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“The only thing that you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library.” – Albert Einstein

“The public library is where place and possibility meet.”Stuart Dybek

“Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read.” – Groucho Marx

My friend Margaret “Babe” Gratz chatted with me recently about something that’s dear to her heart – the Lee County Library.

She figured I might be interested in telling folks about a program the Friends of the Library came up with that involves something dear to my heart – dogs (and cats, too).

She confessed to me she’d used the word “sucker” in reference to me and my love of animals. I assured her I would take it as high praise.

So, here’s the deal: Not only can human beings sign on to become members of Friends of the Library, but now, so can your beloved – and literary – pets.

For only $20, your dog – or cat – can boast an honorary pet membership in the Lee County Friends of the Library. They’ll also receive, as proof of membership, a royal blue bandana emblazoned with “I’m the Best Friend of the Lee County Library.”

There’s more.

If you take a photo of your pet proudly wearing his or her bandana and send it to the library, photos will be posted on the Friends of the Library Facebook page, displayed in the library and published in the newsletter.

“This sounded cute and catchy,” said FOL member Vivian Fleming. “Hopefully, it will take off.”

How can it not? Who’s not crazy about public libraries and pets?

For those who might not be familiar with the FOL organization, here’s some good information offered to me by Becky Rollins, organization president.

“We are a very active group,” she said. “Our mission is to donate money back to the library for books, audio tapes, new computers, anything they need.”

The biggest fundraiser FOL undertakes is A Novel Affair.

Basically, the Friends are advocates for our public library.

“We want to see our library prosper,” Rollins said. “I have such good childhood memories of riding my bicycle to the library and checking out as many books as I could fit in my basket. I have a profound respect for the library.”

According to Fleming, there are now 436 members of Lee County Friends of the Library.

“Most are from Tupelo and Lee County,” she said. “But many are from surrounding towns and a few are from out of state.”

Please, make sure your dogs – and cats – know they can be a part of this library-loving league. If you’re already a Friend, you’ve received a form for your pet in the newsletter.

If you’re not already a Friend, stop in at the library, pick up a form and make your pets honorary members as soon as possible. Support your local library.

Your dog – or cat – will thank you.

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