Gargantuan library sale welcomes more than 50,000 media – Reuters

SALISBURY — There are a lot of books in the West End Plaza.

On Friday, the old mall’s event center was packed with tables, which were covered end to end with boxes full of books, but there are so many books in the center that there are boxes end to end. end hidden under the tables as well. There are also audiobooks, DVDs and other physical media hidden in the center until Monday.

There are about 3,000 boxes filled with about 45,000 books. Adding the other media, there are over 50,000 titles for sale through the Rowan Public Library Bookpalooza. This is a unique and one-time event due to the large number of books the library unloads.

For the past two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, the library has not held its annual sale of titles eliminated from its regular piles. This time around, the 2020, 2021 and 2022 sales have been rolled into one gargantuan sale.

Rowan Public Library manager Melissa Oleen said the sale would normally take place at the Salisbury branch, but this year was different. There are so many books that the library couldn’t adapt to the sale in branches. It took more than a day for a moving company to move the books to the West End Plaza. A sale would normally generate about $4,000 for the library, but for this sale, the goal is over $10,000.

“It’s very unusual,” Oleen said.

She said staff worked on the collection throughout the year. They seek out papers that are not circulating because interest in the topics has faded or their content is outdated like old science books.

“A public library collection is current and popular material, so we have quite a high turnover,” Oleen said.

Hardcover books are on sale for $2. Large format paperbacks are $1. Small paperbacks cost 50 cents. There are also significant discounts on the sale. On Saturdays and Sundays, the library offers educators and students half of everything.

On Sundays, seniors, county workers and veterans get half off everything, and on Mondays the library offers boxes and bags full of books at low prices.

This year there is also a discount wheel, which spins every hour to apply another discount to all books.

She said the library would run out of space if she couldn’t dispose of old materials.

“People like to donate their own books to us and we had to stop accepting them because we didn’t have the space,” Oleen said.

The sale opened Friday night for Friends of RPL members only.

Anything not sold during the sale will be recycled or thrown away.

“If it hasn’t sold after four days of Bookpalooza, with all our discounts, it just won’t,” Oleen said.

She pointed out that there are more reasons to buy books than interest in their content. They can be turned into ornaments, turned into arts and crafts, or placed on an organized shelf for its aesthetics rather than its selection of titles.

“I’ll sell you a box for a few bucks,” Oleen said.

All proceeds from the sale go to library programs such as staff development and summer reading.

Lisa Montag-Siegel was at the opening sale on Friday. She said she has supported the library since she moved here in the 1990s and was a school librarian at local schools.

She came to the sale looking for books for herself and her three grandsons.

Montag-Siegel picked up a biography of George Orwell, a book about regrettable superheroes, and a book about famous women.

She said she sees the sale as another way to support the good things of a library in the community and it is the biggest such sale she has seen.

“It’s extraordinarily large, and they have a really, really nice space,” she said.

The sale takes place from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday.