The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


July 19, 2012

Text Alert: Library book sale underway in Union County

LEWISBURG — Call it Bookstock, this festival-like book sale that benefits the Public Library for Union County.

Somewhere near 45,000 texts covering subjects from cooking to fiction to romance and everything in between went on sale Wednesday at Faith Lutheran Church on Route 45 in Lewisburg.

This four-day, over-the-top sale of books — donated for months by hundreds of people — has been going on for years, said Sally Kobus, book sale chairwoman who was elbow-deep in books inside the building. The sale is always held the third week in July, and may draw up to 800 visitors this week.

“There are people who plan their vacations around this,” Kobus said. “I had a call from a woman checking to make sure of the date so she could make her campground reservation nearby.”

This year’s crowd could be the biggest: The sale is now in the “Things to Do” booklet from the Susquehanna River Valley Visitor’s Bureau, and several people remarked that’s how they learned of it.

And while a heat wave in 2011 kept the crowd at bay, this year the committee outsmarted the weatherman: The sale is indoors in air-conditioned comfort.

“I schedule my trip up here for this,” said Karen Spangler-Pereira, a former New Berlin resident from North Carolina who attended with aunts Julia Fetter and Mary Spangler, both of New Berlin.

Why? “It’s great savings and a lot of selection,” she said.

Spangler-Pereira wasn’t kidding. Twenty bucks will buy a sack of books, as many as a person can fit in it. Spangler-Pereira walked out, all smiles, with mysteries, romances, fiction and cookbooks, among others.

And the tomes keep coming: Every day there is more selection, more to browse, more bookworm candy.

Hundreds will go through the sale the next few days, Kobus said, raising thousands for the library, as much as $27,000 two years ago.

And even the heat didn’t keep the devoted from opening day. The first person at the door was there at 7:15 a.m., Kobus said, leading a line that eventually snaked into the parking lot until the doors opened at 9.

There were also newcomers like George and Jean Groff, of Sunbury.

“It’s remarkable,” George said of the sheer volume of books. A biography fan, George was excited to find a hardcover about Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn.

Jean picked up a book about the royal family.

“My grandchildren will enjoy this,” she said, being able to learn more about the clan before Wills and Kate.

No matter the genre or how many books one could get in that bag, everyone left with a smile on his face.

“We’ve been coming to this for years,” said Doris Maurer, of Mifflinburg, an avid reader who loves to share her books with others. She was there with husband, Robert.

“TV doesn’t interest me,” Doris said as Robert carted off a very full sack that was starting to tear. “I love to read.”

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