Joan Decker Correspondent
A prince of an organization
Quarryville's Croaking Frogs celebrate 70th
Things have been hopping at Pond #1 of The An cient Order of Croaking Frogs since the Quarryville organization was started in 1927.
This year the club is celebrating 70 years of "Bullfrogoligy," a term which denotes its efforts to serve thecommunity.
Although no one is sure exactly when. the organization was formed, court records indicate the nonprofit group began sometime in 1927.
"We aren't sure that was the actual beginning, but we couldn't find any other written records," said 40-year member Mervin Anderson of Quarryville..
. He said a Pond #2 existed in Lancaster city for a time, but has since "dried up."
Visitors to the club's 300 S. Park Ave. home quickly recognize the amphibian for which the group is 'named. A frog rests on a table at the door, while a heavy ceramic one is housed in a lighted area. Throughout, there are smaller frogs, each with croaking sounds . emerging from their mouths.
Club members, who are looking to expand their ranks, don't seem to know why the frog is their namesake, but all seem to accept it.
"We encourage new members,or new tadpoles as described on our applicatio to join," said club president Bill Hambleton.
The group refers to its leader as the "Grand Imperial Croaker," said longtime member Bill Tomlinson of Quarryville.
Tomlinson, who has been a member since 1955, said the group was organized by local . businessmen as a family oriented club.
According to the group's secretary /treasurer, LeeRoy Renier, a ladies auxiliary recently was formed.
Some of the annual community activities AOCF supports include Quarryville Library, Quarryville Ambulance Association, Quarryville Fire Company, a Christmas party for children, and the distribution of oranges, candy and fruit baskets by AOCF's Santa.
According to Tomlinson, one of the group's favorite events is the annual Christmas party, set this year for Dec. 14, which includes a program arranged by members. "It's a small program, but it goes over well," he said. .
Currently, the group is conducting a turkey raffle, which will take place Friday. An Easter ham raffle alsois held. Revenues from both benefit community programs and membership projects.
Membership is nearly 300, and lifetime memberships are available.
"We are a nice group to belong to," said 30-year member Fred Herr, of Quarryville. "We have old-timers and newcomers."
Club officers are: Hambleton, president/master croaker; Ed Mitchell, vice president; Renier, secretary /treasurer; Tomlinson, master of observation; and Anderson, Albert Walton, Harry Nickel and Charlie Duncan, trustees.
For additional information on the group call Renier at 548-2223 or Tomlinson at 786-2761
Members of the 70-year-old Pond #1 of The Ancient Order of Croaking Frogs, standing outside the club's Quarryville home, are LeeRoy Renier, Ed Mitchell, Bill Hambleton and Mervin Anderson, from left.