Sat, Dec. 07

Letter: Three days, 6,500-plus books for Clark library


If anyone’s wondering how Friends of Clark Memorial Library managed to amass over 6,500 books for a three-day Grand Reopening Book Sale this week … I’m with them.

You have to see this collection to believe the very gently used books spanning genres from aeronautics through xeriscape and zoology.

When our library closed on June 30, FCML started with nothing except Yavapai County Free Library District Director Corey Christians’ initial proposal to re-open CML under District management and our determination to have our non-profit 501 (C) (3) paperwork completed before that happened. Re-opening with a book sale to help raise funds for library materials and programs was a distant dream.

However, at our July 4 kick-off booth, County District 3 Supervisor Randy Garrison assured us the Intergovernmental Agreement had his active support, and our call for books met a respectable response from the community. And then our book drive acquired a life of its own.

First the Cottonwood Library Bookmarks chipped in. Then cartons came up from Camp Verde and Tempe. Verde Valley Manor Residents Library donated 10 cartons and collected more on top of that.

And then Sedona Library Friends’ Bookstore Coordinator Richard Sauk stepped in with books and more books, great advice, and “Look, we need to clear space. Why don’t you come back with a couple of trucks?” Jerome Library’s Kathleen Jarvis culled her shelves as well, sending the art, poetry, and music books we needed, plus a copy of The Little Engine That Could.

Meanwhile, individuals brought books to Clarkdale’s Concerts in the Park and called for pickups. Before both the County and the Town of Clarkdale approved the IGA, 18 cartons had swelled to over 200, and our book manager’s living room floor began to sag. At which point, the Library District went into high gear to make our hoped-for October 19 re-opening date a reality.

Although this book sale is presented by Friends of CML, bargain hunters have library lovers throughout the Verde Valley to thank for the selection.

And for the gala Grand Re-opening Celebration with the Mingus Union Honors Choir and Jerome Ukulele Orchestra — plus a Meet the Author program with Ann Metlay — on Thursday the 19th, Cynthia Strom’s music program on Friday the 20th, and Michael Gallagher’s cartooning workshop on Saturday the 21st.

Now I hope book lovers throughout the Valley read “What’s Happening” (VI, Oct. 13, page 14) and come early and often.

Jimmy Salmon

President, FCML

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