Library River Days Book Sale launches


The Portsmouth Public Library is welcoming the community into its doors for its annual River Days Book Sale, which takes place August 29 through September 10.

While the library system has book sales year-round, the River Days Booksale is the largest and has become a deeply popular tradition, with patrons frequently calling weeks ahead to get the details of the event.

“We’ve been running this book sale for a very long time,” Portsmouth Public Library’s Marketing Manager Katie Williams said. “It was once on the lawn of the library, but we’ve since moved it inside, due to size. It is something we hear year-round, and people just look forward to it. The River Days Book Sale is special, because we have a ton of items that are included and have a ton of tables and shelves with content.”

Williams was unable to guess the size of the sale, because the scope is so large and the fact the library is constantly restocking shelves as things are sold and room is made available.

“We have youth fiction and non-fiction, adult fiction and non-fiction, but we also have a ton of CD’s, DVD’s, and Audiobooks on sale,” Williams said. “So, there is a lot for patrons to find.”

Williams said that the sale isn’t a large fundraiser for the library, rather a service, which is the goal.

“The fun thing about the sale is that a lot of the items we get have come from taxpayer resources, so this is a chance for us to give back, once items may not be in the best condition for our shelves, or we replace them with newer copies, or if items haven’t been circulating as frequently,” claimed Williams.

The items that hit shelves in time for the sale have been hand selected by members of the library during what they call “the weeding process.” The staff members involved pull reports and go through various sections of the library to select items that would be a good fit for the sale in order to make room for new titles.

Additionally, some items are donations from the community.

“Donations from the community are looked at to see if we already have the items. If we do, and the donated copy is in better condition, we will swap them out and put the old in the sale,” Williams said. “If it isn’t, then we will just drop it into the sale section. Sometimes, if we don’t think circulation is there for a title, we will also just put that item into our book sale.”

The sale will run through the 10th and will operate on a $5 bag policy. Whatever a customer can fill into a sale bag gets sold for that price.

In addition to the book sale, various other programming is ongoing, including the open hours during the parade, where the public is welcome to visit for public restrooms, water, and the book sale. Also, since the theme is school spirit, the library will have a school spirit station in the children’s section the day of the parade.

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