‘Books and Baubles’ sale included pieces of local library’s history
By Annie Gentile - ReminderNews
Ashford - posted Thu., Jun. 2, 2011
Buyers might not have known it at the time, but along with every “bauble” purchased at the Friends of Babcock Library Books and Baubles Sale on May 28, 29 and 30, they took home a little piece of the historic stone building.
The three-day sale included, as might be expected, an array of fiction and non-fiction hardcover and paperback books of every genre. It also included a tempting baked goods sale. However, arguably the most interesting portion of the sale was the “baubles” table where the Friends of Babcock Library members used their creative talents to fashion pieces of interesting jewelry from remnants of the building’s former copper roof.
“[The pieces] are all pretty unique,” said Carol McCarthy, an FOBL member who helped with the sale.
According to FOBL Membership Officer Cindy Curry, the removal of the copper roof was part of a 2006 remodel and expansion of the building, which formerly housed not only the library, but also town offices. When the town offices were moved to a neighboring building, the library was able to expand about four-fold into the entire upper floor of the building.
The Friends group has found a number of creative and frugal ways to augment the needs of the library beyond the limits of its budget. With the baubles sale, they combined bits and pieces of the copper roof with an assortment of beads to create fashionable and creative pieces of jewelry. In addition, in past years they have held a “Roof Relics” sale, for which they fashioned larger pieces of the copper roof into ornamental stars. Their “Curtain Cutups” sale involved creating attractive purses and handbags from the library’s discarded curtains. The group has won two Friends of Connecticut Library awards for their sale projects.
The money raised by FOBL has, among other things, paid for the new circulation desk that was added in the expansion, a children’s literacy station, a book deposit box, replacement of many of the library’s classic novels, and the young adult reading group, Curry said.
“The best thing I ever did was join the Friends of Babcock Library,” said Elsie Stolle, who helped out at the baked goods table. Stolle said she didn’t really know anyone when she moved to town six years ago, but joining the group allowed her not only to do some good voluntary work in the community, but also opened up new opportunities for friendships.
Curry said they have been fortunate to have a Board of Trustees, library director and Friends of Babcock Library group that all work well together toward the same end.
“We want the library to be a center for lifelong learning,” Curry said.