Racine Grange receives national honors

RACINE — At the recent meeting of Racine Grange, Charles Yost, master, reported that three members had attended the recent National Grange session in Spokane, Washington. Nita Yost, Olivia Yost and Keith Ashley all attended. Olivia Yost was honored by being selected to be the national chaplin on the National Grange Youth Team. Keith Ashley was a participant in the national talent contest with a piano solo entitled “Polichinelle” by Sergei Rachmaninoff. He received rousing applause for the performance.

It was then reported that Keith and Emma Ashley attended the National Grange’s 150th anniversary birthday banquet at the historic Decatur House in Washington D.C. in December. Keith was asked by National Grange master, Betsey Huber, to perform on the piano for the event on the Decatur House’s Steinway grand piano. The dinner featured U.S. Senator Susan Collins of Maine and former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture John Block. The Ashleys were the only Grange members in attendance who were not state or national grange officers.

Under legislative affairs, the legislative chairman presented a resolution asking that Congress stop paying out taxpayer’s money to defend sexual harassment claims against Congress and to release all information on former claims to the public. The members approved the resolution.

A discussion was held on the recurring temporary funding resolutions being approved by Congress. Also discussed was the recent ruling of the U.S. Supreme Court that declared the Internal Revenue Service violated the rights of conservative groups by purposely putting road blocks up to stop the issuance of tax-exempt status. Granges all over the U.S. got caught up in this problem even though they had tax-exempt status only to see the status revoked. Members were disappointed that the court granted no damages to the organizations affected.

Fruit baskets were prepared for local widows, widowers, and shut-ins in the neighborhood.

Members were shown a copy of the new National Grange publications, “Good Day.” The magazine received very positive reactions from the members.

Submitted by Keith Ashley.