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Sun, Sept. 15

Denim & Lace rounds up library funds

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LAST year's Denim & Lace fund raiser brought in more than $10,000 to benefit the Camp Verde Library.

They won't pay for keeping the lights on, but they will supply a reading lamp.

They won't build the library they'll just make it better.

They are the Camp Verde Library Endowment, and they are having their biggest (and only) fund raiser of the year on April 2.

The event is call "Denim and Lace" and last year it brought in over $10,000. The endowment hopes to someday use the money to fill a new library facility with useful things -- such as desk and chairs and computers and pens -- all those things that make a library, a library.

The event will be held, once again, at the Cliff Castle Casino Lodge -- that's the one at the bottom of the hill -- and it will feature a buffet dinner and the entertainment of Peter Ford and Billie Helm along with a live auction.

Ford is a western actor and stuntman and is also the son of actor Glenn Ford. He will give a talk about what it was like growing up with a legendary father and his own experiences as a Hollywood actor.

The truly great thing about the Denim and Lace Dinner and Auction is that 100 percent of the proceeds raised from the event will go to the Camp Verde Library Endowment.

Most of the items and services are donated, and Lodge Chef Jerry Jordan prepares a gourmet buffet for the dinner portion.

"I can't say enough for all of the contributions and support that Cliff Castle Casino and Manager John O'Neil have done for this event and the endowment in general," Camp Verde Library Librarian Jerry Laurito said. "They have been great supporters."

This year will be the fifth annual Denim and Lace. Its roots go back to the formation of the endowment foundation.

The endowment began in 1999 when Library Board member Dorothy Wood wanted to make an investment in the library's future. At the time there was no way to donate money to the library without it being donated to the town's general fund.

Together with Sharon Massey, Pat Hjalmarson, and Veda Lovato, Wood formed a group to explore what it would take to build a perpetual funding source where contributions could be safely deposited, specifically for the town library.

With the blessing and enthusiasm of the town's new librarian, Laurito, and a suggestion of Tom Taylor, the group started an endowment foundation in December of 1999, from scratch.

Originally the group raffled off various items including an oil painting, a book and a quilt. Then one day they hit on the idea of a charity dinner.

The money raised in the last five years is now over $61,000.

"Not bad for a small town," Wood said.

Along with its charity dinner, the foundation actively seeks charitable contributions.

The money that is contributed to the endowment is invested with the Yavapai County Community Foundation, which is under the umbrella of the Arizona Community Foundation, a consortium of charitable foundations statewide.

The interest earned from the money invested will eventually be used to furnish and supply a new town library.

A new library is getting closer to reality as the town recently approved the funds to begin design work on a new building.

The town also plans to sell off five acres of land that was originally donated by the Cliffs Development as part of an agreement with the town and to use those funds toward building construction.

The town has also designated a site for a 30,000 square foot library building as part of its uptown city facility master plan.

Money raised by the Camp Verde Library Endowment will not be used to construct the building, only furnish it.

Anyone interested in attending the Denim and Lace Dinner and Auction on April 2 may purchase a $25 per person ticket at the Camp Verde Library, or the Chamber of Commerce, or by calling (928) 567-6362 or 567-3921.

The foundation is also interested in hearing from individuals who are interested in making private or corporate donations to the endowment. Please contact the library for further information concerning donations.

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