2008 was a very successful year for the Friends of the Sawyer Free Library. Membership in the Friends has continued to increase. We have expanded our funding of projects for the Library, our participation in library activities and outreach to the community. The Board of the Friends is continuing to work to increase membership and seek additional members for the board.
When the Library received damage in the December, 2007 fire, the Friends board paid the $2500 dollar insurance deductible allowing the Library to proceed with repairs at no cost. We also purchased tables for the Library which are being used for functions, including the Friends library book sale, eliminating the need to rent tables. In addition, we purchased a speaker system for the Library.
The Friends continues to provide funds for the Books for Babies program, and to fund museum passes. We funded a children’s face painting program at the Book and Bake Sale. Members of the Friends Board and other Friends of the Library are very active in delivering books to those who love to read but can’t get to the Library.
The fifth annual plant sale organized and run by Sharon Pablo, with flower donations from others, was very successful. The book sale again was held in the Friend Room with a presale event on Friday evening for Friends members. The event would not be possible without the efforts of many of the Friends members and other lovers of the Library. The entire event was a very successful fundraiser for the Friends and the Library.
We continue to sell T-Shirts and book darts at the Library and at library events, along with baked goods at the book sale. This year we developed and purchased book bags imprinted with a detail from a Fitz Henry Lane painting from the library's collection. The bag has been very popular and serves as a good advertisement for the Sawyer Free Library. Mayor Kirk distributed a number of bags at a regional mayor’s event. It was a very popular gift, which certainly promotes Gloucester and its Sawyer Free Library.
The Library is one of Gloucester’s most treasured resources and the Board of the Friends is very pleased to be providing support and funding for the Sawyer Free Library and its programs.
Peter Jenner, Chair