News agency, Cape Town, South Africa
Wednesday August 22nd 2018

World record book domino run sets pages fluttering

The Open Book and Central Library team celebrate among fallen books after a successful domino run of 2 528 books, hopefully setting a new record. Photo: Steve Kretzmann/WCN

The Open Book and Central Library team celebrate among fallen books after a successful domino run of 2 528 books, hopefully setting a new record. Photo: Steve Kretzmann/WCN

27.08.2013

The sound of books falling caused mild panic in the Central Library yesterday as organisors of the Open Book Festival attempted to set a world record book domino run.

The usually quite confines of the library was filled with occasional cries of alarm as the scores of onlookers exclaimed as a painstakingly placed line of books fell over too early, and applauding when an untimely run was caught before it went too far.

Having spent almost five hours on Monday evening setting up the 2 568 books on the library floor – with gaps every ten books as ‘stoppers’ – the team were back in the library at 7am yesterday to pick up lines that had fallen over during the night and do the final set up for a 9am record attempt.

They were foiled time and again by the unstable books, however, and a first attempt pushed off by author Margie Orford at 10.45 stopped about a quarter of the way through when a book failed to knock over its companion.

More painstaking effort resulted in the second attempt, started off by poet Toni Stuart shortly before midday, running all the way through, hopefully putting the Central Library on the pages of the Guinness Book of Records to beat the record of a 2131 book domino run set in Seattle Public Library in June.

The aim of the attempt, said Open Book Festival co-ordinator Frankie Murrey, was to draw attention to the festival and the central role of the library in the drive to create a nation of readers.

Murrey, who is central in putting together the third five-day annual Open Book Festival running in Cape Town this year from 7 – 11 September, said they had been practicing since the beginning of July, experimenting and seeing how best to set the books up.

Besides organising an impressive lineup of local and international authors for the festival, Open Book, in partnership with Equal Education, each year sets up a library at a disadvantaged school in Cape Town.

This year it’s the turn of Westridge High in Mitchell’s Plain to receive books, a librarian and the necessary computers and indexing software.

Public Relations manager Kate Thompson-Duwe said all the necessary procedures to verify the world-record attempt had been fulfilled.

She said the attempt was properly recorded and the documentation would be sent to Guinness World Records.

As the organisation received up to 1500 world record attempts per week, it would take between six and eight weeks to receive official confirmation, she said. – Steve Kretzmann

 

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