Search the News Archive Search the News Archive

On the March Library page: Friends group bolsters library’s budget, programs; Book Review
2/26/2014 11:07:08 AM

By Tammy Kimberley
Splash Staff Writer

It turns out Friends of Liberty Lake Municipal Library do some heavy lifting, literally, when it comes to championing the library in the community.

Friends members laughed when they said they seriously could use some 6-foot, 200-lb. men to join their committee.

"When you consider there are boxes and boxes of books that need to be moved each month, we need muscles," Friends Vice President Cindy Troxel said. "It would be nice to have some strong arms available."

The non-profit group works to champion and advocate programs of the library, primarily in fundraising for items not included in the library's budget. And the committee is on a mission to build their membership base (with 11 active members currently) to better support events such as the reading program that served 800 children last summer. 

"We're there as a means to attain things not in the budget that enhance the library," Friends President Dianne Murray said.

Library Director Pamela Mogen said the staff could not do many of their special things without the Friends' help in man-hours and fund raising.

"The current group of ladies is the most hard-working, creative and dedicated bunch we've ever had, but they do need help," Mogen said. "More members could make what they already do easier and what they dream to do possible."

Described by themselves as neither quiet nor subdued, the energetic members meet 4 p.m. the last Tuesday of each month to plan for upcoming events, process donations, deal with requests from library staff, and have fun while doing it. Murray said some of the members, such as she and Karol Maier, have a background in education and find this a meaningful way to spend their time.

"I'm a retired educator and helping children is dear to my heart," Maier, who serves as secretary, said. "Plus I enjoy the people I volunteer with." 

There are a variety of ways interested community members can get involved, she said, from donating books (year 2000 and newer) for their sales, becoming a member ($10 per year) or assisting with events such as the upcoming spring tea. 

"A Time for Tea" will take place at noon April 26 at the Meadowwood Technology Campus. With a focus on the library being the heart of the community, Troxel said this year's tea will be full of surprises and "not your norm."

"As a theme, we decided vintage was the way to go-elegant, historic, but simple. You should feel like you're stepping back in time," she said.

Dawn Nelson, author of several western books, will be the guest speaker for the event which is $20 per person. Troxel emphasized that the tea is not just for the older crowd, but for younger ladies as well. 

As the group's largest fundraising event, they are actively soliciting donations in the form of products, services or money to offset their expenses. Silent auction baskets or items from local businesses or library patrons are also welcomed as donations. 

"We're trying really hard to represent the community in this, given that it's the library," Troxel said.


"A Time for Tea"
Hosted by Friends of Liberty Lake Municipal Library
April 26, noon to 2 p.m.
Meadowwood Technology Campus

Author Dawn Nelson will be the guest speaker at this vintage-themed event featuring food, entertainment and a silent auction. Tickets are $20 and are available at the library or by contacting 315-4688.

• • • 

Book Review: ‘Harvest' yields mysterious plot

By Daniel Pringle
Liberty Lake Municipal Library

Jim Crace's Harvest is a subdued historical novel that unfolds at a stately pace. Set in rural England during enclosure, when the commonly held lands were turned to tenant farming, it follows an eventful week in the life of a village upending its established order.

The villagers are bringing in the harvest, a time of hope and celebration as they lay stores by for the coming winter, when a mysterious fire destroys the master's barn. Conveniently, a group of squatters has appeared whom they can blame for this calamity. From there, the drama escalates when the master's horse is slaughtered, a squatter dies, the landowning lord arrives to begin preparations for fencing the commons, and accusations of witchcraft arise as three village women are detained for defying the lord. The actions they take to answer these accusations compel the villagers to a stark decision.

Crace writes from the perspective of Walter Thirsk with an authentic voice mixing archaic vocabulary and contemporary prose. Walter embodies someone stuck in the middle, the master's former sideman who married into the village but remained an outsider, allied to both parties. Even as the modern way of life begins to overtake the old, and new values of progress and prosperity shut out community and cooperation, Walter has faith in another harvest. Though he recognizes the inevitability of change in the face of outside forces, he believes they can survive. "Summer's in retreat," he says, but "rain or shine, the earth abides, the land endures, the soil will persevere forever and a day."

Daniel Pringle is adult services and reference librarian at the Liberty Lake Municipal Library.