SaddleBrooke Libraries – more than books

Rollinde Prager

Have you visited the SaddleBrooke libraries lately? Do you know that there are three libraries in SaddleBrooke? The SaddleBrooke Library in the SaddleBrooke Clubhouse, the Cholla Library in the MountainView Clubhouse and the DesertView Library at the DesertView Theater and Sports Complex are fantastic resources for books, videos and magazines.

Our libraries are able to provide services to the community thanks to financial support from three sources: grants from the Friends of SaddleBrooke Libraries (FSL), sales of surplus books and budget support from HOA 1 and HOA 2. The HOA funding goes toward furniture, shelving and the annual subscription cost for the cloud hosted catalog system. The libraries also receive donated books and audiovisual materials which are added to the collections or sold as surplus.

In 2016, FSL grants funded the purchase of 1743 new books, DVDs, audio books, large print books and paperbacks. The Cholla and DesertView libraries rely on these grants to purchase 97% of the books and audiovisual materials. The SaddleBrooke Library relies on FSL funds for 60% of all new book purchases. A recent FSL special grant for the purchase of additional large print books resulted in a huge increase in the circulation of those books. Grant funds were also used to update the paperback book collections at all three libraries.

All library users benefit from the handouts and information packets detailing library services paid for from FSL funds. A new addition at the libraries is copies of Book Pages, a monthly publication providing information about new books and old favorites. It’s a great resource for book clubs!

As you can see, the sustained and robust support that FSL provides to our libraries is essential to maintain the high quality of materials and services the community has come to expect. Library usage continues to grow and currently there are 2,345 SaddleBrooke households registered to use the three libraries. This represents almost half of all SaddleBrooke residents; however, of those many users only 740 are members of FSL. Our goal is to grow FSL membership to sustain and improve the library experience. To achieve that goal, FSL offers many incentives for members. From the basic membership level to the highest, FSL members will receive free admission to all FSL lectures as well as advance notice of upcoming FSL trips and events. Anyone who didn’t get a ticket for the sold-out author luncheons will appreciate that benefit! The higher the level of contribution the greater the rewards with the highest contributors given seating with the guest author at the spring or fall luncheon.

Basic membership starts at $20 annually. If you haven’t yet joined please consider doing so. The benefits alone make it a bargain. More importantly you will be making an important contribution to one of our most valued amenities.