Li­brary is more than books

KnitFit Com­mu­nity Knit-a-thon cel­e­brates its 10th an­niver­sary

Cape Breton Post - - COMMUNITY CONNECTIONS - Chris Thom­son At the Li­brary

Knit­ting nee­dles and cro­chet hooks will be fly­ing Satur­day at the McCon­nell Li­brary in Syd­ney as crafters come to­gether to cel­e­brate the 10th an­niver­sary of the KnitFit Com­mu­nity Knita-thon.

At this an­nual char­ity event, any­one who wants to lend their time and skill to knit or cro­chet warm and wooly items for a lo­cal char­ity can join us for all or part of the day.

Knit­ting, cro­chet­ing and other hand­crafts have been shown to be good for your health and your mind, as ther­apy, stress re­lief and a so­cial ac­tiv­ity. Add to that the sat­is­fac­tion that comes from help­ing oth­ers and you have a win-win sit­u­a­tion.

The Cape Bre­ton Re­gional Li­brary’s KnitFit Com­mu­nity Knita-thon is one such op­por­tu­nity.

The knit-a-thon is also a fundraiser for chil­dren and teen pro­grams at the Cape Bre­ton Re­gional Li­brary.

Par­tic­i­pants gather pledges to raise much-needed money to sup­port lit­er­acy pro­grams at the re­gional li­brary, such as the sum­mer read­ing pro­gram, teen and tween pro­grams, spe­cial pro­grams and baby, tod­dler and preschool pro­grams across the re­gion.

Pledge sheets are avail­able at all Cape Bre­ton Re­gional Li­brary branches, on our web­site (www.cbrl.ca), at Mo­raff’s Arts and Crafts and at My Fair Ladies Eth­i­cal Em­po­rium in Syd­ney.

If you don’t wish to col­lect pledges, you can just make a do­na­tion to par­tic­i­pate. If you don’t knit or cro­chet, you can con­trib­ute by spon­sor­ing a friend or one of the par­tic­i­pants at the event or through your lo­cal li­brary branch.

All li­brary branches ac­cept do­na­tions of yarn and tools. At the knit-a-thon, do­nated yarn is avail­able for use dur­ing the day or to take home to con­tinue mak­ing items for char­ity. Many peo­ple bring in the items they have been work­ing on over the pre­vi­ous year, so that hun­dreds of hats, mitts, scarves, sweaters and more are do­nated to nine lo­cal char­i­ties that pro­vide free cloth­ing for those in our com­mu­ni­ties who need them.

Over the last 10 years, close to 5,500 items have been do­nated to Cape Bre­ton char­i­ties through the li­brary by gen­er­ous lo­cal crafters and more than $11,500 has been raised to fund chil­dren’s lit­er­acy pro­grams at the li­brary.

Do­na­tions are now ac­cepted year-round and items that are re­ceived by Christ­mas are do­nated to char­i­ties in time for their Christ­mas parcels.

Over the years, lo­cal gro­cery stores (Sobeys and At­lantic Su­per­Store) and bak­eries (Tony’s and Harold’s) have do­nated lunch for par­tic­i­pants. This year the culi­nary arts pro­gram at Nova Scotia Com­mu­nity Col­lege Mar­coni Cam­pus will pro­vide re­fresh­ments and lunch and we look for­ward to part­ner­ing with them.

Many lo­cal and re­gional yarn busi­nesses, as well as some li­brary pa­trons, also do­nate door prizes for par­tic­i­pants who come for the knit-a-thon day.

To cel­e­brate our 10th an­niver­sary, lo­cal knit­ter and li­brary sup­porter Barb Kelly Landry has de­signed a cir­cu­lar shawl pat­tern that will be sold on the knit­ting site Ravelry.com and at some lo­cal yarn stores. All the pro­ceeds will go to sup­port chil­dren and teen pro­grams at the re­gional li­brary.

The shawl will be on dis­play at this year’s knit-a-thon and pat­terns will be avail­able for sale.

The pub­lic is in­vited to come to the McCon­nell Li­brary be­tween 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Satur­day for the 10th an­nual knit-a-thon, for a fun day to cre­ate warm win­ter items for Cape Bre­ton fam­i­lies, to sup­port the Cape Bre­ton Re­gional Li­brary or just to watch and learn.

Sev­eral Cape Bre­ton Re­gional Li­brary branches also host reg­u­lar drop-in ses­sions where yarn crafters can work on projects to­gether and share tea and con­ver­sa­tion. Many of th­ese crafters are ma­jor con­trib­u­tors to the knit-a-thon ef­forts year­round. The fol­low­ing is the crafters sched­ule at lo­cal li­braries: Glace Bay Li­brary Knit­ting

Club meets on Fri­days from 7-9 p.m. New Water­ford Knit­ting and

Craft­ing Drop-in takes place on Tues­days from 6:30-8 p.m. North Syd­ney Li­brary Fi­bre

Lunch is held ev­ery sec­ond Thurs­day from 1-3 p.m. McCon­nel Li­brary in Syc

ney hosts Fi­bre Lunch on Fri­days from 1-3 p.m.

When Syd­ney’s founder, Col. J.F.W. Des Bar­res sports his win­ter woolies you know the Cape Bre­ton Re­gional Li­brary’s knit-a-thon is com­ing up soon. The KnitFit Com­mu­nity Knit-a-thon takes place on Satur­day at the McCon­nell Li­brary in Syd­ney.

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