The Books For Troops project has just completed eight months of sending reading materials to deployed troops. This project is a joint effort between Friends of the Solon Library and the Solon American Legion Auxiliary Post 460.
To date, there have been 15 boxes sent containing 219 paperback books, 27 newspapers, 91 magazines, plus assorted DVD movies and music C.D.s– all donated by local residents, the Friends of the Library and our newspaper carrier. Postage costs are shared between Friends and the Auxiliary. Various businesses have donated the 159 ballpoint pens included in the packages and 39 decks of cards have been included from the Riverside Casino. Many other items have been included as space permits and each box is tightly packed with individually wrapped hard candies.
Due to the generosity of patrons at the Legion, an additional $63 has been collected in the jars placed on the counter. These extra funds have helped supply postage for an additional box being sent every month and four sets of poker chips have been purchased and sent.
The response from the troops has been one of gratitude. A note from one of the soldiers this month said, “Thanks so much for the great box of stuff! Everyone in the platoon got use of the magazines, books and pens. And, the poker chips and cards were a big hit also! Thanks, again.” The most recent postcard received said, in part, “Thank you for the box full of books, movies and magazines that you sent us. We sure appreciate your support.”
Plans are for the project to run through December 2011. Funding continues to be tight. If you would like to help with the project, monetary donations in any amount may be left at the library or in the jars at the Legion or by contacting Margo Redlinger at 624-3780. One dollar buys a bag of hard candy, $8 buys a set of poker chips, and $13 will pay the postage for one box. Twenty dollars buys a current movie. The thank-you received from the troops makes this a very proud and rewarding project.