Wesley Woods had its annual booster dinner on Oct. 9. They also celebrated their 70th anniversary. Attendees reflected on how much the camp has changed over the years.

Dean and Ann George were inducted into the Hall of Fame. Kelly West was awarded Volunteer of the Year.

Wesley Woods’ focus is to rebuild connections with the community. They have a lot to offer from summer camp programming and retreat facilities. Visit their Facebook page or go to their website, wesleywoods.com to check out their latest schedule and events.

Upcoming events

— Nov. 6: Pleasantville VFD is having a holiday bazaar from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. The kitchen will be open for lunch.

— Nov. 13: Grand Valley VFD Chicken and Biscuit dinner will be held from 4-7 p.m. Dine-in and takeout will be available.

— Nov. 20: Grand Valley Craft Show will take place at the GVVFD from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

— Nov. 28: Christmas photos will be taken at Grand Valley Methodist Church after church (around noon). The cost is a donation to benefit the church. All are welcome to come get their picture taken. A digital copy of your photo will be emailed to you for your Christmas cards or gifts.

— Dec. 4: Tidioute Area VFD is having a craft show from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Interested vendors can contact Sheryl at (814) 688-3630.

— Dec. 12: Christmas On Horseback & HoHoHo Night Parade takes place in Pleasantville at 2 p.m.

Groups/clubs

— Eldred Township meetings are held on the second Wednesday of every month. Contact Eldred Township at (814) 436-7654 for more information.

— Southwest Township meetings are held on the first Monday of every month. Contact Southwest Township at (814) 589-7551 for more information.

— The Grand Valley Volunteer Fire Department is in need of ambulance and fire personnel, as well as social members to help with work bees and fundraisers.

There are work bees on Tuesday nights at 6.

Monthly meetings are held on the first Thursday of every month at 7 p.m.

— The Grand Valley Desperados next meeting is Monday at the Grand Valley firehall at 6:30 p.m. They will be electing officers. If anyone is interested in finding out more about the Desperados’ 4-H Club, contact leaders Sam Greer or Connie Tenney at (814) 827-9462.

— The Sanford Saddles and Spurs 4-H Club have some upcoming fundraisers including their beef stick sale and wreath sale. All of these fundraisers are helping to pay for the club trip to Frontier Town, which the club hopes to visit next summer. Details of this trip were discussed at their last meeting.

Their November meeting, is TBA. They are  hoping to schedule the meeting later in the month and combine it with the wreath making day. The club will wait to see if they can get the wreaths to decorate, before they make that decision.

Anyone interested in joining the Sanford Saddles and Spurs 4-H Club can contact leaders Matt and Dianna Maille at (814) 436-7778.

Condolences

Joseph C. Haehn, 73, of Grand Valley, passed away on Sunday, Oct. 31, 2021. Thoughts and prayers go out to all his friends and family.

Church news

The Evergreen Charge Churches consist of Grand Valley UM, Sanford UM and Enterprise UM. Livestreaming of the service will be posted to the Grand Valley United Methodist Facebook page on Sundays at 9 a.m.

— Grand Valley United Methodist Church Sunday worship is at 11 a.m.

— Sanford United Methodist Church Sunday worship is at 10 a.m.

— Enterprise United Methodist meets at 9 a.m. for worship.

— Bible study takes place on Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. at the Enterprise Church. All are welcome to attend.

— YOUth Group is at the Grand Valley parsonage. Meetings are every Sunday at 6 p.m. Grades 6-12 are all welcome to join and bring a friend.

— Sanford Kid’s Club meets every first and third Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at the Sanford Church. Anyone age 3 to 5th grade is welcome to attend. New this year will be a Bible study for the parents upstairs during club sessions. Contact Amanda Ongley at (814) 873-7483 for more information.

— If you know of someone in need during this time, reach out to G&S Helping Hands or Pastor Penny Helmbold at (814) 436-7409 or at pastorpenny12@yahoo.com.

Recipe

A Thanksgiving staple is the green bean casserole. It is often made with three ingredients; green beans, cream of mushroom soup and french fried onions. If you want to up the ante a bit and impress your guests, try this from-scratch recipe.

Homemade Green

Bean Casserole

Ingredients

Onion Topping:

— 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

— 1 small onion, sliced

— Kosher salt

— Freshly ground black pepper

— 1/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs

Casserole:

— 1 pound green beans

— 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

— 1 small yellow onion, sliced

— 8 oz. sliced baby bella mushrooms

— 2 cloves garlic, minced

— 4 teaspoons butter

— 1/4 cup flour

— 2 cups milk

— 1 cup chicken stock

— Kosher salt

— Freshly ground black pepper

Directions

For onion topping:

Preheat oven to 375°. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook onions until slightly golden and tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from skillet and place in a medium bowl. Toss with Panko until coated and season with salt and pepper.

Prep green beans:

Prepare an ice bath by filling a large bowl 1/3 full with cold water and adding 6 to 8 ice cubes. In a large pot of salted boiling water, add green beans and cook until bright green and crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer green beans to ice bath to cool completely, then drain and transfer to a large bowl.

For casserole filling:

Heat oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally until tender and slightly golden, about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are golden, about 5 minutes more. Stir in garlic then transfer mixture to the bowl with the green beans.

Melt the butter in the same skillet over medium heat. Whisk in flour and cook until golden, about 2 minutes. Gradually whisk in milk and stock and bring to a simmer. Cook until thickened, about 4 minutes, then season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove from heat, add green bean mixture, and toss until ingredients are coated in the sauce. Transfer mixture to a medium casserole dish.

Bake until warmed through and bubbling around the edges, about 20 minutes. Top with ‘fried’ onions and bake 10 minutes more until golden. If you want your onions even crispier, broil on high for 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Birthdays

Nicole Condron (Nov. 6)

Bethany Evans (Nov. 7)

Kaylan Wright (Nov. 7)

Jen Wright (Nov. 7)

Janet Birchard (Nov. 8)

Contact me

All are welcome to contribute with any local events, club news, seasonal activities, reunions, births, marriages, get-togethers, family recipes and any other Grand Valley happenings. Please submit information by noon on Thursday so I can get it into Friday’s column. Thank you.

Alissa Savitz can be reached at 814-964-7453 or grandvalleyvoice@gmail.com.

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