PCLA book sale starts Friday

By Jason Evans
Staff Reporter

PICKENS — Book and bargain lovers, rejoice: It’s almost time for the Pickens County Literacy Association’s Fall Used Book Sale.

The sale will kick off Friday morning at 9 a.m. at the All Saints Hall at Pickens Presbyterian Church. The sale will be open until 6 p.m. that day and resume from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 19.

The PCLA is a nonprofit organization that trains volunteers tutors to teach reading skills to non- or low-reading adults, including those needing help learning and reading English.

This year, the association will be selling copies of “Heroes All: Amazing Stories of World War II,” a military history book by Elbert Watson, at a discounted price.

The book sale is the major fundraiser for the association.

At a recent banquet held in honor of the organization’s volunteer tutors and donors, tutor Rebecca Davis shared the story of one of her students.

“Someone came to me at the beginning of school last year and asked me if I’d be willing to tutor this man,” she said. “He was 52 years old. He was told when he was a child that he could not learn. Probably his parents had been told that, too. He did not think he could read one word.”

Davis and her student began with letters and sounds.

“I felt impressed the second meeting to take a Level 1 Reading book with me, to see if he knew some words,” she said. “That man picked up that little book like it was a Bible or something. He read that whole little book, Level 1 adult reader, nearly an hour. He read to me! I think I told him two words in that whole book.

“He would look at me every few minutes and just grin,” Davis continued. “I said ‘Michael! You said you couldn’t read!’ He clutched that book to his chest when he finished it. He said ‘Miss Davis, this is the first book I’ve ever read in my life. Nobody would help me learn to read.’ He had that within himself. It just had to come out. He had not had an opportunity to show what he could do.”

Davis and Michael are continuing to work together.

“We are in Level 3,” she said. “We started from nowhere. He just swallows it up. He is so beautiful to teach and so appreciative. I wouldn’t take anything for this experience, working with Michael. I call him Marvelous Michael.”

The association is always seeking donations of gently-used items for its book sales, which are held twice a year.

Items needed include paperback and hardback books, children’s books, craft and cookbooks, as well as video and audio cassettes, CDs and DVDs.

The following local businesses assist the PCLA by serving as collection sites for donated items.

In Pickens, bring items to the Blue Ridge Electric Cooperative office, Grace United Methodist Church, Pickens First Baptist Church, Pickens Savings and Loan and Pickens Federal Credit Union.

In Easley, bring donations to Custom Cleaners, Kelly’s Pharmacy and Robin’s Laundromat.

In Central, bring items to Central Town Hall or the Central-Clemson Recreation Center.

Family Medicine Associates in Clemson also accepts donated items.

If you know an adult who would benefit from the Pickens County Literacy Association’s program, contact any member of the PCLA. If your business or organization would like to help the PCLA collect books and other items, call 639-2925 or 878-9642.