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September 8
10 am - 4 pm
Main Room opens at 11 am

September 9
1 pm - 4 pm

Featured topics for September:

Apartheid-era South African Literature
Asian Art and Literature
Caldecott Medal winners (Children's Room)
Home Improvement
Newbery Medal winners (Children's Room)
Vintage Post Cards, Maps, and Ephemera
Vinyl Records (Bargain Room)
And over 50,000 other items

4000 Middlefield Road
Palo Alto
Northwest corner of the Cubberley Community Center

More information on the sales
Donate your old books
All proceeds go to help Palo Alto libraries.

Main Book Room Sale
In our Main Room, prices are way below what used book stores charge. Paperbacks are 50 cents and up, and hardcovers are $1 and up.  Numbered tickets for the Main Room are given out beginning at 8 am on Saturday.  These reserve your place in the line that forms before the 11 am opening.  Each person may pick up one or two tickets.  On Sundays this summer, you get a 20% discount on all purchases of $5 or more.
Children's Books in K6
Room K6 in the K wing (see map) is entirely filled with children's books and toys.  You'll find picture books, school age fiction, award winners, non-English titles, and books for parents and teachers, many for under $1.  This room and the Bargain Room open at 10 am on Saturday.
Bargain Books in K7
Next door in K7 is the Bargain Room, where paperbacks are 50 cents, hardcovers are $1, and children's books are just 25 cents each.  The room also contains many LP records and 78s at $1 each.  All items are half off after 12:30 pm on Saturday and all day on Sunday.  On Sunday, you can also buy grocery bags in the Bargain Room for $5 and fill them with books.

Members-Early Sale in November

This year's special early admission for members of the Friends will be at our November 10 booksale.  This annual event lets lifetime members in to our Main Room at 9 am and other members in at 10 am.  Non-members then can enter the Main Room at the usual 11 am.  There will be more information in our November issue.  Please note that members only get in early once a year.

September 27 Talk on Green Living

Attend a free talk by environmental writer Jennifer Roberts on September 27 on practical ways to incorporate environmentally-sound principles into buildings and everyday living.  The presentation will be at the Main Library at 1213 Newell Road from 7 to 8 pm and is sponsored by the library, the Friends of the Palo Alto Library, Books Inc., and the City of Palo Alto Recycling Program.

Non-Profit Book Giveaway
Non-profit organizations and schools that need free books should come to the Bargain Room this month from 4 to 6 pm on Sunday, September 9.  Please bring grocery bags to put books into.  More information.

We're always eager to hear your suggestions for ways to improve our book sale.  Please email them to us at or mention them to a volunteer at the sale.
Booksale Features Asian Art Books
This month's sale features two special tables of books and magazines on Asian art, including many on ceramics, furniture, museum collections, and auction catalogs from Christie's and Sotheby's.  The magazines include Arts of Asia and Orientations.  The tables will also have other books on Asian literature, history, geography, memoirs, and biographies.
Main Room Continues Special Summer 20% Sunday Discount
Not only can you avoid huge crowds by coming to the sale on Sundays, but you also get an automatic 20% discount on Sundays in our Main Room if you purchase $5 or more.
Window Shop on Your Computer

Click here to see some of the shelves at this weekend's sale
Check out our numerous shelf preview pictures to see some of the tens of thousands of books for sale this weekend.

Library Use Climbs

Library Director Diane Jennings reported in late August that Palo Alto library circulation rose significantly during the 2006-07 fiscal year.  Already among the top library users in the state, Palo Altans checked out 1.4 million items, approximately 10% more than in the previous fiscal year.  Circulation was up at each of the four open branches, as were the number of visits.  With the Children's Library closed for all of the past fiscal year but only part of the prior one, overall library visits dipped by 2.6%, but the rise in total circulation defied expectations.

Friends Give Over $1.3 Million

Over the last five years, the Friends of the Palo Alto Library has given more than $1.3 million to improve the Palo Alto Library.  This includes over a half million dollars to renovate and expand the Children's Library, approximately $410,000 of new books, DVDs, and CDs, about $100,000 for children's events and the Summer Reading Program, and about $220,000 of new computers, printers, and online resources such as the Rosetta Stone language training and the Historical New York Times.  Thanks go to the thousands of donors, members, booksale customers, and volunteers who helped raise this enormous sum for their great generosity and support of our local libraries.  In fact, from July 2005 through June 2006, our 150+ volunteers contributed 25,237 hours, up 6% from the previous fiscal year.

Attend Children's Library Grand Reopening on September 29
The interior of the new wing of the Children's Library.  The library reopens on September 29.After almost two years of reconstruction and expansion, the Children's Library will reopen this month.  We invite you to visit the opening day festivities on September 29, which begin at the nearby Main Library at 10 am.  There, a procession led by Palo Alto Mayor Yoriko Kishimoto will bring books from Main back to the Children's Library, with an official ribbon cutting at 10:30 am followed by an unveiling of a library mural.  David Keane, author of the Joe Sherlock, Kid Detective series will speak at 11 am.  Musicians will entertain at 1 pm and 3 pm and refreshments will be served throughout the day.
The effort to improve the Children's Library took almost a decade.  A larger expansion of the branch was part of the 2002 Measure D effort that narrowly failed.  Subsequently, an anonymous donor offered $350,000 for the project, launching a combined effort of the City of Palo Alto, the Palo Alto Library Foundation, and the Friends of the Palo Alto Library to raise the remainder.  Within a year, sufficient funds came in to start the construction process and a final push brought in additional contributions for furniture, fixtures, and equipment.  In total, the project cost about $3 million.  See many more pictures of the branch's reconstruction.
New Library Plans Unveiled

A city-hired design firm recently displayed conceptual designs for improving the Mitchell Park, Main, and Downtown libraries to several city commissions.  The most substantial development would be at Mitchell Park, when the proposals call for replacing the present branch with a new facility up to four times larger.  The adjacent Community Center might be replaced as well, resulting in a two-story 51,000 square feet building on the present library/community center area that would not encroach into the park and have no underground parking.
Representatives from Group 4, the design firm that also developed the library plans for Measure D in 2002, emphasized how the Mitchell Park design would preserve a major oak tree and wrap a courtyard around it.  The new facility would meet stringent energy-efficiency standards and make major use of natural light and views of the adjacent park and trees.
Group 4's proposed improvements for the Main Library including adding air conditioning, moving the book return area, updating interior furnishings, creating four glassed-in group study rooms under the eaves adjacent to the patios, and building a meeting room for up to 100 people on the rear lawn that faces the Art Center.  One challenge is ensuring that the 5,500 square foot addition containing the meeting room fits in well aesthetically with the existing building, which was designed by world-famous architect Edward Durrell Stone.
Group 4 had two proposals for the Downtown Library.  One assumes that the technical services staff remains at the branch and expands to meet extra demands on the overall library system, thereby shrinking the public areas and eliminating public access to one patio.  The other proposal moves technical services to the Mitchell Park Library, freeing up space for a large meeting room at Downtown.  In either case, the building's lighting would be improved and the interior redesigned to bring the collection closer to the entrance, but the exterior would not be changed.
Depending upon which options are chosen, the improvements were previously estimated to cost between $25 and $45 million, necessitating a bond measure.  The Mitchell Park Community Center replacement accounted for about $10 million of the earlier estimate, and the City Council is expected to decide whether to include that portion after hearing from Group 4 on September 17.  The Council will also review the recent library audit findings on September 10.  If the bond measure goes onto the June 2008 ballot, final decisions about the library and community center project must be made by February, including whether to have a single measure that also funds a new public safety building.
Recognizing that a recent survey showed fewer than the requisite 2/3 of likely voters support these projects, the City recently hired a communication specialist to hold focus groups and develop strategies to inform the public of the need.  See recent articles from the Palo Alto Weekly and Palo Alto Daily News.

This notice comes to you from the non-profit organization Friends of the Palo Alto Library.  No trees were felled in the making of this e-mail.  While the Better Business Bureau recommends that no more than 35% of a charitable organization's expenses be for management and fundraising expenses, ours were under 1% for our 2005-2006 fiscal year.  In other words, over 99% of the money we raised went to help Palo Alto Library users.  Visit our web site.  Become a member by joining online.

Be sure to receive your own free copy of this e-mail notice so that you'll know about all special upcoming books sales.  To sign up, just e-mail us.  We carefully protect the privacy of your e-mail address.  We will not share your e-mail address with any other organization and we will not use it for any purpose other than to send you these notices.  If you do not wish to receive these e-mail notices in the future, please reply with the words "Remove Me" in the subject line.