Mark your calendars for Saturday, February 15, and Sunday, February 16, 2014. It's going to be a weekend heyday for bookworms and literary fanatics who travel from far and wide to see what's been deemed worthy and interesting by the Volunteer Nonprofit Service Association (VNSA).
Members of the local nonprofit spend all year, every year, sorting through thousands of book donations dropped in parking lot bins and carted in by book-recycling programs. The best (around half a million) hardbacks, paperbacks, children's books, and rare items make it to the sales tables at the Arizona State Fairgrounds every year to be snapped up by avid readers at a fraction of the price you'd find on Amazon or big-box bookstores.
This year's 57th annual event was billed as one of the largest book sales in the country and the "Valley's Greatest Treasure Hunt," which all began in the 1950s as the fundraising arm of what's now the Volunteer Nonprofit Service Association, with a logo drawn by local comic hero Bil Keane. The organization since has held an annual book sale to raise money for the community. In its first year, VNSA raised $900, and since, the organization has traded used books for more than $6 million. We can't wait to see what's sifted out of this year's loot.