Friends of the Library’s guest speaker tells of opportunities, pipe wrenches

05_diane-basket_5945BIG WINNER  — Diane Boyd was the winner of the big Kindle basket during The Friends of the Library event last Wednesday afternoon.  I-O Photo by Pat Lee

By Tirsea McNeal, I-O Reporter

The Conrad Library upstairs room was filled with Friends of the Library members awaiting special guest speaker Lisa Schmidt, author and owner of natural grass fed beef and lamb ranch in Conrad.

As Bernice Paisley played lively tunes on the piano, guests assembled and looked over the donated baskets and gifts given for the raffle, all donated by reading book club members and individual supporters of the library.

Carolyn Donath, Conrad head librarian, welcomed everyone and spoke about the importance of the Friends of the Library organization and also mentioned the library levy coming on the ballot in June.

Donath stated the importance of supporting the library.  She spoke of how the library is associated with many community functions.

Bonnie Bethelson, the Conrad Children’s Librarian, spoke to the group about the importance of children’s story hours with songs and project examples and songs taught to the children.

Bethelson sang and gave participants an example of story hour.  She said, “the Children’s Summer Reading Program will start soon.”

Schmidt was introduced and spoke about how she got her start in writing and ranching.

Schmidt said on Saturday mornings as a child, after watching morning cartoons, she would go visit the library. She mentioned some of her favorite books, The Incredible Journey, and the Little House on the Prairie book series, and asked the audience what was some of their favorite books. It seems everyone had favorite childhood reading experiences with their local libraries.

Schmidt said as she got older, she then took her kids to the library.

She said how important knowledge is and added, “I think about what this library provides: the story hour and the recreation it provides for our community.”

She also spoke on how important libraries are in general to our society.  She said, “Think about how our society would be without knowledge? How could we have a democracy without knowledge?”

Schmidt briefly spoke about her education experience and opportunities she encountered on her way to becoming a well-known agricultural column writer and rancher.

She also spoke on the pipe wrenches that sometimes knocked her down in life, those low times when she’d re-examine her goals and opportunities again would present themselves.

Mayor Wendy Judisch was then introduced to draw the raffle ticket winners.

The first gift basket filled with CD’s, movie tickets and various movie related memorabilia, went to Della Kellogg.  Second gift basket filled with treats and candies went to Kelly Hanson.

Cody Yeager won a $50 gift card to Country Charm and Teresa Conti won a gift card to Maria’s Greenhouse.

A hand carved wood walking stick and sign was won by Elsie Lamma.

A spa basket filled with Sweetgrass products was won by Molly Donath, and a quilted table runner made and donated by Helen Stordahl was won by Paula Hudson.

A book basket complete with coffee mugs was won by Donna Warwick and the final basket worth $1,200 complete with Kindle, a bottle of wine and an assortment of Kindle related gifts was won by Diane Boyd.