Celebrating friends

Jackson County Public Library is spending this week celebrating its Friends of the Jackson County Public Library group as part of the 10th annual celebration of National Friends of the Library Week.

Friends of the Jackson County Public Library was formed in 1977 to support the Seymour Public Library. The organizing officers were Wayne Proell, temporary chairman; Carol Wait, secretary; and Herbert Montgomery, Mr. and Mrs. William Schmitt, Betty Elsner, Judy Michael, Marita Douglas and Leora Topie, all members of the bylaws committee.

Current officers are Teddi Ashcraft, president; January Rutherford, vice president; Nancy Kent, secretary; Sandi Hall, treasurer; and Jim Daily, Joyce Fouts, Linda Jacobsen, Billie Richardson and Ann Schwein, all board members.

Today, the library provides free library services to area residents.

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While public funding covers the costs of salaries for professional staff, utilities and other operational costs, the library often looks to private sources of funding for a portion of the budget each year. The bulk of that annual private funding comes from Friends of the Jackson County Public Library through its book sales and special events, such as the Oktoberfest parking lot.

In 2015, the organization has donated more than $9,000 to provide special programming, such as the summer reading program; Abraham Lincoln impersonator David Wolfe; video games for all three libraries; Seymour Rotary Club’s “I Like Me” books; seasonal window painting at the Seymour Library; and more.

Friends of the Jackson County Public Library always is looking for more volunteers to help support the library. Some current opportunities include:

November quarterly book sale: Setup begins on the morning of Nov. 6. Volunteers, especially those who can lift boxes of books, are needed to arrange the books on tables by subject. The sale opens with a preview for Friends of the Jackson County Public Library members from 4 to 5:30 p.m. Nov. 6 and from 9:30 to 10 a.m. Nov. 7. The sale is open to the public from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 7.

Ongoing sales: Donations come in daily and have to be processed. The Seymour Library Book Nook shelves are stocked weekly to ensure a good selection. Occasional boxes of books also are sent to the Crothersville and Medora libraries for their sales carts. To volunteer to help with these flexible activities, contact Teddi Ashcraft at [email protected] or January Rutherford at [email protected].

Even if you can’t volunteer for one of these events, you can help by becoming a member of the Friends of the Jackson County Public Library.

Applications are available at the checkout desk at the Seymour, Crothersville and Medora libraries, online at web.myjclibrary.org/libraryinfo/friends/Join%20the%20Friends.pdf or by mailing your tax-deductible membership fee to Friends of the Jackson County Public Library, 303 W. Second St., Seymour, IN 47274.

Membership categories are member, $5; family, $10; patron, $25; benefactor, $50; or any amount you wish to contribute.