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Friends of the Dimmick group finds ways to support library

Starting with benefactor Milton Dimmick in the 1890s, Jim Thorpe’s Dimmick Memorial Library has always relied on the community for vital support.

Today, a lot of that support comes from the Friends of the Dimmick Memorial Library.

The group continues to make contributions, and search for new members to continue their work.

“I love to read, I love books and I love supporting the library,” said Janet Hermann, of Penn Forest Township.

Recently, the Friends donated approximately 230 new books to the library’s collection, a monetary value of nearly $4,000.

After a year where events were put on hold, the Friends group finished the year with more money than it expected. At the same time, the library needed to complete its annual purchase of materials.

The new titles were chosen by library director Kara Edmonds. They are largely new releases for adults and children, including print books, DVDs and audio. But Edmonds also tries to fill any gaps she detects - completing fiction series, or adding a subject to its nonfiction collection.

“If we discover a nonfiction topic that isn’t covered, I’ll try to find the best recent book that will provide that information for our patrons,” she said.

The Friends group raised the funds through a variety of events: chili cookouts, cookie sales and selling cards for hoagies.

Their dedication to the library stems from a love of reading, and the opportunities that the library provides to patrons of all ages.

“Libraries have always been important to me,” said Karen Bushnell, of Jim Thorpe.

The friends do more than just raise funds. They are also the library’s ambassadors to the community.

Hermann loves meeting new visitors to the library. Visitors to Jim Thorpe regularly get nostalgic about the libraries where they grew up when they enter the Dimmick’s Victorian building.

“Everybody loves it. They’re awed,” Hermann said.

Edmonds says the current membership shows the impact that the group can have on the community. She would like to see more volunteers join them, because of the potential for what they can accomplish. Anyone interested in joining the Friends can contact the library at 570-325-2131, visit dimmicklibrary.org, or check out Dimmick Friends of the Library on Facebook.

“The organization is aptly named. It’s ‘Friends of the Dimmick,’ but I consider these ladies friends without the quotation marks,” Edmonds said.

Dimmick Memorial Library Director Kara Edmonds and Friends of the Dimmick Memorial Library group members Janet Hermann, Karen Bushnell and Carol O'Brien stand with some of the 230 new books purchased for the library with funds donated from the friends. CHRIS REBER/TIMES NEWS