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East End Books Ptown Opens

Provincetown, Massachusetts’ East End Books Ptown held a grand opening celebration over New Year’s weekend, featuring author readings, book signings, and a movie screening. The bookstore, which Jeff G. Peters opened in December, carries books, e-books, vinyl, and magazines.

The grand opening included readings by Paul Lisicky, author of The Narrow Door (Graywolf Press); Robert Winter, author of September (Dreamspinner Press); and Frank Muzzy, author of the America Through Time historical books.

The store also hosted a reading by Annie Weatherwax, author of All We Had (Scribner), and a screening of the movie adaptation at the Waters Edge Cinema. East End Books Ptown created a pop-up bookstore at Sage Restaurant, where a reception was held for Weatherwax.

“People turned out all weekend for our grand opening, welcoming us to the neighborhood and showing their love and support for indie bookstores,” said Peters. “I’m gratified that people seem to love the curated book selection that I’ve put together. It brings me great joy to have an avenue to express my love of books and have conversations with true bibliophiles.”

Peters is also the president of Anhinga Press and the LGBTQ Literary Preserve; his new documentary, Run Across Cuba, is screening at film festivals this year.

Neighborhood Reads to Open in Missouri

Dawn Kitchell, the educational services director for the Missourian newspaper, is planning to open Neighborhood Reads bookstore in downtown Washington, Missouri, this summer, reported the Missourian. She also co-founded the newspaper’s Missourian Book Buzz youth literacy project in 2003.

“In any other community, I might not be as optimistic — it will take a lot to get a bookstore off the ground — but my work with families and educators convinced me our community needs a bookstore,” Kitchell said.

Kitchell and her husband, Eric, purchased a historic house that they are renovating and expanding. The store will carry about 3,000 books, with the inventory to grow based on the reading preferences of the neighborhood, as well as cards, journals, tote bags, and puzzles and games for kids.

“We recommend a lot of great books in the Missourian,” she said. “Now, we’ll be able to offer readers a place, in addition to the local libraries, to seek out those titles and others like them. It takes a bookstore to attract authors on book tours — now we’ll have that.”

Blue Manatee Expanding

Sandra Gross and John Hutton, who own Blue Manatee Children’s Bookstore in Cincinnati, Ohio, are building a new headquarters for their businesses in the Oakley neighborhood, just half a block north of the bookstore, reported WCPO. Gross and Hutton also own Brazee Street Studios and Sleepy Bee Café.

Blue Manatee will relocate to the new location once the $1.2 million project is complete. The headquarters will include a space on the first floor for the bookstore as well as a local salon; the second floor will serve as the offices for the café, the bookstore’s publishing arm, and Blue Manatee Boxes, the bookstore’s online baby gift business.

“We’re focusing on our core customer base, which is younger kids,” said Hutton.

Joe’s Place Relocating

In Greenville, South Carolina, new and used bookstore and coffee shop Joe’s Place is moving across the Reedy River and into a house in the Pettigru Historic District, reported the Upstate Business Journal.

Co-owner Mary Bernard said the move is due to the desire to own the bookstore’s building now that the store is established and doing well. “When we opened Joe’s Place none of us had a lot of retail experience,” Bernard said. “We weren’t sure how it was going to play out. It’s totally my happy place.”

The new spot will grow the bookstore’s footprint from 1,900 square feet to 4,400, providing more space for private events and a full coffee bar. The bookstore will be open for business in its new location in late April.

The Lit. Bar Launches Fundraiser

Noëlle Santos, who is seeking to open The Lit. Bar in the Bronx, New York, later this year, has launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise $100,000 for the store’s startup. The funds will go toward inventory and a point-of-sale system.

To make her pitch, Santos recorded a short spoken-word performance in front of a mural on a Bronx street. Perks for donating include a digital zine, tote bags, signed editions, shelf sponsorship, and more.

Last fall, Santos won second place in the New York 2016 StartUP! Business Plan Competition. She chronicles her journey to open The Lit. Bar on her blog,