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August 22, 1986 - Image 14

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1986-08-22

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

and bargain buyers,
for the 25th year,
are flocking
to the Brandeis
Used Book Sale

MO taft* t.„] §•:R ;•P * .•5

s Shirley
Weiner speaks about the largest
used book sale in Michigan,
enthusiasm overwhelms her. "It's
exciting seeing people find what
they want and, rewarding to know
that they will enjoy the fruits of our
The sales coordinator is refer-
ring to the Brandeis Used Book Sale
being held through next Wednesday
at Tel-Twelve Mall.
Sponsored by the Greater De-
troit Chapter of Brandeis Univer-
sity's National Women's Committee,
the sale did not always take place at
Tel-Twelve, nor did it always ac-
cumulate 150,000 books and maga-
zines to be sold.
Its roots go back 26 years when,
in March 1960, 12 tables and ap-
proximately 1,000 books covered the
front lawn of a chapter member's
Detroit store. Growing to 30,000
books the following year, the sale
moved to a former shoe store in
Highland Park and remained there
for three years. In 1966, Northland's
former special events center served
as the setting until 1970, when it
was moved to Northland's parking
lot beneath a 7,200 square foot tent.
By then, the number of books total-
led 60,000.
If it had not been for a severe
rain storm in 1977, causing one-
third of the books to be ruined, the
sale may never have moved to Tel-
Twelve Mall where it has remained
the past eight years. "Watching it
(the sale) grow has been the most
phenomenal thing in the world.
Each year it gets bigger i" Weiner
proudly declares.
In 1948, both the national
women's committee and Brandeis
University were founded. Today, the
women's committee has 126 chapters
and 65,000 members in the United
States. All have one common goal: to


Friday, August 22, 1986

raise money annually to purchase
new books for the university's four
campus libraries in Waltham, Mass.
The Detroit chapter would not dis-
Close the amount of money raised
here annually, but last year,
$2,150,000 was raised nationally.
So, why - is Brandeis University
the only college for which this na-
tional organization raises money to
purchase new books? "Brandeis Uni-
versity is the first and only Jewish-
sponsored, non-sectarian, private
school," Weiner said. It also contains
the largest Judaic studies depart-
ment in the nation.
Surprisingly, volunteers begin
collecting books and magazines in
September, prior to the next year's
sale. A pickup service will come to
the homes of those donating more
than 200 items. Others can take
tax-deductible book donations to the
Brandeis Book Depot on Coolidge in
Oak Park.
Although all books are accepted,
weekly magazines are rejected be-
cause "no one wants them."
Once an item arrives at the de-
pot, it is marked by category from a
choice of 86 book topics and 30
different magazines. When a shelf is
full, the publications are priced, fol-
lowing the university's suggested
price guide. Many of the local Bran-
deis volunteers have worked in
specific fields, gathering expertise to
properly price the same categories of
books each year.
The most expensive books are
rare collectors' items that run up to
$100. To qualify as rare, the book
must have a good binding, many
illustrations and be published before
1900. On the other hand, some
paperbacks are priced as low as 30
Last year, 11 sections of books
and magazines lined the mall with
topics as diverse as diet, Israel and





Helen Lipton tries to find room for more books.

Carole Garvin

Jewish News Intern

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