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Friends of the Needham Public Library - Celebrating 50 Years, 1973-2023


The Friends of the Needham Public Library welcomes you to the library we love. The Friends came together in 1973 to advance the library’s goals and enrich its resources. We invite you to help with this enjoyable mission by becoming a member, making a donation, volunteering and participating in our activities.

We are known for our periodic book sales, our annual program series, the Friends’ Book Shop, the Friends Art Gallery and the Library of Things. We are also proud to support children’s programs, museum passes, collection enrichment and many other important library programs and facilities.

Upcoming Programs

The Friends presents a series of programs from October through June of each year. Our next program will be the Friends Annual Meeting and Program, Thursday June 6, 7:00 PM, featuring guest speaker Emily Norton, “The State of the Charles River” – See our entire program schedule here.

Upcoming Book Sales

Mark your calendar for our book sales on the following dates.

Friday, May 31 – Sunday June 2, 2024

An Evening with Doris Kearns Goodwin

The Friends celebrated our 50th anniversary on April 26 by presenting a special fundraising event featuring Pulitzer Prize-winning president historian Doris Kearns Goodwin and Jared Bowen of GBH. The event took place in Powers Hall at Needham Town Hall. We thank our 25 sponsors and more than 400 attendees for helping to make the program a resounding success! More info

The Friends’ Art Gallery

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Friends’ mission?

In the great American library tradition, we help provide citizens with an exceptional library where services are free to all and all are welcome. We promote, support and advocate for the Needham Free Public Library.

What are some library resources that exist because of Friends’ donations?

  • The Library of Things
  • The Friends’ Art Gallery on the first floor of the library, where local and regional artists show their work on a monthly rotating basis
  • Up-to-date audiovisual equipment to facilitate a wide array of programs in the library’s Community Room
  • LCD screens in the entryways that provide visibility for the library’s programs and need-to-know information
  • Museum passes
  • International and foreign language materials
  • Adult graphic novel and video game collections
  • Summer reading programs
  • And much, much more!

Where do the Friends’ funds come from?

The generosity of the public allows the Friends to support library activities. We raise most of our funds through our periodic book sales and the Friends’ Book Shop. Additional funds come from membership dues and donations of money and books.

How do I donate books to the Friends’ book sales?

Donations of used books that are in good condition may be placed directly into the large gray bin inside the Rosemary Street entrance. Materials are examined and sorted by genre and condition. Donations may be sold in our Friends’ Book Shop, in our periodic book sales or on Amazon. The Friends use all proceeds to benefit the library and library programming.

We do not accept: audio cassettes, VHS cassettes, magazine, puzzles and games.

Book donations are a major source of revenue, so we thank members of the public for their generous book donations!

Who runs the Friends?

The officers and Board of Directors of the Friends meet monthly from September through the annual meeting in June, to plan and organize the activities of the Friends. Current officers are:

President: Bruce Barnett
Vice President: Margaret Pantridge
Recording Secretary: Jan Bowen
Corresponding Secretary: John Lechner
Co-Treasurers: Paul Chern and Susan Chern

How can I get involved with the Friends?

We would love to have you join us. Our volunteers help organize our book sales, plan our programs and serve on the board of directors. We have volunteer opportunities to suit a wide variety of interests and time commitments. Working with the Friends is a great way to make new friends, get involved with the community and be around books. If you are interested, please join the Friends and then send us an email using the email form below. We will be in touch!

How can I follow Friends’ activities?

Members receive email and snail-mail notifications of our events and activities. You can also follow us on Facebook and here on this web site.

How can I contact the Friends?

Please use the form below.

Friends of the Needham Public Library
1139 Highland Ave
Needham, MA 02494

Website: friendsneedhamlibrary.org

Telephone: As a small volunteer organization, we do not have a telephone number or regular office hours. Please contact us through the email form below and we will get back to you. To contact the library itself, please call 781-455-7559.

Email: Please fill out this form and click “submit.” In the message box, please tell us if you have a specific request, such as to be notified about or programs or book sales.