Since forming last year, the Friends of the Arlington Library group has been looking for a creative way to raise money.

Hoping to be able to host one big fundraiser each year, members began to throw out ideas and, as those discussions evolved, the idea for a beer tasting event was born.

On Oct. 12, the Friends will host Booktoberfest from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Arlington Auditorium. As part of the fundraiser, businesses will be setting up informational tables and have craft beer on hand for attendees to sample.

"It's about getting together and support a community staple," said Sara Hasenauer, the group's president.

Participating businesses are asked to bring four different cases of craft beer and have someone on hand to pour samples to guests attending the event. They are also encouraged to have information about their business on hand, although Hasenauer said it will not be an event to sell items.

Hasenauer said residents can even get involved by setting up a table.

As part of the event, adults 21 and older will pay a fee and receive a Friends of the Library glass and tickets for sampling, said Shanon Willmott, the Friends' treasurer.

"It is kind of like the wine tasting event at the fair," Willmott said. "You will get a certain number of tickets and you can go from table to table, drop in a ticket and try craft beer and learn about the companies."

Proceeds from Booktoberfest will go to support library programs. Hasenauer said the Friends group may even look into purchasing a new circulation desk for the library.

Efforts to form a Friends of the Library began in 2017 as the Village Board of Trustees discussed the possibility of building a new library as part of plans for a new municipal building. But, the group never got off the ground. Last year, after talking with Sheila Bracht, president of the library board, Hasenauer and Willmott revived the effort to form the Friends group.

"I think it's gone pretty well," Hasenauer said of the first year. "Overall, we've had a pretty good turnout at our meetings and people are willing to help out."

Wilmott said the group is working to get more people involved. Currently, there are 20 Friends members.

To learn more about the Friends of the Arlington Library, visit the group's Facebook page, www.facebook.com/arlolibraryfriends.

Businesses or people interested in participating in the Booktoberfest event can email Sheila Bracht at sheilabracht@yahoo.com or call 402-350-3654.

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