Friends News and Notes – April 2009

Remembering Elaine Christofferson

Our organization was saddened last May to learn of the passing of Elaine Christofferson. Elaine was a long time FMPL board member, treasurer, and book sale coordinator who brought enthusiasm, professionalism, and optimism to the Friends and any work she did. From the routine work of keeping the accounts, working with the bookstore group, helping with mailings, and scheduling booksale volunteers, to long hours on Sunday afternoons packing boxes at the end of the three day sales, Elaine was always willing to take on tasks to help the Friends of the Library. Elaine also contributed to the community in other ways, through her involvement with other civic organizations and her church. Even after her formal retirement from the Friends Board Elaine maintained a link with the organization, helping out when she was able. Special thanks to Doris Farmiloe, Wilfred Pierick, Mae Nelson, Thom Boykoff, Frances Clark, Jane Roughen, Charlotte Richardson, Marvel and Jane Anderson, Thomas and Karen Christofferson, Budi and Julie Nara, Edyth Harb, Arlene Moberg, Arlene Hart, the Women’s Club of Madison and anyone else who sent notes of condolence and remembrance or made a donation to the Friends in memory of Elaine. This year part of the Friends donation to the library will be made in honor of Elaine to enhance the collection of mystery books – one of the types of books that she most enjoyed.

Volunteers – the Heart of the Friends

Many organizations make a special effort at this time of year to recognize the contributions of volunteers. The Friends, branch Friends groups, and many library activities and services would not exist or would be significantly diminished without the support and active participation of many volunteers. Friends volunteers pack and sort donated materials for book sales, serve as sales clerks, assemble mailings, manage membership files, plan and staff special events, coordinate fundraising, and generally support and advocate for the library in the community. Other individuals work in the basements and backrooms or directly with library staff members at various locations around the city sorting, shelving, filing, mailing, looking out for the needs of special populations, and otherwise contributing time and energy to help ensure high quality library services for everyone.

Volunteers provide services that enrich the community and constitute the “heart” of many organizations. We thank all of you for your dedication and the donation of time and energy.

FMPL Joins the Dane County Time Bank

The Dane County Timebank is part of a national network that links individuals, social service organizations, public and private institutions, food producers, neighborhoods, local businesses and arts groups to make it easier to work together. Timebanking is an exchange system. People help each other and receive credits for their service. Anyone who helps another member earns one time dollar per hour, which they can then spend on an hour of service from anyone else in the network. As a member of the Dane County network our Friends group can offer our volunteers the opportunity to join the bank and earn “time dollars” that can be exchanged for materials or services offered by other members. Go to for information or to register.

Booksale News

The February sale resulted in revenue of just over $2600. Thanks to the efforts of Ann Falconer for finding and overseeing the many volunteers who worked at the sale.

2009-10 Board Candidates

The tentative slate of officers and directors for the 2009-10 fiscal year, with terms beginning at the next annual meeting, includes Janice Zmrazek as President, Ann Falconer as Vice President, Karenne Giguere as Treasurer, and Annie Rauh as Secretary. If you are interested in serving on the board for the 2009-10 fiscal year or want to nominate someone you know who would be willing to serve contact Gary Poulson at 233-0914.

Annual Meeting

The annual meeting of the Friends of the Madison Public Library, along with a volunteer recognition event, has tentatively been scheduled for the first part of May. Information about the date, time, and program will be sent in a separate mailing as soon as plans have been finalized.

Book Store Beat

Donations Needed!

If you are moving, downsizing, or cleaning a library or music, movie, or art collection please consider donating these materials to the Friends. At this time we are particularly in need of good quality and gently used books of any genre but are also grateful to accept maps, CDs, DVDs, videos, record albums, specialty magazines, or prints. Materials can be brought to the library at 201 West Mifflin and left on the collection cart on the first floor near the reference desk. Pick up of materials can also be arranged – call Janice at 833-6310.

Sales Clerks Needed

The Friends Book Store in the Central Library is always in need of volunteer sales clerks. Two hour shifts are standard but hours can fit your schedule, training will be provided, and you will have the first chance to see new materials. Sign up in the Book Store or contact Lynn Bucher at 827-5974 or 358-8271. To register your interest in these or any other volunteer opportunities with the Friends of the Madison Public Library you may also check the appropriate box on your Friends membership application or check for volunteer opportunities at the United Way site –

Library Services Enhanced by Friends Grants

Friends donations supported a number of staff-initiated projects in 2008. These projects were intended to meet the unique needs of particular neighborhoods or community groups or provide special interest services. The January 2009 edition of Friends News and Notes featured a description of the materials on emergent literacy distributed to the libaries with Parenting Collections. Two more successful projects include:
• Portable Sound System – Heidi Marzden reports that the sound system that was purchased for the South Madison and Meadowridge Branches has been so well utilized at the Meadowridge Library that staff have decided to keep it there and purchase a separate system for the South Madison Library. Examples of programs that have used the sound system include youth open mic nights and poetry readings. The kids and teens love being “on stage” with a microphone and sound system and it has enhanced the experience of showcasing their talents.
• Board Game Club – Librarian Margie Navarre-Saaf notes that “the Lakeview Branch Game Club has been extremely successful in providing an opportunity for youth to play board games in a fun and safe environment and has provided the additional benefit of creating more positive and respectful interactions between staff and many of the kids. We are currently averaging about 15 kids each week. We spent a portion of the grant on a variety of board games for different age groups and abilities. We changed Youth Librarians in the middle of this project, but the current Librarian is in the process of purchasing more board games based on the ages, interests, and recommendations of our current participants.”

Dates and Updates

Board Meeting Schedule

There will be brief meeting of the FMPL board of directors just before the annual meeting, tentatively scheduled for early May. A schedule of meetings for 2009-10 will be set in June. Meetings generally are held in the central library downtown. All FMPL Board meetings are open to the public. Call the Library office, 266-6342, or check – to confirm meeting dates and times.

Book Club Cafe

This annual event, a collaborative effort by Madison Friends groups coordinated by Orange Schroeder from Monroe Street, this year will take place on Tuesday May 19 at Olbrich Gardens, starting at 7 p.m. The featured speaker is Lesley Kagen, author of Whistling in the Dark and Land of a Hundred Wonders. This year is the 12th annual Book Club Cafe.

Book Sales

A “Grow Your Library” sale will be April 23-25. (See the flyer included with this mailing for further details and contact Ann Falconer for information, or to volunteer). All FMPL sales take place over three days, with the first day being a member’s-only preview from 12-6 (open to all Madison library Friends from any location). Sales for the 2009-10 fiscal year are planned for September 17, 18, 19, 2009, February 11, 12, 13 2010, and April 22, 23, 24 1010. Book sale information and dates can also be found on the Madison Public Libary Calendar.


The Foundation is promoting the library through presentations to organizations in the community, planning a major fundraising event for the fall, gearing up for fundraising for the new South Madison Branch, and waiting for the city to determine which, if any, of the proposals for a new or remodeled downtown library will be chosen.

Friends Book Store

Current hours are generally 11 to 1 Monday to Friday and 10 to 2 on Saturday. The shop may also be open from 1 to 4 on Sundays from October through April if the Schwab Library building is open.

Library Events

Check for information about programs and events at any branch at


The tentative date for the fall Friends mailing will be September 2, about two weeks before the fall booksale. Mailings typically are held at the downtown library from 12:00 to 3:00 but occasionally require additional work after 5:00. Call Janice Zmrazek, 833-6310, for information. Friends volunteers may be asked to come and help with mailings for the Library or the Library Foundation.

Member Card

Persons whose 2009-10 Friends membership dues were processed before April 6 should receive a member card soon. Bring the card with you to gain access to the Friends book sale during members-only hours and other members-only events.


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