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MALF connects Friends of Library organizations, provides valuable resources to support their work, and is a strong voice for Friends of Library groups and libraries throughout Minnesota.

 

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Give to the Max Day 2019

Posted by jim on October 22, 2019

Last year, Friends from Duluth to Rochester and many points in between raised thousands of dollars as part of Minnesota’s unofficial giving holiday, Give to the Max Day. In total, donors raised a whopping $21 million for nearly 5,500 good causes.

Don’t leave your slice of the pie behind for Give to the Max Day 2019!
 Registering your nonprofit is easy; but you will want to do so well ahead of the big day, November 14. Many donors select their favorite causes and pre-schedule their gifts ahead of time. Registering also puts your Friends in contention for “golden tickets” -- $500 bonuses given by lottery to participating organizations. Additional tips and tricks for coordinating a successful GTTM campaign (including promotional tools and workshop opportunities) are available here.

Happy National Friends of Libraries Week

Posted by jim on October 17, 2019

October 20-26 marks National Friends of Libraries Week (NFLW). Now in its 14th year, this annual celebration of Friends is sponsored by the American Library Association but powered by you. Ways to observe NFLW are as many and varied as Friends’ valued contributions to their libraries. In recent years, we have heard of bookmark design contests, in-library scavenger hunts -- and taking the cake, pun intended, on-site baking demonstrations by local cookbook authors.

Odds are, if you are choosing to partake, your own celebration will not be quite so imaginative (or messy). Fundraisers, membership drives, and recognition ceremonies are far more common Friends of Libraries Week tie-ins. (
Click here for ideas, plus ready-made graphics and a host of other resources.)

Regardless of what you do, the American Library Association wants to hear about it! United for Libraries – the Friends arm of ALA – will award two monetary grants to participating organizations through it’s National Friends of Libraries Week Award contest. While innovation is looked upon favorably, visibility and results are more important still.
 Click here to apply. Be sure to do so by December 10.

Help Us Help You Help Libraries!

Posted by jim on October 09, 2019

Public libraries are constantly evolving, and it is incumbent on Friends of the Library to change with the times as well. With this in mind, the board of the Minnesota Association of Library Friends likes to “step back” periodically to reevaluate our services and organizational priorities.

At its core, MALF exists to serve you – Friends at the local level. We would greatly appreciate your candid feedback on this brief survey. Please participate by November 4. And if we could ask for just one further favor... please share the link with your Friends network!

Minnesota's Largest Friends Author Gala

Posted by jim on September 26, 2019

Looking for something else to do in October? Opus & Olives, the marquee author gala of The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library, is slated for Sunday, October 13. Hollywood actress Kate Mulgrew (Star Trek, Orange is the New Black) will emcee a night headlined by New York Times bestsellers Mark Bowden, Jennifer Chiaverini, and Chris Pavone – and breakout newcomer Maaza Mengiste. Click here for information on venue and tickets.

Author luncheons and galas are an increasingly popular Friends fundraising platform. Inspired to research your own? Consider exploring the Center for the Book’s new
 Minnesota Writers Directorywhich lists authors alongside details on appearances and engagements they will consider.

A Grand Day For Grand Rapids!

Posted by jim on September 24, 2019

Friends of the Grand Rapids Area Library had a grand day indeed last Thursday, October 19. During the long-awaited MLA Conference in Prior Lake, representative Mary Jo Wimmer came away with the top prize in MALF’s annual Evy Nordley contest. It was no mean feat, either; MALF fielded a higher than average number of project entries from across Minnesota in the 2019 cycle.

Grand Rapids’ show-stopping project, “Pop-Up Book Sales,” stood a cut above the rest due to its innovative nature and great promise as both a sustainable and replicable fundraising model.

The reasoning behind organizers’ departure from the tried-and-true book sale model is simple yet profound. Over the past decade, reading habits have changed for a significant slice of bibliophiles. In this era of e-readers, trekking to the library or book store is no requirement – you can find materials from the comfort of your couch. With grassroots initiatives like Little Free Libraries, physical books and serendipitous discovery are attainable close to home, as well.

Pop up sales, held in a nontraditional (read “non-library”) location, seemed like a logical enough extension on the trends.


Click here to read more about this project, and the runners-up from Austin (“Murder Mystery at Hormel Historic Home”), Brainerd (“Little Free Library Partnership”), and Red Wing (“Telling Our Library’s Story”).