Leader Blues

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

TOP STORY >> Book show in Jacksonville this weekend

Leader staff writer

The 24th annual Arkansas Book and Paper Show will take place this weekend at the Jacksonville Community Center, 105 Municipal Drive. Many rare books, maps and unusual legal documents will be on display.

The book show will be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Ed and Jeri Myrick of Conway are the show’s directors, and they expect a big crowd. “We’ve consistently had about 500 people,” Ed Myrick said.

“We’ve got 39 book and paper dealers signed up. We’ve got a couple of postcard vendors, and some old picture and legal documents dealers,” he said.

About half of the show’s vendors come from out of state. “We have one vendor coming from as far away as Colebrook, Conn.,” Jeri Myrick said.

McIntire Rare Coins of Jacksonville, which specializes in rare coins, maps and legal papers, is scheduled to participate in the event.

About a dozen authors from around the state will sell and autograph their books at the show.

The show attracts specialty book dealers from all over the country, Jeri Myrick said.

Jacksonville has been home to the annual book expo for the past five years. Before, the show was held in downtown Little Rock, but the Myricks said that became too expensive and the Jacksonville Community Center has been a pleasant alternative.

Who should attend the event?

“Well, we’ve got investors and collectors,” Ed said. But he promises something for everyone.

Books on history, cooking, travel, war, sports, the outdoors, as well as fiction will be available. He says books on the Civil War are always popular.

The Myricks own Book Traders, a rare and used bookshop in Conway and North Little Rock.

“Our books are modern first editions with fine binding,” Ed Myrick said.

“We’ve got a number of book dealers who specialize in children’s books,” he said.

“We have some of the greatest dealers coming. It’s a fun thing. All kinds of things to see and fun people to talk to. For $5 admission, it’s not bad,” Jeri Myrick said.

But the show is not just for buyers. Attendees interested in selling their collectibles can pay $20 for a table to display their items. With so many dealers on hand, sellers should easily find a buyer.

For more information about the event, visit www.arkansasbooks.com.