MAY 14
Everything sold out! See you next year!

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Friends of the Falls Library Spring Newsletter

“Spring drew on…and a greenness grew over those brown beds, which, freshening daily, suggested the thought that Hope traversed them at night, and left each morning brighter traces of her steps.”

—Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre

Hello, Friends of the Falls of Schuylkill Library.  We hope you and your loved ones have been healthy!

As we wish you a Happy Spring, we want to share some news about current Friends Board events and projects.

Spring Plant Sale
Save the date: the Friends will hold a Spring Plant Sale on Saturday, May 14, from 10:00AM to 1:00PM! The sale is headed by Suzanne Penn, the Chair of the FFSL Garden Committee and an experienced, knowledgeable and creative gardener. The sale will take place outside, in our award-winning Midvale Avenue garden. As we get closer to the sale, we will be in touch with more details. Note May 14 on your calendar – you’ll be glad you did!

We know that as we are further into 2022, there are many changes related to the pandemic. As of this writing, Philadelphia  no longer requires masks for indoor activities. Please look for any signs on the doors to the Library that would indicate a change, especially if masks would be required again.

Book Sale
We have news to share: we will not have a Spring Book Sale. We are as sad and crestfallen as you are. I have asked Wendy Moody, our Book Sale Chair, to write about this:

Alas, No Spring Book Saleby Wendy Moody

As much as the Friends of Falls of Schuylkill Library had hoped to hold our traditional Spring Book Sale, the popular Sale will not resume until the Fall.  With the safety of our volunteers and shoppers paramount, the uncertainty of the path Covid would take necessitated us to err on the side of caution for this indoor event.  By necessity, we needed to make this decision early, as the Sale takes much pre-planning – including three weeks of book intake from the public a month before the Sale, as well as another two weeks of sorting books by genre.
Branch Librarian Drew Birden let us know that the City is continuing to allow a relatively small number of persons in the meeting room at a time, understandably without a prediction as to whether this number would increase in time for this often-crowded sale. All things considered, we decided to wait.
Regrettably, we have had to cancel five Book Sales since spring 2020.  Instead, to raise revenue, we initiated our “Buy-a-Brick” campaign which has been a highly-successful – and no contact – fundraiser. 

We are planning a major Book Sale in the Fall, which we plan to hold the Saturday after Thanksgiving – a perfect time to browse for holiday gifts.  More details will be forthcoming.
We extend our thanks to all of you who have phoned and emailed inquiring about donating books during the past two Covid-ridden years of no Book Sales.  We surely understand if you need to donate your books to another facility before the Fall, but if you can hold on to them, we will gratefully accept them in October. We will announce our schedule for donations in the Fall.
In the meantime, please support our outdoor expanded Plant Sale on Saturday, May 14!

Thank you, Wendy, for this announcement.  Many thanks to you and the committee who handle the Book Sales. We are looking forward to the Fall sale as we begin to get back to the events that bring us joy, and the Friends of the Falls Book Sale certainly does that.

Visit the Library!
While we are on the topic of books, let’s talk about the circulation of books and other materials at our Library branch. The Free Library of Philadelphia (FLP) pays close attention to the circulation statistics for all the Branches.  If a Branch is active and has strong circulation of materials (books, audio books, CDs, DVDs, etc.), the FLP knows that a community cares about its Library.

Have you visited the Library recently to borrow some books? Ask a question of the Librarians and Staff? Take out a new DVD perhaps? It is not a stretch to say that visiting the library could be one of your best experiences this week. The Free Library allows card holders to request books and materials and you can have 10 books on request at a time.  It’s a great way to queue up for a bestseller or new movie. Currently I have nine items on hold in case you wondered.

Recently as a part of a baby gift, some Friends and I came together to give a handmade baby quilt and 3 books. Ms. Meredith, our Children’s Librarian, was instrumental in steering us to terrific books and suggested 7 titles. A few weeks ago I had a conversation about audio books with our Branch Librarian, Drew.  When I asked for his suggestions, he recommended Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman. I requested it and it’s now in my car for my listening pleasure.

Head to our Falls Branch – you’ll find great books, audio-books, music CDs and excellent DVDs. Currently at home we are watching “Mare of Easttown,” with “One Night in Miami” to follow.

“Buy a Brick” Progress
Here’s a Spring event for the Friends that will be joyful: if you have read about and/or participated in the “Buy A Brick” fundraiser, the Committee is currently working with the company who will engrave the bricks and with the brick layer who will place them in the brick walkways in the Midvale Avenue garden.  The Committee which has handled this and the MANY details for it has been a cohesive group that defines dedication, organization and cooperation. If you bought a brick, please know the Committee will reach out to you with details of the unveiling.

News from the Board
As a member of the Friends Board for many years and as the President of the Board since the Fall of 2020, I continue to marvel and be grateful for my fellow Board members. We are always looking for ways to support the Falls Branch and the VIPs on the Staff. Drew as Branch Librarian, Ms. Meredith as Children’s Librarian, the Library Assistants and the Municipal Guard have continued to have very full work loads during the pandemic and they continue to deserve our support and appreciation!

Here are some of our current Board initiatives and projects:

  • The Board will be expanding with the addition of a new position and Committee that will focus on Outreach and Community Involvement.
  • We are planning a community and Library patron survey.
  • The FFSL member application is being updated in preparation for the new membership year which begins on July 1, 2022.
  • We are devoting time and energy to projects that we believe will enhance the Building and your experiences there.

How You Can Help
The Friends are always in need of the helping hands of volunteers in our many endeavors and numerous projects throughout the year. If you have considered volunteering with us or would like to donate a few hours for an event, please let us know.  Yes, there are some volunteer jobs that are on-going throughout the year and there are many that happen once a year (the holiday tree sale for example) or twice a year. We would be grateful for your assistance and we promise not to bug you for more help. Please reach out to the general FFSL email  friendsofthefalls@gmail.com and/or the Membership email  membershipffslibrary@gmail.com to let us know how you would like to participate.

Thank you!
As always, thank you from our entire FFSL Board for your support of the Friends and for the Falls of Schuylkill Library.

Martha Fuller
President of the FFSL

Welcome back to the Falls Library!

Here’s the latest from the Falls Library Staff:

Welcome Back!

Starting Monday, September 13 we have new hours. 

In Person Service (you are welcome to browse our collections, borrow materials, us our Express PC for printing, and more)

Mondays & Wednesdays, from 12:00  to 8:00 p.m.
Tuesdays & Thursdays, from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Fridays, from 10:00 a.m to 5:00 p.m.

Materials Pickup (curb-side) will discontinue at this time.

Please remember that there is currently a Masking Mandate in Philadelphia and everyone needs to mask up-regardless of your vaccination status.  It’s a good idea to continue to maintain physical distancing while in the library.

We look forward to seeing you!

Library Funding is No Joke!

Libraries are a vital resource for people of all ages, and they will be especially critical to helping our communities get through and recover from the pandemic. On April 15, the Mayor presented a proposed city budget for the upcoming fiscal year.  It is critical that libraries regain the funding that they lost during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please join us to support increased funding for the Free Library of Philadelphia! 

 You can make calls or send emails to elected officials and/or post on social media to remind them that library funding is no joke! Let them know why you love your library, and why library funding is so important (see suggested social media messages here).

Don’t forget to use our hashtag #FundOurLibrariesPHL and tag elected officials, as well as the Friends of the Free Library. Our Friends Toolbox has all the tools you need including elected officials’ contact info, sample social media posts, and a suggested script for phone calls. Make your voice heard!

Join the Friends of the Falls Library!

Membership is open to all individuals and organizations interested in supporting the Friends. 

Click here to learn more.  Click here to download an application.

Our Values
The Friends of the Falls of Schuylkill Library is an all-volunteer community member organization promoting the Falls of Schuylkill Library’s services and supporting the preservation of the Library, an original Andrew Carnegie funded library.
• The Friends value our library for its history, its central location, and its content which is free to everyone.
• We value the Library as a community meeting place; it is the heart of East Falls.
• We value literacy and library programs that work toward it.
• We value meeting the needs of a diverse community by encouraging and funding library programs open to anyone, whether a library card holder or not.
• We value cooperation with other East Falls organizations in supporting a vibrant community.

If you have any questions please contact us Click Here




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