By Andrea Singer
The Indian Valley community gathered in the Historic Taylorsville Hall on June 19 to hear from a California State Grange representative concerning the future of the beloved hall. Nearly every seat was occupied, making it obvious residents were eager to learn more about the legal process currently in motion as well as have their questions answered. Unfortunately, just hours before, the California Grange representative notified Ken Donnell they would not be coming to the public forum, with concern of the meeting having an acrimonious tone resulting in irreconcilable differences with no positive outcome, under the assumption the Taylorsville Historic Hall is part of the Guild, which it is not.
The people of Indian Valley are resilient above all else and they chose to utilize their time by opening the floor to a community discussion (led by Ken Donnell master president of the Indian Valley Grange). The objective being to educate the public on the background/history of the Grange organization and their local chapter, as well as provide the sources (such as websites) so the public knows where to go to in order to find accurate information on the topic. Donnell expressed the importance of community members taking initiative to do independent research in order to form educated opinions resulting in accurate decisions, because in the end it comes down to a community decision. It was immediately clear members of the community disagreed on whether or not the decision to separate from the Grange was a good one, but everyone seemed to want the best for a building that has been a staple of the community for generations.
Another topic that was on the forefront of the meeting was lack of volunteers, leaving just a few people to carry the weight of running the historical building. Taking the lead and the bearing the burden is Laura Kearns, local hero of the Historic Taylorville Hall, and Indian Valley transplant. Laura says she instantly fell in love with the building upon visiting Taylorsville, seeing it needed love and people to step up to bring it back to its former glory, she was first in line! Laura encourages community members to join her in the journey to bringing life back to the Taylorsville Hall, a building that so many in our area have gained memories and experiences from.