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Lahaina’s bookstore open at Outlets of Maui

By Staff | Feb 13, 2020

Wayne and Lynn Poole from Astoria, Oregon, shop in one of the many aisles of books in the just-opened Maui Friends of the Library Bookstore at Outlets of Maui in Lahaina.

LAHAINA – The Maui Friends of the Library Bookstore is now open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily at Outlets of Maui at 900 Front St. in Lahaina.

The bookstore relocated last month from The Wharf Cinema Center, taking with it a collection of some 15,000 gently used books.

It’s now across from the Tommy Hilfiger store in the mall.

The new Maui Friends of the Library (MFOL) Bookstore carries gently used paperback and hardback fiction and nonfiction, including classics and books that are out of print.

These include biographies, history and military history, plus books on self-help, health, business and more. There is also a children’s section.

In addition, the store is featuring a large collection of new Hawaiiana books and a special display of books by a growing number of local authors, including Norm Bezane, Elaine Gallant, Howard Fields and Nancy Phleger, as well as an anthology by local writers.

With 750 square feet of space – 150 square feet more than in the prior location – the new store will be able to stock even more books.

The current collection was moved to Outlets of Maui and re-shelved by 22 community volunteers in ten days starting Jan. 14.

“The volunteers were incredible,” said Store Manager JoAnn Carroll.

She had special praise for one of the store’s regular volunteers, Paul Walker, who was critical to the move.

“Paul met the volunteers, helped organize them and also assembled the bookcases in the new store,” she explained.

Other volunteers packed and unpacked books. Those helping with the move included members from two Lahaina Rotary Clubs (Sunrise and Sunset), the West Maui Book Club, people from the community and regular volunteers who staff the store daily as a community service.

Proceeds from the sale of books go to Maui County’s nine public libraries for special materials, programs in the libraries for adults and children, and many other needs that state funding is not able to cover.

Last year alone, MFOL purchased a new video unit on wheels and a Front Street sign for the Lahaina Public Library; new furniture and rugs for a renovated children’s section of the Wailuku Public Library; new flooring for the Makawao Public Library; and a new van for pickup and delivery of large donations of books.

Previously, the organization was able to purchase a $300,000 bookmobile and donate it to the Hawaii State Public Library System for use on Maui.

MFOL, established more than 100 years ago, opened its original Lahaina store in 2011. The organization has no paid staff and operates entirely with volunteers.

MFOL’s biggest need is for volunteers who work one of two shifts once a week. Volunteers can sign up at the store. Used book donations are welcome at all of the stores.