Columbiana library fundraiser turns into silent auction to meet pandemic protocols, weather

Local News

They've sold about 200 books, and the money goes back to help the library

COLUMBIANA, Ohio (WKBN) – Over the summer, the Columbiana Public Library held their book sale out in the parking lot. It’s part of a way to raise money so they can hold events throughout the year.

But when the weather started to change, they had to think of new ideas that would still follow COVID-19 protocols.

The word “silent” might be a word you associate with a library, but what about a silent auction?

It started around Christmas time as a way to substitute for their indoor book sales.

Sponsored by the Friends of the Library, the fundraiser supports many activities at our library found at 332 N. Middle St. 

“It still is the highest gross that I’ve made and a lot of people, when they came in to make their purchases, rounded it up,” said Margaret McBane of Friends of the Library.

As you walk in the main doors, tables with books, DVDs and more are set up on the right.

You write your name and phone number on a slip of paper, and each paper has a number with it. Then, you write that number and the bid on the sheet of paper in front of the item you want.

All bids had to be raised by one dollar or more.

Some items are donations and some are from the library.

“When books haven’t been checked out for years and they decide the book is no longer popular, they cut it back gradually,” McBane said.

Under orders, you can’t have any more than 10 people together at once, so this is how the silent auction came about.

“We raise funds and we support the special programs that the librarians plan,” McBane said.

And there’s something for everyone.

They had a Harry Potter set that was up to $30 along with series from The Hardy Boys mystery novels, and one of the highest selling books was a book about World War II.

“I thought it would be old people. No, it was the young people who wanted to read about what their grandfather or great-grandfather or great-grandmother did during the war,” McBane said.

They’ve sold about 200 books, and the money goes back to help the library.

They say winners will be contacted after the bidding ends at noon May 8.

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