Independent bookstores take pride in connections to their communities. Stores donate books to causes or host fundraisers throughout the year, but some stores have special holiday season drives, wish lists, or angel trees for the holidays.
Studies show that for every $100 you spend at one of our local businesses, $52 will stay in the community. Through bookstore philanthropy, customers and bookstores put their money where their hearts are.
Here is a sampling of some giving opportunities at bookstores around our region:
Auntie’s Books in Spokane, WA has an angel tree. Customers can select a paper angel with a genre or reading age representing a book desired by a local charity and purchase the book for delivery. Giving opportunities are year-round with gift cards to purchase for charities to use. Auntie’s also hosts a high school library wish list full of titles that have been requested by Lewis and Clark High School. Folks buy online or in store and specify “LC Library” to let staff know the book goes to the school.
Beach Books in Seaside, OR has a Wishing Tree for the four school libraries in its local school district. The store gets a wish list from the school librarians and puts them on the tree as little books. Customers get a 20% discount on the book for the school and on a book for themselves. Beach Books has given hundreds of books over the years.
BookPeople of Moscow has a year-round Book Fair Fund to ensure that children in need are able to get bookfair books. You can help the book fair fund by going on a “Blind Date with a Book” at the store, which is by donation, or contribute directly. Swing by the store or give them a call to find out about other ways you can help them get books out into the community.
Liberty Bay Books in Poulsbo, WA has a gift book tree with tags for kids at Fishline, their local food bank. Choose a gift tag, purchase a present, and the store and the food bank will help you make someone’s holiday.
The Neverending Bookshop in Bothell, WA, Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park, Seward Park, and Ravenna, and Queen Anne Book Company in Seattle, WA partner again to give books to Seattle Children’s Hospital. The stores collect new books for children from infancy through 18 years old to deliver to the hospital over the holidays. The partnership developed when The Neverending Bookshop opened and only sold used books (which cannot be gifted to medically fragile children), but has continued this year even as TNBS now offers new books. Books will be collected through December 18.
Queen Anne Book Company also hosts a wish list for the Ballard High School library. Books to donate can be purchased online, over the phone, or in the store. The store extends their 20% educator discount on donations to the library.
Is your local bookstore or another local business gathering donations this holiday season? Please comment below to tell others!