Friends of Library raise money for youth reading programs
Ryan Summerlin May 29, 2012
Nancy Abbott of Kremmling has served as the president of the Friends of the Grand County Library for four years, with two additional years as a member of the board.”We really emphasize the children’s programs,” she said. “It is possibly the best thing we can do for children; to get them a good start in reading. “Moms can come to our story hours and learn how to work with their children to help develop their reading skills, and their love of libraries.”All the money raised by the Friends goes to programs and materials offered by the various Grand County libraries, Abbott said. The Friends of the Library is a nation-wide organization with its sole purpose to raise money for libraries. “Summer is the busiest time for the Friends,” she said. “Our books sales are all tied to each town’s events.”Upcoming events with Friend’s book sales are Hot Sulphur Days, Kremmling Days, Granby’s Fourth of July parade, Art Affair in Winter Park, and Grand Lake’s Buffalo BBQ weekend. About 80 percent of the book sale money goes to the individual library. The other 20 percent goes to the prevailing district need, she said.The Friends’ biggest fundraiser is the Top of the Rockies at the Grand Lake Yacht Club, scheduled this year for June 24. “Some years we made $14,000, but with the economy, it’s been a bit less.” she said. This is a chance for the public to go into the private club, which is a members-only organization. “It’s a great event with wine tasting, hors d’oeuvres, and music.”The “Tops” are table tops based on a book theme. Additional revenue streams for the Friends is membership dues. Members help with book sales and work in libraries shelving books, Abbott said. In 2011 they raised $36,611 to be used for summer reading programs, children’s summer entertainment, and family movie nights. Every October the Friends hold their annual meeting to choose officers.”I hope someone will take over as president,” Abbott said. “We need new ideas.” The requirements to be an officer: “Anyone who loves libraries and knows how the board works” will make a great president. Meetings are once a month in the mornings. “The staff at the libraries are great,” said Abbott. “Lauren and Emily at Kremmling say hi to everyone that walks in.The library is like a big hug. They are so welcoming with fireplaces and gas stoves.”The staff is trained with ebook downloads and getting books from around Colorado through Marmot and Prospector, she said.In 1995 the board of the Grand County Library established a special district. Funding is provided to the library system by a mill levy. Property tax value affects the actual amount that is collected to fund library operations.