Learning Center Grand Opening
The Friends of the Library hosted the grand opening of the new Harald Haug Library Learning Center on Saturday, August 18, 2018. Seven Friends volunteers led tours of the new facility from noon until 3:00 p.m. Event chairperson, Judi Collins, said 222 people took tours of the new meeting space, kitchen, technology center and upstairs conference room. Three Friends volunteers served refreshments from the new kitchen, and by the end of the tours at 3:30, there was only one gift-bag of home-baked cookies remaining and no lemonade. 100% of all our visitors were impressed with the stunning new addition to our library.
At 4:00, there was a ribbon-cutting ceremony, followed by our library director, Jeremy Skinner, making a short speech. When Jeremy introduced himself, the crowd erupted in applause in appreciation of his non-stop work in spearheading and directing this project.
Friends president, Jim Boyle, introduced best-selling author, Jim Lynch, who spoke to a crowd of over 120 people. His talk focused on how the wild side of the Pacific Northwest inspired and shaped his novels. He also shared his roller coaster writing journey, and his thoughts on the books that have influenced him. He was warm, personable, and funny, and during the question and answer time, one 12-year girl asked him if he was a comedian! Judging from the applause, laughter, and questions posed to Jim, this author talk was a huge success for our inaugural event in the new Learning Center.
Annual Book Sale
The Friends Book and Bake Sale takes place every year over Presidents’ Day weekend, Friday-Monday. One of the big perks of joining the Friends of Curry Public Library is gaining early admittance to the Book Sale on Friday night; non-members are not admitted to the sale until 9:00 a.m. Saturday.
Annual Month-long Silent Auction
The Friends started the annual Month-Long Silent Auction in 2010, and it has become our most lucrative fundraiser, pulling in more than $7,083.00 in 2019. In March, an appeal is sent to all Friends’ members and the Gold Beach community, requesting donations of items that are new or in like-new condition. Something that is taking up space in folks’ closets, spare bedrooms, or garages (a gift they never used, an impulse purchase they regretted, a piece of furniture that doesn’t fit) may be just the thing someone else wants. Fifty useful, unique or fun items are on display in the library for the entire month of May, and the public is invited to bid… and bid often!
Annual “Just Desserts” Dessert Auction
The Friends started the “Just Desserts Dessert Auction” as a grand finale to our Month-long Silent Auction in 2010, and it has become one of the most fun events of our calendar year. We recruit fabulous desserts from thirteen-fourteen people who are renowned for their baking expertise and creativity. The desserts are auctioned off by Reverend Tim Brueckner, who is funnier than a stand-up comedian, and a master at coaxing big bucks out of his audience. The record to date is $4,320 for fourteen desserts in 2018.
Annual Party in the Park Booth
The Friends and the Rotary Club of Gold Beach have partnered to put on “Party in the Park” since 2005. Other local non-profits joined in 2015 to make it a free community-wide event for children. Every year a different theme is selected, and the Friends decorate our booth to match the theme…Dinosaurs, Legos, Jungle Book, Super Heroes.
Annual Community Holiday Bazaar Booth
The community holiday bazaar is held the Friday and Saturday before Thanksgiving. Twenty non-profits, including the Friends of Curry Public Library, combine their efforts to determine a theme for the event, make and sell Christmas swags to offset the booths’ costs, host a competition for the best decorated booth (according to the theme), and provide a complimentary tea table for the shoppers. In 2015 the Friends decorated their the booth whimsically for the “Nautical and Nice Christmas” theme, and tied for first place, winning $75.00 with their “Seas and Greetings” booth! The theme for the 2016 Bazaar was “Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice,” and the Friends took second place $50.00 with “Read, read as fast as you can…can you read as fast as the Gingerbread Man?” The Friends won first place with their “Storybook Christmas” themed booth in 2018.
The eight members of the Grant Writing Work Group (Judi Collins, Sandy Grummon, Bryan Moe, Nancy Rogers, Terry Shannon, Jeremy Skinner, Phoebe Skinner, and Mary Uhlir) attended a 20 hour “Learn By Doing Grant Writing Workshop” in the spring of 2016, and the group developed three grant proposals as part of their class work. Since 2015, the Friends have applied for and received the following grants:
- $4,800 technical assistance grant from The Ford Family Foundation to hire consultant Dr. Meredith Howell (June 2015)
- $1,200 grant from the Oregon Community Foundation for re-designing the Friends’ website (October, 2015)
- $20,000 grant from the Oregon Community Foundation for construction of the Harald Haug Library Learning Center (May, 2016)
- $250,000 grant from The Ford Family Foundation for construction of the HHLLC (July, 2016)
- $50,000 grant from The Collins Foundation for construction of the HHLLC (October, 2016)
George Converse, who has an extensive programming background, is the technical lead of the Website Management Work Group. Ali Van Otterloo, Bryan Grummon, Jeremy Skinner, and Sandy Grummon take turns updating the website on a monthly basis. It was a group effort from May 2016 through September 2016, but once everyone was comfortable with the WordPress software, each Work Group member has taken responsibility for updating the site every fourth month.
- The Work Group members received training from the website designer in May 2016
- The group is committed to changing the rotating photos on home page, and adding the current treasurer’s reports, minutes and agendas on a monthly basis
- The Landscaping Work Group maintains areas around the library that are not covered in the library’s landscape maintenance contract. Barbara Johnson and Linda Stokes volunteered to head this effort, and Terry Shannon has recently joined them.
Friends host a Holiday Party every December instead of having a monthly meeting. A theme is selected…usually the same theme as the Holiday Bazaar so we are able to use many of the same decorations. A potluck lunch is arranged in the large meeting space, library director, Jeremy Skinner, gives an overview of the past year, some years awards are handed out to every member, and a wrapped Book Exchange culminates the luncheon.
- Library Mortgage Burning Party (July 1, 2015)
- Harald Haug Library Learning Center Launch (January 23, 2016)
- Library employee/volunteer appreciation breakfast (September 23, 2016)
- Grand Opening of the Harald Haug Library Learning Center (August 18, 2018)
Bryan Moe chaired and cheered the Website Design Work Group from their first meeting in early September 2015 until the site was ready to launch in March 2016. The group (Bryan Moe, George Converse, Jeremy Skinner, and Sandy Grummon) met weekly and broke the huge project into bite-sized chunks, accomplishing the following:
- Bought URL: friendsofcurrypubliclibrary.org
- Determined how the site should look in a general sense, reducing the major categories to 4 buttons
- Decided the site should be linked to the library’s calendar
- Created an updated donor list to appear on far right column of every page
- Wrote the entire content
- Worked with the Friends’ Board of Directors to select the photos for the website
- Hired Anneliese Dehner to create the new site using WordPress software
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