Camp Conley CEOS holds meeting

POINT PLEASANT — The Camp Conley Community Education Outreach Service (CEOS) Club met at the courthouse annex for their April meeting wearing masks and social distancing. This was the first meeting in over a year. Instead of refreshments, each member brought their own brown bag to enjoy together before the business meeting.

Mary Artis, president, called the meeting to order. The pledges were recited by the group. Phyllis Hesson gave the minutes for the February 2020 meeting which were approved as read. Darlene Haer presented the financial reports including 2020 income and expenses and the 2021 budget. All were approved.

Artis gave the members their program lesson information for the rest of 2021 and talked about the recent County Council meeting. Some of this information included CEOS week is May 16-21. There will be a plant exchange at the Faith Gospel Church on Tuesday, May 18 at 9 a.m. – noon. No luncheon will be served. There will not be a craft show this year. A Blessing Box will be set up at the library. County club member are asked to make donations to help provide supplies. Members are also asked to collect personal hygiene items to send to the VA hospital for veterans who are admitted after an appointment and not prepared for the hospital stay.

Under club business, a “thank you” note was read from Lakin Hospital for the club donation made for Christmas gifts for the patients. Since most of the club members are no longer able to properly maintain the herb garden at the West Virginia State Farm Museum and a gentleman has volunteered to do so, the club voted in favor of turning this project back over to the museum for all future maintenance. A motion was made, seconded and approved that a club project will be the recycling of paper and cardboard. Each month, members will report on their recycling figures. Also discussed was the possibility of changing the club meeting to the afternoon instead of the evening since no members are working at this time.

Becky Haer presented the lesson “Traditional West Virginia Foods” as follows:

Our long history of Appalachian home cooking is seen even today with home gardens, community covered dishes and rows of canned goods in most residents’ basements. Breads, syrups and wild plants are just some of the historic foods still made and consumed. One of the most popular is the pepperoni roll, which is deemed the official state food. The creator, Guiseppe Argiro, migrated to Fairmont from Calabria, Italy and in the late 1920s to early 1930s the pepperoni roll was born. Another food is the salt-rising bread. The earliest known recipe dates back to 1778 and is a product of its surroundings as yeast was not always easily purchased or found in rural markets. Salt-rising bread has a starter that must be started days in advance before baking the first batch. Ramps are well-known in West Virginia as a pungent wild leek. They are some of the first wild greens to sprout in the forest in the spring. They are commonly cooked with bacon and potatoes. Other popular foods are buckwheat cakes and maple syrup. Several festivals are held throughout West Virginia promoting many of these foods. Wild foods including morel mushrooms, teaberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, chanterelle mushrooms and cranberries are found throughout the year as forgeable foods available in West Virginia.

The lesson was written by Alex Coffman, WVU Extension Agent in Grant County.

The meeting was adjourned with the next meeting scheduled for May 17. For more information about our club, please contact the Mason County WV Extension office at 304-675-0888.

Submitted by Darlene Haer from Camp Conley CEOS.