The Ann Arbor Book Fair – This Sunday From 11 to 5

The Ann Arbor Antiquarian Book Fair will return to the Ballroom of the Michigan Union at 530 S. State Street in Ann Arbor on Sunday, May 22, 2011, from 11am to 5pm.

For the past five or so years, I’ve made the annual trek to this smallish (38 dealers have signed up as of this writing) but always fun and interesting book fair. I never make much money there, but I get to hang out with some of my favorite booksellers on the planet, like Garrett Scott, Dennis and Dennis from First Folio, and Aimee England, a tireless book-and-ephemera-hunter whose pedigree as a dealer of social movement material is even older than mine (alas, Aimee has no website, but here’s a link to an article she wrote about the AABF way back in 2003!).  And, if I’m lucky, I’ll get to see one of my favorite librarians on the planet – the amazing Julie Herrada, curator of the Labadie Collection at the UM Special Collections Library – the largest collection of Anarchist literature in America! Best of all I get to stay with my old buddy Lisa, who edits obscure math journals and whose house is full of shy and wonderful animals and who makes me coffee for my ridiculously early wake-up time on the morning of the fair (don’t you, Lisa? Umm, Lisa…?).

To make it all even more worthwhile, I get to drive all the way across Ohio in the Minivan of the Revolution, through the green and rolling parts as well as the brown and rusty parts. I don’t suppose everyone would consider this a treat, but Ohio has always fascinated me, especially the old caving-in relics of steel towns – it’s like touring the prehistoric home of a race of long-extinct industrial dinosaurs…call it The Land That Capitalism Forgot. Don’t know if I’ll stop to shop for books along the way this time – I’m in kind of a hurry to get back and get our next catalog out – but I’ll enjoy the sights anyway, and I’m thinking I’d like to detour a bit and drive along old Rte. 2 from Cleveland to Toledo, which will take me along Lake Erie through such charmingly down-on-their-heels factory ghost-towns as Lorain and Sandusky. If I do I’ll try to take some pictures along the way and share them next week.

If you’re in the area, why not join us? Admission is only $5, and your entry fee goes to benefit the William Clements Library at the University of Michigan – surely a good cause, because I doubt they’re gonna get much out of that self-serving gas-bag Rick Snyder this year!

One Response to “The Ann Arbor Book Fair – This Sunday From 11 to 5”

  1. LisaLou Says:

    Good news: last time I procured, Trader Joe’s was out of the $3.99 java, so what’s laid in is almost *twice* as good, by that system of value. And that morning, happily, the pup and I will be up with the booksellers, as they (could) say.

    Do photodocument. I’m already enjoying the kinds of pictures I’m imagining you featuring.

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