SAYVILLE

Friends of the Sayville Library raising funds for free and discounted tickets

Linda Leuzzi
Posted 2/20/20

Guess who gets you free museum passes to great places including the Intrepid Museum? Or discounted tickets to the Bronx Zoo, Long Island Aquarium, Suffolk County Fair and Splish Splash?

There are …

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SAYVILLE

Friends of the Sayville Library raising funds for free and discounted tickets

Posted

Guess who gets you free museum passes to great places including the Intrepid Museum? Or discounted tickets to the Bronx Zoo, Long Island Aquarium, Suffolk County Fair and Splish Splash?

There are other offerings that Friends of the Sayville Library raise money for, which most people don’t know about. But last Thursday, the group was honored by the Sayville Rotary Club for their volunteer efforts by president Bob Draffin and vocational service director Pam Greene and given a donation.

“They’re the auxiliary arm of the library that extends services in areas the library can’t support,” explained Jonathan Pryer, head of community outreach and library liaison.

Lorraine Martin heads the group as board president. “It’s very important you know who we are,” Martin said, as she glanced at her colleagues. “We’re a nine-member board and without all these folks, it wouldn’t fly.” Besides Martin, vice president Beth Levy, secretary Theresa Heid and treasurer Susan McCormick consistently pitch in with members-at-large Donna Formica, Kristen Lind, Marie Mandell, Fred Seitz and Bonnie Glenn. 

Friends incorporated in 2004 and now disperse 3,500 free museum passes a year, a nice extra to those with families, or just Sayville library cardholders, who want to enrich their minds. There are the two $500 scholarships awarded to library pages who write compelling essays. Adult, teen and children’s reading clubs get in the spirit with an extra boost for prize money from the Friends’ efforts. Sometimes, they even purchase furniture for the library.

Simply put, they love the library. You’ll see them selling raffle tickets for wine baskets (after all, wine makes you happy), or at the Sayville Ferry in warm weather overseeing yummy homemade baked goods that fly off the tables. 

“We really appreciate the Stein family,” said Martin. “They allow us to get our wares out.”

The group inserts their skills as a whole. Here’s a sample. “Beth [Levy] was involved with the yard sales, Bonnie [Glenn] is in charge of the mah-jongg tournament,” said Martin, ticking off some of the team effort cooperation. “Donna [Formica] bakes the goods. Terri [Heid] is always looking to make money for us.”

Not surprisingly, Martin was a devoted library attendee as a young girl growing up in Queens. She trekked several blocks on Jamaica Avenue to her local branch in her quest to read classics like “Little Women,” “Black Beauty” and “Gulliver’s Travels.” When she moved to Middle Road in Bayport in 1961, the Sayville Library became her go-to place for books. Several librarians who had retired wanted a support group to expand the library’s reach in the community. Martin answered the call. 

Ever the champion for her enterprising board, Martin commented, “We all get along.” 

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