SAN JUAN ISLAND GRANGE: A Community of Growers since 1931.

2013-09-25 16.59.15MISSION: To support a resilient community of growers, makers, and keepers, to foster social and political engagement, and to maintain our Hall as a home for celebrations and programs.

Resilient Community: Grange members grow food and fiber, make music and artifacts, keep house and livestock. Likewise do we grow in our skills and knowledge, make a meaningful life for our families, and keep this island in good health for future generations.  In our programs we learn and teach the skills of living in this special place, because we believe that a resilient community skilled in the arts of living can weather whatever storms the future may bring.

Engagement: The Grange is political, but not partisan. We take stands on issues, not on candidates. For instance, in 2012 San Juan Island Grange #966 endorsed the initiative to ban the growing of GMO crops in our county.  RESOLUTIONS   We also believe that a community that plays together stays together, so we make sure we have plenty of potlucks and other social events on our calendar.

Maintain our Hall: We are known to the public by the San Juan Island Grange Hall in Friday Harbor, a beautiful wooden building originally built as a church in the 1880’s. Recognizing its value to our island community, we vow to take care of it so that it can serve its function as a cultural venue for years to come. DECK PROJECT

We meet on the first Wednesday of each month at 7:00 at the Grange Hall at 152 First Street North in Friday Harbor. Visitors are welcome.




Grange Open House, Art Contest, and Creative Writing Open Mic

2018 San Juan Island Grange Creative Writing Contest

Art Fair 2018 at the San Juan Island Grange: April 11

Calling all artists, poets, writers, and makers, of ALL AGES… San Juan Island Grange 966 is hosting an art, craft, and photography contest, as well as a creative writing open mic, at our 2018 Open House!

Join us at the San Juan Island Grange Hall (152 1st St, Friday Harbor) Wednesday, April 11th for a spring celebration of creativity.  We welcome art and craft submissions of every kind (photos, drawings, paintings, sculpture, weaving, jewelry, metalwork, woodworking, you name it), and multiple pieces (in multiple categories) are encouraged.

We will be accepting art/craft submissions the day of the event between the hours of 11am and 1pm.  If you are unable to get your piece to us at that time, email to arrange a pick-up or drop-off that works for you!

All submissions will be up on display for the public during our Open House potluck and artist reception from 4pm-6pm, come enjoy the the show and complimentary non-alcoholic beverages!  This is a great opportunity to see our new deck and freshly refinished floor if you haven’t already… Bring a snack or dish to share if you like!

From 6:00-7:00 PM we will open the space for a creative writing open mic!  Folks who have submitted pieces to our writing contest, and anyone else who’s ready and willing, will be invited to read or recite their work. The deadline for official submissions to the writing contest is March 26th, please email for details.

We hope you will join us for this special community event, sponsored in part by the San Juan Island Grange 966 Makers Guild.


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THE AGE OF LONELINESS: Cultivating Spirit through Environmental Activism

How can we stay hopeful, grounded, and engaged, while standing up for what we believe in? We live in an age of unprecedented climate chaos, polarizing politics, and a mass extinction previously unseen in human history. Whether we acknowledge it or not, the times we live in weigh heavily upon us.

In recent years, spirituality as become a vital component of activism; particularly in the environmental movement. Land-based spiritual activism and bio-regional resilience is the fertile edge of intersectional environmentalism.

Activism is not only marching and gathering signatures, resiliency means more than a full pantry and an emergency plan, and the environment is inseparable from ourselves. We must learn to recognize our place in the life of the world, and acknowledge the existential loneliness we are creating for ourselves as a species. We must learn to see our work as a part of a greater whole.

Join seasoned activist, herbalist, and educator Milla Prince at 6:30 p.m.  Tuesday, February 27, 2018 at the San Juan Island Grange for a discussion of how reconnecting with land, plants and the human community can help us build emotional and spiritual resilience.

The lecture will be preceded by a pop-in potluck dinner at 5:30. p.m. Join us for a meal, or just come for the lecture.

Milla Prince is a writer, wildcrafter, folk herbalist, local plant enthusiast, community organizer, teacher, filmmaker, activist, gardener.

Her work as an herbalist in the Pacific Northwest is deeply rooted in the practice of bio-regionalism, Earth Activism, and local resilience. It is her goal to empower folks to discover and revive their own ancestral, holistic traditions.

She was born and raised in boreal forests of Finland and now lives on unceded Coast Salish Territory in the Cascadia Bioregion.

The Age of Loneliness: Cultivating Spirit Through Environmental Activism is part of the Grange Lecture Series, which strives to foster social and political engagement, discussion, and to maintain our historical Hall as a home for celebrations and programs.

The San Juan Island Grange has been a community of growers, makers, and keepers since 1931.

The Grange is nonpartisan, and so is this event. All are welcome, including kids.



San Juan Island Grange is proud to present our 3rd Annual Seed Exchange at the Grange Hall this Saturday, February 17, 1-4PM.

Have some seeds left over from last year? Did you save seeds from a special vegetable you’d like to share? Have some bulbs or cuttings from a favorite plant? Bring them to the Seed Exchange. Last year, a very tall and handsome kale and a tasty tomato came to the exchange and went home with several gardeners.

We’ve had reports that fruit tree scion wood will be available this year for you grafters out there.

And of course the San Juan Seed Company will have some seeds to give away!

See you there!


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Grange Meeting Wednesday February 7

THE SAN JUAN ISLAND GRANGE Where the farmers and the musicians can be friends

Hey folks! It’s time for our February membership meeting. With the 2018 Strategic Plan in the can, the Spring Street Property lease signed, new committee chairs for Grange Hall, Marketing and Membership, and now over 100 members (!), we are poised to have our best year ever.

Please join us for our potluck at 6PM and our meeting at 7PM. Our special event this meeting will be a presentation on the Grange degree system by Shann Weston.

See you there!


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San Juan Island Grange Completes Strategic Plan for 2018

Thanks to the care, intelligence and hard work of our members, we are very proud to  present:

San Juan Island Grange #966 2018 Strategic Plan

Financial Management (Executive Committee with approval by membership)

  1. Conduct an annual audit
  2. Establish audit policy to include annual internal audits with periodic independent audits
  3. Establish annual expense budgets for committees in annual budget
  4. Create financial management plan for Spring Street property revenues
  5. Create fundraising master plan and continue fundraising events

Relationship with State Grange (Executive Committee with approval by membership)

  1. Continue relationship building with State Grange Master and State Grange Executive Committee
  2. Regain financial control of all monies held by State Grange
  3. Regain ALL SJI #966 Grange minutes, check registers, and all other records

Spring Street Property

  1. Complete deferred maintenance of building (exterior painting, roof repair)
  2. Continue investigating required process for resolving environmental clean-up

Grange Hall Maintenance and Improvements (Hall Committee)

  1. Fix leaking roof at electrical risers
  2. Fire Marshall Inspection for 2018 (occurred 2/9/18 thanks to Dave Kane)
    1. Exterminate rats in basement
    2. New extinguisher at entry and other misc. items
  3. Complete:
    1. painting exterior and trim on deck side; paint French doors
    2. Reinstall old window (can come later with kitchen redesign)
    3. Kitchen door (can come later with kitchen redesign)
  4. Paint wood paneling on east wall of main hall (interim fix until ceiling remodel)
  5. Refinish main hall floor
    1. Patch flooring at old vents
    2. Trim paint touch ups after refinish
  6. Upgrades to sound system
    1. Additional speakers and subwoofer for movies, built in
    2. Speaker covers
  7. Membership Visioning Session for use of Hall to determine timeline and priorities for additional upgrades
    1. Appoint Design Committee to guide Hall updates
  8. Replacement of the street side foundation
    1. Requires removal of vestibule; replace with larger version extending to sidewalk and further to the sides (could include table storage on either side)
  9. Street side landscaping (after foundation is replaced)
  10. Installation of outside electrical plug ins
  11. Develop a remodel plan for commercial kitchen, entrance hall, and bathrooms
    1. Conduct a kitchen design charrett
    2. Include ADA accessibility
  12. Main hall
    1. Ceiling remodel considering acoustics
    2. Wiring upgrade
    3. Lighting (adjustable brightness)
      1. Consider indirect lighting hidden behind period correct crown molding; strategic placement of ‘invisible’ spots to illuminate podium, fireplace, etc.
      2. Period correct wall sconces
    4. Removal of wood paneling
    5. Acoustic wall treatments
    6. Install valance to conceal projector screen
    7. Replace fireplace mantel with live-edge local Douglas fir slab
    8. Replace fireplace bricks with tile or stone (inscribed with donors’ names?)
    9. Entry – information boards and exterior lighting
    10. Library location
    11. Storage for round (weddings) and rectangular (meetings) tables
    12. Upgrade windows for energy efficiency
  13.  Basement
    1. Haul away old furnace system
    2. Complete cleanup
    3. Additional storage space; potential for office space
  14. Create master plan for cleaning and long-term maintenance of the Grange Hall
  15. Evaluate the need for deck furniture and fire pit

Relationship with San Juan Island/San Juan County Community

  1. Consider hiring a marketing manager
    1. Improve marketing of hall rental, events at the Grange, and Grange membership
  2. Increase membership
  3. Improve outreach to Hispanic community
  4. Improve outreach to the under 50-year-olds of our community
  5. Increase locally relevant resolutions that get communicated to the public
  6. Increase scholarships as funding is available

Accomplishments – 2017 Strategic Plan Goals Completed 

Financial Management

  1. Conducted an annual audit for 2016-2017
  2. Established an audit policy to include annual internal audits with periodic independent audits (thanks to Doug and Val)
  3. Obtained property tax exemption; annual savings of $3,500 (thanks to Doug and Val)
  4. Increased rental income by 30.4% over 2016 while maintaining compliance with property tax exemption status and fulfilling our mission to make the Hall available to the community (thanks to Roger and Doug)
  5. OPALCO billing review and reclassification saved $900-1,200 per year (thanks to Doug and Steve)
  6. Reached fundraising goal of $25,000 via seed sales, pie sales, events, donations and solicitations (thanks to Roger, Deirdre, Alice, Katie, and many more)
  7. Awarded $500 scholarship to Grange member Carter Fuehr-Busch for continued education (thanks to Susan, Lovel, Katie, Paula and Christina)
  8. Evaluated increase in dues because State increased their portion; membership authorized in July
  9. Reviewed and revised rental policy and rental fees at completion of the deck
    1. Developed a policy and hand book on Hall rental for internal use posted in kitchen closet and on website (thanks to Roger, Malcolm, Boyd, Val and Doug)
  10. Membership increased from 54 in June 2011 to 100 in 4th quarter 2018
  11. Established expense budgets for committees in annual budget
  12. Improvements to Grange website regarding hall rental (thanks to Roger)

Relationship with State Grange

  1. Continued relationship building with State Grange Master and State Grange Executive Committee
    1. Communications with State Master established and ongoing (thanks to Boyd)
    2. Letter from State Grange removing our Grange from probation February 2017!!
    3. Commitment by State Grange Executive Committee to release additional 1/3 of income from Spring Street property in an annual dispersal the following January, beginning in 2018
  2. Regained management and financial control of Spring Street property (thanks to Boyd, Lovel, Doug and Paula)
  3. Regained control of tax return oversight

Spring Street Property

  1. Continued investigation of required process for resolving environmental clean-up

Grange Hall Maintenance and Improvements

  1. Completed deck and double door to main hall (huge thanks to Malcolm, Roger, Steve, Val, Dave and many others)
  2. Installed new ductless heating system
  3. Investigated foundation repair on street side
  4. Installed fire code compliant ‘push’ door handles on both entry doors (thanks to Ben Haynie)
  5. Completed pest and fire extinguisher inspection (thanks to Roger)

Other Accomplishments

  1. Successful programs (lectures) include standing room only for Emergency Preparedness in the San Juans (thanks to Glenn)
  2. Began weekly Growers Circle Coffee Hour, where farmers and gardeners share information on all things agricultural and horticultural (thanks to Roger)
    1. The Corps of Resilience initiative was launched from these discussions




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Free Pruning Workshop at Dancing Seeds Farm

Friday Harbor, WA … Do you have fruit trees or an interest in them? Would you like a better understanding of how to prune and care for them?

Join the San Juan Island Grange for a field trip to Dancing Seeds Farm Sunday, January 28th, for a hands on pruning workshop lead by Greg Meyer and Keith Keyser.

The workshop will begin with an 11am brunch potluck meet ‘n’ greet in the farmhouse at 3501 Beavterton Valley Rd, where there will be books to peruse, and graphics to examine.

We will move into the orchard at noon, where Keith and Greg will go over times of year to prune, tools, techniques, and collecting scion wood for grafting future trees!

The day will wrap up by 2pm.

Greg Meyer’s experience with pruning started out with attending a workshop just like this while living in Seattle, where he was also lucky enough to have a landlady who let him practice on a plum and apple tree at her house.  Greg then spent two years at the Bullock Brother’s Homestead on Orcas Island, where he pruned trees of all ages and sizes, while at the same time honing his skills with his landscaping clients.

Keith Keyser pruned apple trees for commercial orchards in Okanogan County for two years, in the late ’70’s.  Since then he has worked on many clients trees over the years as well as for his own small orchard.

Free Pruning Workshop at Dancing Seeds Farm is part of the Grange Lecture Series, which strives to foster social and political engagement, discussion, and to maintain our historical Hall as a home for celebrations and programs.

The San Juan Island Grange has been a community of growers, makers, and keepers since 1931.

The Grange is nonpartisan, and so is this event.  All are welcome, including kids!



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NY 2018The next regular Business Meeting of the San Juan Island Grange #966 is this Wednesday, January 3rd, starting at 7pm, preceded by our usual potluck at 6pm.  We will greet the New Year with a Candle Lighting Ceremony and, among other items, consideration of a 2018 Budget.

All are welcome and encouraged to attend.


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