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Wanted: A new HVAC system for Walnut Library

WALNUT – The Walnut Public Library Board has taken on several fundraising projects to help raise money for a new heating and cooling system for the library.

Librarian Michele McAlvey explained the current HVAC system is original to the building, which was built in 1964.

“It’s still operating, but it’s being held together by basically baling wire,” she said.

With a project cost of just over $25,000 hanging over board members’ heads, they’ve  brainstormed fundraising projects for each month this year to help raise enough funds to replace the HVAC system sometime next year.

“Coming from a small town, when we do our fundraising, it’s just little bits and pieces here and there at a time, and you’re not going to get big time money coming in,” McAlvey said.

She also has plans to re-apply for a 50/50 grant the beginning of next year to help with the cost.

Last week, the library held an electronic recycle drive, where they filled two moving trucks full of electronics. McAlvey explained the company who takes the electronics will sell off the parts, and the library will receive that money.

The library is also hosting an ongoing cell phone drive. Patrons who own an old cellphone and don’t have a clue what to do with it are encouraged to bring it to the library. The cell phones will be given to the electronics company, which will sell parts and give profits to the library.

The library’s upcoming July fundraiser is a silent auction, which will be held during the annual Walnut Days Celebration.

“We have a very large contingency of crafting people in the area, and so the board has been going around to businesses and these people who are well known for their crafting and asking them to donate items to the silent auction,” McAlvey said.

Currently the library has collected an Americana wicker basket, a homemade shelving unit, a wood-carved squirrel feeder and two sets of baseball tickets. The first set is to the July 19 White Sox vs. Atlanta Braves game and the second set is the Aug. 2 Cubs vs. Los Angeles Dodgers game.

“Whenever we say we need something, the community just rallies around us and gives what we need. We’re very lucky,” McAlvey said.

Comment on this story at www.bcrnews.com.

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