More than 35 Grange youth and young adults gathered at Friendly Hills Grange Camp, Zanesville, Ohio, for the Eastern Regional Youth Conference. The first of six conferences scheduled this year, it was hosted by the Ohio State Grange.
The weekend is a time for connecting Grange youth from various states. Together, they participate in competitive contests and grow in their Grange leadership.
National Grange Youth Ambassadors Cassidy Cheddar and Derek Snyder joined National Grange Youth Director Charlene Shupp Espenshade to present two workshops. The first was based on the new youth department project, PI2 (PI squared), designed to encourage Grange involvement to encourage Grange growth. The second was based on the program, Apathy Not Allowed, promoting grassroots advocacy.
Michael Martin, National Grange Membership Director, presented a workshop on code reading. For many of the Grangers, it was the first time they had ever attempted this unique Grange tradition. Jenna Wyler, 2014-15 Ohio State Grange Youth Ambassador, earned a Thompson Achievement Seal for code reading by the conclusion of the conference, as confirmed by Martin.
The contests were very competitive, especially Grange Jeopardy, where youth tested their Grange knowledge. Jennifer and Rob Beaman of Pennsylvania and Melanie Fitch of Ohio will represent the Eastern Region at the national contest. In the public speaking contest, the winner was Jenna Wyler of Ohio. Melanie Fitch of Ohio earned the best of show sign a song.
For photos from the event, go to the National Grange Youth Facebook page.