On Tuesday evening, Michael J. Morand, president of the New Haven Free Public Library Foundation, stood in the almost empty main room of the Ives branch of the library. In years past, that space had been transformed into a raucous Mardi Gras party that functioned as the library’s annual blowout fundraiser. Not this year.
“Welcome to the first and hopefully last virtual celebration,” he said to his online audience — with firm hopes of reuniting again in 2022, and with plenty of festivities and good news regarding how the city library system adapted and continued to develop during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Morand explained that the library’s first Mardi Gras celebration was in 1997 to mark the institution’s 110th birthday. (Click here for a video of the proceedings.)
“It was such a great event that we decided to make it an annual tradition,” he said. This year, noting that…