Behind the Scenes of The Friends of Newtown Public Library Book Sale
The Friends of the Newtown Library will hold a multi-day book sale from August 21st through August 25th at the Newtown Public Library. Nearly 4,000 books are in boxes awaiting the book sale. The Friends thank the community for donating books so generously but must ask that, for now, no more books be dropped off at the three collection locations, Acme Markets, Burlap and Bean and 291 Aronimink Drive.
While the Friends make it look easy, the sale is the result of many hours of labor, organization, and knowledge about books. Here is a bit about how it comes together:
- Books are donated at the Acme Market, Burlap and Bean, and 291 Aronimink Drive.
- Members of the Friends pick up the books on a regular basis...sometimes multiple times a day! "I'm amazed at the how many books are donated," says Lynn Elston, President of the Friends of Newtown Library, "Quite often I pick up a load, only to see the bin totally full the next day. Sometimes my trunk is completely full of books. We could not hold this sale without the generosity of the community."
- The books go to the sorting site, which is the entire two-car garage at a member's home. At least weekly, and sometimes more often, several Friends gather to sort the books into 40 categories and alphabetize the fiction books. "It is a lot of fun to go through the books when we meet to sort," says Sharon Haslett, a Friends member who is Co-Chair of the Book Sale and on the sorting team.
- Thousands of books get moved to the community room next to the library, in preparation for the sale.
- Four days before the sale, volunteers start setting up the tables, unpacking and organizing the books, and arranging the displays! And then…the Preview Sale Begins!
The event begins with a $3 Preview Sale, held on the first day of the sale (August 21st) from 10 am until noon. During the 5 days of the sale, held during library hours, some Friends and volunteers continuously arrange and organize the books while others work at the checkout tables. Books are $1 for hardbacks and $0.50 for paperbacks. There is also a coffee table section where exceptional books are $3 and $5. After the sale the unsold books are packed up and donated to local charities.
The Friends of Newtown Public Library is an all-volunteer not-for-profit 501c3 organization. Its mission is to raise funds to be donated to the library for items not in its budget and to promote community awareness of the library by offering programs for the community's entertainment and education. As a result of the Book Sale, the Friends have been able to donate a Kindle Fire, multiple computers, software and CDs, and have sponsored a variety of public events this year. The Library Book Sale is an integral part of our community effort, and we hope to see everyone there August 21st through 25th!
If you are interested in volunteering at the book sale, we would love to have you! Please sign up at the Newtown Square Public Library, located at 201 Bishop Hollow Road, Newtown Square, PA. Call (610) 353-1022 for hours and directions.