Friends of the Year

At The Friends of The Seattle Public Library’s Annual Board meeting, two volunteers were honored as Friends of the Year. Thank you both, and congratulations! Here are their nominating statements:

Patricia Ann is a tireless worker for both the donation center and the Friendshop at the Central Library.  She works once a week at the donation center scanning and filing books and helping with all other duties as assigned.  She also voluntarily checks the stacks for books that are suitable for sale at the Friendshop and thus has helped to increase the sales of books at the shop because of her superb culling.

She is considered to be the “Book Lady” at the Friendshop and can answer any question about the books from customers.  She responds to inquiries ranging from: “where are the fiction/or nonfiction books?” to “what book would you recommend for my weekend reading?”  At the shop, she volunteers to work extra shifts at the Friendshop as needed, especially in a pinch.  She also drops in to the shop periodically to “make sure all the books are in order.”  She is an invaluable resource at both volunteer spots. IMG_1909

Jessica Torrez-Riley joined the FriendShop team September 2015 and has been an asset since she began.  From the beginning Jessica ran beyond her responsibilities as a volunteer who cashiers and assists customers.  She quickly became a representative and advocate for the Friends of The Seattle Public Library not only while in the FriendShop but on social media.  Jessica introduced our organization to Eventbrite and Facebook events which drew crowds to our sales both big and small.  She responded quickly to the crowds of the large book sale when the room hit capacity both in person and online by posting and responding on social media and by placing herself as the Friends’ representative alongside the officer who had to turn people away.  She acts quickly and responsibly and is a true Friend of the Year! IMG_1912


Annual Meeting

On the 1st of October, the Board of The Friends of The Seattle Public Library had a very meaningful meeting. We were fortunate to hear from Diane Gallegos, Executive Director of Wolf Haven International, and Annie Musselman, an award-winning wildlife photographer. Wolf Haven is between Olympia and Tenino, south of Seattle, and has at its mission sanctuary, education, and conservation.

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Annie received a grant to take photos for a non-profit and spent quite some time at Wolf Haven capturing beautiful images. The sanctuary currently has 65 animals, including 10 wolf dogs and 2 coyotes.

Author Brenda Peterson has written a book called “Wolf Haven: Sanctuary and the Future of Wolves in North America” that features Annie’s photos. While this book is difficult to find for purchase, you can find it at the Seattle Public Library!

One of the other highlights of our meeting was saying thank you to outgoing Board President Carmen Bendixen.

Steve Griggs, incoming Board Vice President, presented Carmen with a token of our appreciation, and she humbly received them before closing the meeting.

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The Huske Brothers are Darn Good Readers

Micah and LoganWe here at The Friends of The Seattle Public Library LOVE young readers! Steph Huske was kind enough to fill out the info sheet that comes in the Friends totes given to little ones when they obtain their first library card. This picture of Micah (age 9) and his brother Logan (age 6) picking up their first holds at the Southwest Branch is priceless!

We were so captivated by the photo we wanted to know more, so Steph helped us “interview” the boys. They are pretty serious about their reading, as they have ALREADY completed the summer reading challenge! “Micah says his favorite part about the summer reading challenge was reading new books from the library. Logan’s favorite part was trying to finish before Micah.”

The first book Micah checked out was “The Legend of Rock, Paper, Scissors” by Drew Daywalt. Logan adds, “There are lots of different kinds of books, they even have Angry Birds and Transformers and Pokemon!”

The best thing about having your own library card? Logan is excited that he can check out books he chooses with his own library card. Micah says the best thing is holding books under his name. Both boys are also super psyched about their cool user names! (Trust us, they are very cool, but we won’t publish them for privacy reasons).

Micah’s advice for young readers: “Never give up! If you don’t know the words, you can ask a parent or a guardian to help you.” Logan’s advice: “Go slowly and sound the letters out.”

If you haven’t finished your summer reading challenge yet, take a look at Micah and Logan’s suggestions and follow their advice above!


Lakshmi, Goddess of Wealth and Prosperity

LakshmiThis little kit was found in a donation to The Friends of The Seattle Public Library. The icon appears to be Lakshmi, Hindu Goddess of wealth and prosperity. Was someone going to make a necklace out of it, or sew pieces into a tapestry? We will never know what beautiful creation someone had in mind. (Please remember to double check your books, DVDs, albums, etc. before you drop them off, to make sure you are not leaving treasures behind!)

You can learn more about Lakshmi, Hinduism, and related topics through The Seattle Public Library.

Online shopping love

Did you know that The Friends of The Seattle Public Library sells one-of-a-kind gifts and collectibles? Some lucky person knows, because they just purchased this beautiful book from 1934 by Vernon Grant! vernon grant illustrationMr. Mixie Dough_Vernon Grant copy

Maybe Mr. Mixie Dough isn’t quite your style. There is much more to explore on our site!

Did you grow up with Babar? How cool would this be on your shelf?

Do you love jazz? You could remember Birdland for a long time with this!

There is so much more at our online store! To see what we offer from Dr. Seuss, Lewis Carroll, and everything under the sun, visit:

After Austen

It is a truth universally acknowledged that Jane Austen fans had a delightful afternoon at the Central Seattle Public Library today. The couture was divine, the Austen-themed merchandise plentiful, and those first editions quite swoon-worthy! Below you can see some of the day’s images, including the Washington Regency Society and Jane Austen Society members, selfie props, and, of course, those books.

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Jane Austen fans unite!

You may have seen or heard about the special event coming to the FriendShop this Sunday. As a way to honor the life of Jane Austen, we will be commemorating the 200th anniversary of her death. A long time Friend of The Seattle Public Library has a set of first edition novels of Jane Austen that will be on display! In addition to being able to purchase all manner of things Austen at the FriendShop, there will be bonnets and other period items to try on for your Austen-ified selfie. Many members of the Washington Regency Society make their own period costumes or have them commissioned. Rumor has it that tea and biscuits will also be served.


We caught up with Agnes Gawne, who helped coordinate this one-of-a kind event. Agnes has ties to both the Jane Austen Society and the Washington Regency Society.

How were you first introduced to Jane Austen and her work?
“I first read Pride and Prejudice in 1984. I was a classically trained singer and happened to specialize in composers who lived at roughly the same time as Jane Austen. Perhaps 1989 or so I became involved with the Bay Area English Regency Society after being asked to sing for them; one thing led to another and I became involved with the Jane Austen Society in San Francisco.”

Do you have a favorite Austen quote?

How quick come the reasons for approving what we like!” – Persuasion

What is the book you wish Austen had written/would be found somewhere perfectly preserved?
Actually, we know that Jane Austen’s sister Cassandra destroyed many pages of correspondence stating that it was too personal and that it should not be read by others. I just wish that those letters could be read today.”

What is the reason for this event?

“We would like to honor Jane Austen on the 200th Anniversary of her death by gathering and sharing our love of her work with the people in the library on that date.”

Who should attend the event on Sunday?
“Everyone! I am sure that there is something about Jane Austen, the time she lived, the things she wrote, the clothes she wore, the tea and biscuits she ate that will interest everyone.”

Volunteer Profile

DaynaI caught up with Dayna Roberson at the West Seattle Pop Up FriendShop a few weeks ago. She has been volunteering for The Friends since 2009. The Central location of The Seattle Public Library is her favorite, although her usual branch is Montlake.

She started volunteering because she likes helping. Alex, who was sitting next to her at the makeshift register, said, “She’s kindhearted.” Dayna believes it’s important to volunteer and give back. She may not have money, but she has time. “If more people volunteered the world would be less broken.”

Little lake dude

Screen Shot 2017-06-18 at 3.55.50 PMHere’s another treat from our box of things that are found in the donations to The Friends of the Seattle Public Library. This photo actually reminds me of one of my little brother’s friends from growing up, but that was another time and another place. Did someone put it in a book to keep it flat? Was it used as a favorite bookmark? I just love his little smile, and the complete Pacific-Northwest-ness of the photo.