WILTON — When Mike Kane stopped by the Wilton Free Public Library on Tuesday afternoon, he was pleasantly surprised to learn visitors now can buy coffee to drink while reading.

Library patron Kate Whitmore, who came by to read to her two children, Clark and Rory, said she thought it is a great idea that the library is selling coffee.

“It should bring more people here and have them stay longer,” Whitmore said.

Tuesday was the first day of the Wilton Free Public Library selling coffee by the cup for patrons to either grab and go or drink while reading at the library.

Librarian Lynne Hunter said staff have been interested for a while in the idea of selling coffee to patrons as a way to make their library experience more enjoyable. The library gets about 40 visitors a day and serves a community of 4,116 residents.

“We’ve always wanted people to be able to hang out at the library, and now it’s a great place to get your book and your coffee at the same time,” Hunter said.

“Books and coffee are a natural pair,” Library Director David Olsen said.

Library staff members said they hope to secure grants and donations eventually to build a patio on the south side of the library, where visitors could sit and drink their coffee. The library is downtown, off Main Street and alongside Wilson Stream.

“We’d like to be able to have some patio furniture and have the outdoor space for other library activities too, like children’s activities,” Hunter said.

The money from coffee sales serves as a general fundraiser for the library, with an 8-ounce cup selling for $1 and a 12-ounce cup for $1.50. She said patrons can drink their coffee anywhere in the library and aren’t limited to having the beverage in certain areas.

The library is selling two Carrabassett Coffee Co. blends: Bad Dog medium/dark roast and decaf medium roast.

Later this year, the library plans to start selling bags of Bookworm Blend ground coffee — the library’s personal brand of coffee, which will sport a label designed by library board member Amber Kirkwood.

The bags will cost $7 for an 8-ounce bag and $10 for a 12-ounce bag, Hunter said.

Kaitlin Schroeder — 861-9252

[email protected]


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