Library benefactor issues challenge



BAR HARBOR — Long-time library volunteer Emily Sabah-Maren will match up to $10,000 donated to the Jesup Memorial Library between July 17 and 31.

“While I was growing up, there was plenty of love in our family, but there was not a lot of money. We barely had enough of it for food, clothing and shelter; certainly none for books,” said Sabah-Maren. “The library saw to that. My success and that of my children began in the library. When I donate, I am giving the same opportunity to others that I enjoyed.”

All money raised will go directly to support annual library operations. As a private nonprofit, the Jesup has served as the public library for the town of Bar Harbor since it opened its doors in 1911. However, the town provides less than 5 percent of the funds needed by the library to keep the doors open. Endowment provides another 49 percent. The rest comes from individual donors and businesses.

“The Jesup – and all we offer – is open to everyone, on an equal basis, at no cost, but there are significant costs associated with operating the library,” said Ruth Eveland, director of the Jesup Memorial Library. “We are so grateful for Emily’s generosity. She is truly our hero.”

So far in 2015, the Jesup has welcomed more than 5,000 people to more than 250 programs for children and adults – concerts, author talks, arts and crafts, science and technology and other lectures. That’s in addition to free 24-hour Wi-Fi, free access to public access computers, plus the thousands of books, e-books, music, movies and even a telescope to be checked out.

Donations can be made at www.jesuplibrary.org via the Jesup’s secure server (look for the big red “donate” button on the home page), in person at the library, or via mail to 34 Mount Desert St., Bar Harbor, ME 04609.

Call 288-4245 or email mrice@jesuplibrary.org.

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