Expansion, Picton Gazette

Since the announcement of up to $100,000 in matching funding just a few days ago the response has been exactly what the anonymous donor envisioned – inspired! In less than one week our fund has grown by $19,112 and doubled this translates into $38,224. The community’s generous and wholehearted support for this project is undeniable.

Our goal for breaking ground is June 2019. That will be fast upon us. Since the outset of our campaign the committee chair Alexandra Bake has reiterated the library’s determination to make our campaign one of short duration. The library is a community service that is free and available to all.

For a short while to make this asset better equal to the task of serving the community we have deviated from that principle. As Alexandra says everyone contributing a little will make this happen. At the end of the day when the community has donated to double the size of the Picton library branch, all of those benefactors and volunteers will feel a sense of ownership. Even if you can’t donate or volunteer, spreading the word about the project is another great way to contribute. Speak to any municipal candidates who come to your door about how the library has helped you or someone in your family.

My week started with a meeting of the Friends of the Wellington Branch Library. Among other things they were planning their annual Pumpkinfest book sale. This sale is huge and the Friends have faithfully put it together for probably 15 years. As a result of this and other projects the group has made many notable contributions to the Wellington branch. The benches, table and landscaping, the attractive front and side gardens (that they maintain), the circulation desk, a lecture series and guest author visits – all this is made possible through their hard work.

On Tuesday morning the Wellington Friends unanimously voted to make a donation to the Picton branch expansion! I was very touched. I know how much they value the Wellington branch and how hard they work to support it. They have a deep loyalty to “their” branch, but clearly they also recognize the nature of our library. It is one library with six branches and this expansion will benefit all of Prince Edward County library patrons.

The rest of the week continued as it started. Alexandra’s idea to seek a donor who would match donations provided a short-term goal for the committee and added incentive to the community. If you are interested in naming opportunities, contact me by phone at 613–476-5962 for more details.

We already have a sponsor for the periodicals reading area and the green wall. Colleen Green’s book club took up a collection at their meeting. Colleen delivered an envelope of cash to the library and issued a challenge. Her book club is challenging the many other book clubs in Prince Edward County to do the same and to top the $220 that her club donated.

There will be many opportunities during the month of October to help out the project. October is Canadian Library Month and the third week of October is Ontario Public Library Week. There will be many special events during library week – check our October newsletter or our website at peclibrary.org. This year during the month that celebrates libraries we will be holding several fundraising events. Tickets for “Vicki Delaney and Linwood Barclay Conversation” are almost gone. It takes place Friday, Oct. 12, at 7 p.m. in the Picton library. Tickets for the gala event Night at the Library, planned for Sunday, Oct. 28 at the Picton library are now available. They are $50 each and can be purchased at all of the library branches. On Oct. 18, 19, and 20 watch for volunteers at various locations selling tags in support of our fund.

In closing, a message from our hardworking fundraising chair Alexandra Bake: “I am thrilled by the response in the first week! Many, many thanks to everyone who has contributed so far. I look forward to celebrating a $200,000 jump in our thermometer by the end of October!”

-Barbara Sweet