The Framingham Public Library Foundation rang in the New Year with great news: an anonymous donor gave the foundation $50,000 to help reach its goal of $600,000 for the new McAuliffe Branch Library project.
Ruth Winett, president of the foundation, said the organization received a call from a lawyer in late December notifying her that "some people wanted to make a $50,000 anonymous contribution to the foundation," she said.
The library group has been trying to raise $600,000 in private donations to supplement state and town funding to build a new McAuliffe Branch Library in the Nobscot section of town.
The estimated $8.6 million project will include construction of a one-story, 17,000-square-foot building on Water Street that will better suit the library's changing needs, officials said.
The project received $4.2 million from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners in October, and supporters will ask Town Meeting to approve $3.8 million in town funds in April.
In the past 18 months, the foundation has raised about half of its $600,000 goal for the project, Winett said.
"We’re just very pleased by the support we’ve been receiving," she said. "We still need more help, but we appreciate the generosity of these people and many others who contributed, both individuals and businesses."
Winett said the library group is still working on an upcoming baseball-themed fundraising event on the evening of Friday, March 15, although details have not been decided upon yet.
"We still have a way to go to achieve our goal, so we’re working hard to get there," she said. "But this donation puts us somewhat closer."
Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org