Dear Neighbor,

For the first time in many years, Skene Library ended its fiscal year (on May 31) in the red. This is due to the state-mandated fully-automated system; patrons from all 42 libraries in our Four County Library System now have access to our collections; and patrons at Skene have access to the entire system as well. But the costs for a small library like ours are very steep–around $4000 per year. And our winter fund-raiser did not succeed as hoped. So Skene will be attempting another fund-raiser this summer. If you can, please mail a donation to
Skene Library,
PO Box 189
Fleischmanns NY 12430.
Or better yet, drop it off when you next come get a book. come in to use our new computers, or attend a program!

“Upgrade.” It’s a word we hear a lot these days. Upgrade your refrigerator. Upgrade your television. Upgrade your smartphone to a smarter phone.

Upgrading is as essential for organizations as for machines. They too must raise the level of their capabilities if they are to remain viable. It is why libraries must always be involved in an upgrading process, and why we at the Skene are doing just that.

You may have noticed that our public computers have been upgraded to the Windows 10 operating system, with its greater speed and improved design. New, upgraded headsets provide sharper sound and a lighter feel. Through our connection with the Four County Library System, Skene patrons now have upgraded access to an expanded range of research into such topics as business and finance, job help, health and wellness—not to mention into a vast collection of encyclopedias, periodicals, almanacs, Spanish-language resources, and more. You can also reserve or download books from any of the libraries in the system, including the Skene, digitally, and if you want to, in the middle of the night.

Now we are focusing on opportunities for grants to help us deal with other fundamental upgrades. One possible grant, through a newly opened funding area from a local foundation, could help us extend or expand our highly successful series of children’s programs. Another, from New York state, would enable us to make substantive changes to our physical plant to improve both efficiency and the library experience—new and better lighting, for example. As is the case with most grants, these would require a local match—that is, we would have to advance a percentage of the total sought to evidence local support for the upgrade.

Building up the funding for such matches is our special “ask” as we turn to you for financial donations in this season. Your steadfast support over the years has enabled the Skene to continue to deliver benefits to the communities we’ve been serving since 1904. We see it as your vote of confidence in the unique role a local library plays and in the special qualities that characterize the Skene—a renowned collection of books of local interest or origin, wifi even before you get in the door, programs and performances for adults and children throughout the year, and our unmatched acquisition of current books across a range of genres and interests.

This year, we hope your donation will also reflect your support for the upgrades we have effected and will continue to pursue in order to preserve those special qualities and keep your library viable far into the future.

Whatever gift you can manage, we thank you for your generosity, and we extend our best wishes for the holidays and for a healthy, happy new year to you and your family.

Make you donation payable to:  Skene Memorial Library

Please mail your contribution to:

Skene Memorial Library
PO Box 189
1017 Main Street
Fleischmanns, NY 12430

My contribution is enclosed ____________

Name: ______________________________________________

Phone: ________________



Email: ______________________________________________