Group forming to help support Hampshire’s Ella Johnson Library
By Jeanie Mayer For The Courier-News October 23, 2012 9:02AM
Updated: November 26, 2012 6:49AM
HAMPSHIRE — A small gathering of people brought together by their love of books met at the Ella Johnson Memorial Public Library on a recent evening to discuss a new venture that will give residents a chance to support the library in new ways.
The meeting was led by library Director Carol Schrey, who has been with the library for the past four years. Kate Tamms came to the meeting as a library board member liaison.
“I would have come anyway because I always wanted to be a part of a library friends group,” Tamms said.
Schrey said the Friends of the Ella Johnson Library would be an independent entity from the library and do “fun things” such as organize fundraising events and book sales and determine where those funds might be allocated.
“The library board handles budget, personnel, and things like that,” Schrey said.
Those in attendance were eager and began brainstorming ideas about where to hold the next book sale, noting the library was a bit too small for the event last year. They also threw in ideas that might draw adult patrons to some events like a wine and cheese tasting.
Schrey said the Friends organization should be structured with a board of directors, officers and a set of bylaws that governs the group. She also would like to see the group obtain a 501(c)3 designation as a not-for-profit organization.
“Some of the people will want to be involved in fundraising for the group and decide how to allocate funds. Others might form a pool of volunteers for the library to draw on for special activities,” Schrey said.
Most of those in attendance cited their love of reading and a desire to give back to the library and the community as their reasons for joining the group.
Naomi Blackburn is a Burlington resident and self-proclaimed avid reader. She said she wanted to get involved with the library more.
“I am really looking at ways to use my MBA in ways I can give back. I love the library,” Blackburn said.
The group agreed to meet again at 7 p.m. Dec. 3 at the library to begin planning the 2013 book sale.
Anyone interested in joining the group is welcome to attend the meeting.