Friends of the Palo Alto Library Visit our web site 

Saturday May 12
Ephemera 8am - 4pm
Bargain and Children's Rooms 10am - 4pm
Main Room Sale 11am - 4pm
Tent Sale 9am - 4pm

Sunday May 13
All Rooms 11am - 4pm


Mother's Day
Paperback Mysteries
Scrapbooking & Quilting
Large Format


4000 Middlefield Road
Palo Alto
NE corner of the Cubberley Community Center
(650) 213-8755

More information on the sales
Donate your old books

Marty's (Main) Room
In our Main Room, prices are way below what used book stores charge. Hardcover books start at $1.00 and softcover books start at only 50 cents.

Due to the popularity of our sale and the fact that we can only have 160 customers in the room at any time a numbered ticket system (Main Room only) is in place and numbers are given out beginning at 8am on Saturday. Be sure to be in line in order of your number before the 11am opening. If you miss the time when your number is allowed to enter the Main Room you will forfeit your place in line. NOTE: If you plan on arriving to the sale after 11am you do NOT need to get a number.

Please note that due to crowding during the first two hours of the Book Sale, no strollers, rolling carts, etc. can be brought into the Main Room. This is for the safety of shoppers and volunteers alike. By 12:30 or so, the crowd thins out and shoppers are welcome to bring these items into the sale.

Children's Book Sale
The Children's Room has moved to the portable formerly occupied by the Jewish Community Center next to the soccer field. It is entirely filled with children's books and toys. You'll find picture books, school age fiction and non-fiction, award winners, non-English titles, CDs and DVDs, and books for parents and teachers, most for 50 cents or $1. Strollers are welcome in the Children's Room at any time.

Bargain Books in K-7
The Bargain Room is located in Rooms K-7 and K-6 of the Cubberley main campus, right next to the tennis courts. On Saturday, 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. On Sunday, the room opens at 11 am and all prices are half off. Or, save even more on Sunday by buying grocery bags from us for $5 each and stuffing them with any items in the room. Buy 4 bags and get the 5th one FREE!

Library Closings for Memorial Day
All libraries will be closed Sunday May 27 and Monday May 28 for the Memorial Day holiday. Normal hours will resume on Tuesday May 29.
Non-Profit Book Giveaway
Non-profit organizations and schools are able to select books from among the thousands of books available in the Bargain Room on the Sunday evening following the sale from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm. If you are associated with a non-profit organization or school that would like to receive books from us for free or for information on eligibility, hours, and the types of materials available, please contact Norma Burchard in advance by e-mail at or at (650) 494-1082. Several dozen organizations benefit from the monthly giveaways, including local hospitals, homeless programs, senior centers, schools, and jails, as well as libraries in rural areas and on reservations, and literacy projects in many other countries.

We're always eager to hear your suggestions for ways to improve our book sale. Please email us at or mention them to a volunteer at the sale.
Sale Overflowing with New Donations
We gladly accept donations Monday through Saturday from 2pm to 4pm, and we have a book donation pick up team that's been busier than ever. In April alone, we received about 40,000 donated items, which we quickly sorted and put out for this upcoming sale. Our donations come from individuals, estates, and companies all over the area, as well as from the Palo Alto Library. Many people drop off donations at their library branches, which accept up to one bag or box per day per person. Other people bring books by the carload to our main book sale room at Cubberley. While you're at the sale, take a peek at the sorting room just inside the main room's entrance and you'll see how big our behind-the-scenes donation processing has become.
Give a Bouquet of Books this Mother's Day - Sunday May 13th
Our moms are often the first people to teach us how to read and our first "librarians". That's why FOPAL loves moms and we love celebrating all of the wonderful moms in our lives on Mother's Day. Every year, millions of us purchase a bouquet of flowers to honor the mothers in our lives. This year, why not celebrate her with a bouquet of books? Stop by the Curious Books section to see our display of books all about the love of Mom!
Paperbacks A-plenty
Be on the lookout for the new Paperback Mysteries we received. We'll be giving many of these away. Grab a few for your book club or for your favorite charity. We are fortunate enough to have dozens of the same titles and can pass these freebies to you and then you can pass them on, and so on and so is good.
Home & Crafts
Capture the essence of your summer days with alphabets, embellishments, die-cuts, stickers...what are these? you may ask. Why, they're scrapbook essentials. If you are drowning under a sea of school papers and projects, then why not work with your child to make a scrapbook out of them? Or you may be inspired to use your selvages to make a quilt. It's fun! Home and Crafts section manager Nancy Welch says "summer is the perfect time for Quilting and Scrapbooking. The Home and Crafts section is brimming with inspiration for both activities."
Oversized Book Section is Overflowing
Considering adding some oversized books to your collection. On their own, these books provide visual interest as well as contain beautiful pictures. Oversized books make a statement in any room and piled books draw the eye. If shelves aren't high enough or deep enough to accommodate oversize books, stack them on a flat surface, such as a bench or an end table. Our Large Format books are in great shape, many look new and priced so well you could purchase several. In this case bigger is better!
Psychology Sections are FULL
Section managers Bonnie & Bill Chandler unpacked dozens of boxes of Psychology books that had been stored after the fire in August 2010. So many books, in fact, that they couldn't accommodate them all in the Main Room. Many of these books can be found in the Outside Sale (dollar sale) and Bargain Room located in K-7. These books had been priced over a year ago, so the deals here will be great!
Preview Our Shelves
Click here to see some of the shelves at this weekend's sale Check out some of the thousands of books that will be on sale this weekend using our shelf preview pictures.
Grants to Library for Fiscal Year 2012-2013
Our past book sales have been so successful that we have approved several grants to the Palo Alto Library, totaling over $200,000 to the Palo Alto Library for the coming fiscal year. $150,000 of this will be used to lease books during the upgrading of the Main Library. $35,000 will be used for children's and teens' programs, $11,000 for adult programs, and $5,000 for program supplies. These books and programs will all be available and free to the public.
FOPAL Volunteers Rock!
Here's a big THANK YOU to the dozens of FOPAL volunteers that make this sale possible. It's in part because of our amazing volunteers that the FOPAL Book Sales are a great success. While attending the sale offer a "Thank You" to the volunteers you see. If you'd like to become a FOPAL volunteer please email or call (650) 494-1266.
FOPAL Book Sale Notices Now on Twitter
You can now follow us on Twitter @fopalbooks. We'll post Sale notices and will reveal the Sunday 50% off section via our Twitter feed.
Friends Bookstore in Downtown Library
If you cannot attend the book sale, please drop by the Friends Bookstore located inside the Downtown Library and open during library hours. It is restocked regularly with a unique selection of books for all ages and interests.
Bring Your Donations!
Donations are accepted in the Main Room during our normal hours of 2pm - 4pm Monday through Saturday. Use the door on the right side of the building, next to the fire lane. If you need to bring books to us outside of those hours just call (650) 213-8755 and see if anyone is working in the book room and can accept your donation. We also accept donations during the Book Sale hours as well. Book and media donations can also be dropped off at the Mitchell Park and Main Libraries (limit of one bag or box per day, please). Note that the new College Terrace Library does not have the space to store donations so they ask that you please do not drop donations off there. Pickups can be arranged for large donations or if you are physically unable to bring your books to us. Please email or call (650) 213-8755 for more information or to leave a message after hours.
Special Handling for Special Donations
Got an unusual donation? If there are things you'd like to donate to us that are rare, fragile or unusual and require special attention contact or call (650) 213-8755 and leave a message for Jerry Stone.
Recycle Your Used Packing Materials At FOPAL
Looking for a place to recycle those packing materials? FOPAL can use them! As our online sales have grown we would be happy to accept your used bubble mailers, small boxes (small size Amazon boxes are great!), bubble wrap, packing peanuts, and those bags of air and we'll reuse them. We cannot use very large boxes or styrofoam blocks.
Think Ecologically! - Bring or Donate Your Own Bags
Due to the increasing reuse of grocery and other bags, we tend to run short at our sales and encourage you to bring your own cloth tote or paper bags to the sale. If you have any extra grocery or department store bags in good condition please bring them for your purchases at the sale. We would also gladly accept any extra bags you wish to donate.
Support Palo Alto's Libraries While You Shop
By shopping at Kepler's Books in Menlo Park a percentage of your purchase price can help the Palo Alto Libraries at no cost to you. At Kepler's, just mention to the cashier that you want to support the Friends of the Palo Alto Library.
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 2007-2008 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.