May 21, 2018
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Orrington’s Enterprise Grange to be dedicated Sunday

By Nok-Noi Ricker, BDN Staff

ORRINGTON, Maine — The Enterprise Grange 173 hall in Orrington, located at the corner of Center Drive and Dow Road, has played host to numerous events over the last 126 years and on Sunday will be dedicated as a national landmark.

“We will recognize the hall, which is now on the National Register of Historic Places, and will also honor Wendell Hanscom,” Selectwoman Chris Lavoie announced at the end of Monday’s annual town meeting.

Hanscom worked for decades as a mail carrier in Orrington and after retiring drove a school bus in town. The longtime Grange member and Boy Scout leader passed away two years ago in March.

“He was very well liked in Orrington, for sure,” Mary-Michael Billings, Grange secretary, said on Wednesday.

The Enterprise Grange 173 was built by members of the Grange in 1884 as their meeting hall and was officially listed on the National Register of Historic Places on Jan. 24, 2008, “in recognition of its role in the social and fraternal history of Orrington,” the Maine Historic Preservation Commission website states.

“The Italianate building is outfitted with an attractive hall, complete with balcony and stage, and a spacious dining room and convenient kitchen,” it states. “Its design offered Grange members facilities in which to conduct meetings and rituals, and made the property valuable as a social and cultural facility for the residents of the town.”

Sunday’s dedication, which is scheduled for 3 p.m., will include the unveiling of a plaque recognizing the hall, light refreshments and music provided by Bill Thibodeau and Jeremy Shirland from Main Street Music Studios in Bangor.

“They are going to do bluegrass and old-time music,” Billings said.

Those who would like information about the event may call Mary-Michael Billings, Grange secretary, at 825-4515.

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