Friends of the Cedar Falls Public Library
A library is not a luxury but one of the necessities of life.
Henry Ward Beecher, 1813-1887
Message from FOTL President, Maelou Baxter
On my desk, I have a copy of the first page of the Articles of Incorporation of the Friends of the Cedar Falls Public Library, Inc. It’s stamped by the office of the Iowa Secretary of State, and the date is April 19, 1982! The Friends of the Cedar Falls Library organization is 30 years old!
Just look at the progress in those 30 years! The library has moved from the old Carnegie Library building to the gorgeous new building we now occupy. In Fiscal Year 2012, the circulation was 385,257 – a record-breaking year! The collection has changed to include not only books but also many non-print items. Services, especially electronic services, have been vastly expanded. For example, thirty years ago, who would have imagined that we would be able to “borrow” eBooks and audiobooks through the OverDrive and NEIBORS programs and download free music through FREEGAL!
The money generated from Friends’ memberships, gifts, and most of all, our wonderful Book Nook, is used to support library programming. Our donations supplement, but do not supplant, the library’s public support. We do not buy items for the collection. We do not pay the utility bill. We do not pay salaries. We support summer reading programs such as those this summer--Dream Big: READ for the youth, Read Big, Play Big for teens and Music Among the Books for adults. The programming we support would not be possible at this level without the Friends. Throughout the year we also support author visits, classes and presentations.
Visible and tangible Friends’ support in the library are the youth area Playhouse, the Young Adult Area furnishings and the Book Page publication, which is available to everyone. This list is just a sampling. None of these resources would be in our library without the Friends.
We give not only our money, but, just as importantly, we give our time and talents. Volunteers shelve books, serve as Friends Board members, work in the Book Nook, help with the outside plantings, prepare food for special events, coordinate book discussion groups, and travel to local daycare centers with Traveling Tales--the list goes on...
The Friends, library director Sheryl McGovern, and other library staff continue to work together to take the library’s story to the community. Our objective is to make Cedar Falls citizens more aware of this marvelous resource, the quality of its offerings and services, and the importance of the library to life in Cedar Falls. Please contact us if you would be willing to let us share our story with you and other members of your service organizations.
Friends’ Membership Chair, Joan Duea, is working hard to increase our membership again this year. We invite you to participate in that effort by renewing your membership or becoming a new member, and then by recruiting at least one new or just-hasn’t-gotten-around-to-renewing member. October is the month for our annual membership campaign, but members are welcome any time. Brochures are available at the library, or you can fill out and submit a membership form online and then mail your contribution to the Friends.
Happy 30th Birthday. Thank you for being a Friend, and let us continue this “necessary” work!
The Friends of the Cedar Falls Public Library organized in 1982 to promote the resources, services, and needs of the library. The Friends of the Cedar Falls Public Library cultivate a love of learning and celebrate the joy of reading by supporting library services for the community.
- To stimulate the use of the library's resources and services
- To focus public attention on the library
- To maintain an association of persons interested in libraries
- To help fund materials and programs for the library
- To provide volunteer services in support of the mission of the library
For Friends information, contact Maelou Baxter at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the CFPL at 319-273-8643.