The Mark Skinner Library's annual book sale took place on Aug. 9-11 in the former Bank of Bennington. The people of Manchester, having donated boxes of books and media, came out to support the sale. More than 40 people lined up at the bank's back door on Friday evening to attend the Preview Party and get a chance to buy books before the Saturday sale.
They entered a building piled high with books sorted into appropriate categories; the mystery books were even in alphabetical order. The sorting and setting up had all been done by a corps of dedicated volunteers who gave hours of their time each week to ensure that our customers would be able to easily find what they wanted.
We've been asked if it was worth all the work. And we answer, definitely. Not only did we reach our target fundraising goal, but we were able to also donate to the new library's building fund. We gave second, third, or fourth lives to books and media. We put books in the hands of a diverse group of people; some of whom told us that they could not have afforded them without a sale like this.
One family bought many bags and boxes of books and we asked if they had a business. They laughed and said, "Four kids and I run a program for troubled teens. Many of the books will go to that program." And then there were the sisters, one 89 years-old and one 92. They were there at least two of three days and bought more books than they could carry. (We know that because many of us ended up carrying their heavy bags.) They were, like the local bears, getting ready for a long, cold winter.
Thanks go to all the volunteers who worked before, during and after the sale; thanks to Jim Comar at the Bank of Bennington for once again allowing us to use their building on Route 7A; and many thanks to all who supported this year's sale.
Next year, we hope to have our book sale in the fall at our new library - we hope you'll check us out then!
Pat Johnston and Michele Post
Co-Chairs MSL Book Sale