The library hosts a number of annual events, many of which are key fund-raisers. In addition, book discussions, special lectures, weekly storytimes and arts and crafts workshops are held throughout the year. For information about our current programming check out our events calendar


Fall Fundraiser

Columbus Day Weekend

Saturday, October 6, 2018
Bryan Memorial Town Hall


After 3 decades of hosting the Washington Connecticut Antiques Show, we are turning a page and introducing a new event in its place.


We will move back to the stately Town Hall – an anchor that speaks to our roots and recalls the philanthropists of a century prior.  Gregory Seeley Bryan’s gift of the Town Hall mirrors the friends of Frederick Gunn who in the early 1900s built Gunn Memorial Library as lasting memory in his name.  We hold that history in esteem and we are so excited about moving forward with a fresh approach to our celebrated annual fall fundraiser.


The Town Hall will be transformed by Mis en Scene into a chic cocktail party for those wishing to clink glasses with friends while supporting the institution that stands at the center of our community. Come enjoy cocktails, sumptuous hors d’oeuvres, live music, and a select silent auction.



Library Luminaries

June 8, 2019

Held annually each spring, Library Luminaries features dinner parties in private homes with guest of note. Dinners follow a cocktail party at the library.  Always festive, always fun, pictures of this year’s June 16, 2018 event are shown here.  Thank you to our Luminaries and our gracious hosts!


Angie Silverstein & Barry Blitt (New Yorker cartoonist and his wife







  Daniel Arias, Beppe Savoni (Creative Director of The Promotion Factory), Bernadette Cruz & Patrick Moxey (hosts; Patrick is founder of Ultra Music), Monica Thornton


Regine Laverge-Schade, Joseph Kanon (author whose book The Good German was made into a movie starring George Clooney and Cate Blanchett), Maria Campbell (hostess), Robin Straus (literary agent and wife of Joseph Kanon)











The Festival of Trees

Gunn Memorial’s annual Festival of Trees cocktail party takes place in the historic Wykeham Room on the first Friday in December from 5 to 7pm.  The event featured creatively-decorated holiday trees, wreaths and stockings available for purchase.  Guests perused the festive hall while sampling wine and hors d’oeuvres provided by local restaurants. The Library’s tree is always decked with Treasure Pouches, each containing a slip of paper bestowing a mystery gift.  Attendees purchase a pouch and claime an item or service that had been donated by a local business including gift baskets, theater tickets, edibles, gift certificates and more.



  • Our Book Basement offers constantly refreshed fiction, non-fiction, biography, history and children’s books at very reasonable rates.  It is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursdays, and Fridays from 10-4 and Saturdays from 10 to 2. Please call 860-868-7586 to confirm hours before you visit as the shop closes periodically to rotate inventory.
  • In our Stairwell Gallery, artists of local and international fame share their work. Gunn Memorial benefits from a percentage of all sales. Exhibits rotate every six weeks.
  • The Children’s Holiday Sale is a popular Junior Library event which takes place the second week of December. This sale gives children an opportunity to purchase holiday gifts for family members at very reasonable prices. Patrons are asked for donations of small gift items, accessories, housewares or unused toiletries to make the event a success. A great way to put aside items for the sale is to designate a box (in the attic or basement) and deposit those little gifts or items you receive throughout the year that you know you won’t really use. For instance, you might set aside a box of soaps, a necktie that’s out of favor, candles, a knickknack with no knack for your taste, a scarf that missed the mark, a redundant kitchen gadget — you get the idea. Then just bring them to the Junior Library the first week of December. Thank you!