Stoughton library out to set Guinness record for book-toppling

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STOUGHTON — The Stoughton Public Library will attempt to break a world record on June 28 for toppling books like dominoes.

Stoughton Public Library Director Patricia Basler and Stoughton Council on Aging Director Karen Hall came up with the idea.


“We thought it would be a fun activity to bring the community together,” Basler said.


Volunteers will set up some 5,000 books, push over the first one and, if everything goes according to plan, watch as the other 4,999 follow.


The library, SOLA (Support Our Library Association), the Stoughton Community Events Committee, and the Stoughton Chamber Of Commerce will sponsor the event on “Kids Day,” at 5 p.m. at the library.


There will be a pizza dinner, provided by Town Spa Pizza which is donating 50 pizzas.


There also will be a $3 raffle for a chance to set off the chain reaction of tumbling books. All proceeds from the raffle will go to SOLA.


The Guinness Book of World Records states that the mark now is held by Central Library in Cape Town South Africa, which established the mark of 2,586 books Aug. 27, 2013.


“We would like to get more than 5,000 books, probably around 5,030 for some cushion,” Basler said.


The library may house many books, but is there any specific books that are being used for this event? Yes.


“Our library receives books every year from donation,” Basler said. “Our shelves are already maxed out. We have a closet filled to the ceiling full of books people have donated. Before donating them to others or sending them to third world countries, we figured we will use them for the domino effect.”


How will organizers fit this long train of books in the library?


“We have an engineer, Jim Vlahos, who is working on the design and making sure it fits. It takes a lot of math and calculating,” Basler said.


The library is looking for volunteers to help set up the books from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. the day of the event.


“Volunteers can come whenever they are available,” Basler said. “They should call the library to sign up. We need around 30 to 40 people who will set it up in teams.”


In addition to the sponsoring organizations, Stoughton Media Access Cooperation’s Jeff Pickett and Mike Hammond, SOLA President Dori Frankel and Chamber President Terry Schneider have helped.


Hammond and Pickett will film the set-up and execution.


“In a way, they will be keeping record for us,” Basler said.


Basler believes the books will tumble.


“We are very hopeful,” Basler said. “If not then, we will do it again next year. It’s just a really fun thing for the community to do together.”


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