The South Pasadena Public Library sold 4,720 books for a dollar apiece during a local fundraiser on October 8. The event was held in the name of the late owner of the books, Stephen Rice, in order to raise money for the library and its programs and events.
Kathy Plum, Rice’s sister, inherited his vast collection after he passed away in November of 2014. Plum then donated 6000 of the books to the public library in late 2014.
All of the books were sold in three separate fundraisers: the $1 Book Sale, and two Art & Design Book Sales that took place in March and July. The organization behind the sales, the Friends of the South Pasadena Public Library, donated all profits to the library to maintain and enlarge the library’s collection.
“[Although] a lot of people say that libraries are no longer relevant and people don’t read books anymore, I think we proved that wrong in the sale,” organization president Ann Messana said. “People are still buying books and they’re still happy to be reading them.”
The nonprofit organization donates an estimated $70,00 to $80,000 to the library each year and also provides funding for a variety of events and activities ranging from weekly Author Nights, the Summer Reading Program, and various Books Clubs and Teen Programs.
“Today was a remarkable day because I think we saw that libraries are still important in the community,” Messana said. “Our library still continues to serve a great need.”