Crowds Welcome First Mt. Prospect Public Library Post Pandemic Book Sale

Long lines of people waited for the weekend Mount Prospect Public Library first post pandemic book sale to open while volunteer cashiers went from two to six in the main sale room to manage the crowds of book, CD, DVD, audiobooks, and art loving customers as doors opened at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 14.

Shoppers of all ages found tons of newly donated stock accumulated over the past 12 months for the two-day sale held in three areas-the main floor, the downstairs sale room and part of the garage. The sale, held by the volunteer Friends of the Library, ran from Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.

Prices ranged anywhere from $50, for rare books, to a quarter. There were major bargains to be found among a wide range of books, CDs, DVDs, vinyl records, art pieces, chairs (yes, office chairs - a couple were sold), chocolate fountains (3 were donated and, yes, on Saturday one sold). There is no fee to enter the sale.

"This has to be the largest crowd we have ever seen waiting to get into a library sale. It was fantastic," longtime Friends of the Library board President Pat Klawitter said Saturday. "We have not had a sale inside the library, like here in the better books room, since January of 2020. People are excited to be back, to see what is new to read, and to help their community."

All funds raised by the library sale provide the Mount Prospect library with equipment, programs, services, and other materials that it might not otherwise be able to purchase.

Not only did customers find a lot to choose from - who can pass up Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's "Mycroft and Sherlock" or an over 100-year-old map of Paris with architectural plans - but Friends of the Library volunteers who not only spend months pricing and sorting donated books, are also experts on the stock available allowing them to help shoppers find what they need.

"I love it when I can connect children and their parents with the books or movies they are looking for. One family asked me with long faces if we had any Minecraft," Friends board volunteer Mary Jo Gagnon, who specializes in children's books, said, "When I told them absolutely, they were thrilled."

A volunteer helped one customer find books in the language he was searching for; he knew exactly where to find it.

A steady stream of customers purchased a wide array of product throughout the two-day sale and some shoppers came back a second day to catch what they may have missed.

One happy customer found and bought an autographed copy of Anne Rice's "Interview with the Vampire."

"We love connecting people with books, many they may not have ever known about. It is wonderful to do just that with the library sale," Klawitter said.

To help make the sale happen several community volunteers of all ages, many from local schools, descended on the library Friday from 5-8p.m. to physically set up for the sale. From pulling and pushing 100s of bins of books to the upstairs and outside, to organizing books by subject and neatly setting them up, the volunteers did not leave until it was ready for the next morning's sale customers.

One volunteer noted Saturday afternoon there was now space on the tables in the main books sale room where there was absolutely none the night before. "As a matter of fact, there was a lot of spillover Friday night, so we had to put some under the table for access," she said.

As one mother left the sale she noted, "I go to all the local library books sales and the Mount Prospect one has to be our favorite. So, thank you."

The next Mount Prospect Friends library sale is the weekend of July 30 with the Fall sale set for the weekend of October 22. For more information go to

All donations can be dropped off in front of the Friends room located on the lower level of the library.

Article Comments
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the "flag" link in the lower-right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.