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Fundraiser for Grange Hall in Riverhead

A community landmark built in 1831, the Grange

A community landmark built in 1831, the Grange Hall is in need of a new stove, refrigerator, windows and floors, and the ceilings need insulation. The cost should total approximately $75,000. (Oct. 30, 2011) Photo Credit: Ursula Moore

For Rita Allen, there is nothing better than reading a good novel.

And the Grange Hall Book Sale in Riverhead on Sunday made finding a great read that much easier for the Jamesport woman.

“This book sale is so varied from cookbooks to plumbing to children’s books. There is so much here, it’s wonderful,” said Allen.

In search of a Chinese dictionary for her grandson to take on his trip to China next summer, Allen found one at the sale.

“This is great, he will be glad to have this on his trip,” she said.

The first ever book sale offered over 1,000 rare and out-of-print books including “Limpy” by William Johnston and “Just So Stories For Little Children” by Rudyard Kipling. The prices for the books were $2 for hard covers, $1 for soft covers and 50 cents for paperbacks.

The book sale is a fundraiser for the Grange Hall which is owned by the First Parish Church, located across the street from the Grange. A community landmark built in 1831, the Grange Hall is in need of a new stove, refrigerator, windows, floors and the ceilings need insulation. The cost should total approximately $75,000.

“As of right now, the stove only has three burners working and the refrigerator freezes everything. The stove and refrigerator have been here since the 1960s,” said Lisa Barrow, trustee of the First Parish Church and the author of Love In The Gardens of Macantar. Her pen name is Lisa Acor Laurel.

The Grange Hall houses a variety of events including the Nature Lyceum, a monthly class for learning how to grow food organically; a play titled “How to Remove a Curse”; the basket weavers’ meetings every third Wednesday; Alcoholics Anonymous meetings; a shelter for the homeless two nights a week in the winter.

“We really care about this building,” said Maryann Musumeci, book sale coordinator. “We don’t want to lose it because it is vital to the community.”

The church is currently planning to use the facility for an alternative school for grades kindergarten through eighth grade.

“The school will teach the traditional lessons and it will also give kids the chance to explore the environment. We plan to open it next September,” said Barrow.

The Grange Hall holds a special place in the community’s hearts.

“People that use this building have a connection with this building,” Barrow said. “The Grange Hall is special, it has soul.”

The Church plans to have another book sale next month. For more information or to make a donation, call 631-608-3827 or visit www.spirit-renewal.com.

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