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Materials Donation Guidelines

Boulder Public Library accepts new or gently used:

  • Hardcover and paperback books
  • Media materials (DVDs, CDs, audiobooks) in good condition

The library cannot use the following materials: (Recycling information)

  • Cassette tapes
  • VHS tapes
  • Magazines
  • Encyclopedias
  • Reader’s Digest condensed books
  • Mass market (pocket) paperbacks
  • Vinyl records
  • Damaged or moldy materials
  • Used textbooks or materials with highlighting or handwriting (except author-signed books).

Bringing Donations to the library

Please bring your donations in small boxes or bags that can be easily carried. Place your donated materials in the donations room on the right, inside the Arapahoe entrance of the Main Library.

Please do not place donated materials in the book returns or leave them at the Meadows or Reynolds branch libraries because of storage space limitations.

Donations are Tax Deductible

At your request, library staff will provide you with a letter of receipt that you may fill out for tax purposes. The library staff is not qualified to determine the value of your donation. It will be up to you to assign a value for tax purposes. Letters of receipt may be obtained at the accounts desk inside the Arapahoe entrance of the Main Library.

Large Donations (more than 10 boxes)

If you have a large amount of materials that you wish to donate, please contact the volunteer services coordinator by phone at 303-441-3100 or e-mail Ask a Librarian with the quantity and a description of the materials. Donated items are evaluated with care and we have only limited storage space to store materials while they wait to be processed.

A staff person will contact you promptly to let you know if the library is able to accept a large number of materials at the time you wish to bring in the materials.

What does the Boulder Public Library do with donations?

All donations are greatly appreciated. The library sells donated items at the library book shop and book sales. The money raised by sales goes to fund the volunteer program and to purchase library materials. Donated materials are not added to the library collection. Donated materials that the library cannot sell are given to local nonprofit agencies or to Eco-Cycle for online sale, distribution to schools or thrift stores, or recycling.

What can I do with materials the library cannot accept?

Recycle! Reuse!
Many thrift stores and used book stores accept books and other materials as donations. Be sure to call ahead for information about what materials are accepted. BetterWorld Books has several collection boxes for books in the area.  The Center for Hard-to-Recycle Materials (CHaRM) also accepts materials for recycling.

Approved by the Library Commission on February 1, 2017