What an exciting year it has been for The Friends of Boerne Public Library! Our biggest project got underway on April 4, 2012, when we hosted the official “soft” opening of our bookstore, The Bookshop Under the Windmill (formerly named the FriendShop). Later, on May 2, 2012, we held our official grand opening to the public and began serving our community and the library.
We have made a few upgrades in the shop since opening: a new sink, blinds and we put in a small garden at the front of the building. The Bookshop Under the Windmill is currently open on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 10:00am through 2:00pm. Since opening, we have sold 15,989 books, had 6,526 visitors and added 44 new volunteers. We currently have 440 donor/members as well.
Book donations have provided us the ability to provide books to the VA Hospital in Kerrville, the Fort Sam Wounded Warrior Program, University Hospital in San Antonio and Daily Bread Ministries in Boerne. We also allow teachers to purchase books in the shop at a special rate: 15 books for $10.00. We participate in Boerne’s Family Fun day and give children books for free. We also appeared at the 150th Anniversary of Kendall County celebration.
In the last twelve months, the Friends have organized and hosted numerous community events at the new bookshop. Craft classes, book signings, storytelling for children and adults, book club meetings and many other kinds of events. These events have been well-received and well-attended, leading us to add more space with the new door and deck on the back of the shop.
Recycling continues to be a large project for the Friends. We moved a recycling bin to the main library and added a new one at the old library annex. Current revenue generated from this effort totals approximately $1894.37 per year.
Another project, the Friends’ “Little Free Library,” a kiosk receptacle placed on the property of A Little Nature Store at 106 E. Theissen, is designed to provide even more access to reading for people in our area. Other future projects include a literary garden at the Boerne City Campus and the replacement of six ceiling fans in the Bookshop Under the Windmill.
Ongoing projects include continued marketing and promoting the bookshop via traditional and online media. As Boerne’s only bookstore, we are working hard to get our information “out there.” Our Facebook page and the FOBPL blog have been effective tools for our organization. We have joined the Boerne Chamber of Commerce as well and expect that relationship to provide many new connections for our organization.
Our last book sale event was held last fall. The financial success of the bookshop has eclipsed our need to have the periodic book sale events, which required a tremendous amount of planning, volunteers and physical demands. Our numbers indicate that the shift from event-based sales to our current retail model of fundraising will be successful and carry our efforts into the future with ease.
President – Cheryl Perz
1st Vice President - Ann Liebner
Treasurer – Sandy Henning
Secretary – Judith Umberger