Changes for Friends of the Library
Like every firm in the country, this has been a helluva year for Friends of the Library. We bought the Junior League space early in the year and now own the whole building at 430 N. Main St., giving us much-needed additional capacity.
Then came COVID-19, which prevented us from holding both our five-day spring and fall sales, disappointing our volunteers and thousands of eager customers. We therefore have a hugely reduced income and cannot contribute to the county’s libraries as we have done for 65 years.
We do expect to repeat our recent Bag of Books (BOB) sale in mid-January to mid-February. Other potential sale schemes are in the works. For information, please look at our website: folacld.org.
Currently, we are not accepting book and media donations for the rest of 2020. Do bear with us. We miss you as we hope you miss us. Remember that “this too shall pass.”
P.J. van Blokland, president, Friends of the Library
Build solar farm elsewhere
Earlier this year, the residents of the Archer area protested the building of a solar farm in their neighborhood, and won their case with the Alachua County Commission. The developers are trying to change the zoning of a couple tracts of land in the Archer area, on either side of County Road 346, to build their solar farm. In the area are many families, farms, ranches and stands of timber.
From discussions I have had with the people in the area, they don’t want to have this “farm” in their neighborhood. They feel it would probably lower their property values, and assuredly upset the balance of wildlife in the area.
Many believe that it should be built near Gainesville Regional Utilities’ wood-fired power plant, on the other side of the county, where there would be a lesser impact on the lives of people and animals, and an easier connection into the power grid.
Richard DesChenes, Archer
Fanny Lou Hamer’s legacy
Watching Kamala Harris’ victory speech transported me back to the times when I shared PBS images of the civil rights struggle with Dutch students.
In the very year Harris was born, Mississippi cotton picker Fanny Lou Hamer made her plea for voting rights at the 1964 Democratic Party convention
As a teacher at a Utrecht, Holland, journalism school, I visited the U.S. with a group of students three times to cover the presidential and congressional elections.
In 2000 we went for the first time. In Holland, we had come to see America as a beacon of hope. That sense of promise became even stronger when in 2008 we witnessed Barack Obama being elected president.
The contrast with 1964, when Hamer spoke to challenge an all-white delegation, seemed too good to be true. Kamala Harris has surely grown to celebrate Hamer’s heritage. Joe Biden learnt the lesson and faced up to the challenge.
Herman van der Meer, former University of Florida exchange student
The other night we drove up to Alachua to see Bill Holmes’ light display. It lasts just under an hour and is just wonderful. In these times with so little good news and things to enjoy it was really worth the trip. His address is 7904 NW 170th St.
This is really worth the drive and it is great for all ages. You sit in your car on the berm in front of his house. I highly recommend it. You won’t be disappointed.
Denny Gies, Gainesville