Parish House Repairs

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Parish House?

May 17, 2006

Four months to the day of the terrible Parish House fire, the re-building of the house is completed.  The goal from the beginning was to have the project finished for the arrival of the Summer ministers.  The photos show the results.  Scrolling down this page will show the transition.

A major effort spear-headed by John Atkinson and the crew from Atkinson Builders, Inc. as the general contractor with the support from Penboscot Cleaners, Northeast Plumbing and Heating Co. and Whitney Appliance Sales and Service, Inc. met the June 1st goal.

On Saturday May 27, 2006, an Open House will take place from 4 - 6 pm in the Parish House.  Followed at 6 pm by the traditional Memorial weekend dinner.  All are invited to attend this grand event.  Rain or shine.

On behalf of everyone from the building crew to the benefactors, the residents and the friends of Cranberry Island a heart felt thank you.

Sonja W. Colby - President
Cranberry Isles Ladies Aid Society

Dining Room, Kitchen, and Bedroom

Dining Room


Living Room

May 7, 2006

The re-construction of the Ladies Aid Society Parish House nears completion.  We are on target for a wonderful Open House on Saturday May 27, 2006 at 4:00 pm.  All are welcome to visit the transformation of this historic building.  It is the same afternoon as the traditional Memorial Day weekend Ladies Aid Society dinner.

As the new photos show, the kitchen cabinents and counters are installed.  Appliances are in place.  The LP gas tank arrived last month and the gas will provide fuel for the new kitchen stove and the gas clothes dryer.  Piping was installed for the dining and living room fireplaces for possible future gas stoves.  The new handicap ramp and rear deck are complete.  The interior has been painted, lighting fixtures, hard wired smoke detectors and exterior lighting are done.  New curtains, shades and the cleaned furniture and rugs will be in place in the next two weeks.  The Society held a "Bed, Bath and Beyond" roast chicken dinner on April 29th for replacing the linens, etc. lost in the fire.  Over 40 islanders attended the dinner and contributed generously to the effort.

I thank all the wonderful people that have given to rebuild the Parish House.

Continue watching this site for updates including photos of the finished project.

Sonja W. Colby - President
Cranberry Isles Ladies Aid Society

Kitchen with new cabinets, washer & dryer, and flooring

LP gas tank is offloaded prior to installation

New handicap ramp gives easy access to the house

March 19, 2006

The re-construction of the Ladies Aid Society Parish House is well along for it's June 1st deadline.  New windows have been installed and all the new ceilings and walls have been painted.  Installation of window trim and stripping of doors and fireplace mantles is progressing.  Wiring of the entire house is finished awaiting only the installation of lights, electrical outlets and wall switches.  The bathroom re-build is nearly completed.  A group of volunteer members will lend their hands to complete the trim painting throughout the house.  The installation of the new modestly priced kitchen cabinets, counters, appliances, a stack washer drier and new flooring will complete the major re-construction of the kitchen.

The Ladies Aid Society members are planning a "Parish House Shower". All the original furniture, rugs and paintings which were professionally cleaned and stored will now return to the Parish House.  The members will be hanging new curtains, shades and arranging for new bedding, towels and all the little details that will make the Parish House once again a home for the returning ministers and their families.

The re-build funding has been proceeding with contributions from Winter residents and Summer residents and visitors.  Monies for the matching challenge grant have been forthcoming.  The Cranberry Congregational Church has made a separate significant gift to the re-building.  However, the anticipated funding has not approached the actual projected finished costs of $100,000.  Generous contributions are still very much needed.  Donations over $300.00 are tax-deductable.

Contributions can be made to: The Great Cranberry Futures Group, attn: Richard Beal, P.O. Box 115, Cranberry Isles, ME 04625.

I thank all the wonderful people who have helped thus far, and those in the future who wish to help in this most important Cranberry Island project.

Continue watching this site for updates.

Sonja W. Colby - President
Cranberry Isles Ladies Aid Society

Dumpster and New Windows (Mar 19)

Living Room and Stripped Doors and Mantle (Mar 19)

Dining Room with Stripped Mantle and Cellar Door (Mar 19)

February 20, 2006

The re-construction of the Parish House continues at a rapid pace.  Although the project is turning out to be far greater than originally expected, the carpenters, electricians and plumbers have made extraordinary progress. The new windows arrive this week for installation. As you can see by the enclosed new photos, sheetrocking in the kitchen and dining room is almost completed. The good news is we are far ahead of schedule for completion by June 1st.

It should be understood, the Parish House does not belong to the church.  For over 100 years the Ladies Aid Society has maintained the Parish House for visiting ministers, as well as school teachers, returning service men, boat yard workers and those in need.

However, re-construction funds are far behind what was expected by now.  Insurance will not cover the re-build costs.  The Parish House has been generously offered a matching grant.  For each $2.00 donated to the re-build, it will be matched by $1.00 up to $20,000.  This is welcome news.  However, the re-build will be far more expensive than what the grant and insurance will cover.  Fund raising letters have been mailed to home-owners and Summer islanders past and present.  Substantial funds are still very much needed.

Contributations may be made to: The Great Cranberry Futures Group, attn: Richard Beal, P.O. Box 115 Cranberry Isles, ME 046625.

Continue watching this site for updates on progress of the re-build of the much loved Cranberry Isles Parish House.

Sonja Colby - President
Cranberry Isles Ladies Aid Society

Kitchen Sink area (20 Feb)

Dining Room area (20 Feb)


February 7, 2006

The re-construction of the Cranberry Isles Parish House after the January 17th fire has begun in earnest.  To date, demolition throughout the house is nearly completed.  All new wiring and new plumbing, (to bring the entire house up to code) is in progress.  Work will continue with sheet rocking, flooring, installation of replacement windows, new kitchen and painting.  The entire kitchen to include cabinets, counters and appliances had to be totally replaced.  Finished completion date is June 1st or before for the arrival of the Summer ministers.

Anyone wishing to send donations to the re-construction should make checks payable to:

The Great Cranberry Future Group
attn: Richard Beal
P.O. Box 115
Cranberry Isles, ME 04625.

Watch this site for further details and photos.

Sonja Colby, President
Cranberry Isles Ladies Aid Society

Kitchen Sink area (7 Feb)

Dining Room area (7 Feb)

Although called the Parsonage for years, Sonja informs me that the building under repair is better named the Parish House, due to the fact that many folks other than ministers have stayed in it over the years.  The change in nomenclature also helps for tax reasons, and for some charities with a reluctance to give to church organizations, which the Ladies Aid (who owns the building) is not. -- Bruce

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