-Support the ongoing programs and services of the Aurora Public Library with financial donations
-Celebrate the lifetime joys of reading by offering a wide variety of low cost books and other media in a vibrant, well-organized atmosphere
-Provide knowledgeable, caring volunteers to assist customers with their reading needs
• The Friends of the Aurora Public Library celebrated their 30th Anniversary as a non-profit organization in 2017.
• The primary mission of the Friends of the Aurora Public Library is to support the ongoing programs and services of the Aurora Public Library by providing direct financial donations.
• This goal is accomplished by managing and operating a retail used bookstore known as The Book Outlet.
• As a separate entity from the Library, The Book Outlet is currently located at 2243 South Peoria Street in the Iliff Square Shopping Center at the northwest corner of Iliff and Peoria in Aurora.
• The Book Outlet has over 2,000 square feet of used books and other media in over 100 categories.
• Staffed entirely by nearly 50 enthusiastic and knowledgeable volunteers from the community, The Book Outlet provides a vibrant, well-organized atmosphere for readers of all ages.
The history of The Friends of the Aurora Public Library and The Book Outlet shows a fascinating legacy of growth, dedication and commitment in service to the community:
• In 1977, The Friends of the Aurora Public Library was originally created by the Board of Trustees of the Aurora Public Library to help support the efforts to build a new library.
• For several years, the Friends hosted annual book sales that provided operating revenues for the organization as well as some financial support to the Aurora Public Library.
• The Friends was reinstituted and reinvigorated by a dedicated group of volunteers in 1987 and became a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in the State of Colorado in January of 1987.
• In 1990, the Aurora City Council and the Aurora Public Library granted permission to the Friends to reactivate and convert a bookmobile to a used book outlet.
• In July, 1990, the Mobile Aurora Book Library Exchange (MABLE) was born in this unique space.
• MABLE operated from the parking lot of the Central Aurora Public Library and also traveled to branch libraries around the City of Aurora.
• Seeking a permanent storefront location for book sales and through the generous support of a local business, the Friends were able to open their first retail location in January 1991 at 14573 East Alameda Avenue. This would become the now famous Friends of the Aurora Public Library Book Outlet.
• The extra space and stable location facilitated the acceptance of donated materials from the community and the library, enhanced the Friends ability to attract volunteers, allowed memberships to grow and vastly improved the Friends ability to provide financial support to the Library.
• In May 2000, a new and larger location for The Book Outlet was opened in a more visible location at 340 South Chambers Road. Memberships and sales continued to increase as did donations. This continued to present challenges due to ongoing space constraints.
• In March, 2005, The Book Outlet moved once again to a new, larger location adjacent to the Iliff Square Branch of the Aurora Public Library. With more than twice the space of previous locations, the Friends of the Aurora Public Library and The Book Outlet continue to grow in volunteers, members and donations.
• Now, we challenge the community of readers to help us continue to achieve our important mission by supporting the Friends of the Aurora Public Library through Colorado Gives Day and the Community First Foundation.
I am the Director of the Aurora Public Library and it has been my pleasure to work for many years with the wonderful and hard-working volunteers who run the Friends of the Aurora Public Library and their wonderful used book store, "The Book Outlet."
The Friends have contributed hundreds of thousands of library support dollars over the years, and each dollar has been both hard-earned and much-appreciated. The Friends are the major supporter of the library's summer reading program, as there is no budget line item for either general library programming or for children's literacy programming. The Friends have also sponsored special writing programs and contests. Their money has been used on special programming to encourage adults to be life-long learners and to assist the Library with events such as author visits that the library could not afford to do alone. The Friends have sponsored special year-long educational programs for adults and children, such as the Power of One (a series of theme-related programming efforts that include a reading program, lectures, a film series, and - again - special related programming) at the library and have also funded the purchase of Library equipment for which there were no City budgeted funds.
During the past couple of years, the Friends have focused their financial support on library collection development and children's literacy programming because of a 50% library budget cut beginning in 2010.
They are phenomenal and make things possible for Aurora's children and library users that would not otherwise occur. We very much appreciate the Friends of the Aurora Public Library organization.
Patti Bateman, Director
Library and Cultural Services
City of Aurora
MEMBER AND CUSTOMER TESTIMONIALS:
"The books are great, but the volunteers are what make this place so special. Helpful, informative and polite. I always leave happier than I come in." Don, Member & Regular Customer
"The prices! The helpful staff! The Books! I love the quaint neighborhood/village feel of the place. Thank you." Karen, Member & Regular Customer
"Friendly volunteers, good selection, great cause! Hal, Member & Regular Customer
"Can always find what I want. Personnel very knowledgeable regarding what's available and where to locate everything. Books are arranged neatly and in order. Very pleasant atmosphere." Grace, Member & Regular Customer
"Love the variety and prices. Can find almost anything and the people who work here as volunteers are all very nice and helpful." Christine, Member & Regular Customer
"This is the best used book store in the Denver area. The volunteer staff is so helpful. If you love books as I do, this should be a frequent stop. The books rotate so quickly that the offerings change with every visit. And what a great cause!" Sue, Member & Regular Customer
"I have always enjoyed reading and coming to the Friends of the Aurora Public Library is a joy! I get to add to my book collection and help support the library. It's a win-win situation!" Sandra , Member & Regular Customer
"The Book Outlet is my happy place! I look forward to my weekly visits. The volunteer staff is great and the book prices are wonderful. This is the only book store where I can shop to my heart's content and not break the bank. Long live the Friends of the Aurora Public Library Book Outlet!" Mary, Member & Regular Customer
"We have utilized The Book Outlet over the last 20 years and have found many wonderful books for our own library at home and for our children's public school library. By providing this outlet with low price availability, the bookstore helps so many people. The staff is always so friendly and helpful and work hard to keep the shelves full and neatly organized." Tim, Member & Regular Customer
"This Book Outlet has the best books money can buy. The people here are pleasant and the books are great. There is no better bookstore in the State of Colorado." Bernard, Member & Regular Customer
"This is a fantastic opportunity for book addicts so we can read to our heart's content without going broke. And the staff is fantastic and very helpful!" Barbara, Member & Regular Customer