AAUW Book Sale Opened Saturday

stacked books

pexels-photo-110252from the Transylvania Times

Calling all readers and book lovers. The doors of the AAUW Book Sale open Saturday, June 18, at 10 a.m.

As happens every year at this time, there will be a line of anxious buyers down the hall and out the door of the Boshamer Gym on the Brevard College campus. Thursday before the opening when books are delivered, unpacked, organized and set-up in this yearly campaign. Much of the preparation has already taken place. The iconic yellow boxes have been removed from their book collection sites and returned to storage. There has been a pre-sale walk-through inspection of the gym floor. College maintenance workers have laid tarps over the basketball court area and AAUW members, family and friends have laid and taped two to three layers of heavy-duty construction paper around the perimeter. Nearly 100 tables have been setup in an engineered pattern, computed to match the number of tables to the number of boxes of books collected in each category.

Book categories include virtually everything under the sun: mysteries, science fiction, science, psychology, religion, history, military exploits, fiction, cookbooks, gardening, music, art, travel and geography, sports and children’s books. Quality and quantity abound this year. In fact, AAUW has collected more books this year than last and last year was a bumper year.

“It’s amazing how generous the community has been with their donations. We laugh now about the dire predictions several years ago that book donations would dry up and disappear,” said Carol Carrano, head of the category volunteers and overall manager of book sorting, pricing, packaging, storage operations and table set-up in the gym.

“It’s interesting that each year we seem to get an abundance of books in different categories. The mystery category always collects a lot of books, as do paperback and hardback fiction categories, but this year we have double, if not triple, the number of books we usually get in the religion category,” said Carrano.

“Last year we passed the 1,000 packed box level in early June and this year we reached 900 boxes by the end of April. We think we will exceed 1,200 boxes of books this year,” said Pinkie Byrd, 2016 Book Sale co-chair.” This translates into more than 30,000 books. This is the first year that AAUW members maxed out their storage space. There are more books than ever.

While the scale of this operation is daunting, considering that in two days, AAUW members will be set up and ready for their book loving fans, the motivation of branch members is unwavering.

“We do it because we believe so strongly in our mission of helping, enriching and providing educational opportunities for the young women of Transylvania County. That is the motivation for all of us,” said newly installed 2016-2017 branch president Aleta Tisdale.

In addition to the scholarships funded directly by book sale proceeds, some book sale revenue also goes to funding scholarship endowments at both Brevard College and Blue Ridge Community College. The AAUW endowment at BRCC has grown to well over $100,000 and generates three scholarships by itself, independent of the book sale proceeds.

While direct scholarships from book sale proceeds to Brevard College passed the $125,000 mark several years ago, the BC endowment was just started last fall and has already passed the halfway point to maturity, something AUW members and their family and friends to give donations to these scholarship endowments for birthdays, anniversaries, holidays or in memoriam for loved ones. Endowment donation forms will be available at the book sale, so that everyone can help in this effort.

This year marks the branch’s 47th book sale. The sale begins Saturday, June 18, at Brevard College’s Boshamer Gym. The sale runs through June 23 with Wednesday, June 22, being “half price” day and Thursday, June 23, being “fill a box for $5” day. On Friday, June 24, from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m ., any books remaining are offered free to nonprofits and good cause organizations.