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BookFriends would like to invite BookFriends members as well as the community at large to its seventh Annual Meeting on January 31, 2005. The evening will begin with refreshments from 7 - 7:30 p.m., followed by a brief business meeting from 7:30 - 8:30 p.m. topics will include past and future fund-raisers and a discussion of BookFriends' services in support of the library, including shelf-reading, garden maintenance and homebound delivery. The meeting will conclude with recognition of volunteers who have contributed an extraordinary amount of time and energy to the organization.

The holidays have come and gone, and we hope that BookFriends activities played a small part in your enjoyment of them.

We began the season early on November 12th with the Holiday Marketplace sponsored jointly by BookFriends and the New Hartford Business Council. Thanks to the efforts of BookFriends Board members and Business Council members Allison Bannerman and Phyllis Webb, the library was transformed into a shopping wonderland. Over a dozen Business Council members showcased their products, merchandise and services and generously donated to BookFriends samplings of their wares for a teacup auction. The auction raised $1,200.00 for the librarys new shelving project, a respectable amount considering our turnout was affected by an early snowstorm.

Fast forward to the first weekend of December, a busy one for our volunteers. On Saturday, December 4th, we sponsored a seasonal jazz concert fund-raiser at St. Johns Episcopal Church in Pine Meadow (Thank-you, Rev. Low). The church provided just the right setting for the Eric Mintel Quartet to present their program A Charlie Brown Christmas. With the help of volunteers Muriel DiGiro, Helga and Werner Bochow, Corinne and Robin Rebillard, Peggy Grohs, Denise Devins and Marilyn Ottone, the wine and cheese reception and concert went off smoothly. The Quartet as well as audience members were so pleased with the evening they asked that we do it again next December. (We think we will.) Best of all, we netted approximately $1,100.00 for our library.

The annual Light New Hartford event was held the following Sunday evening. Volunteer Janice Place, her husband, Charlie, and daughter, Emma, did a wonderful job decorating the library outside and in to prepare for BookFriends cookie and cider offering after the tree lighting downtown. Wreaths were hung on the front doors and white lights twinkled from the porch columns. A lovely illuminated basket of greens was placed at the back door. Inside the library was decorated with greens and candles, a fresh holly tree (courtesy of Mrs. Krzys) and potted pink calendulas. Thanks to Patty Kierys for re-decorating the wreath over the fireplace, to the Womens Club for providing the cookies, to BookFriends volunteers for donations of cider and to the flute chorale Harmonically Yours for a festive Christmas serenade. Last but not least, thanks to the volunteers who hosted the event, including Annette and Tony Lombardi, Martha Steenburgh, Debbie Dolan, Marilyn Ottone and Jo An Smith.

As busy as December was, BookFriends is looking forward to an equally busy and, we hope, profitable 2005. Although weve had to cancel our plans for a Chocolate Tasting fund-raiser at Valentines Day, we are going ahead with a sale of romance novels at a bargain price in honor of the holiday. Look for our colorfully wrapped bundles of books by popular authors like Rosamund Pilcher, Nora Roberts, Barbara Cartland, etc. for sale ($5 per bundle) at the library in February.

In June, BookFriends will once again sponsor two popular annual events/fund-raisers: the Used Book Sale and Music Under the Tent.  The book sale may be a two-day event this year for the first time. Stay tuned for more details. The concert will take place on Saturday, June 11th, following the close of the book sale. Mark your calendars

One last thing We hope that you received within the past couple of months a letter from the chair and vice-chair of BookFriends asking you to either renew your membership or become a member for the first time. If you havent returned your application form as yet and youd like to do so, were still accepting them. If youve misplaced your application, you can pick one up at the library. We hope that volunteering on behalf of your wonderful library will be one of your New Years resolutions!

Marilyn Ottone, Chair

BookFriends is an organization created to be the The Licia & Mason Beekley Community Library's community connection. Founded in the summer of 1998, the volunteers have accomplished many wonderful things! The money raised by BookFriends is used to fund special projects and programs, such as the museum passes, the newsletter, new collections, special equipment, and summer reading.

If you would be interested in joining the Bookfriends and helping with any of the following events or committees:

    Used Book Sale
    Gardening Committee
    New Hartford Day (Sept.)
    Hospitality Committee
    Pre-School Delivery Service

please fill out a membership form at the library.

Members of the BookFriends Board are: Marilyn Ottone, Chair; Annette Lombardi, Vice-chair; Janice Place, Secretary; Kathy Worley, Treasurer; Allison Bannerman, Anita Baxter, Muriel DiGiro, Sue Hall, Nancy Linton, Ann Palmer, Janice Place, Corrine Rebillard, Caren Ross, Meg Schmidt, Martha Steenburgh, Lee Tangarone, Meredith Tiedemann, Phyllis Webb, and Jame Whitney .

Marilyn Ottone, Chair

BookFriends utive Committee