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Open Books

Heartland Regional Library


Founded on March 16, 2023, the Heartland Regional Library Foundation was created to assist the Heartland Regional Library System with greater capacities in access and accommodation in order for patrons to create and learn for all ages and walks of life. Visions include offering spaces large enough to keep up with the demands of evolving technology and to continue to support life skills for home and work, through providing books, programming, workshops, and activities.

2023-11-07 21 Eldon 100.png
Photo Credit:

The Advertiser - Thursday, Oct. 19, 2023
Left to Right:

Eldon staff, Sue Stewart, Ruby Bunch, Heartland Regional Library Board President, Lerilee Huhmann,
VP, Nora Bond,
Board Member, Stacey Dunham,
Miller Board President, Ralf Trusty, Heartland Regional Library Director, Lisa Garro,
Miller Board Treasurer, Anne Graves, Eldon staff, Carolyn Strange

Our mission at Heartland is to empower our rural communities by providing essential information and skills that enable our patrons to navigate today's society successfully.

As we strive to fulfill our mission, Heartland Library faces numerous challenges, with one of the most pressing being the limitations posed by our current facilities. Since our inception in 1994, our library branches have remained in the same buildings, which, unfortunately, are now showing signs of age and deterioration. While the world has witnessed the advent of technology and libraries have evolved to incorporate diverse resources, our spaces have not kept pace.

The primary obstacle confronting all Heartland branches is inadequate space. This limitation restricts our ability to provide patrons with the full spectrum of services and resources that Heartland is capable of offering. Our collection has expanded beyond printed books to include telescopes, sewing machines, STEM kits, and Stay Sharp kits for Seniors. However, the lack of space inhibits our capacity for growth in areas such as collection diversity, meeting spaces, program offerings, and technology integration.

Our current facilities pose additional challenges. Two of our libraries are housed in aging buildings that were old even at the library's inception. The other two are in rented spaces where the threat of eviction looms, hindering any potential for long-term growth. This situation greatly impacts our patrons, who miss out on opportunities for telehealth consultations, computer skill development, entrepreneurial education, and job searches.

Compounding these challenges is the issue of funding. Our tax base is modest, and an increase in property tax is unlikely to pass if put to a vote. While there are grants available for specific aspects of library needs, none address the urgent requirement for new and improved facilities. The Heartland Regional Library Foundation is thus reaching out to individuals and organizations that share our commitment to community enrichment.

One of our smallest branches, located in Belle, Missouri, has no room for growth, and we face the looming possibility of eviction from our rented space in Eldon, Missouri. Additionally, our Iberia and Vienna branches are housed in buildings that are deteriorating, offering limited space for community needs. Estimates from architects suggest that building new facilities would require approximately $3-$5 million for each building, a sum far beyond our current financial capabilities.

This is where your support becomes invaluable. We are reaching out to compassionate individuals and organizations to join us in overcoming these challenges. Would you consider making a donation to help us achieve our mission and provide our communities with the knowledge and skills they need?

If you have any questions or require more information about how you can support our work at Heartland Regional Library, please do not hesitate to contact me directly or 573-422-9866. Your generous support will bring us one step closer to creating spaces where our communities can thrive in this day and age.



Thank you for considering our appeal, and we sincerely hope you'll join us in building a brighterfuture for the Heartland.

Warm regards,

Lisa Garro President, Heartland Regional Library Foundation

Send Donations To:

Heartland Regional Library Foundation

P.O. Box 231

351 Third St.

Vienna, MO 65582

EIN 92-2982673

Let us know which branch you wish to donate to:

  • Belle

  • Eldon

  • Iberia

  • Vienna

  • Split evenly among Maries County branches (Belle & Vienna)

  • Split evenly among Miller County branches (Eldon & Iberia)

  • Split evenly among all four branches of Heartland

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