Easton Library Lights Up For the Holiday Season

Easton Library transforms into a children's Winter Wonderland.

There are a slew of Burlingame events celebrating the magic of the holiday season. Adding to the fun this year, the Burlingame Library Foundation (BLF) is hosting its first annual Children's Holiday Tea.

The event will take place at the on Sunday, Dec. 5 from 2 p.m. until 4 p.m.

A year ago at this time, the Easton Branch was on the verge of closing due to a lack of city funds, but the BLF was able to raise enough money in the last six months to keep it open for another year.

"It's nice to have this event at the Easton Branch because the community has put in so much time and effort into keeping it open," said BLF trustee Lisa Rosenthal. "It deserves the attention." 

Rosenthal is a 31-year Burlingame resident and one of the founding members of the BLF. When asked where the idea for a Children's Holiday Tea came from, she referred to the creation of the Adult Book and Author Luncheon.

"One of our younger committee members thought so highly of the event, she came up with idea of doing something similar for kids," she said. "This project has been in the making for about a year now."  

In addition to providing a holiday activity for children, this Children's Tea fundraiser is a celebration of how the community rallied around the Easton Branch and the success of the BLF.

The foundation was started 15 years ago by Burlingame residents to help provide private funding to sustain the city's public libraries. Over $200,000 were raised to furnish the main branch in 1997 and another $230,000 were raised to restore the Easton branch in 2004. 

Over the years, the foundation has moved from raising money only for the main library to providing funds for programs being cut and the book collections. When bond money became available to refurnish the Easton Branch, the foundation got to work again.

"The Easton Branch is a jewel to the neighborhood," Rosenthal said. "Now the foundation is at a crossroads--there's more and more cutbacks and hours are being cut. The city relies on the foundation to raise money to keep up both branches."

The foundation holds fundraisers throughout the year, including the Author's Luncheon in the spring and numerous used and new book sales. The funds raised from the Holiday Tea will go directly towards children's programs - such as story times, special events and special speakers - at both Burlingame public library locations.

Entirely run by volunteers, the Easton Library will be turned into a winter wonderland during the tea. Burlingame businesses, such as Teacake Bake Shop, , , Pete's Coffee and , are donating food, treats and tea. has underwritten the event.

The event will host special guests. Amelia's Notebook author Marissa Moss will lead an interactive presentation. Jonathan Zambole, balloon enthusiast, willbe making balloon animals for the children and Brian Switzer, a local music teacher, will direct a middle school jazz ensemble as they fill the air with the sounds of the holidays.


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