On May 18, 2017, more than 300 gathered to support the Jersey City Free Public Library Foundation at the 14th Annual Black & White Ball and Silent Auction Fundraiser. The event, held in the elegant Gallery at Liberty Prime on Montgomery Street in Downtown Jersey City, brought out Jersey City’s stars to raise funds for the ongoing renovations of the Main Library. Dress for the event was black-tie optional, with many guests going all-out to impress in a fabulous black-and-white ensemble. Attendees enjoyed a pasta station and other light fare, unlimited beer, wine, and soft drinks, and live music provided by the Eamonn Ryan Band. Attendees also had the chance to bid on incredible Silent Auction items such as a brand-new television, a home audio sound bar, a designer handbag, and wine baskets, as well as major gets like a complimentary one-night weekend stay at the Hyatt Regency Jersey City, including breakfast buffet for two, or a 3-month membership to BASE Fitness Jersey City, including a 60-minute massage and much more. One very lucky winner also took home a Michael Kors watch, the proceeds of a 50-50 raffle, and a “salad bowl” full of “greens” including cash and scratch-off tickets.
Speaking about the ongoing renovation of the Main Library, Jersey City Free Public Library Foundation Board President Michael Ryan said, “We are delighted to have the opportunity to restore this community treasure. The work we are doing now will guarantee that the Main Library will continue to serve the residents of Jersey City in glorious condition for at least another century.”
“The Library Foundation relies on the support of the community to realize our mission of sustaining and growing the Library’s facilities and services,” Ryan added. “In the current climate, public funding for educational and cultural institutions is unfortunately a bit of a question mark. One of the goals of our upcoming Fundraiser is to come together and show off the strong community support we have in this city for this beloved institution.”
Library Director Priscilla Gardner noted that Jersey City’s Library must rise to special challenges. “Jersey City is the most diverse city in the nation. The Library is a place where all of our city’s diverse communities – every single resident of Jersey City – can find information and resources to enrich their lives and improve their opportunities.”
Gardner noted that the objective of the ongoing renovations at the Main Library is to better serve the city’s residents. “As the population of Jersey City grows and changes, the Library’s role is to grow and change along with it, to fulfill our mission of serving everyone in this city.”