By Emily Bialkowski
If this winter has given people anything, it’s the chance to curl up with a blanket and good book. The Houston County Historical Society will help replenish area residents’ dwindling reading selections with its annual book sale March 15 and 16.
With years of experience under their belts, Historical Society volunteers have been hard at work categorizing what has been described as an “unbelievable” selection of books.
“Our book sale is a project that goes on the entire year with people picking up books and bringing in books,” Historical Society President Shirley Johnson said.
A year’s worth of collecting leads to two days of sales, and bookworms across the region will want to hit the road early to get the first glimpse of this year’s choices. There are thousands of children’s books, history books, romance novels, biographies, poetry collections, cookbooks, gardening books and more.
Most paperbacks run 50 cents, while hardcover books run 75 cents. Newer books and specialty items will cost a little more, Johnson said.
The book sale begins at 8 a.m. Saturday, March 15, and runs until 3 p.m. Those looking for a deal can head to the sale Sunday, March 16, from 1-4 p.m. for a $5 bag sale and price reductions. The sale is at the Historical Society Museum at 104 History Lane, East Main Street entrance, Caledonia, by the Houston County Fairgrounds.
Despite the affordablility of the sale and competitive prices, this fundraising event actually yields thousands of dollars for the society’s efforts. The fundraiser averages $4,000 and hit the $6,000 mark once, Johnson said. In the early years – this is the 19th annual event – the book sale garnered a few hundred dollars.
“We think it gives us good visibility, and it is our main fundraiser for the year. It helps us buy things to protect the archives like acid-free boxes for photographs,” Johnson said.
Despite the fact that society members are experienced at putting on the sale, this year presented some unique challenges. Several days of bitterly cold temperatures and dangerous driving conditions forced the society to cancel work days.
“We’re working most Saturdays now to get this thing together,” Johnson said. “It was so mind-boggling when we started.”
For more information about the book sale, or if you would like to make a donation, call 507-725-3884 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The society’s regular hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.
Thrivent Financial for Lutherans is offering the society supplemental funds in conjunction with the sale.