First of all, a huge thank you to EVERYONE who responded to my blog post yesterday about the Wells Memorial Library in Upper Jay, NY.
The library lost virtually its entire children’s section in flooding during Hurricane Irene. You can read more – and see some pictures that will break your heart if you love books – here.
There’s also a lot of information about how to help, including a partnership with terrific indie booksellers at The Bookstore Plus. If you call them at 518-523-2950 or visit their website, you can choose a book to donate to the library, and the bookstore will store it for them until they’re ready. Or you can donate to a gift card for the library so librarians can choose books later on. The response, so far, has been amazing, and I’m told the bookstore has more than $700 on that gift card right now. What a great start!
I’m working with Sarah at The Bookstore Plus now on what I hope will be a huge fundraiser for the library. On October 22nd, they’re going to host an evening reception where book lovers of all ages and members of Lake Placid’s vibrant arts community can come purchase books for the library. It’ll include author/illustrator appearances and (we hope) a silent auction of original art from children’s book illustrators. (I just heard from a couple illustrators who have offered to donate, so it looks like this part of the fund raiser is a go!)
If you’re a children’s book illustrator who would like to donate a piece to help this library rebuild after Hurricane Irene, would you please touch base with me, either in a comment or via Facebook or email (kmessner at kate messner dot com) to let me know? I told the bookstore I’d coordinate, so I’ll take your information, pass it along to Sarah, and then the art can be sent directly to the bookstore. They’ll will use the pieces in a big window display before the auction and then all proceeds will be donated directly to the library.
I understand that this is asking a lot…and I’m sure you get many requests each year and have to pick and choose which efforts to support, if you donate art at all. But I thought I’d put the word out, just in case this is a cause that you’d like to get behind. It would be much appreciated by the librarians and the families of this community.
Authors: If you’d like to donate a signed book, that would also be most welcome! Please mark clearly on the envelope “FOR SILENT AUCTION”
Here’s the bookstore address: