Dayton Book Fair Chooses New Beneficiaries

The Dayton Book Fair announced on Wednesday that they have chosen this year’s three beneficiaries to receive proceeds from their 50th anniversary Book Sale in November 2020. Each beneficiary will receive a grant of around ten thousand dollars.

This year the three beneficiaries are the Dayton International Peace Museum, the Xenia Area Community Theater and WYSO’s Center for Community Voices project.

The Dayton International Peace Museum is the only brick and mortar Peace Museum in North or South America and the houses the only interactive exhibit on the Dayton Peace Accords in the world. They are the official repository for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize and run a very successful Peace Camp for children ages 5-12. They maintain changing exhibits on the many challenges to peace and peacemaking including the effects of violence and war, gun culture, poverty, bullying, the environment, and international cooperation.

The Xenia Area Community Theater is an all-volunteer theater and gallery space established in 2005 to serve area interests in performing and fine arts and stimulate community involvement in those areas. They produce eight fully staged plays during their regular season (to date more than 100 productions) along with several summer shows and youth camps. Their plans for the grant from the Book Fair Foundation include a week-long Special Needs Children’s Initiative workshop and performance for children on the Autism Spectrum, and to improve theatre accessibility to a variety of groups whose ability to attend live theater is hampered by ticket cost.

WYSO, the public radio station long-associated with Antioch College has recently separated their university relationship to become an independent entity. While much of their budget pays for nationally syndicated public radio programming, the grant from the Dayton Book Fair will enable them to fund grassroots programming in the Center for Community Voices, for the documentary and story-telling segments produced by Dayton Youth Radio, Women’s Voices (produced by female inmates at a Dayton correctional facility) and County Lines, focusing on the rural populations in our community.

“It is challenging to choose just three,” said Dayton Book Fair Executive Director Larkin Vonalt. “It is a multi-day project for the Foundation’s board to winnow down from dozens of excellent organizations all doing important work to just three.”

Asked about criteria that the board might consider in choosing the finalists, Ms. Vonalt noted that they examine the size of the organization, the need for funding, and how the board feels that the year-long partnership will work.

“There are so many intangibles,” she added, “and at the very end when we’ve narrowed it to just a few, it often comes down to what kind of fit it will be for all of us.”

The Dayton Book Fair board handles grant-making a little differently than other foundations, requiring a year-long informal partnership with the beneficiaries. Organizations chosen are asked to promote the sale through a variety of means, they are encouraged to hold a book drive and required to volunteer at least 40 hours over the year.

Since 2015 the Foundation has made grants to 16 different organizations in the Dayton Community, giving away more than $130,000 over the last five years. The Dayton
Book Fair is Ohio’s largest used book sale and each year rehomes about 40 tons of books, records, puzzles, and games.

“While the grant-making is an essential part of our existence, and we are delighted to be able to support so many exceptional Dayton-area non-profits, we have discovered that we have another remarkably important mission in providing a meaningful and purposeful venue where people can donate their beloved books,” Ms. Vonalt commented, noting that they collect books all year round at their office at 2181 Embury Park Rd as well as offering a free pick up service for those who need it and collaborating twice a year with all the Dayton area Grismer Tire Stores for book “round-ups” the last week of May and August.

Those donated books are then sorted, priced and packed for the sale held each year the second weekend in November at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds, and the proceeds from that sale used in making grants to community non-profit organizations working in the areas of arts, education, social welfare, literacy and community development.

Saturday at the Dayton Book Fair!

Saturday at Dayton Book Fair

It’s Saturday at the 47th Annual Dayton Book Fair! We’re open today from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and we have untold thousands of books, records and movies for your perusal and shopping pleasure! Come see us at the Coliseum Building, Montgomery County Fairgrounds, 1043 S. Main St. in Dayton.

Today we’re having fun with Jane Austen . . . if you come dressed as Jane, or a character from an Austen novel, we’ll be happy to give you a ten dollar gift certificate. Don’t forget to take a selfie with Jane! After 4 p.m. we’ll have cupcakes for you from Moore Dessert Please and special discounts throughout the evening.

Guys from Freedom’s Boombox taking selfies with Jane at the television station. Come on in to the Book Fair and you can take selfies with Jane too!

Saturday is also the last day for our fabulous silent auction, ending at 6 p.m. Among this year’s auction items are books signed by Jane Goodall, President Lyndon B. Johnson, famous pop culture photographer Herb Green; and a wonderful copy of Mike Peters’ The Nixon Chronicles, not just signed by Mike, but also featuring a hand-drawn cartoon of Nixon inside the front cover. You can see more about our auction at our website.

And if you can’t make it today, don’t forget that tomorrow is our bag sale, with bags full of books at $7.50 (tax included) from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. And on Monday, maybe you can give us a hand cleaning up with Monday Morning Clean Sweep from 8 a.m to noon— pay just one dollar to get in, and take as much as you want.

The proceeds from this year’s sale benefits the Artemis Center, Caesar’s Ford Theatre Company and Discover Classical 88.1 Dayton Public Radio.

Call for Volunteers!

Dayton’s 47th annual Book Fair is fast approaching and we would love your help!

We’ll be hosting a Book Pricing Blitz at our Book Loft at 2181 Embury Park Rd, Dayton on Sunday, October 29 from noon to five. Folks will be pricing and sorting hardcover, paperback and children’s books to get these last books to this year’s sale. It’s relaxed work with plenty of time for socializing and (of course) snacks. Even if you’ve never helped at the Book Loft before, come out and give it a try. We think you’ll have fun.

Set up for the sale starts Monday, November 6th at noon at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds. The first day will largely involve moving pallets, dividers and tables into place. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday will be devoted to unpacking and arranging books on tables. We’ll start each morning at 9 and run till 5 or 6 in the afternoon. Informal lunch will be provided Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, and on Wednesday, we’ll have our customary catered lunch for volunteers at 12:30.

The Book Fair begins Friday at nine a.m. and runs each day through Sunday at eight p.m. All kinds of festivities are planned for Saturday, so you won’t want to miss that! We’re asking Book Fair volunteers to please commit to four hour shifts (8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.. 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m.) As always we need readers, adders, baggers, straighteners and the like. If you had a job in the past that you loved and would like to do it again, just let us know.

And finally, Monday. Monday is “Clean Sweep” from eight a.m. until noon. Bibliophiles pay a dollar to get in and can take as much as they want. In other years we have given the remaining books away (sometimes at considerable expense to us) to recyclers. We’ve decided we’re no longer comfortable seeing a few tons of goods books shipped off to be shredded, so we will be packing them all up this year and taking them back to the loft to be re-sorted and allocated to different charities and the like. With your help, we know we can do it!

Proceeds from this year’s book sale benefit the wonderful folks at Artemis Center, Caesar’s Ford Theatre Co. and Discover Classical! Dayton Public Radio. We hope you will be as enthusiastic as we are about lending a hand to help such fantastic organizations.

Please call the Book Loft to let us know how and when you can help— (937) 999-4491.  We are there much of the time, but if you happen to get the answering machine, just leave a message and we can call you back. Also, feel free to email us at bookfair@earthlink.net.

Our heartfelt thanks to you– we couldn’t do the work we do without the support of such an extraordinary volunteer team.

Hope to see you soon!

Wristband Day Sunday October 1st!

 

Wristband Day is nearly here! Beginning at 12:01 a.m. Sunday, October 1st you can order wristbands through our website that will secure your place in line on Opening Day of the Book Fair.

The wristbands are numbered sequentially and admission will be in the order of wristband number, with the lowest number being first in the door. The price is still just $11 for all day Friday (with in and out privileges of course). You can save a dollar by buying a wristband at the door that Friday, but you will be much further back in the line.

The link to the wristband page is here, If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to give us a call at 937.999.4491 or send us message through our website or Facebook pages.

We Give Away Books Too

We’re known for collecting books for our big sale, but we also give books away.  We have a fair amount of foot traffic past our office– usually people walking to the bus stop– so we’ve started giving away books under our big umbrella.

A few weeks ago we had a call from the Ohio Reading Corps, a branch of Americorps, wondering if we could give them some books for their reading program. We could. Here are some of our volunteers with an Ohio Reading Corps tutor, just before we figured out how to put a pallet’s worth of books into his Honda Accord.

We give books to Dave Hurwitz as well– we hope you’ve seen his wonderful truck full of free books at festivals and in the Oregon District.

We’ve given books to camps, preschools, clinics, community kitchens, shelters, and jails. If you have a group who could use some books, let us know.

You can reach us at 937.999.4491 or send us a message through this site.

And don’t forget that on the last day of our sale, Monday from eight a.m. to noon, you can pay one dollar to get in and take away all the books you want.

Don’t Be Confused . . .

Yes, we know there’s a book sale going on at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds this weekend. That’s not us.

That’s our good friends from the Friends of the Dayton Metro Library– you’ll remember their great sales at Hara Arena. Nothing’s sorted, but everything is just a buck. Stop in and see if you can find something to read! Their sale goes on through today, Saturday, June 3rd at 5 p.m.

The Dayton Book Fair will be back in our regular spot Friday, November 10th through Monday, November 13th. Wristbands for Friday admission will go on sale at 12:01 a.m. October 1, 2017 on this website. .

It’s Round Up Time!

We are thrilled to announce that through the generosity and cooperation of Grismer Tires we are extending Round Up at every Grismer location in the Miami Valley, Springfield and Troy from Monday, May 15th through Monday, May 22nd. Just bring your books inside to the barrel in the waiting room– don’t forget to get your receipt and new bookmark from the Grismer staff while you’re there.

And of course, on Saturday, May 20th, we’ll be at all our regular locations as well, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., and at our Book Loft Location, 2181 Embury Park Road, Dayton at least ’till 3 pm and probably longer.

  • David’s Church 170 W. David Rd, Kettering
  • Davies Residence 3975 Forest Ridge Blvd, Riverside
  • Fickus Residence, 201 King St.Yellow Springs
  • First United Methodist Church, 60 E. North St. Springboro
  • Greene County Historical Society, 74 W. Church St., Xenia
  • Harmony Creek Church 5280 Bigger Rd. Kettering
  • K12 Gallery 341 S. Jefferson St. Dayton
  • Miami Valley Unitarian Church, 8690 Yankee Rd. Centerville
  • Polk Grove Church, 9190 Frederick Pike, Englewood
  • St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 33 W. Dixon, Oakwood
  • Trinity Church 821 N. Central, Fairborn.

Please note that we will not be collecting at Montgomery County Fairgrounds this spring, even though it said so in the ad– but we WILL be at Fairgrounds for our annual sale, this year Friday November 10 through Monday, November 13, 2017.

The Book Fair Foundation is a 501c3 registered charity, and your donations are tax-deductible. Proceeds from this year’s sale benefit Artemis Center, Caesar’s Ford Theatre Company and Dayton Public Radio.

We welcome donations of books, vinyl records, VHS, DVD, CDs, puzzles, board games, prints and maps.

If you have questions, just give us a call– 937.999.4491.

(And if you can’t manage to bring your donations to us, give us a call to ask about our free pick-up service.)

The Joy in Giving

Someone asked us recently what was one of the best things we did this year. And this was it, hands down.

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There’s nothing like handing somebody deserving some cash they can really use.

FilmDayton will use the 10 grand we gave them for workshops. Learning Tree Farm needed work done on their well. K12 will be able to use the money they got from us to expand the occupancy of their building from 69 to more than 300.

This feels good. All the work that we do each year, nearly every single day of the year to make the Book Fair happen is returned to us in gasps of surprise, peals of laughter, pure unadulterated joy.  It feels good to give away money.

Today, December 31,  is the last day to get your applications in the mail to us, or to drop them by our office at 2181 Embury Park Road. We just need a letter– and the particulars are at this post– How to Be a Beneficiary.

We had a fantastic time this year working with Lisa, Rebecca, and Loralynn– and a shout out to Elaine Bonner for her work in bringing this group together as well. It gives us great pleasure to know that the three beneficiaries from 2016 will stay on as friends of the Book Fair Foundation, as we get ready for the 2017 sale.

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How to Be a Beneficiary

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As it’s “Giving Tuesday,” this seems an appropriate time to talk about how to apply to be a beneficiary of the the Book Fair Foundation, and what the process is for choosing next year’s beneficiaries.

The application process could not be simpler— there’s no form or report or presentation. We simply need a letter from your group. Your letter should tell us something about the group’s mission, your role in our community, and how you envision a partnership with the Book Fair Foundation.

There are three requirements for application:

  1. Your group must be a registered organization in the State of Ohio.
  2. Your location must be within 25 miles of the city of Dayton
  3. You must be a 501c3.

Letters must be received by December 31, 2016.

The board will meet early in January to talk about the applications we’ve received. Some of the things that we consider is what kind of “match” the applicant feels like for us— does this seem like a group whose mission is in concert with our own? We also look at the 990-N documents that each organization has filed. We work very hard to make the book fair a success. We’d like the gift we give to have significant impact on the organizations we choose.

Dayton Book Fair beneficiaries share equally in the net proceeds generated by the fair– and this year we will again choose three organizations.

If your group is chosen as a beneficiary, there are certain requirements you should be aware of.

We require 40 volunteer hours from your organization. It can be 40 people for one hour, 4 people for ten hours, one person for 40 hours— the volunteer hours can be at the sale, or during one of our two roundups or during the year at the Book Loft, or a combination of any of those. At least four of those forty hours must be fulfilled on the afternoon of November 13th,2017 the Monday following the sale.

Additionally, we expect that you will promote the 47th Annual Dayton Book Fair among your own volunteers, staff and fans– through newsletter, website, Facebook page, emails or tweets. We want the people who love your organization to help support you by supporting the Book Fair.

Letters of application should be sent to the Book Fair Foundation, 2181 Embury Park Rd, Dayton, OH 45414. You are also welcome to drop off your letter at our Embury Park Road office. (Look for the big red sign in the yard.) We are open Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday 10 to 3 and Wednesday 1 to 7.

We will announce the beneficiaries of the 2017 Dayton Book Fair on Monday, January 16th, 2017 on this site, on our Facebook page and on our telephone greeting.

And remember, if we don’t choose you this year, that doesn’t mean we wouldn’t choose you another year, so even if you are disappointed, be sure to apply again.

Getting Ready for the Sale

2016dbffposterPreparations are in high gear at the Book Loft as we get ready for our 46th annual Book Fair. Wristbands are now available– and you can still secure a spot in the first 100 admissions into the fair. But that won’t last for long! Our Paypal button is working now, and you can also order wristbands by calling the office 937.999.4491.

We are looking forward to another great sale with the Montgomery County Fairgrounds, in our regular building at the Coliseum.

We’re starting a day earlier this year– on Thursday– and there is an admission charge Thursday only. Friday, Saturday and Sunday admission are free, and Sunday is our bag day. (Still just $7.50 per bag and that includes the sales tax too!) We’ll have some special events Saturday afternoon and evening, so stay tuned.

Again this year, you can help us on Monday at our “Clean Sweep” — just pay a dollar to get in and take all the books you like.

There’s still time to donate books for this year’s sale and if you’d especially like your donations to go to FilmDayton, K12 Gallery and TEJAS and the Learning Tree Farm, be sure to get them to us by October 21st.