Felton Library Friends Steering Committee Meeting Notes

December 1, 2020, 4:00-5:30 Via Zoom

Desired Outcomes

  1. Strengthen relationships among members
  2. Shared understanding of current/future Library and FSCPL activities
  3. Shared understanding of ongoing projects in the Park. Vote on bench purchase.
  4. Understanding of Community Foundation Flex Fund agreement.. Vote on agreement.
  5.  Plan for donor relations in upcoming months
  6.  Agreement on plan for guest speakers

Facilitator::   Nancy Gerdt      Notetakers: Nancy Gerdt, Michele Mosher

Members In attendance:  Bruce Cotter, Cindy Sekkel, Diane McCormick, Donna Ziel, Kirsten Hill, Nancy Gerdt, Michele Mosher,

Guests: Valerie Haff; Angie Lyons, Rebecca Hurley,, Margaret Ingraham  

Welcome.  All spoke to the question “What’s one thing you  look forward to in the library and park once Covid restrictions have been lifted?”                   

Ongoing park  projects

County Park Superintendent Rebecca Hurley talked about park projects that have been discussed with the FLF Parks Team. We are maintaining notes on a shared Google Doc.

  • Sundial improvements: discussed are stenciling the full abbreviation of the months, replacing the material between the sections, and adding color.
  • Shade:  Shade sails over the gravel digging area aren’t possible because of the mitigation area. FLF Park Team will investigate possibilities for adding shade to other areas in the park. 
  • Mitigation beds.  Kirsten asked how planting plans are developed, as once the velvet grass has been removed from the mitigation area near the sundial there will be bare spots..  Rebecca will check with Park Planner Will Fourt about this.
  • Human nest. Any potential alterations will need to wait until the park has been open longer in order to observe how children are using it.

County Park Volunteer Coordinator Margaret Ingraham, a long-time Felton resident, will be the main point of contact between FLF and the Parks Department.  She would like to generate small groups of volunteers for work days, and asked us for ideas to identify leads for projects. This method works well at Quail Hollow.

Kirsten Hill summarized her research into how other public gardens identify plants, and suggested that we might start with a simple system on wooden labels and some way for people to learn more about each plant.  The Park Team will discuss this in detail and make a recommendation to Parks and the Steering Committee.

Nancy explained the evolving project to beautify the area under the SLVWD solar panels.  An Americorps team will  lay down rolls of  paper donated by Home Depot and chip.  Peat pots planted with poppy seeds donated by Shepherd’s Seeds will be placed in the chip.

The Steering Committee voted unanimously to purchase a backless wooden bench for approximately $1300 to be placed under the shade sails.

The Library World                                                                   

Branch Manager Angie Lyons said that the Grab and Go in the lobby has been busy.  Scotts Valley holds will again be at Felton when that branch closes for repairs.  Angie is on the SCPL Equity Team, which has been looking at the composition of the staff.  

Library Advisory Commissioner Bruce Cotter reported that deceased chairperson Bob White was memorialized at the meeting.  The Grab and Go program is designed to be used at all levels of COVID restrictions.  A goal is to implement checkout of Chromebooks and wifi hotspots.  For full details, see Library Director Susan Nemitz’ report to the LIbrary Joint Powers Authority here

Friends of the Santa Cruz Public Libraries board member Michele  Mosher talked about the Aptos Friends project, Our Community Reads.  In February 2021 the selected book, The Great Believers, and themes in the book, will be highlighted in a series of special free virtual events aimed to create a shared experience.  Felton Library Friend April Zilber is coordinating an event with organizer Denise Ward.    Click here for more information about this highly acclaimed and relevant novel.  

FLF discussion 

Community Foundation Flex Fund

The Steering Committee unanimously voted approved the following motion:

“The Felton Library Friends Steering Committee recommends that the FSCPL Board approve the Agency Flex Fund Agreement with the Community Foundation of Santa Cruz County to establish the Felton Library Fund with an initial investment of $100,000 in the Socially Responsible Long- Term pool.”

When approved, the agreement will be signed by the FSCPL President and Felton Library Friends President.

The Fund is being established to provide annual financial support for

programming at the Felton Library and Felton Discovery Park. Funds may also be withdrawn to be used for any other emerging needs of the Felton Library or Felton Discovery Park, as approved by the Felton Library Friends Steering Committee and the Board of the Friends of the Santa Cruz Public Libraries.

Donor Relations Team 

Donna reported that the team has decided to send a postcard greeting in mid-December to donors of $500 and more.  They discussed sending another card in February to mark Valentine’s Day and the one year birthday of the library.  They also discussed doing a newsletter feature on donors who have named spaces.  Nancy and Michele will interview them with the question being why they were moved to name that particular feature of the library or park.  

Guest speakers at FLF meeting

Cindy suggested a representative from the Native Plant Society, and will make that contact.

Diane suggested Denise Ward of the Aptos Our Community Reads project. Note: Diane contacted Denise after the meeting, and she will attend our January 5 meeting.  Michele will contact April Zilber to attend also.    Michele suggested we invite Library Director Susan Nemitz at some point.  We may want to have guests every other month.                                                                                                                                      

Next steps

Next meeting is January 5, 2021, 4-5:30 via Zoom

Agenda building: Denise Ward to discuss Our Community Reads.  Ask Librarian Jackie Danziger to talk about outreach to SLV schools.