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Hadassah Martin, 15, and her mother, Angela Martin, both of Ephrata, look through books during the first day of the annual book sale to benefit the Lancaster Public Library Monday, Aug. 10, 2020. The sale, which continues Tuesday and Wednesday, Aug. 11 and 12, is being held in the former Bon-Ton department store space in Park City Center.

The Friends of the Lancaster Public Library's Big Book Sale took in a big sum last week to help the library — nearly $11,000 more than during the 2019 sale.

The three-day sale, held Aug. 10-12 in 80,000 square feet of the former Bon-Ton department store space at Park City Center, brought in just under $109,000 in gross sales, Pat Ditzler, book operations chair for the volunteer friends group, says.

Gross sales from the sale in 2019 were around $98,000.

The library uses the money from the friends group's book sales for its general operating budget.

"We were just thrilled with how everything went," Ditzler says. "We're thrilled that we were able to pull it off this year."

The sale, which was to be held on the Franklin & Marshall College campus in June, was postponed until August. Then, the friends group had to find a new venue.

Ditzler estimates about 4,000 people came through the doors at the former Bon-Ton last week to find bargains on books, CDs, DVDs and more; some of those were repeat customers.

Now that the warehouse at the friends' Book ReSort, 225 N. Marshall St., has been emptied of books, the group is planning to reopen it to accept donations on Monday and Wednesday mornings, starting Aug. 24.

Items may only be brought to the Book ReSort, Ditzler says, not to the library.

Ditzler says the Book ReSort will accept donations only from 10 a.m. to noon Mondays and Wednesdays. No books or other items should be left outside the ReSort at any other time.

The ReSort accepts used books, vinyl records, DVDs, CDs and audio books. It does not accept any Reader's Digest condensed books, music cassettes, VHS tapes, magazines or pre-2000 encyclopedia sets.

Bookstore reopens 

In addition, the Juliana Book Store, located on the first floor of the Lancaster Public Library's 125 N. Duke St., branch, reopened today, Monday, Aug. 17.

The store, which sells used books, is run by the friends group and raises money for the library.

Leigh Kaliss, manager of community engagement for the Lancaster library, says only two customers are allowed in the bookstore at any one time. Everyone must wear a mask in the store.

The store is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday; 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday; and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

"When at all possible," Kaliss writes in a message, "all purchases should be paid by credit card. Cash will be accepted (and) exact change is appreciated." 

Ditzler says she expects the friends group's Marshall Street bookstore, located next to the Book ReSort warehouse, to reopen sometime after Labor Day. Kaliss says an exact reopening date has not been set; check the library's social media and website for updates.

Ditzler says the former Bon-Ton space in Park City worked out very well for the book sale, adding the volunteer fundraising group would love to have its Big Book Sale there again next year — in its usual spring time slot, in May.

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