Books, books books: Three sales and giveaways coming

MICHAEL KELLY The Marietta Times Katherine Pekruhn holds up a paperback mystery novel as she looks through books that will be offered at the Washington County Friends of the Library fall book sale this weekend. Pekruhn, president of the organization, said it takes weeks of preparation for the sale, which will be held Saturday, Monday and Tuesday at the library annex, a house next to the main branch of the library on Fifth Street.

It’s going to be a banner weekend for readers.

The Washington County and Barlow friends of the library groups both have their multi-day fall used book sales scheduled, and the Ely Chapman Foundation Fall Sale on Saturday will be giving books away.

On Tuesday, Katherine Pekruhn walked into the Washington County Library Annex, a small, bright yellow house just north of the main library on Fifth Street. Inside, it had the look of a book store Marietta no longer has, shelves crowded with books of every variety from fiction and nonfiction to coffee table books, works for children and teens, romance, mystery and technology.

Pekruhn, president of the Friends of the Library and assistant librarian for the main branch, said it takes more than a dozen volunteers weeks of labor to prepare for the group’s two annual book sales, spring and fall.

“Every sale is different, it depends on what people give us,” she said.

The sale includes used books donated by the public and volumes that the library has decided to retire from its collection. The librarians, she said, also get first view of the donated books and can flag any they’d like to add to the collection before they go on sale.

The friends accept books throughout the year. Some books, Pekruhn said, are no longer put out at the sales: encyclopedias, dictionaries and textbooks just don’t sell any more.

“We only put out things we think people will want,” she said.

She estimated the fall sale will offer about 3,000 books, sorted into categories and set into orderly display on the annex’s shelves and bins. The sale also will include CDs and DVDs, she said.

“It takes a village,” she said. “We usually meet Monday nights, some people like to sort them, others like to work the sales.”

The friends, she said, has about 90 members in all.

The sale will be held 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Monday and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday. Hardback books are $1, trade paperbacks are 75 cents, small paperbacks are 50 cents or three for a dollar, retired library books are 50 cents, books on CD are $2, DVD movies are $1, music CDs are 50 cents, vinyl records and magazines are a dime, comics are a dollar, and a variety of games will be on sale as marked.

“It’s a treasure hunt,” Pekruhn said.

Leftover books will be donated to teachers, she said, for their classroom collections.

Also, a preview sale will be held Friday from 5 to 8 p.m. for friends members only, but memberships will be available for half price, she said. Memberships range from $5 for students and $12 for regular members upward.

At another library branch, the one in Barlow, another sale takes place Thursday, Friday and Saturday in the basement of the Barlow branch in the White Oak commercial center on Ohio 339. Kim Henry of the Friends of the Barlow Library said it’s one of two big sales held each year, but the friends in Barlow also hold monthly sales on the first Thursday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

“We never know from one sale to the other what we might get, maybe a whole box of cookbooks or a box of children’s books,” Henry said. The friends keep some of the books for sale on permanent display on the downstairs shelves, other are set in rolling racks they pull out for sales, she said.

“We’ve got six stacks of permanent shelving, seven feet on both sides, and 12 roller carts,” she said. “It’s a lot of books, fiction, nonfiction, children’s books, books for babies, a few on CD, and they’re all 50 cents, 10 cents for magazines.”

The friends’ group pulls in a few hundred dollars on each sale, she said, and the money goes toward getting some extras for the library and in turn, for the community.

“We help out the library with its summer reading programs, sometimes we bring in musical groups to perform or educational groups for presentations,” she said.

The Barlow fall sale will be held Thursday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The Ely Chapman Education Foundation will have more than books at its annual Fall Festival on Saturday — and the books are free.

Alice Chapman is president of the foundation, which provides wall-to-wall services for children, including year-round pre-school and an academic after-school program.

“For our Fall Festival, we usually have people lined up waiting for the doors to open,” she said. “The books are the popular thing.”

The books are new, she said, contributed by the Christian Appalachian Project, a regional nonprofit, and there will be about 8,000 of them. The limit, she said, will be 10 boxes per person unless they’re being picked up for a school by someone with written verification.

The event will include an indoor yard sale of household items in good condition donated by the parents and staff, and a lot of food will be served, she said.

Homemade chicken and noodles, Texas sheet cake, nachos and cheese all will be available, she said, and typically 500 to 600 people show up. The sale is held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Chapman building, 403 Scammel St., and much of the food is gone by noon.

But the big thing is the books.

“It’s not a fundraiser, it’s more of a literacy event for the community,” she said. The foundation never knows what might arrive in the book boxes until they’re opened.

“It’s going to be a great event. The rain is supposed to stop on Friday, and I hope people will enjoy the selection of books,” Chapman said. “There’s nothing more important than a good book you can curl up with and get lost in on a rainy afternoon.”

Any paperback books that are left, she said, are donated to prisons.

Books to be had this weekend

•What: Washington County Friends of the Library Fall Book Sale.

•When: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Monday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday (bag day, $2 a bag); members preview Friday 5 to 8 p.m., memberships available at half-price.

•Where: Library Annex, 615 Fifth St.

•What: Barlow Friends of the Library Fall Book Sale.

•When: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

•Where: Barlow Branch Library, 45 White Oak Professional Center, Vincent.

•What: Ely Chapman Foundation Fall Festival.

•When: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

•Where: Ely Chapman building, 403 Scammel St.