Musings from a librarian on a recent Friday morning

Published 7:00 am Friday, May 5, 2017

By Carol Phares

An active and supportive Friends of the Library group is imperative for the smooth running of the library.

During Move the most recent Books Friday at Crosby Memorial Library, so called because it is the day that many volunteers converge to move thousands of donated books from the storage room, where they pile up all year, to the meeting room and foyer of the library.

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I sit at my desk writing this essay as book cart after book cart rolls by my door. There are the seniors who have retired and love their library and want to see it succeed. There are the homeschooled teens whose parents want to instill in them a love for their library. There aren’t any in-betweens; those people have jobs, but their support is evident in the many books they donated throughout the year. Many books are in near new condition, hot off the presses and on the New York Times Best Sellers list.

The library accepts donations of books, magazines, CDs, and DVDs all year. Staff sort through the donations to see if what came in is in better shape than the copy on the shelf. If it is, it is replaced.

The book budget for the library system was zeroed out when the floor fell out of the economy a few years ago and hasn’t been reinstated yet. So, many of the books are kept to add to the collection.

Those books that are not used for the library are then donated to the Friends of Crosby Memorial Library.  They box and store the books. Once a year, they gather and converge for their book sale.  Move the Books Friday is followed by a week-long effort to set up for book sale. Those fortunate folk who volunteer to help un-box, separate and arrange the books get first choice of what they would like to buy.

The Book Sale week continues until Saturday at 4 p.m. Today the book sale will close at 5 p.m., but reopen Saturday at 9 a.m.

The volunteers man the tables, keeping them organized, helping customers find the right book, and will even help carry boxes of books to cars.

As I write, activity is slowing down. The store-room is almost empty of books. The teens are scarfing down donuts and everyone is taking a break. The library is peaceful once again, at least until Book Sale week begins next year.