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Effort raises $230,000 to benefit libraries


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POSTED: Wednesday, December 09, 2009

A campaign to keep the doors open at state libraries during Hawaii's economic recession has helped to raise $230,000 in donations.

“;We're very appreciative of the support from the public,”; state Librarian Richard Burns said yesterday.

Burns said that as of Friday the Hawaii State Library System has received $130,000 in the “;Keep Your Library Open Campaign.”;

He said the Friends of the Library support group has received more than $100,000.

Burns said Hawaii publishers have also made generous donations.

He said Bess Press has donated 3,000 copies each of “;IZ: The Voice of the People”; and “;Hawaii Warrior Football,”; and the books will be given as incentives to participants in the library's summer reading program.

Other contributors include the Islander Group, Kamehameha Publishing and Watermark Publishing.

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Burns said the state library system is applying for grants and seeking more donations to keep the libraries open.

People wishing to make donations may turn in a contribution at any state library, make a credit card donation at the Friends of the Library Web site at friendsofthelibraryofhawaii.org, or call the Friends at 536-4174.

Contributions may go to a specific library by writing a note on the bottom, left-hand line of a check.

Fundraising helped keep Mountain View Public and School Library open on the Big Island for three weeks in October, state officials said.

One of the largest donors was entertainer Jack Johnson, who contributed $25,000.