Who We Are
The Friends of the Waynesboro Public Library is a group of people who are interested in helping to make Waynesboro City a good place to live, work and raise a family. We think reading is key to the learning, knowledge and empowerment that can make things better for everyone. As book lovers and reading enthusiasts, we naturally focus our efforts on the Waynesboro Public Library. Our Library, with its emphasis on children’s reading and family activities, is widely recognized as outstanding within the Commonwealth of Virginia.
The Friends organization was formed in 1966 as an independent, non-profit association engaged in charitable and educational activities in support of the Library. We are also qualified under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, so your donations to us should be tax deductible (but check with your tax advisor). Membership in the Friends is open to all on a dues-paying basis. If you are a library patron, you have a library card but that card does not mean you are automatically a member of the Friends. Membership involves a written application and payment of modest dues. Click on JOIN or pick up an application form at the Library to learn how easy it is to be a Friend.
What We Do
Since 1966, the Friends have actively supported the Library with time and money.
Time means volunteers. For each of the past several years, the Friends have coordinated over 2,000 hours of volunteer time to supplement the work of the library staff. Volunteers have been involved in events such as Author Fest, Easter Egg Hunts, Mini-Golf tournaments, the Halloween Haunted Library and workshops for genealogy, computers and other special interests. Volunteers have also attended the library collection through activities such as shelf reading, book covering and updating archive files. Under current pandemic conditions and with the library not fully reopened, volunteer activities are now limited to assisting with the book sale process and serving on the Friends Board of Directors. Click on Volunteer to learn more.
Money means purchases and sponsorships. Each year the Friends spend money for items not covered by the Library’s normal budget. We have purchased equipment, furniture, books, materials and supplies needed for day-to-day library operations. We have also sponsored or defrayed the costs of programs, events and services that have been enjoyed by patrons of all ages and interests. We raise the money for these expenses through our book sales, membership dues and donations. Click on BOOK SALE and DONATE to learn more.
Some examples of where our money goes:
—- The books, art supplies and, in one case, snakes (which were wrangled by the Virginia Wildlife Center) used in various summer reading and other children”s programs;
— The books in the Library’s extensive Large Print collection;
— The tables, easy chairs, love seats and sofas in the reading and other areas around the Library;
— The copy machine, which is regularly used by a large number of library patrons for reference work and their own personal needs;
— The X-box in the Young Adult Room, which is strategically placed near all kinds of books and reading materials;
— The special learning computers in the Children’s Library;
— Your winning round at the Library mini-golf event;
— Your kid’s scary night at the Haunted Library on Halloween.
Our single biggest expenditure was in 2013. That was the year that saw over $1,000,000 of renovations at the Library, paid for by the City after approval by the voters in a special election year referendum. The Friends raised over $160,000 in a Branch Out capital campaign, combined that amount with funds on hand from previous years of fundraising and then contributed $227,000 to the City for the Children’s Library and furnishings throughout the rest of the Library. Because we did this, the City was able to redirect some of its renovation funds to the interior staircase. Before this staircase, patrons had to go outside and walk around the side of the building to go between floors. The staircase was not in the original renovation plans.
In addition to our specific activities, the Friends advocate on behalf of the Library and we also have helped raise the Library’s profile within the community. The Library Open House celebrating the 2013 renovations and the Library’s centennial celebration in 2015, the expenses of which were covered by the Friends, attracted local and State dignitaries and large numbers of patrons and community members as well as interested media. Our Annual Fall Book Sale, with its dozens of volunteers, hundreds of customers and thousands of books has also become a community event.
In 1991 and again in 2014, the Virginia Library Association recognized the Waynesboro Friends with its Friends Achievement Award. The Waynesboro City Council has formally proclaimed its appreciation for the Friends.
We rely on a strong and active member and donor base to be who we are and accomplish what we do. Click on JOIN, DONATE, or VOLUNTEER to be a part of our work.
600 South Wayne Ave
Waynesboro, VA 22980
Friends of the Waynesboro Public Library 2023 Site design: KWGraphicsandWeb