The Tolland Public Library Foundation was established in 1996 to receive donations to benefit the Tolland Public Library and to enhance library services beyond what the town budget provides.

Library visitors gather around author Jane Haddam to have their books signed as part of the Foundation's Eaton-Dimock-King Authors Series.

Library visitors gather around author Jane Haddam to have their books signed as part of the Foundation’s Eaton-Dimock-King Authors Series.


Tolland Public Library Accomplishments and Use of Donations as of March 28, 2013

Eaton-Dimock-King Author series –2012-2013  season

The third season of this popular series will began in December 10, 2012 with national basketball writer Ken Davis, an award winning sports writer and author.  Additional authors will follow.

How to Pay for College – September and December, 2012

The Foundation board sponsored this program featuring financial advisor Craig Breitsprecher to help parents better understand their college funding options and strategies.  The September program was so popular, a second program was added for December. A third event will be held April 10, 2013 to meet the demand from residents.

Library Open House – September, 2012

The Foundation board coordinated with the Friends of the Tolland Public Library the Tolland library board, and the Library staff to hold an open house to coincide with the end of renovations.  The event included musical performances; a gift presentation; database, media system and e-reader download demonstrations; a slideshow; student readings; children’s activities and refreshments. The Foundation provided a Nook e-reader that was given away in a drawing.

Armchair Traveler display – September, 2012

Following Barbara Butler’s retirement as Library Director in 2011,the Foundation board donated a display to honor her years of service with a gift that would share her love of travel with patrons.  The gift included a display unit, fiction and non-fiction travel titles, and a bulletin board where patrons can display their travel photos.

Celebrate Tolland – September 2012

TPLF board members set up a booth at this townwide celebration to raise awareness of the Foundation, and our support of the library.  Board members were available to discuss our role, and people could enter to win the Nook drawing.

Astronomy Program – September, 2012

The Foundation sponsored “Look up to the Stars!’” an astronomy program in conjunction with the Willington and Ashford Public Libraries.   On Sept.12, 2012 astrophysicist Kevin Manning, a retired NASA consultant, spoke on various topics related to astronomy, and then brought attendees outside to view stars with a high powered telescope.  He spoke in Willington on September 13, and in Ashford on September 14 on related astronomy topics.

Online Database renewals– April, May and September, 2012

The Foundation authorized grants to renew library subscriptions to three online databases for public access.  All of them, except the first, can be entered through remote access as well as from the library computers:  Ancestry.com (Library Edition), Consumer Reports.org, and Credo Reference.  Renewal decisions were based on usage data and library directors’ determination of value to patrons.  

Poetry Slam – April, 2012

Working with the library staff and the Tolland High School English department, the Foundation sponsored a Poetry Slam on April 27, 2012.  This very successful event featured high school and middle school students performing their original poetry pieces, which were judged by a panel including the Children’s library director, the assistant principal of the high school, a student, and a Foundation board member.  Prized were awarded for the highest scoring readers. The second poetry slam will be held April 26, 2013.

The Hunger Games Book Voyager Series, February – March 2012

The Foundation funded a four part “Book Voyager” discussion series and Trivia Blast based on the enormously popular Hunger Games trilogy for young adults.  Each of the three discussion sessions were very well attended as well as the Trivia Blast program.  The Foundation sponsored gift cards to the movies as a drawing for children who attended the discussions.

AWE After School Edge workstation – January 2012

The children’s librarian identified a need for an educational workstation in the young adult section similar to the one recently purchased for the children’s section.  The children’s workstation was very popular, so the Foundation purchased a similar workstation with educational and fun software appropriate for children 6-12 years.

Getting in to College Series, October 2011 – March 2012

In October, the Foundation hosted a panel discussion entitled “The College Search from the Student Athletes Perspective” including college athletic coaches, parents and high school coaches.  In March 2012, TPLF hosted Heather Ricker-Gilbert for  “Getting Started on your College Search” program.  This program was so popular, with over 100 in attendance, we had to offer two sessions.  Along with the programs, several books were purchased and donated to the library regarding the college search topic.

Take a Look, Win a Nook contest –  September – November 2011

As part of an overall marketing strategy to draw people to the library, TPLF held a contest with a free drawing to win a Nook e-reader.  We collected hundreds of entrant names submitted at Celebrate Tolland, the TPLF programs such as the author series, student-athlete program, and at the circulation desk.  The winner was photographed with members of the TPLF board and the library Director, and a press release was submitted to local publications.

Celebrate Tolland – September 2011

TPLF board members set up a booth at this town wide celebration to raise awareness of the Foundation, and our support of the library.  Board members were available to discuss our role, and people could enter to the Nook drawing.

Eaton-Dimock-King Author series –2011-2012  season

The second season of this popular series began in September 2011 with mystery author Jane Haddam, author of the Gregor Demarkian series; followed by veteran journalist and author Denis Horgan in November 2011, and will continue with popular young adult author Paul Catanese on May 1, 2012.

Multimedia System donation to the library –  November 2011

The TPLF researched and approved the purchase of an A/V media center to be donated to the Library.  It was installed in the current program room and is available for library and town personnel use, as well as available to the public, based on the current regulations for using the program room.  Training was provided to library staff, and a “Cheat Sheet” was designed to facilitate users.  This gift is to honor Phil Bognar’s long and dedicated service to the Tolland Public Library Foundation.  The system includes TV/projection unit, available computer/laptop hook up, speaker system, and can be used to show movies.

TPLF Marketing Campaign– 2011- 2012

The purpose of the campaign is to raise awareness of the Library Foundation among library patrons and non-patrons.  Posters were printed to hang in the library highlighting some of the resources the Foundation has donated to the library, including the online databases and a drawing for a Nook e-reader to encourage people to come into the library and reacquaint them selves with materials available.  TPLF had a booth at the Celebrate Tolland in September.  Additional initiatives will continue, such as the development of a Planned Giving Policy (beginning with an information session with an estate planning lawyer) and development of our website/social media campaign.  The desired result is raised awareness of the foundation, which will hopefully translate into increased donations.

The Year of the Young Adult– 2011- 2012

We established this focused giving initiative, based on the Library Director’s noted area of priority.  The initiative will include programming and materials focused on serving community members 12 years old through High School.  Some of the programs include Young Adult Author visits to the library, Young Adult Book Voyager Programs (book discussions), AWE After School Edge Technology workstation, Getting into College series, donation of college search related books to the library, purchase of books to support THS summer reading assignments, the Poetry Slam, and the Astronomy program.

Increased United Way designated gifts to Foundation–2011

Increased publicity and awareness of TPLF as a United Way designated recipient of contributions.  Increased donations significantly, by making public aware they can direct their donations that they give through United way to the Foundation.

Newman’s Own Foundation Grant – April 2011

The Tolland Public Library Foundation received a grant of $6,500 from Newman’s Own Foundation in support of the Tolland Public Library’s classics and reference collections, Great Course offerings, summer reading program and children’s literacy program.  The support from Newman’s Own Foundation and the non-profit Tolland Public Library Foundation augments the library’s public funds.  Specifically, the grant from Newman’s Own Foundation will be used to replace aging copies of classic books, to purchase Great Course DVDs that feature world-renowned professors, to update outdated reference materials, to buy a laptop computer to support the summer reading program and to purchase an Early Literacy Station.

Eaton-Dimock-King Author series – Inaugural 2010-2011 season and ongoing

The inaugural season of this popular series was from September 2010 through April 2011.   The Foundation hosted four dynamic authors to speak to the public in the library program room.    Speakers included Caragh O’Brien, Birthmarked; Lucy Anne Hurston, Speak, so you can speak again: the life of Zora Neale Hurston; Jeff Goldberg, Bird at the Buzzer; and Susan Shoenberger, A Watershed Year.

Online Database purchases – June 2010 and 2011 (renewals)

The Foundation authorized an initial grant of $7,000 for library subscriptions to four new online databases for public access.  All of them, except the first, can be entered through remote access as well as from the library computers:  Ancestry (Library Edition) – this popular geneology resource includes over 4 billion records (census data, vital records, directories, photos, and more) to aid in tracing family ancestors.  NoveList Plus – This readers’ resource, with information on over 250,000 fiction and readable non-fiction titles, will help libraries and patrons find the next “great read”.  Also included are lists of award-winning books, Book Discussion Guides, Book Talks, Recommended Reads, and more. Consumer Reports.org – This popular, award winning website provides quality and price comparison to help consumers make better purchasing decisions.  Advice and tips on home improvement, personal finances and health are also included.  Credo Reference – Library Journal’s Best Reference Award 2009.  Access full text of over 400 reference books covering every major topic, including Art, medicine, history, technology and literature. 

Book Fund Interest for Library book purchases – ongoing

Each year the Foundation offers the Library Director the interest from the Book Fund.  Based the interest rate for this account our grants have averaged approximately $500 per year.  (These funds were transferred from the Tolland Public Library Association in June 1999 under the condition that the $10,000 principal be maintained and the interest earned be offered annually to the Library Director for the purchase of books.  The Director may decline, allowing interest to accumulate for use at a later date.)

Phoebe Dimock King and Elizabeth C. King Eaton Endowment 

Elizabeth King Eaton left a bequest to the Foundation in memory of her mother, Phoebe Dimock King, a former Tolland Public Library director.   At the time of Elizabeth’s death (February 3, 2009), the total value of her accounts with ING was $741,735, 60% of that amount is $445,041. This is the amount to be considered the IRA basis for the Library foundation endowment.

The Transfer of the Beneficiary IRA to us occurred on close of business 7-15-09 and the account balance was $474,153.  The ING Beneficiary IRA was closed on December 14, 2009, all funds were sold for a cash value of $559,179.40.

Two Public Access Flat Screen PCs – January 2010

These replace failed old units, $2,800.

Renewal of the antivirus and software to “lock” the PC desktops on the public access PCs June 2009, $100 grant to the Library to fund this.

Annual Appeal to Area Businesses – Fall 2008

We raised $3190 – From this, we granted $1000 to the library for collection development (Books and multimedia) and added $800 to the long term endowment account.

“21st Century Technology for the Tolland Public Library.”

From our October 2007 mailing to Tolland businesses we raised more than $3200.  Six new public access PCs were purchased for the library.  Two were funded by the Library Foundation by a grant of $2800, two by the Friends of the Library, and two from the donated book sale revenue.  All will have Bibliomation support. We also granted $235 for anti-virus software for all PCs and a new network switch.  Wi-Fi / wireless internet access in the library $59, December 12, 2008

Program Room at the Library – Dedicated November 2006

The idea for a Program Room initiated with the Friends of the Tolland Library (Friends), whose efforts to provide programs for the community were hampered by the lack of an appropriate space to hold them.  They approached the Tolland Public Library Foundation (Foundation) for financial support.  Both groups met with the Library Director and the Library Board, and a plan was developed and presented to the Town Council. Fundraising efforts by the Foundation began in November 2004, with a mailing to local businesses and organizations, with follow-up visits to explain the scope of the project to potential donors.  The Friends raised money through book sales, holiday cookie platters, and individual donations.  The Friends also took responsibility for hands-on activities, including sorting and clean-up of years of accumulated items, organization of needed materials, and painting of the former storage room.  The Town of Tolland provided supplies and manpower for additional modifications to the facility, such as a new dropped ceiling.  The Town Manager arranged for a major contribution by the Hicks Family Foundation, whose generosity enabled the completion of the project in a timely manner.  The room dedication was held in November 2006 with all major objectives accomplished including: (Foundation grant amounts)

•  Storage cabinets ($3775)                                            •  Adult tables ($300)

•  Children’s chairs ($840)                                              •  Carpeting

•  Speaker’s podium                                                       •  VCR/DVD player

•Video projector                                                          •  Projection screen

Multimedia Collection Grant – January 2004

The board provided a grant of $850 to the library for a multimedia collection (CDs, DVD, …)  in honor of Kay Mahoney’s 32 years of service as Library Director.

Two Fleetwood Revolving Multimedia “bookcase” displays – April 2003

These high quality cases make the contents easily viewable by library patrons while using a minimum of space.  They were acquired by the librarian with a Foundation grant of $1278.

HP Laser printer with a 3-yr H.P. service contract – January 2002

This printer was acquired with a $475 grant and enabled library patrons to print their work on the library computers.

First Grant 1999 – $100 for the 100th anniversary of Tolland Library.

This grant was used to sponsor a children’s library event during the community celebration of the library’s 100th anniversary.

June 1998 total accounts balance of $1981

March 12, 1996 – Town Council approves creation of the Foundation

First Board meeting June 13, 1996