White Whale Bookstore Expands Store for 5th Anniversary | Literary arts | Pittsburgh

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Photo of the CP: Kaycee Orwig

White whale bookstore

In Pittsburgh Rugged independent bookstore scene, and one of its classics is celebrating its 5th anniversary on Friday, October 15. The White Whale Bookstore opened in Bloomfield in October 2016 under the control of Adlai and Jill Yeomans. We are celebrating our fifth year by expanding our stores to adjacent stores, increasing sales and raffle, and finally adding a coffee bar.

Bookstores are teasing the expansion of social media, including internal neon whales and new external signs promoting coffee, but the expansion is only the latest in White Whale’s journey to support the local literary community. .

“It was a wild vehicle,” says Jill Yomans. “We are always flying near the seat of the pants and trying to find the next step while doing all we can right now.”

Yeomans bought the store from Lesley Rains in May 2016. At that time, it was still the East End Book Exchange. They focus on selling new books rather than used ones, and their inventory spans modern literature and non-fiction, poetry, local writers, children’s books, and the social sciences. such as history and philosophy.

The bookstore continues to grow, with Anna Claire Weber as the event coordinator in 2018 and partnering with Pittsburgh Arts and Lectures in fall 2019 to support the Poets Aloud and Made Local series for 10 nights. As the bookstore grew, Yeomans was able to hire more staff – affectionately known as the “whale pod” – those who helped develop the bookstore’s identity and position in the community.

“Unsurprisingly, our staff add a lot to what we can offer, to the store’s atmosphere and its impact,” says Jill.

The pandemic challenged the bookstore as it had to close the door to face-to-face shopping, but White Whale decided to continue serving the community and emulate the feeling of a common face-to-face online space. Made. Instead of ending indefinitely, White Whale focused on online sales and digital events, and Weber sought to move scheduled face-to-face events to virtual events.

“The pandemic actually helped us grow our business,” says Jill. “Having to sell online, have a subscription box, and learn virtual events, it helped us develop as we wanted to anyway, but all of a sudden I had to. ”

I also added a Socialist Realism Wall Paintings Inspired By Brian Gonnella bookstore to the side of the white brick building. Controversy with McCaffery’s interests The rental of a bookstore, a Chicago-based company developing terminals in the Strip area, was extended from June 1 to include adjacent storefronts.

This extension doubles the retail space and gives the bookstore more space to showcase books using the local writers’ case and Pittsburgh books. Respiratory chamber. The new retail space will house a selection of white whale non-fiction, and the bookstore will expand its offering of poetry, social science, science fiction, fantasy and romance.

As promised by the new sign, White Whale will be serving coffee between now and the holidays. The bookstore contracted TJ Fairchild, owner of Commonplace Coffee, to help develop the coffee bar that was set up when they moved into the space. When White Whale goes live, it will offer and store common coffee, but expand to store other local roasters.

“It feels like a natural fit. Their values ​​really match ours, ”says Jill.

Going forward, White Whale will continue the virtual event and return to the face-to-face event in January 2022 if it is safe. The only exception is – and the store’s first face-to-face event since March 2020. Memoirs of Yan Beatty, book American Bastard published at Michael Rotenero’s art studio in the Strip.

“It’s really great that we’ve been in a digital environment for five years, then on top of the pandemic, then expanded. It’s like a gift, ”says Jill. “And that’s because of our Pittsburgh community and our supporters.”


White whale bookstore: 4754 Liberty Avenue, Bloomfield. whitewhalebookstore.com

White Whale Bookstore Expands Store for 5th Anniversary | Literary arts | Pittsburgh

Source Link White Whale Bookstore Expands Store for 5th Anniversary | Literary arts | Pittsburgh


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