Inner Sunset's Barbara’s Annual ‘Book Bash’ Returns to the Sunset

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Residents know about Barbara and her community bulletin board, fairy lights, a tree swing and a vertical mural on a utility pole are just a few of the unexpected items that appear outside this distinctive home. Her annual Book Bash makes it’s another round for the community.

“The first year we did this, my husband and I would alternate walking home, because the car would get so full,” she said. These days, after unloading crates of books from the car, she and her small book blast crew transfer them to her basement, where they’re sorted into fiction and non-fiction.

“It takes weeks and weeks,” said Barbara. “If we didn’t have a fiction section, we couldn’t get everyone into the backyard.”

The Book Bash began several years ago, when Barbara decided to find a way to make books a part of the community corner she was widely known for.

“It was just an idea,” she said. “I’d heard people complain that they had too many books, and I wanted to help people who were looking for books. It was that simple: Why not figure out a way to make this a win-win?”

The first year, Barbara and three volunteers collected more than 5,000 books. Unfortunately, many were encyclopedias, outdated computer manuals and magazines. “It was awful,” she said. “People think they’re going to be helpful, but they’re not.”

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// Attendees are allowed to take home as many books as they can carry, but no dealers are allowed. September 17 and 18th, 1297 6th Ave., San Francisco.


Written by Anthony Rogers, photos sourced from Hoodline — Get to know your community and keep eating.

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