Shop on Amazon using Amazon Smile and donate a portion of your purchase to the Friends of the Potsdam Public Library. Be sure to designate the Friends as your charity of choice.
As donated books are received, they are sorted into 32 categories, depending on value and content; it is the most interesting area of all -- "you never know what is going to be in the next box!". Our donors are very generous with their most precious books and we try to make sure the library reaps the full benefit of their worth. Of course, the library often finds sought-after books for the collection, and that saves money which would have been spent buying these titles. Volunteers are subjected to a brief training session, so that books are sorted uniformly, finding the optimal place for each donated book.
We hold annual book sales in July, coinciding with the Potsdam Summer Festival. The first year we had over 20,000 books and profited $4,500 for the library expansion fund. July, 2003; we profited $8,800 for the library. Our smaller Holiday Sale is at the store and we try to present books which could be given as gifts.
We operate an online used bookstore through Amazon.com using the Marketplace -- a very fascinating part of our book sales -- where a good number of books are sold at higher prices than would ordinarily be received in the bookstore or at a regular book sale. This area needs volunteers, to research books on the internet, so that they could be competitively priced. A volunteer would experience a brief training session, so that the research is done uniformly, and so that the conditions of books would be described in a consistent manner. Volunteers need only to be intrigued by books and have minimal computer skills.
We also operate a brick and mortar used bookstore in the basement of the Civic Center, under the library. It is currently open on Saturdays, from 10am to 1pm. The books are mostly donated by area residents, with some coming from the discards at the library. We'd like to expand our hours but would need more volunteers to do so. The work would involve selling and stocking shelves.