Who are the Friends of the Cambridge Community Library?

We are a non-profit community organization dedicated to supporting the Cambridge Community Public Library. Our purpose is to assist the library in developing programs to meet current community needs; to assist in promoting knowledge of, and participation in, library services; and to aid in providing funds to meet special library needs.

Our members are book lovers, information seekers, readers, listeners, music and movie buffs. We come from varying backgrounds and age groups! We all treasure ideas and value the public library as a vital community resource. Our annual meeting is held in January of each year.

Meeting Schedule of Related Boards

Library Board 
First Wednesday of the Month at 7:00P.M.
Lobby of the Cambridge Community Library

Friends of the Library Executive Board
First Thursday of the Month at 7:00P.M.
Senior Room, Amundson Center

Our History

There was a great deal of excitement when the new library Grand Opening was held on August 15, 2015.  Many people helped to make that happen. So where do we go from here? Our mission remains the same: “Our purpose is to assist the library in developing programs to meet current community needs; to assist in promoting knowledge of, and participation in, library services; and to aid in providing funds to meet special library needs.” Cambridge Community Library is one of our most valuable community institutions. The Friends are proud to support the library through community advocacy, activities, and events. The Friends “job” is to fill this new library with excitement, new materials, new services, and interesting programs.

History reveals the success of our organization over the years. The first library was in a tiny space at Village Hall in 1955. It was open for ten hours a week. Efforts were made to move to a small space in the high school but failed. Prior to 1978, the bookmobile arrived at Veterans’ Park for two hours each Monday. In 1978, a library advocacy group formed consisting of Laurie Hagberg, Genora Bernhardt, Betty Stoffel, Dona Merg, John Jeffries, Jeanne Patterson, Harold Dahlen and John Neibauer. That same year, the Village of Cambridge passed an ordinance creating a Library Board to oversee the operations of the library. The advocacy group’s efforts paid off and a grand opening was held at the first library on September 2, 1978 at 201 W. Water Street.

In October of 1990, the library moved to the Amundson Center. The Friends gifted over $13,000 to welcome the library to its new home. The Friends held many fundraisers including a talent show, hot dog and chili supper, donkey basketball, tour of homes, garden tour and geranium sale. Used book sales were held outdoors at Veterans’ Park. As technology advanced, the Friends donated $8,500 for the first year’s operation of LINKcat.

Past librarians of the library were Ethel Mary Curtis, Mary Burton (first official librarian), Mary Gjermo, Mary Pope, Sharon Olson, Anne Bowles, Pam Brandel, Judy Doan-Brassington and Debra Bird.

Due to our fundraising efforts and individual donations, the Friends contributed $185,766 to the new library building fund. The Friends continue to raise funds at their annual Art & Craft Fair, Plant Sale and Used Book Sale as well as support the children’s summer program, magazine subscriptions, books on CD and numerous special needs of the library and its current Director, Joan Behm.