Monday, May 21, 2007

Top Five Reasons Why Church Sales Are Better Than Library Sales

Every Thursday morning I check the classifieds and hope a church sale will be there. I can hardly be bothered with garage sales anymore. Not even garage sales by retired school teachers. I've been burned too many times. But church sales? I'm there. They tend to be better than library sales too. Here's why:

1. The incidentals. When you go to a church sale you can also replenish your stock of Coca Cola glasses, tacky plastic floral 1960's plates, cereal bowls and Tupperware. Throughout the winter these items tend to break or melt when placed inadvertently on a hot burner so the summer church sales are my chance to stock up again. We are probably the only family with a mug shortage because of all the breakage and, trust me, church sales are also an excellent source of mugs. Because of the incidentals my children happily come along when I go to church sales. Even if I walk away with no books I've spent a nice time with the children as they happily pick out junky toys that cost no more than couch change.

2. The books. People give it up for their church. They'll bring in their grown son's complete collection of science fiction paperbacks that has been sitting in their basement for twenty years. Or they'll finally decide to let go of the 100+ International Collectors Library books with the gold gilt edges that they never read anyway and won't fit in their new assisted living facility. Maybe they even part with a lifetime's collection of 1940's and 1950's vintage mystery paperbacks. Pastors and scholarly folks will donate theological books. I've had many of my best finds at church sales.

3. The people. The volunteers are always friendly and they often serve snacks and coffee.

4. The lack of people. Book people, that is. I almost always have the books to myself and don't have to deal with the pressure of other book dealers hovering nearby. There was a church sale in my neighborhood this past weekend. I showed up on Saturday, not realizing it started on Friday. I thought the books would be picked over, but no. There was a box of 1949 Childcraft books, all 14 volumes, and a few antique Mrs. E. M. Holmes books and some other things.

I went to a church sale the weekend before last and there were four high school yearbooks (2001-2004). I know you are always supposed to pick up yearbooks and park them in your eBay store at $40 a pop but I didn't have the heart to do so in this instance. Why did this girl ditch her yearbooks already? Is she unhappy? Is she deceased? I did not wish to dwell on these things so I refrained from purchasing them.

5. The prices. Ten cents. A quarter. Fifty cents at the most. Sometimes there are no prices at all and the church accepts donations instead. Of course I always end up paying more that way but at least I feel good about it.

Can a library sale top any of these things? I think not.
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2 Comments:

Blogger Mimi said...

Ooooh, sounds wonderful.

10:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you so much! Guess I havn't gone much because some church sales have almost a craft fair or carnival atmosphere, whereas library sales are serious events. But since I need to lighten up, and also need some good books to sell, I'll definitely take your advice. Thanks again for sharing this tip! - Bunny

4:33 AM  

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