By Julie Maresco
This was a special year for the NSDAR Continental Congress. When President General Denise VanBuren announced in April that the conference would be held entirely online due to COVID-19, daughters everywhere had to prepare for a very different type of event. This included those girls in white dresses who all look forward to making sure Continental Congress runs as smoothly as possible. Despite this change in platform and its new challenges, the pages rallied together to Rise and Shine for America! I was so honored to be a part of this historic event while paging for my very first time.
All of the pages were sent emails before Continental Congress started and we were assigned to teams to help with the virtual conference. I was assigned to the Junior Shoppe team and I posted over 20 Junior Membership items for sale on my personal Facebook page and on my DAR group pages over the course of two weeks. Since we couldn’t wear our page sashes this year, we had special Facebook profile frames with a page sash on them so DAR members could identify us this way, which was super creative. My posts received a lot of likes and several positive comments about these great products. I had a lot of fun sharing all the fun items for sale this year and I even made a purchase or two myself. It is hard to pass up on cute firefly jewelry, tumblers, shirts, and so much more.
Apart from the actual work all the pages did, there was also lots of fun. Our team met on Zoom before the conference began and we made signs to spell out “DAR JUNIOR SHOPPE.” Of course, we got some letters backwards and had to reorganize a couple of times, but we eventually got it right and the team photograph turned out great. It was nice chatting with the other pages and getting lots of help from our team leader, Malinda Shackleford too. I enjoyed working with the Junior Shoppe so much that I offered to help with the Junior Shoppe at the New York State Conference this September.
I also joined the CC Pages Facebook group and have had a great time reading everyone’s posts, asking questions and getting tons of feedback from more seasoned pages, and seeing all the reactions to the Opening Night Ceremony, sessions, and many other happenings. The pages also had a page meeting on Zoom where we got to play a fun bingo game and were visited by the President General. When she entered the meeting, we put on sunglasses and waved our hands and wiggled our fingers showing her how we were shining. Her face lit right up and she laughed so hard. That was a really good time shared by all present.
In addition to the work and socializing, being a page has connected me with so many wonderful young women from all around the country. I look forward to more opportunities to network with them and assist with our Continental Congress next year, hopefully in Washington D.C.