We Need Your Help!

Once again, the Friends of the Library have been told we must find a new home for the Giant Book Sale.  The timing is particularly tight this time.  We generally feel we must know we have space by the end of May, so we can begin to plan in earnest to start preparations in August.

The sale, by now, is enormous, which makes the search that much more difficult.  For the past several years we have offered over 100,000 books and related items for sale over a three day period.

These are our needs:

We need the space to be donated.  Profits are used to support the Guelph Public Library.  If we had to pay rent, there would be no point in having the sale.   We are a registered charity, and so can offer a tax receipt.  If necessary, we could pay utilities. We are insured by the City, and we are very responsible tenants who clean up after ourselves.

The past two spaces we have used have been 25,000 sq ft and 30,000 sq ft respectively.  A warehouse, accessible to the public with parking nearby works well.  A loading dock, or other large-vehicle access such as a large overhead door is highly desirable.

In a perfect world, we would have access to the space for August, September and October.  We could probably manage with just September and October.

This has become an iconic community event.  We are hoping that, once again, a community member will come forward and make it possible.

If you think you can help please contact me at 519-821-5874, or virginiagillham@aol.com, or friendsguelphlibrary@gmail.com


Virginia Gillham, Chair
Friends of the Guelph Public Library

Wanted! Guelph Reads Needs New Coordinator

The Friends of the Guelph Public Library is seeking a creative individual to take over the organization of our Guelph Reads series. We have been organizing this annual event since inheriting it in 2012.

Guelph Reads is loosely patterned after the CBC’s annual “Canada Reads” series, although it has evolved into a characteristically Guelph event. There is a three- or four-member panel who each choose one book they think everyone in Guelph should read. They come together for one evening in the downtown library to defend their books in a free-wheeling and good-natured discussion. An unbiased moderator keeps everything moving smoothly forward. Audience members then vote on which panelist “won” the evening.

The process used for organizing previous editions of Guelph Reads will be shared with the new coordinator and the previous organizer will be available to provide advice and guidance as needed. The new organizer should be an enthusiastic team player and an imaginative self-starter and will report to the FGPL executive through the Planning Committee

Interested individuals should apply to alan@sentex.net outlining their experience at organizing public events and their ideas for future events.

Friends of the Library Book Sale volunteer Dave Lawrance, an employee of Toyota Canada, presents a donation from Toyota to Friends Treasurer Elaine Lilley. Toyota has a policy of donating to organizations for which their employees volunteer. Thanks, Dave, and thank you Toyota Canada!

Nicholas Jennings in conversation with Brenda Lewis

We are very pleased to announce a new addition to the event “Jennings on Lightfoot” which happens on Monday November 27 in the downtown library. Renowned jazz singer Brenda Lewis has joined the event.

Lewis will lead a conversation with Jennings about the man behind the Canadian Railroad Trilogy and many other classic Canadian folk songs.

Nicholas Jennings is the author of the new and definitive biography of Gordon Lightfoot. He is a music journalist writing for Maclean’s magazine from 1980 to 2000.

Lewis is a publicist, professional musician and human rights advocate. For over two decades, she has been singing professionally, first as a folk/blues vocalist, then for most her career as a jazz vocalist, performing with some of Canada’s finest jazz musicians. She was the successful panelist at Guelph Reads 2016 with her spirited defense of Flint and Feather, a biography of poet Pauline Johnson.

Between them, Jennings and Lewis have extensive experience in different aspects of the music business, reportage and performance. Pairing them together will bring added depth and intimacy to the discussion about Gordon Lightfoot.

Doors open in the downtown library at 6:30pm with the conversation beginning at 7:00pm.

“Jennings on Lightfoot” is presented by the Friends of the Guelph Public Library in partnership with The Bookshelf, Guelph’s independent downtown book store.

Seats can be reserved through Eventbright.

Thank you!

…To our dedicated volunteers, nearly 200 of them!

…To our sponsors, donors, and suppliers – click here to see the full list

…To the neighbourhood around the sale, the city of Guelph and surrounding areas

…To the faithful shoppers who return year after year

Thank you for another successful sale.

See you next year!

Book Sale Volunteers Ben and Norma…

Long time sale volunteers Ben & Norma have just emptied their car of book sale donations — 20 boxes collected from Bullfrog Mall Library. Thanks, Ben & Norma. And thanks to all of our great volunteers!

Would you like to help, too? Click here to go to our Volunteer Page where you can sign up to deliver posters & bookmarks around town, sort incoming donations, work on the sale weekend, and help us keep the sale site ship-shape.