Friends of the Cary Area Library


Gently used book and media donations will be accepted again beginning January 2, 2017
Items donated are tax deductible. Material that isn’t added to the Library’s circulating collection is saved for our bi-annual book sales. Items that are not sold are donated to local area charities or are recycled, so nothing is wasted. Please note, we can no longer accept encyclopedias and reference sets, yearbooks, textbooks over 5 years old, VHS and cassette tapes.



Upcoming 2016 meetings, held at the Library:
January 5, 7 pm
February 2, 7 pm
March 2, 7 pm
April 6, 7 pm
May 11, 7 pm
June 1, 7 pm

Spring Used Book Sale:
Saturday, April 22, 2017, 9 am-5 pm
Sunday, April 23, 2017, 1-5 pm

Little Free Libraries
FOCAL has installed three Little Free Libraries around Cary, with help from a local Boy Scout. They are located at the Cary Park District Community Center, Kraus Senior Center, and Greenfields Park. Learn more about Little Free Libraries.

Contact FOCAL

Who we are…
The Friends of the Cary Area Library (FOCAL) is a group of community volunteers committed to supporting the library through fundraising efforts, contributing to library programs and promoting public awareness of the library and its services.
Last year, FOCAL volunteers raised over $11,000 by hosting two annual used book sales (April and October) and partnering with Culver’s in Crystal Lake for two fundraising days (May and September).

The money we raise has helped the library purchase…

  • Prizes and books for youth, teen and adult reading programs
  • Two tablet computers
  • Outside benches for patrons to relax
  • Book Club participant books
  • Lego robotics sets for youth programs
  • Gift cards benefiting the Battle of the Books reading competition at the Cary Junior High

FOCAL’s efforts go beyond the walls of the library. Past and present, FOCAL continues to support and outsource used books to members of the community, schools, area nursing homes and charitable agencies.

  • Each spring, we award two $500 scholarships to graduating Cary high school students.
  • We maintain three Little Free Libraries in Cary. They are located at the Park District Community Center, Greenfields Park, and the Kraus Senior Center.
  • FOCAL provides and organizes a display of free used books at the Cary Metra station for riders to read during their commute.
  • Last winter we assisted the local PADS program by contributing books and magazines for the clients.
  • We have supported the Head Start Program by providing parents with books to read to their children.

Become a Friend!

The Friends of the Cary Area Public Library (FOCAL) are always looking for new members. A Friends group can have a strong positive impact on the Library. Friends provide a source of volunteers, a source of additional funding, and serve as advocates for the Library. Apply online or fill out the brief application form at the Library. Membership is free.

When are the meetings held?
Meetings are held in the Library at least four times each year, typically one meeting before and one after each sale; additional meetings are added to the calendar as needed. Meeting dates are posted above and reminder emails are sent to members prior to each meeting.

What is the time commitment?
A member can volunteer for as many hours as he/she would like. We encourage attendance at all meetings to keep everyone up to date on activities.

What do members do?
There are many opportunities for a member to get involved. Some of them include the following:

Book sorting: As books are donated for sales, they need to be organized and packed up for sale storage. This is done during the library hours throughout the year.

Fundraising: Members can help out at FOCAL fundraising events.

Book sale:

  • Publicity- post flyers of upcoming book sales in Cary area businesses; post yard signs around town the Friday prior to each sale and pick up after end of sale.
  • Pre sale- sale set up begins the week before the sale. Members help organize the tables and books in the main sales room and children’s sales room.
  • Sale days- members assist sale customers, reorganize shelves.
  • Post sale- assist with packing up unsold books; deliver books to local charitable organizations; sale room take down.