Library foundation imagines successful fundraiser

The Shenandoah County Library Foundation has almost reached the $30,000 goal for its annual fundraiser, but a last-minute push this February is still very much needed, said Robert “Sandy” Whitesides, director of the Shenandoah County Library System.

“That money is used for general support of the library system,” Whitesides said. It supplements money the library receives through state and county taxes, and helps the library foundation fund programs it normally wouldn’t be able to fund, he said, such as iPads for all six locations of the library system, and enhance other services, which include a designated endowment for the purchasing of new books.

Recently the foundation used funds from previous campaigns for an expansion to the Basye-Orkney Springs Library and a upgrade to the circulation desk of the New Market Area Library.

The system also includes Fort Valley Library, Mount Jackson Community Library, Strasburg Community Library and the Shenandoah County Library in Edinburg.

The theme of this year’s fundraiser is “Read. Imagine. Explore.”

“We think it really captures what we’re about,” Whitesides said. Reading is naturally what comes to mind when people think of a library, he said. “That reading leads to imagination, [which] leads to exploration.”

Started in the years after the county library opened in 2000, the fundraiser is the foundation’s largest yearly moneymaker. Smaller fundraisers have included a one-time partnership with Pizza Hut and a Bowling for Books campaign with Shenandoah County Public Schools, which Whitesides said he would be happy to continue.

Last year’s fundraising campaign brought in $30,000, and Whitesides said it seemed like a good amount to shoot for again this year.

Whitesides wasn’t sure of the exact amount raised so far, but said he feels confident the foundation will succeed in its efforts again this year.

“I think it’s pretty close,” he said.

Donate to the Shenandoah County Library Foundation by picking up a packet at any of the six county library locations. Checks should be made payable to the Shenandoah County Library Foundation. Or donate online at http://countylib.org/about-us/foundation.

For more information, call 540-984-8200 or email swhitesides@countylib.org. Gifts to the Shenandoah County Library Foundation are tax deductible.

Contact staff writer Josette Keelor at 540-465-5137 ext. 176, or jkeelor@nvdaily.com