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Redding Prepares For Mark Twain Library's Annual Book Fair

Mark Twain Library’s four-day book fair opens on Aug. 30.
Mark Twain Library’s four-day book fair opens on Aug. 30. Photo Credit: Mark Twain Library

REDDING, Conn -- The Mark Twain Library’s 53rd Annual Book Fair opens on  Aug. 30, kicking off a four day-long "book party" at Redding Community Center.

Book dealers from around the country eagerly await what is the oldest book fair in New England, some even spending the night before in the parking lot for the opportunity to get first dibs on the comprehensive collection of over 60,000 valuable bound books in over 65 categories, according to Jen Wastrom, a library board member.

"This gargantuan event has been made possible for over half a century through the dedication and efforts of hundreds of volunteers," Wastrom said. "This year the troops are once again being rallied: Book Fair volunteer coordinator Ginny Beasley is currently signing up any and all willing hands."

Bibliophiles will be able to shop from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the fair's opening day.

There will be a $15 admission charge for the first hour of the fair — 9 to 10 a.m. — as early shoppers pay for the right to view the selection first.

On Aug. 31, the Book Fair will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. There is no admission charge and books will be sold for the prices they are marked. On Sept. 1, the fair will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and all items will be sold for half the amount listed on the price tags.

On Labor Day, Sept. 2, the fair will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in what will be known as "bag day". For $5, customers can fill a bag with as many books as they can squeeze in. Refreshments will be sold. Credit cards are welcome.

Those who are interested in volunteering should call the library at 203-938-2545 or email Beasley at

All proceeds from the Book Fair will benefit the Mark Twain Library, which is owned by the Mark Twain Library Association. It was founded in 1908 by Samuel Clemens — Mark Twain himself — one of Redding's most famed residents.

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