The Winners of the 2019 Holiday Light Decorating Contest are:

First Place – #003

Second Place – #001

Third Place – #004

Honorable Mention #002

Congratulations to all of our winners and entries into our Holiday Light Decorating Contest. You have worked hard and have spread a little more holiday cheer. Start thinking about what to do for next year’s contest!

Reminder: Christmas Magic in Savona, and the Holiday Light Decorating Contest is Coming!

Christmas Magic will be on Saturday, December 7, at the Campbell-Savona Elementary School. The Holiday Lights Decorating Contest is on! Please send a .jpg in an email, or bring a flash drive or a memory card with the file to the library, along with name, address, phone number, and a title for your creation. We will put the picture on our Facebook page and show it at the Christmas Magic event. All voting for the best decorated yard will take place at the Christmas Magic event. All entries must be submitted by December 6. Thank you!

Little Free Libraries are popping up around the area!

If you see an over-sized bird house with children’s hand prints all over it, around the community, check it out. The over-sized bird houses are really Little Free Libraries hosted by the Benedek Memorial Library. Currently there are two in the community with a third coming soon. The first one is at the Campbell-Savona Elementary School, 64 E Lamoka Ave, Savona and a second one is located in the Campbell Town Hall, 8525 Main St., Campbell. The third one will soon be located at the Thurston Town Hall, County Route 333, Campbell, NY. The Little Free Libraries are book exchanges. People can take books for free from the Little Free Libraries and can leave a book or two for other people to take. If you have more than a couple of books to donate, please bring them to the Benedek Memorial Library for donations. We will be going around once a month to check on them and make sure there are books available to take, or change out ones that have been sitting in the Little Free Libraries for a while. Any books donated to the Benedek Memorial Library would be used for the Library collection, annual book sales, or to be place in the Little Free Libraries. Please when making a donation of items make sure they are clean and in good condition. Please no donations of text books or encyclopedias.

The Little Free Libraries project was funded in part by outreach funds awarded by the Southern Tier Library System’s Coordinated Outreach Services Advisory Council. The Benedek Memorial Library would like to give special thanks to the teachers and students of Boces of Painted Post, Campbell Building Supply for donating the building materials, and all of the children, and young adults of our community for lending a helping hand in decorating the Little Free Libraries. Thank you to the Campbell-Savona Elementary, Campbell Town Hall, and Thurston Town Hall for allowing us to set up the Little Free Libraries. Please when you see one check it out and get or leave a book.

New lights at the Library!

Recently the Mary Helen Joint Meeting House, which houses the Benedek Memorial Library, has become brighter. This lighting project was funded in part by a grant from the Foundation for Southern Tier Libraries and from gracious private donations. We were able to have new flood lights installed on the sides of the building for better safety and security. Now at night patrons can use the McCoy St side court yard to use our free public wi-fi, or just use the picnic table. When patrons are leaving after dark, they can see better walking in the parking lot. We wish to express our gratitude to the Foundation of Southern Tier Libraries and our private donners for helping us bring more light to the long dark winter nights and to make the warmer summer nights more enjoyable.

It’s Christmas Magic time in Savona!

Once again Awesome Austin is getting ready for Christmas Magic, by helping with the decorating! Christmas Magic will be happen on December7, 2019 at the Campbell-Savona Elementary School gym from 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM, with a parade at 6:30 to the Benedek Memorial Library for the village tree lighting ceremony. Christmas Magic is an annual event for all in the Campbell-Savona School District and surrounding communities.

Christmas Magic will have crafts, horse drawn carriage rides, Christmas music, hot dogs, hot cocoa, cookies, popcorn, face painting, 25 cents raffles, chili cook-off contest, coloring contest, and the village tree lighting ceremony. A Holiday Light Decorating Contest for Campbell-Savona Residents, just email a .jpg file of your holiday light decorations to with name, address, email, and phone number. There is one other thing…oh yes, Santa will be there also! Children can have their picture taken with Santa! Come and share in the magic of the season at the Christmas Magic in Savona!

2019 Christmas Magic Light Decorating Contest!

The Christmas Magic Light Decorating Contest is open. All entries from properties in the Campbell-Savona School District are welcome. You do not have to own the property, if you are a renter you can enter also. All entries will be accepted until Midnight December 6, 2019. Due to the early date of Christmas Magic, voting will be held at the Christmas Magic Event in the Campbell-Savona Elementary School on December 7, 2019 from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Winners  will be announced at the end of the Christmas Magic event.

To enter send a photo as a .jpg file to along with name, address, email, phone number and a title for the entry to be known by. Once the entry has been accepted you will get a confirming email back. The photo will be put on the Library’s Facebook page for voters to view. Pictures will be displayed at Christmas Magic, when voting will take place.

Prizes for the Christmas Magic Light Decorating Contest will be Home Depot gift cards. The prizes will be:

1st Place: $50.00 gift certificate to Home Depot

2nd Place: $25.00 gift certificate to Home Depot

3rd Place: $10.00 gift certificate to Home Depot

Christmas Magic Light Decorating Contest Rules

  1. Entries can be emailed to with name, address, email, phone number and a photo of the display attached as a .jpg file, with a title for the entry to be known by.
  2. When the entry is put up on the Internet it will be known by the title given or a number (if no title is given).
  3. If you don’t have an email address or access to the Internet you can bring a flash drive or memory stick with the .jpg file to the Benedek Memorial Library, during opening hours. We can have the photo uploaded and you can give your information for the entry.
  4. All entries must be from properties in the Campbell-Savona School District.
  5. Only one entry per residential address.
  6. Once the entry is received you are giving us permission to put the photo on the Internet for the community to vote on. No names or property addresses will be used during the contest.
  7. Due to the short period of time between Thanksgiving (when people start decorating) and the Magic Christmas event, all entries will be voted at the Christmas Magic event in person.
  8. Please one vote per person.

May the best light display win!

Election Day Pulled Pork Take-out Fundraiser

On Election Day the Friends of Benedek Memorial Library hosted a Pulled Pork Take-out fundraiser. They sold dinners from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm and were able to sell out. The dinners consisted of a Pulled Pork sandwich, mac and cheese, and coleslaw for an $8.00 donation. Along with the take-outs they were also selling raffle tickets for four items, two handmade lap quilts with matching teddy bears, a handmade afghan and a pillow with “Shh I’m reading” printed on it. The raffles have been on display since the Annual Book Sale in the beginning of October at the Library. Many tickets were sold. The winners were pulled at the end of the Election Day Pulled Pork Take-Out. The winners are:

Pink lap quilt – Jean Mattoon

Crayon lap quilt – Anonymous

Afghan – Dan Gillespie

Pillow – Carol Ross

Congratulations to the winners! Thank you to all who came and helped support the Benedek Library. Don’t forget Christmas Magic is coming in December, along with the Holiday Lights Decorating Contest.

Halloween Trunk or Treat Winners!

Trunk or Treat was held last Saturday, November 2, 2019. We had 5 trunks decorated, and many more trick or treaters come, than usual. This year the town postponed Halloween to Saturday due to the bad weather predicted on Halloween. With the postponement we had a record crowd come to Trunk or Treat. The five trunks were titled:

  1. Wolf Skeleton
  2. Harry Potter theme
  3. Halloween Teddy Bear with Purple Lights
  4. Skeletons and Bat
  5. Amanda Panda

With all the young and old trick or treaters voting for the best decorated the winners are:

  1. Harry Potter theme – $20 gift card to Tops
  2. Amanda Panda – A choice between two DVDS
  3. Skeletons and Bat – Hand Made Halloween Kitchen

All who came were the winners for the a great time we had a community. We do apologize for running out of treats before the night was out. We did not know just how popular the trick or treating was going to be this year. Thank you to all who participated and helped to support the Benedek Memorial Library.

2018 Annual Report for the Community is Available!

The 2018 Annual Report for the Community is now available for all to read. If you are interested in what happened in 2018 at the Benedek Memorial Library, (spoiler alert!) formally the Savona Free Library, click here:

Renaming Celebration of the Benedek Memorial Library!

On October 6 the Savona Free Library held a public celebration for the surrounding communities announcing their recent name change to the Dr. Sandor and Berthe Benedek Memorial Library.

The celebration program started with a luncheon catered by King’s Market, followed by speakers, the unveiling of the new Library Sign, a ribbon cutting ceremony and a magic show featuring Moreland the Magician.  Speakers included Savona Mayor Brian Scott, Steuben County Legislator Kelly Fitzpatrick, President of the Board of Trustees of the Benedek Memorial Library Bill Fiske, Executive Director of the Southern Tier Library System Brian Hildreth, and Irma Benedek, library benefactor and daughter of Dr. Sandor and Berthe Benedek.

In commemoration of the event a proclamation was issued from the offices of NYS Senator Thomas O’Mara and NYS Assemblyman Phillip Palmesano.

Dr. Sandor Benedek was born in Hungary in 1910.  Post World War II he came to the US seeking a better life for himself and his family.  In 1957 the family settled in Savona where he set up a private medical practice serving the needs of the citizens of Savona and all the surrounding communities including Campbell, Bradford and Thurston.  He loved this area of Steuben County very much and felt very welcome within the community, so much so that he stayed in practice here for the next 35 years, until his death in 1992.  He was school physician for the Savona, Bradford and Campbell Central Schools from 1957 through 1991.  He served as a Steuben County Coroner for over 20 years.  He gave a lot to the community that he felt so much at home in.

His wife, Berthe, known for her skills in gardening, playing the piano and baking was also an avid reader.  She passed away in 2008.  Dr. and Mrs. Benedek were both strong supporters of education, especially for children.

Upon the death of their parents, their son and daughter, Roland and Irma, respectively, established a memorial fund in their name.

They selected the then-named Savona Free Library as the recipient of these funds.  They felt their parents would have been very proud and honored to be remembered in the community by having the library renamed in their honor.

Board President Bill Fiske acknowledged the planning and execution of the event took many hands. He thanked the many people who worked to get the grounds and library ready for the celebration as well as the volunteers who worked on the day of the event to make it a great success.

Phase 1 of the project was the renovation of the circa 1830’s Federal style building which opened in 2014 as the Mary Helen Joint Meeting House in recognition of generous support provided by Mary Helen Joint.

The revitalized landmark provides space for a variety of library activities, including story hours, family movie nights and special events plus office space and storage for the library.  In 2015 the library received a New York State Historic Preservation Award in recognition of the library’s restorative work.

In 2017 the library moved from the Village Hall into the meeting house using the first floor space as a temporary location for the library’s collection of books, digital media and computers.  There is an ongoing campaign for Phase 2 of the project which will be an addition to the meeting house and serve as the permanent home of the library collection and services.


Welcome to the Benedek Memorial Library!

Welcome to the Savona Free Library website. If you are coming to our website you are looking for information on the library. You can find our hours, events, what is new to our collection, access your account, order items to pick up at the library and many other things about the library. But when you think about a library what is the first thing that comes to mind? If you are like many other Americans it would be physical books. While we do have a collection of books there is so much more to libraries these days than just physical books. We have computers and public WI-FI hot spots available for public use. We also lend out audio books on CD, music CDs, movies and television shows on DVD. Coming soon, there will be Kindle Fire tablets to borrow. All of these items are available at the library, but right now you are in cyber space. Guess what, you can still borrow from the library. Just put your pointer on “E-Library” and click to find out. Remember the library is much more than just a place to find books. We offer many other items for borrowing and many different services to the public, through your Savona Free Library card or any library card in the Southern Tier Library System. Also you can access the library not only during the days the library is open, but even when the library is physically closed. Need a book to help you to fall asleep at 2:00 am? Down load a digital book and start reading. Need to get authoritative information for a research project due real soon, check out our databases for articles from many different sources. Look around, try something new, the Savona Free Library is available for your entertainment and informational needs.

Savona Free Library Dogs