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Unique Fundraiser For Swan’s Island Library 

A vacant lot is all that remains of the library on Swan’s Island after fire destroyed nearly everything last year. “Very tragic,” says Donald Carlson, a member of the Swan’s Island Noard of trustees, “a lot of disappointed, disheartened people, a lot of work really went into it and a lot of historical items. It was really a major loss for the island.”Liz Awalt, a local artist, was visiting the site days after the library burned when she noticed something that caught her eye. “I noticed papers everywhere flying in the air, down in the meadow,” says Awalt, “it was astounding really to see how many papers were still intact.”As the old adage says, one person’s trash is another’s treasure, Awalt began collecting the charred pieces of paper. She came up with the idea of jotting down some memories on the old pieces of paper. “I began with the idea,” she says, “it slowly evolved and I thought at first maybe I’d make a few pages then it turned into a community project.”The art project quickly ballooned into much more. Awalt began organizing events to get the community more involved. Members of the community started sharing their memories on the paper she recovered. However she didn’t stop there. “I thought if I could ask some Maine artists, fairly well known Maine artists around the state, if they would like to do a page for the benefit at the library.” The response was overwhelmingly positive. Now all the artwork is set to be auctioned off later this month with all the proceeds going to help build the new library.With the library temporarily being packed in the same building as the Town Office and the Post Office, the new building will be a sight for sore eyes. As for the artist who started it all, she couldn’t be happier. “So I think it’s wonderful and I think just to have everyone on the island make their mark and say something visual about their connection either to the library or the island is very exciting and heart warming.”Te art is set to be auctioned off August 26th at the Neighborhood House in Northeast Harbor. There’s an open house from noon-to-4:00, followed by the auction that starts at 5:00. Tickets for the auction are $25 with all proceeds go toward the new library. For more information visit their website: http://www.swansisland.org/library.htm.