History on display at book fair
BY NOUR HABIB World Scene Writer
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
2/20/13 at 4:16 AM
Every book tells a story. Old books tell two.
Rebecca Parrack has been involved with Holland Hall's annual book fair for more than 10 years. She loves going through the donated items each year, learning a little bit about the people who owned them.
One year, as she sorted through a load of books from an estate donation in which the owner of the books had noted inside each book where he bought it, Parrack said she could see where the owner went to college, where he traveled and where he moved for his first job.
"It was like his whole life," she said.
Some of the books on sale at the 53rd annual fair on Saturday carry such notations, including a signed copy of a book of Robert Frost's poems, which is accompanied by the lecture notes from the woman who bought the book and heard Frost speak. That book is one of many in the fair's rare-book room, where shoppers can bid on valuable books.
"There's so much history in the books," Parrack said.
And this year, a little bit of that history will be on display at the fair. Parrack, who is the chair of the event this year, and her committees have put together a display of intriguing items that were left in the books that were donated. A plane ticket from the 1920s, movie ticket stubs, handwritten notes, newspaper clippings and classroom exercises done by young children many years ago are among some of the items that will be on display.
The display will add to the community atmosphere of the fair, Parrack said, but all in all, attendees of the book fair can expect the same great selection of books and other items at this year's event.
Tens of thousands of books, as well as magazines, games, puzzles, stuffed animals and movies, will be on sale for bargain prices at the fair. Most books are priced between 25 cents and $5.
Liz Anderson, communications director at Holland Hall, said thousands of people attend the event, some even coming from out of town.
Some people start lining up as early as 6 a.m. to ensure the best possible selection, Anderson said. Several bring trash bags or duffel bags to carry their picks. One time, Anderson saw someone with a shopping cart.
"It's quite the madhouse," she said.
The community enthusiasm is what keeps Parrack coming back year after year to help with the fair, which requires hundreds of hours of work and many volunteers.
Parrack knows a public school teacher who shops at the fair every year, buying a book for each of her students, some of whom have never previously received a book of their own.
"That's what I think about when I think about a book fair," Parrack said.
Holland Hall Book Fair
What: 53rd annual book fair, featuring tens of thousands of used books, magazines, games, puzzles, stuffed animals, CDs and DVDs
When: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday
Where: Holland Hall Middle School, 5666 E. 81st St.
Admission: $1 for adults, free for children
Payment: Cash or credit card
For more: 918-481-1111 or tulsaworld.com/hollandhall
Nour Habib 918-581-8369
Thousands of people attend the annual Holland Hall book fair each year. Courtesy