Del Mar council recognizes Friends of the Del Mar Library

Aptly named, the Friends of the Del Mar Library has long been one of the Del Mar Library’s closest allies.

The Del Mar Library opened its doors more than a century ago in 1914. St. James Catholic Church was also established that same year, just a few blocks away.

After the library had been located in several spots, from storefronts to the trailer behind City Hall, and the church had long relocated to Solana Beach, the city bought the building for $1.2 million in 1994 — with support from the community and the Friends of the Del Mar Library.

In 1996, Del Mar Library officially debuted its new digs, the historical building where it remains today.

From helping the library find a permanent home, to continuing to raise funds for the branch, the Friends of the Del Mar Library has supported the library for decades.

Officially becoming a nonprofit in 1982, today the organization continues to fundraise through annual book sales and membership drives. Funds have refurbished the building and refreshed programing.

Recognizing the nonprofit’s important place in the community, Del Mar Mayor Sherryl Parks presented the organization with a proclamation during the March 7 City Council meeting.

“Donations to the Friends of Del Mar Library enable the library to purchase new library materials and enrich the library’s community programming, which includes bluegrass and other music concerts, classes and children’s performers,” Parks said.

Pat Freeman, board president of the Friends of the Del Mar Library, thanked the city for its support.

“We, as the Friends of the Del Mar Library, really appreciate the city of Del Mar in supporting the library,” Freeman said. “The city owns the building, the county runs the library, and the Friends, we just raise money and put it into programs.

“But if there’s a leak, who do we call? We call City Works. If something’s fallen down, a tree, we call. We appreciate your response when we do call. You act promptly, so thank you very much.”

The Friends of Del Mar Library is the third nonprofit the council has honored since the start of the year. When Parks was appointed mayor, she said she planned to recognize local organizations throughout the year. The council previously presented proclamations to the Del Mar Foundation and Del Mar Community Connections.

“The staff and volunteers of the nonprofit organizations in Del Mar are dedicated to upholding the highest standards of community service — donating their time, money and effort to making a difference in the lives of others,” Parks said. “An annual observance provides a unique opportunity for the citizens of Del Mar to join together in appreciation of the many contributions made by nonprofit organizations.”

For more about the Friends of the Del Mar Library, visit