Tricounty News

March fundraising campaign gives libraries local incentive

Great River Regional Library (GRRL) will retain a local element in its March High $5 fundraising campaign following the program's success last year.

Each March, the 32 branches of GRRL solicit donations of $5 from library users. Those donations go into a regional fund to support library services. All books, DVDs and other items within the library system are shared, so all branches benefit equally from the pooled resource.

In 2011, each branch was invited to keep 40 percent of donations for local use. A branch that raised $500 with 100 High $5 donations would be able to keep $200 for a local purchase. For example, the Monticello Public Library put their portion of High $5 funds toward the purchase of a DVD player and projector.

"The main use I saw was to pay for additional incentive prizes and programming for the Summer Reading Program," said Regional Supervisor Brandi Canter. "Being able to use part of the High $5 revenue locally was really appreciated across the region."

Use of regional library services increases every year: more items check out, more people use library computers, and more people attend programs. The total number of items checked out at area libraries in 2011 was 4,183,543, and the current library cardholder total is 138,360. In 2011, GRRL introduced its Digital Library checking out iBooks and iAudiobooks.

Individuals wishing to make a High $5 donation should stop by their closest GRRL branch library. A map and locations are available at the library's web site at