New Maui Bookmobile is State-of-the-art


Maui bookmobileA new Library Bookmobile will hit the streets on Maui this September. The state-of-the-art vehicle replaces the previous 21-year-old vehicle and has a capacity of 3,000 books, CDs, DVDs, audio books and periodicals. The Holoholo Bookmobile will be based at Wailuku Public Library.

The public is invited to the Grand Opening and Blessing Ceremony for the new Holoholo Bookmobile on September 10 at 10 a.m., at the front entrance to Queen Ka‘ahumanu Center. Free books and refreshments for keiki will be provided at the Friends’ Bookstore near Sears. Uncle Wayne and the Howling Dog Band and Hawaiian lap steel guitarist Joel Katz will provide entertainment.

The Holoholo Bookmobile represents one of the largest projects ever undertaken by Maui Friends of the Library (MFOL) in its 103-year history. Holoholo means “go for a ride” in Hawaiian. Thousands of used books were sold in the Friends’ bookstores at Queen Ka‘ahumanu Center in Kahului, Wharf Cinema Center in Lahaina and in Pu‘unēnē to raise funds to purchase the bookmobile.

“We are very grateful to our 80 volunteers and customers at our three used bookstores that made this bookmobile possible. Our “library on wheels” will bring much needed services to schools, communities and rural areas throughout Maui that do not have libraries,” said Dorothy Tolliver, past Friends’ President and Bookmobile Committee Chair, who spearheaded the project.

The new bookmobile will be staffed by a full-time librarian and a driver with funding from the State Legislature. Bookmobile Driver Michael Tinker and Bookmobile Librarian Jessica Gleason will help patrons find and borrow books and other library materials. Gleason will also familiarize patrons with online resources including eBook downloads, databases, and online learning available through the Hawaii State Public Library System website ( and provide story hours and special programs to places miles from the nearest library.


  • Maui graphics art designer Saedene Ota and her team created a unique exterior design for the bookmobile featuring an outline of ‘Īao Valley set against a rainbow of inspirational words and library services appearing as book titles. Ota said she hopes “the design will help people smile, make them excited about learning and proud of Maui. My graphics express the modern age of learning through books and technology.”
  • During the year-long project, the Friends hired nationally known bookmobile consultant Michael Swendrowski of Specialty Vehicle Services of Muskego, Wis., who has designed more than 100 bookmobiles throughout the U.S. and abroad. The vehicle was built to specification by Farber Specialty Vehicles of Columbus, Ohio.
  • In addition to Tolliver and Tryggestad, the bookmobile committee included: Wailuku Public Library Branch Manager Susan Werner, Senator Roz Baker, and MFOL Board members Richard Buckley, John Clark, Sara Foley, Ed Heller, Sharon Woodall, and Rick Woodford.
  • MFOL is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization that provides supplemental funding for books, materials, equipment and programs for Maui’s public libraries.


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