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Scottdale's Love Your Library drive shatters goal

| Wednesday, March 27, 2013, 9:01 p.m.
Rachel Basinger | For The Independent-Observer
Members of the Scottdale Public Library board of directors, Friends of the Library group and Glenn and Carole Johnson - who donate more than $4,000 each yea - celebrated the end of the Love Your Library campaign that brought in more than $18,000 this year.

Surpassing two goals this year, officials with the Scottdale Public Library are elated with the success of their Love Your Library fundraising campaign this year.

With an original goal of $15,000 over the months of February and most of March, the group found the need to raise that number to $18,000 since the original goal was met before the campaign was officially over.

The library ended up with around $18,300 through the campaign.

Library Director Patti Miller said she is very pleased with the way things turned out this year.

“Originally, I was concerned with what I see in our economy that it would be hard to raise the money, but at a time when the library is providing services the community needs, I think they just wanted to be a part of helping out,” she said.

“It might seem like a lofty goal when we start out, but a little at a time and all together, we can do it,” Miller added.

But the library had help with a larger donation from one family in particular.

Glenn and Carole Johnson of Greensburg have been good friends of the library, and several years ago donated funds to remodel the children's room in memory of their daughter Beth Ann Johnson, who lost her life in the terrorist bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie Scotland nearly 25 years ago.

Four years ago, they decided to partner with the library to help them in their plight.

“At first they pitched in with a 50-cent donation for every $1 raised, but then they decided to challenge the community and donate $100 for the age their daughter would be, had she lived, as long as the community matched it,” Miller said.

That put the challenge at $4,300 three years ago, $4,400 two year, $4,500 last year and now $4,600 this year.

Carole Johnson said she is not at all surprised at the response to this fundraiser year after year.

“Scottdale is a very community-minded town,” she said. “It's just another testimony to the town that even with the cutbacks the library still doesn't have to close on Fridays or cut hours. It really speaks well of the community.”

Her husband said it's been obvious over the years that the community loves their library — even six years ago or more when they were looking to build a new facility.

“The fact that they were able to take on a whole building project and have it built two years in advance with no debt just proves that the community is 100 percent behind this library,” Glenn Johnson said.

Miller said with the help of the community, the library will be able to continue offering the needed services.

“I think it's a bad thing, when times are tough economically, to take services away that people need,” she said. “This is when it's time to up your game.

Rachel Basinger is a freelance writer.