MoochStand Project

July 24, 2008


My friend Teresa had a terrific idea: what if there were a BookMooch table at local book fairs, festivals, and other events? That would be a great way to get people interested in mooching, as well as being pro-book and pro-reading.

Cand24-1All across the world, there are events like:

1) book sales by libraries, hospitals, churches and charities

2) festivals, especially in the summer

3) county fairs, and other events

We decided to give it a try at a local town festival in El Cerrito (the dancer on stilts is from that festival).

Tons and tons of people were interested, and talked to us at the festival. And who knew there were so many librarians in the world?

So… this seems like a good idea, and I’d like to invite other moochers to take part.

Teresa thought that a “MoochStand Kit” would help people out, so if you’re interested in having a table at some event local to you, email Teresa and mooch the MoochStand Kit.

Also, since Teresa has been attending these fairs and doing the booth herself, she’s a treasure-trove of information, and absolutely happy to chat with anyone who is interested in this idea. At some of these fairs, there is a modest fee (I think El Cerrito was something like $40) to have a table, and I’m happy to pay that to help promote mooching.


54 Responses to “MoochStand Project”

  1. Rena said

    Hey there John!

    We can talk closer to the time but there is a very large bookfair in Jerusalem every 2 years (English and Foreign language) the Hebrew language bookweek already passed…The international one should be in Feb. 2009. I think it would be really neat to have a booth – I will try to see what I need to do to contact the organizers etc.

    – Rena

  2. gemmas said

    Awesome idea. I had already planned on getting some mooch cards for the next big festival here in Australia to hand out and put in windscreens etc. Are these MoochStand Packages allowed to be posted outside of the USA?


  3. Erin said

    Ooh, maybe I’ll set up a table on Bedford Ave. some weekend day here in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY.

  4. Kathleen said

    Wow idea. I will be looking for events in my area, appropriate to this. Have a large area accessable to me, so will be busy. 🙂

  5. Cam said

    Anyone in Baltimore interested in setting up a stand for the Book Festival, Sep 26-28?

    I’m leaving on vacation and don’t have time to set any of this up (deadline for exhibitor apps is Aug 1, fee is $30), but I’d be happy to sit at the booth on Sat or Sun!

    If someone does arrange for a booth at the festival, please let me know – my userid is camibones.

  6. Cam said

    Wait! I misunderstood the fee schedule! The $30 is just an app fee – the fee for a booth rental is a lot steeper. I don’t know how Bookmooch is organized, but for a private company, the fee is $475 and for a non-profit it’s $350, so that’s definitely not a cost-effective option. Maybe there’s another way to get a presence there, but I can’t research it right now. Sorry!

  7. MaryJo said

    How about promoting at schools. Free bookmarks (the cards you already send out could work). Our High School has about 3000 students, I like to put in a bookmark in every novel they get from me. Some schools have students buy the novels they are ready in class, it would be great if there was a way to trade books around. And what a great way to promote reading!! I haven’t Mooched any card yet because that would use up all the points I have available to mooch books for our students. FYI: I mooch for our public High School.

  8. I’d be honored to promote BookMooch on a larger scale through our various literacy events and our weekly activities. I can also set something up in our local library and community college (a display or cards/literature on their racks). Currently we include cards with the books we give away. Thanks to BookMooch we’re giving books away every week now.

  9. lee said

    this is a great idea. if someone wants to set up a booth themselves, this site is great for getting postcards, handouts and stuff printed up really cheap:

    if you sign up for the mailing list, they send you promos for free stuff so you basically just pay shipping. i made my own customized bookmooch cards and printed them with vistaprint and i think it cost me $6. and i got address labels too!

    (bookmooch graphics are here:

  10. Eva Marie said

    That’s a great idea! My town has a Peach festival coming up (I’m going to a large carnival tonight where I’m taking a bunch of cards from my last shipment!) and we have events all the time surrounding this area, library saled, other festivals, all sorts of stuff. I wouldn’t mind paying $40 or so to get a table and get people reading! I’ll definitely help out. (I wish I had a kit for tonight!)

  11. Yaffa said

    If you have a local freecycle group hosting freemeets, you can also bring cards to the event.

  12. amber said

    I actually do crafts for local craft fairs so I’ll definitely be taking along some cards and putting the info out on my table – why didn’t we all think of this sooner?!?!?!?!

  13. Desirae said

    ATTN: MaryJo – In response to your comment on July 24th, I would be happy to get you as many BM cards as I can! I just need a way to get ahold of you! My ID is: Phoenix_9907

    If you get this, please send me an email and we will arrange it!

  14. I am thinking about a booth at Wordstock in Portland, Oregon. We’ll do some research.

  15. Cathy said

    I would love to have a stand at our local market. This is once a month and I get second hand books there. I could also ask the local library to put up a stand.

    Will you send the package to Australia

  16. Nicole Day said

    I would be more than happy to staff a booth in the Boston area. If anybody hears of any opportunities, please let me know and I’ll follow up.

  17. Korianne said

    There is going to be a recycling fair at my college on Earth Day next year. I realize that April 22 is far away, but if there are any go green type fairs this would be great at them.

  18. Helen (Beachcomber) said

    I keep spreading the word to anyone I can – I’ve recently got my Mum and my boss joined up! I’ll see if there’s anything near me, or possibly just contact my local newspaper and see if they want a story 😀

  19. Frances M. Bothwell said

    Since I got my Bookmooch cards, I have distributed them to my college students, and I know several, at least, have signed up on our site. Additionally, I put a stack of them on the desk of my department’s seminar room (a small research library) and they go pretty quickly. The next time I am invited to go to a job fair or other campus activity, I will bring the cards along. I can create a sign from the webpage and set it alongside my table. And this will be quite free of charge for all.

  20. SirBill said


    I was wondering if you can help me. I saw the note on the Bookmooch home page about setting up the mooch stands.

    I thought it was a great idea but am not in the position to set one up in my area so I emailed Teresa (via the Bookmooch site) to offer my support. I got an ‘undeliverable email’ message to my hotmail account (below) I then sent the same message to Teresa as if I was mooching a book and was deducted 2 points, but the email was again returned as undeliverable!

    Can you please make sure that my email gets through to Teresa (I do not want to make a mooch at this point; just to offer my support) And can you also re instate my 2 points?

    Many thanks

    Marc (my user name is ‘ SirBill’ )

  21. Ruth said

    I think this is a fantastic idea. I’ve manned tables at fairs for my church, and have had so much fun every time. I’ll definitely keep this in mind the next time there’s a fair coming up!

  22. andrea said

    Marc, you can get your 2 points back by cancelling the mooch and then leave as feedback that you were trying to contact Teresa and ask her to email you… (when she replies you can change this feedback)

  23. Marc (aka SirBill)

    Teresa tells me she received your email, we’re not sure why you got a rejection msg.


  24. Daland said

    WoW, great idea! We have the Decatur Book Festival coming up next month. Not enough time to do a booth, but I’d be more than happy to distribute cards throughout. I still have a half a box. Here’s the link to the festival:

  25. SirBill said

    Great! Thanks for the advise

    Many thanks


  26. John Clark said

    Wicked good idea. I have a stack of Bookmooch cards on the circulation desk at the Hartland Public Library and I pass them out every time I attend a meeting of Librarians. This looks like a great way to expand this. I’ll see if I can work up something for the Common Ground Fair in September.

  27. Victoria (vfavey) said

    I would be happy to host a table at our local Farmer’s Market. I will also contact the friends of the library for our local library system here in Zanesville Ohio and see if they will permit a table to be set up in their lobby or in conjunction with their friends of the library book sales. What a great idea! I will mooch Teresa for a kit.

    Thanks for all you do!


  28. Nanci said

    Someone mentioned mooching BookMooch cards. Doesn’t seem right to me for people to get cards for free and then get a point for mooching them. (10 I think is the going rate for 1 point). I’d like to see the practice stopped.
    When I get the time, I’ll let ou know where I can help with distributing at fairs, etc.

  29. Lesley & RAT said

    The library in Paducah KY just had their Summer Book Sal. I didn’t get to set up a table but took BookMooch cards and gave to one of the organizers to hand out as people were checking out and also left cards on some of the tables. There will be another sale in the winter and I will do a better job of getting the word out!!

    Thanks for and to BookMooch!

  30. Leni T said

    Hi! I’m from the Philippines and I’d love to put a BookMooch stand in my high school alma mater. We’re having a fair this October and I have a booth reserved already. I’d be more than happy to put BookMooch there. 🙂

  31. Emily said

    It would be amazing if there were a bookmooch booth in the annual Washington DC book festival. A ton of book lovers go there every September, myself included! I don’t know how to go about setting a booth up, but that would probably get a lot of interest.

  32. Stephanie (smoorefu on bookmooch) said

    Nanci, the reason people get a point for sending out bookmooch cards is because they have to pay for the padded envelope, take their time to count out the cards and package them up, find a time to get to the post office, and pay for postage!

    Also John B himself suggested this practice, so we can be sure that it’s ok and kosher.

    I send out some bookmooch cards with every book I send out, but if someone wants some without mooching a book, yes I appreciate the point!

  33. I work in sales & all of my customers receive a bookmooch card in their mailings & with their orders! I also do a bookmooch display at my tables! Sometimes there is more interest & conversation about Bookmooch……hmmm, if I made money talking about Bookmooch I could retire!!! Thanks again John for this wonderful service!

  34. Janet said

    MaryZee over on BookCrossing

    Does this a lot. She has people from all over the country/world send her books they’re finished with, she registers them, logs them, labels them, and releases them all over the place. The Random House annual bookfair is her main event she takes them to each year. She has really taken it upon herself to promote BookCrossing and inform as many people as she can. She does an impressive job!

  35. Joshua said

    I’m also in Baltimore. If you need someone to man the table for the Baltimore Book Festival

    Let me know ASAP

  36. Stephanie said

    We have an upcoming fundraiser for Susan G. Komen. We are giving away goody bags with discount cards from local businesses, and I’m planning to include cards with those bags.

    Also, at the end of the school year, we made gifts for our many teachers. I punched a little hole in the Bookmooch cards and tied it onto them with the name tag. The teachers and librarians all loved the idea of Bookmooch and several have since signed up.

  37. Jan said

    I regularly sell at car boot sales, and I already give out cards to anyone who shows interest in my books. I’d be happy to setup a bookmooch stand alongside my regular table – will the materials be available to UK members anytime soon?

  38. Stella the Moocher said

    Hope you’re thinking of going to the AWP book fair in Chicago in September. There will be moochers!

  39. Chrissy said

    This is a great idea! Someone pointed me in the direction of your website, and I think it’s totally fabulous. Being a total booknerd myself, I’ve been “mooching” books for a while from friends, community centers etc, and always take mine back there.

    I’d love to hear more about this project and help out if I can! 🙂


  40. Bryan said

    I’m interested in posting cards and maybe a display at my local library. Is there any way I could get a smaller more library-appropriate display and a large number of cards?

    You can find me with my name Bryan Macias.

  41. I think this would be a wonderful idea. I will have to see what we have coming up in the little town I live in. All other towns are a long ways away from where we live.

  42. Mary Shelagh said

    The Eden Mills Writer’s Festival in Eden Mills Ontario might be interested in giving you a table at their September festival. You could apply for this or next year, at their website.

  43. Fiona said

    Forgive my ignorance, but from whom can I mooch cards? I run a small college library in Taunton UK. I’m always telling people to join, but cards would be great to encourage our students. It would help us meet sustainability ambitions too! Is there anyone in the UK supplying cards? Is there any other material available in the UK for a small display stand?

  44. Kath said

    We held a garage sale a couple of months ago where I handed out BM cards to each and every comer. Most people were psyched about the idea of BM.

  45. Kath said

    Fiona, you can mooch cards from me and from other BM members. Just type BookMooch cards into the search box.

  46. Erin said

    I always stick the BM cards in my packages I mail out when I sell stuff on etsy.
    And I keep a stack in my bag at all times to drop off at little cafes etc.

  47. Dziugi said

    Could anyone mooch some BM cards in Portuguese? I live in Portugal and I would like to hand out some cards around.
    I am also thinking of getting a stand in the next fair in the local town where I live to promote, so the cards in Portuguese would be of great help!
    Thank you in advance!

  48. suz hatcher said

    I wanted to mention, and not sure this is the right location for this info….i am new to this group and truly love it!! I have noticed all the books shipped to me are sent “media” rate. This is the wrong postage charge and costs more than the book rate that is called “library”. Just tell your your postmaster. Media is for music, cd and audio type things only :)good luck.

  49. Annette said

    wante to know how can i hear more on the project and help out? our church hold events every week and i love to put up a table since we already have a great book club going, let me know what it is that i need to do, to help out more, i love my book mooch, club better than any other one.

  50. Stephanie (smoorefu on bookmooch) said

    Nope, Suz, actually “media mail” is what *used* to be called “book rate” years ago. They changed the name and now it is for sending books, magazines, CDs, tapes, and videotapes, but not letters.

    From the USPS web site:

    > Media Mail® service is a cost efficient way to mail books, sound recordings, recorded video tapes, printed music, and recorded computer-readable media (such as CDs, DVDs, and diskettes). Media Mail can not contain advertising except for incidental announcements of books. The maximum weight for Media Mail is 70 lbs.

  51. Laura Bowman said

    I requested a book and was told that I had been sent an email that it was on it’s way and I can’t find any email.

  52. John Clark said

    My daughter (another ardent bookmoocher) got married last weekend. I handed out Bookmooch cards to many of the guests at the reception.

  53. Jan said

    I received my Moochstand materials about a week ago. Much excitement!

    So far I have displays in the works canteen, my daughter’s ballet school and I’m goign to devote half a table at a Car Bootsale I’m attending in Kinross (Perthshire, Scotland) this coming Saturday.

    I REALLY appreciate the thought and effort which went into putting these materials together – so many people have said to me how professional the materials look compared to promotional material from other sites.

    Photos to follow!!

  54. Jan said

    Fiona from Taunton – please contact me. I’ll send you some cards!

    I’m Jan Johnson on Bookmooch and you can send me an email thu the site, or click on my name here and it’ll take you straight to my website.

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