Library Customers Raise Funds for Friends With Presidential Penny Poll

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

As part of its “Decision 2012: Engage Yourself at Your Library” campaign to promote civic engagement, voter registration and informed decision-making in advance of elections, Virginia Beach Public Library held a fun - and very un-scientific  - “Presidential Penny Poll.”  Library customers voted for candidates by tossing pennies into 2-liter bottles representing Barack Obama, Mitt Romney and “other,” with all money going to the Friends of the Virginia Beach Public Library. 
Beach Municipal Federal Credit Union staff helped tally the votes using the coin counter at the Thalia branch. Here's how the pennies added up: Barack Obama received $167.85; Mitt Romney received $102.91; and “other” yielded $5.94 - all for a total donation of $276.70.
“The true winner is our community,” said Marcy Sims, library director. “We wanted to encourage civic engagement and highlight free access to information available at libraries. We’re pleased with the participation and happy to be able to present the donation to the Friends.”
In addition to the penny poll, Virginia Beach Public Library hosted “Decision 2012” displays at each location, with books and materials for all ages about voting, candidates, issues, citizen engagement and more. During the month-long campaign an estimated 600 citizens registered to vote at Beach library locations. The library also highlighted access to books, newspapers and online information so citizens could inform themselves about candidates and issues. 

About Virginia Beach Public Library
A community anchor for more than 50 years, Virginia Beach Public Library includes a central library, eight area libraries, a law library and a bookmobile. Services include workforce development and job-search support, small business resources, computer and technology classes, early childhood literacy classes and local history archives. In addition to books in a variety of formats (print, audio and downloadable), the library provides online research tools accessible from home or work, as well as movies, music, and a variety of specialty collections. Visit