The Rose Street Ramblers
on Water Street
Ramblers on May 9 from 7:30 to 10:30.   Square dance your heart away.  This is the last regular square dance of the season. Expect a rollicking good time.  As always,all ages and experience levels are welcome, all dances taught, come as a single, a couple, a trio, a family, or a tribe.  Dancers are
The Rose Street Ramblers
on Rose Street
encouraged to bring their own personal water vessel and snacks to share.  See you there!  360-385-3308.


Caller Nan Evans

Come and dance contras on Saturday May 16. The P. T. Cruisers will get your toes tapping and as she calls the dance, Nan Evans will get your bodies moving. We start at 7:30 and end about 10:30. $6.00 fee, $3.00 for those 3 to 18 years, free for under 3. The Quimper Grange is located at 1219 Corona St., in Port Townsend.

Grange Month was busy. In April we hosted visitors from San Juan Island Grange # 966 for a Sunday brunch; sponsored a square dance; a contra dance; and our Grange month program, a screening of the movie “American Meat’ followed by a conversation about local meat production.
In addition, the Quimper Grange Food Bank Garden is gearing up for another year of growing food and increasing production.


Quimper Grange members enjoyed getting to "talk Grange" with Roger Ellison, and his wife, Anita Barreca, members of San Juan Island Grange #966 at a delicious Sunday morning brunch on April 12th. It was a great opportunity share ideas and get and inspired. We discussed approaches to attracting new members and what we do to pay for upkeep and improvements of our halls. Roger brought copies of resolutions SJIG #966 will be taking to the state convention and discussed the resolution process and how it can work locally. He also brought seeds that San Juan Island Grange sells to help support their programs.   Nice label San Juan Island Grangers!

Our guests attended a square dance on Sat night, brunch on Sunday morning; and the  “American Meat” program on Sunday evening.


There is a lot to learn about the ins and outs of locally produced meat.  We were fortunate that four Chimacum Valley meat producers were able to talk about the animals they raise, the choices they have made regarding slaughter, and their approaches to dealing with slaughter regulations. We would like to thank John Bellow, Samantha Janes, Roger Short and Janet Aubin for leaving us a little more informed. Hopefully the conversation will be continued.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Square Dance; "American Meat" movie & Conversation With Local Meat Producers; Contra Dance; Jefferson County Historical Society Exhibit for Grange Month

April 11th,7:30 Square Dance and Social 

Caller Anne Marie Schaefer
Wild Phil and the Buffalo Gals
Anne Marie Schaefer is calling the Quimper Grange Square Dance and Social on Saturday, April 11th.  Wild Phil and the Buffalo Gals will be hitting the strings and rocking the dancers with southern tunes. Square dance your hearts out. All dances taught. Live music for every dance. Family friendly. Partners not necessary. 7:30 $5.00 for adults, 16 and under free.

April 12th (Sunday) 7:00 PM "American Meat" Screening and Local Meat Conversation
“American Meat” a recent documentary about meat production in America is a thought-provoking documentary of meat production throughout the country and recent innovations in the industry that show promise for a more healthful, humane and sustainable future for the production of meat. More information at: 

After seeing “American Meat" viewers can talk with local meat producers who will share their experiences producing healthy meat for our community. They will also share their ideas about expanding the range of locally grown and processed meat products available in our area. Among the local producers will be John Bellow and interns from Spring Rain Farm, Roger Short from Short’s Family Farm and Janet Aubin from Finnriver Farm.

This event is free and open to everyone. Donations will be gladly accepted to help maintain the Quimper Grange Hall. Questions? Call Marla 385-6924

April 18th,7:30 3rd Saturday Contra Dance
Henceforth Quimper Grange will be sponsoring 3rd Saturday Contra Dances. 
The April dance features AIRSTREAM TRAVELER playing tunes and Carol Piening, from Olympia will be calling.
Info: Jo at 385-0456

April is Grange Month 

To honor the occasion Quimper Grange and Chimacum Grange have collaborated displaying artifacts from the past in the foyer of the Jefferson County Historical Society. Jefferson County used to be home to five Granges: Uncas, Qulicene Rhododendron, Chimacum and Quimper but only two remain, those with halls of their own: Chimacum Grange # 681 and Quimper Grange #720. Within their walls are held the collective memories of community: celebrations of the milestones of life from baby showers to memorial services; potlucks, political forums, concerts, whatever is suited to an unpretentious public space.

In earlier days the Grange took on big challenges working to improve the lives of rural folks. Many goals have been achieved and are now taken for granted; for example the Grange initiated the Cooperative movement in the United States. One of the Grange’s stated purposes was “buying together, selling together and in general acting together for mutual protection”. We have Public Power because of the Grange, better roads; the Grange initiated Rural Free Delivery of mail, Extension Service and agricultural education in schools; the Pure Food and Drug Act, the Wool Products Labeling Act and local Granges weighed in on labeling of butter substitutes.

These days Jefferson County Granges have a more local focus and take pride in being of service to the community. 

Monday, February 16, 2015

WB Reid and Bonnie Zahnow "House" Concert, Worm Bins talk, Square Dance, Plant and Seed Exchange, Grange halls talk recap, emergency floor refinishing, Old-time backup guitar workshop

March 29th, Sunday, 11-3
Fourth Annual Plant and Seed Exchange

This popular event will be held outdoors under canopies and in the Quimper Grange hall. Bring your extra seeds, plant divisions, spare potted plants, trees, bare roots, bulbs, and whatever else needs a new garden to thrive in. Books will be on hand to help answer plant and seed questions and Mountain Spirit Herbals will be providing hot tea. For more information call: Ashley Kehl at 360-821-2092 

March 1st, Sunday, 7:00
Quimper Grange "House Concert" featuring WB Reid and Bonnie Zahnow 

Quimper Grange presents its first “house” concert of the year with an evening of Old Time music and song featuring W.B Reid and Bonnie Zahnow.  Stalwarts of the Seattle Old Time music scene and frequent
teachers at Centrums Fiddle Tunes, W.B. and Bonnie play old-time country songs and fiddle tunes, string blues music from Mississippi and Memphis, and Mexican songs and dance tunes. Both play fiddle and guitar, and W.B. also plays a variety of other stringed instruments. Sweet harmonies on songs ranging from poignant to humorous, twin-fiddling, foot-tapping tunes and slow waltzes,  will all make for fine and enjoyable musical evening. For a taste of their fine playing and musical history visit:
A donation of $10-$15 is suggested. 
and additionally:

March 1st 2-3:30 Old-Time Backup Guitar Workshop with WB Reid
WB will be sharing his decades of experience accompanying old-time fiddle music.

  • chords
  • grooves and styles
  • bass runs

assisted by fiddler Bonnie Zahnow
$15- $25 sliding scale if you have questions call WB at (206)501-7987

 March 2, Monday, 7 pm
"WIMBY - Worms In My Back Yard"
Linda Pfafman on Worm Bins 

In Mandarin one translation of worms is "angels of the earth". Worms are key to more environmentally friendly agricultural practices -- and much more.

Linda Pfafman has worked with the Master Gardener Foundation and Dundee Hill Community Garden and has become a worm specialist. Her talk will highlight:

-- the benefits of raising worms in your backyard
-- anatomy / physiology of worms
-- types of worm bins
-- the care and feeding of worms

By the end of the hour, you should be able to start your own worm bin, reduce your garbage bill, and be able to save money by reducing the need to purchase fertilizers to help your garden grow, bloom, and produce healthy organic groceries. A donation of $5-10 is suggested to help maintain and improve the Quimper Grange's community hall.

March 14th 7:30 Square Dance 
Caller Amy Carroll
On March 14th, Roscoe will be playing traditional Southern square dance tunes behind Seattle Caller Amy Carroll.  Roscoe features Dave Thielk on fiddle, Katya Kirsch on banjo, and ever-ready steady Chris Cooper on guitar.  Our square dance is family friendly and all dances taught.  Call Dave Thielk for more info.  360-301-6005.

Other Dances and Happenings... 

Many other regularly scheduled public events take place at Quimper Grange: Contra dances, Cajun/ Zydeco dances and dance classes as occassional special events. Check our calendar (at the top of the page) and click on the event for details.
Grange and Community Halls are Worthy of Preservation 
Holly Taylor proposes that Grange halls as well as small town and rural community halls should be evaluated as Traditional Cultural Properties, which are eligible for being listed in the National Register because of their association with the cultural practices of living communities; she sees a need to preserve community halls that are used by working class people and honor those who not only restore but those that maintain them. Holly spoke to an audience that included Granger's from from Sequim Prairie #1108 and Chimacum #681 for our February program as well as  members of the Jefferson County Historical Society. We thank JCHS for co-sponsoring this event.
People asked questions after Holly’s talk. “What happens if there aren’t enough members or required officers to continue as a Grange?” Answer: The Grange loses its charter and all assets are placed in a trust fund. If the Grange isn’t reorganized within seven years the building will be sold and the money from the sale will be added to the State Grange general fund. “Why are Granges struggling to attract members?” A past Jefferson county extension agent suggested that relevance is the issue and the fact that younger people are not joiners. Regarding attracting members Sequim Prairie Grange found that fund raising events for worthy organizations attract members. People see joining their Grange as a way to have a sense of purpose in their lives. 

Speaking of Preservation---Our Precious Dance Floor
Emergency Floor Refinishing January 28th

While mopping the floor after our New Year’s Eve Fund Raiser Dance yours truly noticed that our floor finish had worn through to bare wood and we, the guardians of the dance floor, would have to get a protective finish on it ASAP.  The volunteer crew included Jo Yount, Marla Streator, Joanne Pontrello, Chris Cooper, George Yount and John Drew who did a marathon prepping and finishing blitz starting at 12:30 in the afternoon and finishing at 11PM. With a full calendar of renters this was the one and only day possible to get the job done. But, as you can see it got done. Thanks crew!

And Quimper Grange would also like to thank Edensaw’s John Montgomery for answering a million questions and giving us a huge discount on floor finish and prepping supplies.

Marla Streator