Times are Changing—And the Book Fair is Too

A child holds a book at a giveaway we organized at Lincoln Square Neighborhood Center in 2019

Our holiday book sale is transforming into a children’s book giveaway—and moving from Fall to Summer.

“We have loved sharing the Book Fair with you every November for more than 30 years,” said Roderick L. Jones, executive director of the Upper West Side human service nonprofit. “But the publishing world is changing, and this event must change too.” 

Jones said consolidation in the industry has left fewer publishers to donate books to the Fair, and modern printing processes mean fewer excess copies get made. “When the Fair launched over three decades ago, it was common to do large print runs that resulted in lots of extra books that publishers would generously donate to us,” he explained. “Now they can make them pretty much to order and ship them overnight.” 

Jones thanked the publishers for their support and said he looked forward to working with them on getting free books into children’s hands. 

“Reading is so important to a child’s developing mind. We’re excited about feeding a love of books among all the young people in the neighborhoods we serve,” he said. “Publishers have not only donated books and helped us run the Fair for all these years; they have also played a huge role on our Board and have been some of our greatest supporters. We are grateful and look forward to maintaining that relationship,” Jones continued.  

“We’d also like to thank everyone who has come out to the Book Fair over the years, and all of the incredible volunteers, including the category managers who donated their deep expertise to the Fair. We hope to see you at our other events throughout the year, including the new children’s book giveaway.” 

We’d love to hear and see your fond memories of the Book Fair! Please share them using the links below. If we get enough we’ll make a page so everyone can enjoy them.

  • Please upload Book Fair photos here
  • Share any written memories here
  • If you’d rather make a video to tell us your memories, click on the block below.