The future of the CALS Used Book Sale

Earlier this year, CALS announced that Main Library would be closing temporarily to undergo an extensive renovation. That change created a domino effect of moves and adjustments, including (but not limited to) the closing of the Galleries & Bookstore so that Main Library services could move into that space (read about the move here). The CALS Used Book Sale also needed a new home, so it made the trek out to the Port Industrial Hub with the Administrative team.

The good things to note, all the staff who worked at the Galleries & Bookstore were reassigned within the system and are still with us. AND so is the used book sale! Things will be slightly different (but, we think, in a better way); we talked with Lily Kauffman (formerly of the G&B) about the book sale and the move to the Port (7773 Sloane Drive).

CALS: What is your new title?

Lily: I wish I could report that it was something like Book Wizard, but my new title is now Development Specialist.

CALS: What have you been working on recently?

Lily: Since the closure of Main, we’ve been hard at work arranging furniture and shelving in the new space, figuring out what sections go where, and how best to make the space a pleasant, intuitive shopping experience. And I really think that all that hard work and consideration will translate when people see what we’ve done at the port sale location. Our volunteers and I have been hard at work sorting through donations and getting those shelves stocked and ready for the next sale.

CALS: What happened to the books that were in the Main Library basement? 

Lily: When Main closed, we made the decision to not bring any of the books remaining from the last sale in July with us to the port location. I felt like it was a great opportunity to have a fresh start in the new space. Those remaining books were distributed to various organizations for community enrichment.

CALS: When can patrons expect the sale to return?

Lily: The sale will be announced when our shelves are fully stocked, and we have accrued some back stock. We are tentatively planning for a Spring sale in March.

CALS: What changes can patrons expect when the sale returns in March?

Lily: I think people are going to be really pleased with the amount of free parking at the new location, that it is all one level, and it’s only 10 minutes away from downtown Little Rock. The other exciting thing about the location change is that it brings new opportunities, and one of those opportunities is food trucks. I’m going to make it one of my goals to have some food trucks out here during the sales.

CALS: What can they do now to help? 

Lily: Donate, donate, donate. I will take this time to remind patrons that we are currently accepting donations at all the branches except for Main, Roberts, and Williams libraries. Please make sure the donations are boxed and sealed, not over 50 pounds, and we only accept 10 boxes per person, per day. We are NOT accepting donations of VHS, CDs, DVDs, video games, cassettes, audiobooks, magazines (including National Geographic) any Reader’s Digest publications, medical journals, computer software/coding books, and any reference, text, or law books. See the full details here.

CALS: What do you hope to see for the future of the sale?

Lily: I hope to expand the sale to include select Saturdays each month after the inaugural March sale. I’d like to see the sale more accessible than the big three times a year. It is my grand hope and professional mission that the operations here at the port are received well, and after the port, we can continue holding a space somewhere in the community to allow the public to affordably build their own home libraries.