Expansion, Picton Gazette

You love us! You really, really love us!

In 31 days, an astounding $70,263 in donations were made in support of the much-anticipated renovation and expansion of Picton Library. After an anonymous donor pledged $50,000 to kickstart a matching library donation challenge, individuals, groups, families, businesses and even Dory the dog was inspired to donate. In just one month, a record-breaking total of $120,263 was raised.

“Quite simply, we’re so proud of our community and overwhelmed by its generosity,” said Alexandra Bake, Library Expansion Committee Chair. “Online, at local libraries, during Love Your Library Tag Day and Comedy Night at the Library, supporters came out in record numbers to get their donations matched.”

We couldn’t have achieved all this if it wasn’t for the dedicated volunteers and library lovers who stepped up to help make October a success. Oriella Stillo recently moved to the county and took charge of the highly successful Comedy Night. Shelley Carroll brought Dory to Consecon library to make a Tag Day donation. Easton and Gilby Lester helped launch the Love Your Library matching campaign by posing for photos in the Picton Library.

The success of Love Your Library fundraising demonstrates building excitement for the new Library. Hank, Pat and Mark Busscher of Picton Home Hardware, Cynthia Peters of From The Farm Cooking School, Picton Dental Centre and Rotary Club of Picton are just a few examples of corporate donors getting involved.

“We’re grateful that the original fireplace and reading room will be restored and a living green wall will be added thanks to named donors. A music recording studio, accessible modern elevator, three meeting rooms and a technology resource centre are also available for sponsorship,” Bake said. “And with December 31 quickly approaching, it’s important to note any donation of $20 or more is eligible for a tax receipt.”

Even though matching month is over, there are still some fun opportunities to support the project before 2019 comes to a close.

On Thurs., Nov 21, local mystery writer Vicki Delany is bringing together a group of talented authors from around the County representing all literary genres: Ryan Aldred, JD Carpenter, Gail Hamilton, Tanya Huff, Shelagh Mathers, Ken Murray, David Simmonds, Laurie Scott, and Ben Thornton. Each author is donating one of their books to be drawn as a door prize. Refreshments will be served! The event will be held at the Picton library, 7-9 p.m. Tickets at peclibrary.org or at the door!

We’re also excited to be a part of the Annual Drake Devonshire Inn Holiday Pop-up Market on Nov. 30 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. You’ll find us near the bonfire selling Library merch and talking expansion plans, plus maybe hosting a fun activity or two. Stay posted! Each vendor will be making a donation to our effort, and with vendors like Carson Arthur, PEC Honey Co. and Kinsip, among others, you really can’t go wrong!

“Picton Library was built thanks to a $10,000 donation made in 1907. Every single gift made to the new Picton Library will ensure that future generations have opportunities to learn, grow, create and thrive in our community,’ added Devon Jones, Chair of the County of Prince Edward Public Library Board.

-Barbara Sweet