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Gala auction to aid library: Brady-signed football among items
Anna L. Griffin, Telegram & Gazette, March 5, 2007

LEOMINSTER— Members of the 150th Anniversary Gala Auction Committee said plans are firming up for the event that will be held March 24.

“We’re very pleased with the items we have received,” said Sue Chalifoux Zephir, chairwoman of the event. “The community has been very generous.”

Among the items that have been received are a football autographed by New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady; a baseball autographed by Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling and an autographed photograph of Schilling pitching; a wildlife photograph featuring a penguin, shot by Dr. Michael E. Gotthelf, that also comes with two tickets to the New England Aquarium; and a complete Italian dinner for eight, from antipasto to dessert, that comes with a basket filled with a bottle of wine, olive oil, a CD of “Il Divo” and other items.

“We really have something for everyone,” said Mrs. Zephir.

Other items include vacation packages; books signed by local authors, such as Richard Letarte’s “That One Glorious Season: Baseball Players with One Spectacular Year” and Ernest Caponi’s “Arthur and Rose: The Caponi/Mosca Union, In Search of My Italian Roots”; and artwork by local artists Jeanne Zephir and Luanne Hume.

“We are very happy with how the event is shaping up,” said Susan Shelton, executive director of Leominster Public Library. “We also have numerous gift certificates from local businesses as well as gift certificates for professional services from many in the region, such as lawyers and accountants.”

The auction, which will feature both live and silent components, will be held to benefit the Leominster Public Library Building Fund. All proceeds will be used for furniture, fixtures and equipment. Dave Rogers is the auctioneer.

The event will be held from 7 to 9:30 p.m. March 24 in Tata Auditorium, City Hall, 25 West St. Tickets to the event are $25 each. In addition to the auction, there will be refreshments and a cash bar.

Donations of items or services for the auction are being accepted. Those who are interested in making a donation can call the Leominster Public Library at (978) 534-7522, send e-mail to auction@leominsterlibrary.com or contact any member of the committee.

In addition to Mrs. Zephir, committee members are: Donna Balletta, Kim DiGeronimo, Sheila Eydenberg, Martha Faulkner, Suzanne Koehler, Denise Labenski, Ruth McCarty, Carol Millette, Nona Ojala, Mrs. Shelton, and Suzanne St. Cyr.

Auction committee members are looking for volunteers who will be able to assist with the various aspects of the auction. Those who would like to volunteer can use the contact information listed above.

Tickets for the auction can be obtained from committee members, at the Mayor’s Office at City Hall or at the event that evening.

In May 2005, Leominster Public Library moved from West Street to its temporary location at Crossroads Office Park, 690 Mechanic St. A July groundbreaking was held at the West Street location that marked the official start of a project to enlarge the library to 44,513 square feet, with 55 adjacent parking spaces.

This was achieved by renovating the original building, built in 1910, and building a new 34,434-square-foot addition. Entrances to the building will be on both West and Pearl streets. In addition to money from both the state and local government to cover the costs of construction, the library has undertaken a private fundraising effort to pay for such things as furnishings. The auction is part of this private fundraising effort.

A fundraising goal of $1.2 million for this private effort has been set. “We’ve received many pledges and a great deal of support from the people of the city,” said Mrs. Shelton. “We hope to keep the momentum going as we look forward to the library opening in late spring.”

Information on any aspect of the project can be obtained by visiting the Web site www.leominsterlibrary.org.


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