A bookworm’s haven and a scholar’s sanctuary, the Santa Barbara Public Library System offers countless hours of intellectual recreation for the general populace as well as tourists. The library also provides a critical foundation for educational excellence. However, decreased budgets and materials, staffing shortages and recent furloughs, have made it more of a struggle to sustain the library’s invaluable services.

Fortunately, donors and community volunteers help provide support for the library’s programs, equipment, and materials. Support groups for each of the branches sell donated books and other items. The Montecito branch recently held a cookbook sale, for example, and the Solvang branch sells items online.

The Central library occasionally holds giant blow-out sales—and the time is nigh. Central Branch reference librarian Jace Turner explained that the library quote often receives very rare and valuable donations, and it saves them up, until a plethora of goods has been collected.

On Friday, January 29, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., Friends of the Santa Barbara Public Library will host a pre-sale and wine-and-cheese reception at the Central Library, 40 East Anapamu Street. A $35 donation at the door gains you membership in the group and first pick of the sale items, which will be available for sale during the reception: signed and first editions, fiction and nonfiction books, art and photography books, posters, ephemera, original 1930s etchings and other artworks, and a large selection of ex-library Californiana. (Those who are already members pay only $15 to get in.)

On Saturday, January 30, from 10 a.m. till 4 p.m., the sale will open to the public, with free admission.

This is a great opportunity to add to your own growing collections, or feed the fire of some other passionate book lover. “The Central library is hoping that the success from our last Special and Rare Book Sale, held last year, spills into this one,” said Turner. “The joy is in finding happy homes for these special books, and the benefit to the library is huge. There are treasures to be found in this sale. I guarantee it.”


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