Batter up! America’s public libraries have a long history of philanthropic support, with many libraries owing their origins to Andrew Carnegie’s generosity. Public funds make libraries possible, but it is often private gifts that help libraries hit it out of the park.
Since 2000, the Olathe Public Library Foundation has been playing this position for the Olathe Public Library, serving as a pinch hitter, and making sure the library remains a vital community resource. Established by former Library Board President Cliff Tatham and his wife, Elaine, the organization provides long-term supplemental funding to enhance library services and programs beyond what is possible through traditional tax-based funding. To date, the Foundation has given more than $390,000 to the library, sponsoring new collections, summer reading initiatives, innovative technology and accessible equipment.
Grants to the library are awarded each year at the Foundation’s annual fundraiser dinner and author event “A Taste of Literacy.”
This year’s “A Taste of Literacy” event will feature New York Times Bestselling Author and sportswriter Joe Posnanski. Posnanski will talk about his love of libraries and his forthcoming book, Why We Love Baseball, a countdown of the greatest, funniest, wildest and most legendary moments in the history of baseball.
In his 30-year career as a sportswriter, Posnanski has written for The Athletic, Sports Illustrated, NBC Sports and The Kansas City Star, been named National Sportswriter of the year by five organizations, won two Emmy Awards, and was given a lifetime achievement award by the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.
“A Taste of Literacy” will take place on Saturday, Oct. 1, 2022, at the Indian Creek Library. A social hour with cash bar will begin at 5:30 p.m. followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m. and the author presentation at 7:00 p.m. The Olathe North High School Culinary Arts Program will cater a surf and turf meal.
Individual tickets are $75 each. Sponsorships are available starting at $300. Tickets and sponsorships can be purchased at www.olathelibrary.org/atasteofliteracy.