Christopher D. Johnston
6241 Grand River Road
Bancroft, MI 48414
(989)634-9350 (H) (989)666-6648 (C)

404 S. Oak Street
Durand, MI 48429


The National Grange Building
A couple years ago we had a discussion at our convention about the possible sale of the National Grange Building at 1616 H St NW in Washington DC. After a few years of the building being on the market, an agreement has been reached. We have sold the building to an investor from Texas that is looking to refurbish the building for its original purpose of multiple office spaces. The building was sold for $10.3 million. Many Grangers and staff have spent the last couple weeks volunteering their time to bring everything up from the basement and sub-basement and clearing out the offices on the eleventh floor. We will have six months of rent-free space on the first and second floor while they look for a new location. While it is the end of an era we are reminded that the National Grange doesn’t live at 1616 H. St. NW it lives in every Grange member in the country.
Part of this move, they have been unearthing a lot of Grange history and memorabilia and there is starting to be a push for a Grange Museum. Something that is open to the public, near lodging and an airport. You may be hearing more about this down the road, right now it’s just in the wishful thinking stage. And a shout out to Roland Winter on his Grange Museum in the basement. We heard several compliments on his collection while at the Leadership Conference!

​April 20, 2024
A day of Grange learning

​Saturday April 20 we will be hosting a day of Grange learning at the William J Brake Community Center located in Grange Acres in Haslett. This will be from 9:30 am to 4:00 pm with a potluck lunch. There will be presentations from several Department Directors and yours truly. We will discuss this year’s program and maybe a return of the Jeopardy game we had at convention. Come for the learning, come for the fun, come for the fellowship, but mostly come for what Grangers are known for. the food. Coffee will be provided throughout the day.

​Grange Month
April is Grange Month. This is a fantastic time to celebrate all things Grange. Most Granges give out their community citizen of the year, law enforcement, firefighter, teacher, VIP (Very Important Patron). Please utilize these awards to recognize the individuals in your community that are making a difference. 
National Grange Leadership Conference
Formerly know as the Masters Conference then Presidents Conference, this is now the NG Leadership Conference open to Grange leaders from across the country. We met Presidents Day weekend in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, with over 80 leaders in attendance. There was a lot of strategic planning, leadership training, mission statement, and vision statement work.  
The updated National Grange Mission Statement is:
 “Strengthening individuals, families and communities through service, education, nonpartisan grassroots advocacy and agricultural awareness.” 

Grange Month
I hope everyone had a fantastic Grange Month in April and were able to open your doors for programs and awards. Hopefully even gaining a new member or more.

Day of Learning
I’d like to thank everyone that attended the Day of Learning as well as the Department Directors that presented their program. We were a small group of attendees, but we learned a lot. We started off the meeting with a zoom greeting from the National Master, Chris Hamp. Following that we had several of our directors present their programs. There are a lot of new contests for State Session so be sure to go through the program book and check them out. There is something there for everyone of every skill level. And of course we outdid ourselves with the potluck, something Grangers are known for. We had quite the spread and there was plenty. We ended the day with a fun game of Grange Trivia and door prizes.

Grange Picnic and Degree Day
At the State Session in October, there was a resolution brought forth and passed to have a Grange Picnic and Degree Day. Plans are currently in the works for such a day. So save the date of August 4th for a day of ritual and fellowship. Burr Oak Grange has offered to host the event. I believe there will be a hog roast potluck lunch and plans are even in the works for a special guest to attend. The High Priest, Roger Bostwick, has been invited and is planning to be there. Tom Smith is taking up the lead on this project and I’m sure will be in contact with folks to help form teams for doing the first four degrees.

Midwest Leadership Conference
Coming up June 21-23 is the Midwest Grange Leaders Conference. This conference is for all members, you don’t have to hold a leadership position in the Grange. The conference will be filled with workshops, fellowship and fun. This year is Ohio’s turn to host. They have it set up to be at Bowling Green State University. The cost to attend is $130.00 a person, which includes Friday’s dinner, all three meals on Saturday and breakfast on Sunday in a double occupancy room. There are other hotel options across from the campus and the rate will be adjusted for those that stay in a hotel. I encourage everyone to attend! You can find the registration form on the website or on the Facebook page. Please register by June 1st.

State Session
Plans are being worked out for the State Session in Charlevoix October 17-20th. But now is the time to start thinking about resolutions. These can be done throughout the year, they don't need to be done just before the session. I’m sure there is a change that is needed somewhere, whether it be in politics, within the Grange, or even your local community; a resolution is the perfect starting point to make that change. As a grassroots organization, it all begins with you. If you need help with writing a resolution, please feel free to contact me, I’ll be happy to help.