SENECA — The Seneca Junior High Gymnasium was filled with rummage sale items on Saturday, though at least half of those items were not intended to raise a penny for their former owners.

Instead, several community members dropped off donations, or rented out booths, to raise money to benefit the Seneca Library.

The Seneca Library Rummage Sale Fundraiser, which ran from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, the same day as the Seneca city-wide garage sale, was the first true fundraising event held by the Seneca Library Foundation.
Foundation member and Seneca Area Chamber of Commerce president Josh Dodson said Saturday's event was a success.

"It was great participation," Dodson said. "For our first fundraiser and of course something like this, which is a different type of deal, it was fantastic."

Andrea Nichols, organizer of the fundraiser, said the sale saw a steady crowd of shoppers coming in throughout the day, and while organizers weren't yet sure of how much money they had raised, they knew they were doing well.

"It's been a great success," Nichols said. "Between concessions and the fundraiser booths, I think we did pretty good today. Every comment we've received has been "it's for the library," that's their comment when they hand in the money."

Booths were available for rent for $20 apiece, and at one point overflowed from the gymnasium into the lobby, while about half of the gymnasium was filled solely with donations benefiting the library.

"It's going to help with items that are needed for the Seneca Library," Dodson said.

The event included 10 vendors, though not all booths were traditional garage sale items.

Avon, Arbonne and Tupperware were also represented with items for sale at Saturday's fundraiser.

The Neosho Newton County Library board announced in September 2012 plans to close the Seneca library, due to financial constraints, though the board announced in March that the Seneca library would remain open through the end of the year.

Meanwhile, the Seneca Library Foundation, formed under the Neosho Area Business and Industrial Foundation (NABIFI), is working to raise money to assist with the Seneca Library's expenses, or to pay its operating costs if the board ultimately closes its doors.

Dodson said the group hopes to hold another rummage sale fundraiser next year.

Those who are interested in donating to the Seneca Library Foundation can do so by contacting Dodson at 417- 438-3071 or can leave a check with Lori Scribner at Community Bank and Trust in Seneca.

Checks should be made out to NABIFI, with Seneca Library Foundation written in the memo line.

Dodson said the Seneca Library Foundation is also in the midst of planning a second fundraiser, a talent show, to be held during their Fourth of July festivities. The Seneca's Got Talent competition will take place July 5 and 6, he said.