We are now three months into the COVID-19 crisis adjusting and cancelling our programs to stay safe. The FAL (Friends of the Alameda Free Library) Board and its outstanding volunteers have had to think creatively to stay connected with the community. The Docent and Author Talks will continue virtually, via our Friends @ Home series, through the end of the year (see upcoming events here). We are also exploring the possibility of virtual jazz concerts following the lead of many music organizations. We know that even with the opening of the Library at some future date the number of attendees will be severely reduced. An experiment just started with our Used Book Sale team posting items for sale on our Facebook page. It’s still not clear whether and how we can hold our much-loved in-person book sales safely, but we are looking at all options and we know many people miss them as we do.
Our Author and Docent Talks have proved to be very popular through our Friends @ Home series. The virtual setting is an opportunity to reach a much larger community unlimited by distance. At a recent Author Talk attendees joined from as far away as Florida. Thanks to Kumar Fanse for developing a fantastic lineup for the Art Docent programs through the remainder of the year. Due to the popularity of the July Frida Kahlo talk, the Board voted to purchase more seats to expand the number of people who can join the meeting.
FAL supports the Library’s very popular summer reading program — titled, Imagine Your Story – A Summer Reading Challenge. This year the Children’s Librarian, Eva Volin, suggested allowing those who complete the top level to choose to donate $5 to the Alameda Food Bank. FAL strongly endorsed the suggestion and will match the participant donations.