Closing Kaleidoscope

After 26 years of business, Kaleidoscope Books and Collectibles, on the corner of S. Fourth and Ann St., closed its doors for the final time on Monday, January 16th. Owner Jeff Pickell and his wife Deborah Greene each suffered separate, yet equally life-threatening health crises over the past two years, and decided it was time to focus on spending more time together. “Deborah and I get along very well. We enjoy each other’s company, and after my heart attack, she said, ‘Y’know, I’d like to enjoy your company some more. You’ve been doing this seven days a week for 26 years.”

But fortunately, as no true book lover can, Jeff will not retire completely from books. “In talking with Deborah we decided we can continue to do an online business intensively. I have 500 or 600 books online* right now.” In addition to these books, Jeff plans to make room for 5,000 to 10,000 books in his home to add to his online store, and to sell at book fairs, both locally and nationally. But what about the rest of the 100,000 books that packed the shelves and lined the aisles of Kaleidoscope? They’re on their way to the Saline County Fairgrounds, where they’ll await an auction that will take place Saturday, February 18th (and Sunday, February 19th, if necessary).

In addition to the books from Kaleidoscope’s storefront, 80,000 titles that have been in storage for up to 20 years will be auctioned off. The auction service Braun and Helmer is handling the auction, and while there will not be a formal preview, Jeff encourages book collectors to come at 8 am to look at the collection before the 10 am auction begins. The collection will include a lot of first editions, sci-fi, mysteries, and children’s books, as well as modern firsts, prints, and posters. They will also be auctioning off many of the beautiful, antique cabinets and bookcases from the store. You may find more information about the upcoming auction here.

*Jeff uses to sell his books online.

–Rachel Pastiva
Featured in February 2017 newsletter