At a sales conference this past April, Klutz (a division of Scholastic) showcased a sample product from the Sew Your Own Furry Llama Pillow activity kit. It was there that Lemmy the Llamacorn met Nikki Mutch, senior manager of field brand marketing/New England sales for Scholastic.
After following Mutch to the American Booksellers Association’s ABC Children’s Institute in New Orleans, Lemmy officially caught the travel bug. He met Nichole Cousins of White Birch Books in North Conway, New Hampshire, who helped plan his next trip.
“He joined us for a Scholastic author dinner with a number of booksellers. While there, he asked Nichole Cousins to take him out on the town for the evening — so she did,” said Mutch. “He played games, met a purple unicorn friend, drank coffee, and talked literature with new bookseller friends, and then flew to the beautiful White Mountains in North Conway, New Hampshire.”
Since then, Lemmy has been passed along from bookstore to bookstore, gaining new experiences along the way. “From New Hampshire, he toured Massachusetts stores, including Belmont Books, Wellesley Books, and The Blue Bunny. He even went to the beach on July 4th and had barbeque with Margie Leonard from The Blue Bunny,” said Mutch.
Mutch added that “Lemmy has even visited Lake Placid and New Jersey with the Scholastic Summer Reading Road Trip,” and joked that, contrary to popular belief, Lemmy did not drive the RV as he does not have his license yet.
Booksellers should know that keeping Lemmy entertained during his visit is simple. “Lemmy is an avid reader,” Mutch said, noting that his favorite series is The Bad Guys by Aaron Blabey (published by Scholastic, of course). “If you leave him in the store overnight, you might find a pile of books next to a comfy chair the next morning.”
Next, Lemmy will be heading off to Missouri, where he will visit Melissa Posten at the Novel Neighbor in Webster Groves and Emily Hall at Main Street Books in St. Charles. Where he goes after that is up to the bookselling community.
“Lemmy would love to visit independent bookstores in all 50 states and introduce people to this fun new Klutz kit,” Mutch said, adding that they’re currently taking names for future hosts. “He loves to travel and even got a brand-new suitcase, so he can pack his Bad Guys sunglasses and Mardi Gras beads and hit the road.”
Looking for Lemmy? Booksellers can track his travels on the Lemmy the Llamacorn Facebook page. Those looking to have Lemmy visit their store should e-mail Nikki Mutch or send a message through the Facebook page.