Nevada County’s book swap ends Sunday |

Nevada County’s book swap ends Sunday

Community members check out the selection of free books on offer during the monthly book swap at the Banner Community Guild in this archive photo.
Photo by Liz Kellar/

Know & Go

What: The Last Book Swap

When: 12:30-2:30 p.m. Sunday

Where: Banner Guild, 12629 McCourtney Road, Grass Valley

Phone: 530-273-8747

It’s been a good run.

But after close to a decade, the free, volunteer-run Banner Community Guild Book Swap is calling it quits.

According to Becky Peabody, the longest-running volunteer at the swap, this Sunday will be the last book swap.

“Several of us are moving and it is just getting difficult for the group to continue,” Peabody said.

The swap has always been in need of extra, younger volunteers, due to the labor of hauling boxes and bags of heavy books. But without that infusion, the aging volunteer force has decided it’s time to let it go.

The book swap got its start in a fish market as one-time event — a free exchange of books, music, movies, magazines and table games.

Back in 2009, founder Cheryl Noble approached several local nonprofits for volunteer help and asked friends to donate some books for inventory. She created tables from saw horses and old sheets of plywood, and publicized the event, hoping at least a few people would show up that rainy day.

But after that first swap was a huge success, Noble turned it into a monthly event, at times held in the front yard of a closed business with books stored in volunteers’ garages.

The book swap eventually found a permanent home at the Banner Guild.

Peabody took over for Noble when she left the community in 2015 and kept the swap going with a core group of five other volunteers, as well as two or three others who drop in to help set up.

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at

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