By Margaret Mager, President, Friends of the Bronxville Public Library
"Libraries raised me." ― Ray Bradbury
Dec. 13, 2017: For Chiara O’Connor, one of Bronxville’s greatest resources is the library, and she is especially appreciative of its programming, which keeps her children, ranging in age from 2 to 12, returning time and again.
And George Lekovic agrees that the library programs are a big draw for his three young children. What residents may not know, however, is that the vast majority of the library’s reading, music, and enrichment programs are underwritten by the Friends of the Bronxville Public Library ("FOBPL"), including its popular museum pass program that provides free passes to the Frick, the Guggenheim, Storm King Art Center, and the New York Historical Society, among others.
While 8.6 percent of village taxes goes toward supporting the library, “What makes our library stand out, and enhances the quality of life in our village for residents of all ages, are the extra funds raised by the Friends,” said Mayor Mary Marvin.
Greg Wirszyla, director of the library, wholeheartedly agrees. “Through their fundraising efforts, they provide a tremendous amount of financial support, allowing us to fulfill our role in serving our patrons with the latest e-Books for our collection and in providing a wide array of programs for all ages.” “The money they raise also allows the library to offer extra services such as our Kindle lending program and museum pass program.”
Founded in 1986 by a group of civic-minded Bronxville residents interested in literature and poetry, FOBPL underwrites such popular programs as Dawny Dew Music, Summer Reading, ACT/SAT Prep Workshops, and the Adult Coloring Group. FOBPL also funds the repair and restoration of furniture and art and the purchase of new equipment.
Typically, nearly 400 donors support the FOBPL, many of whom are longtime contributors, but the number of donors and amount raised has fluctuated from year to year. In 2016, $41,000 was raised but, so far this year, only $34,000 has been raised from 260 donors. A year-end solicitation was recently mailed to previous donors, and the hope is that, with their support, the programming can continue at the same high level.
“Akin to the holiday spirit, our beautiful Bronxville Public Library is a true gift to ALL in our community--it is an absolute gem for all ages, from our youngest tots to our precious elderly,” said Rose Crawford. “Our family has been both an avid consumer and supporter of the Friends of the Bronxville Public Library for our 23 years in Bronxville, and we have greatly appreciated the wonderful resources and environments offered for all ages. The fact that we have this wonderful resource in our community, for all to access, is an absolute holiday gift! Hopefully, we can all help keep this gift alive for years to come!”
Mayor Mary Marvin added, “I applaud this group of volunteers for their work on behalf of our village and library and urge you to make a donation to the Friends. I do, and I hope you will too.”
Gifts can be dropped off or mailed to the library or made online at FOBPL.org/donate.
For more information, contact
Pictured here: Bronxville Public Library.
Photo by A. Warner