|Beaverdale Books - Des Moines, IA|
For new and/or uncertain readers of The Indie Bob Spot, when I'm not traveling the country visiting independent bookstores I'm hanging out in my home state of Iowa. And for all of my visits, I still had not visited an indie in the state capital and largest city, Des Moines. Consider this over-sight now corrected by visiting Beaverdale Books, in the Beaverdale neighborhood of Des Moines. If Des Moines is going to join the ranks of the hip and trendy urban centers of America as it proclaims, it needs a good independent bookstore. Thanks to Beaverdale Books, consider that problem solved.
This absolutely cute and charming bookstore will be celebrating its 10th anniversary this summer. Ten years is a great milestone and the store continues to show positive growth each year. The one-level store is brightly lit, neat and organized, and has lots of big windows providing natural light. One of my favorite things are the may literary quotes on the walls around the store. In addition to the bestsellers and recent releases, there is a nice children's section that offers a weekly story time. There are also several books clubs that meet in the store, great ways to bring people in. Beaverdale Books hosts author events right in the store but mostly with authors who have local ties. They're also able to hold larger events off-site and often partner with the local library. You'll enjoy their section of books with local interests and authors, those books that you might not find elsewhere. The store offers a few sidelines but are limited with what they can offer due to space.
So what's the secret here? The same component that is a plus at all the good indies. A loyal and devoted local customer base. Add some tourists and patrons from nearby communities and you have a good business base. The store location is also a plus, surrounded by other small businesses in a neighborhood shopping area with lots of easy and free parking.
I didn't get to meet Alice M., the owner, but what a great time I had talking to Catherine and Hunter during my visit. Regular readers know how consistent this is with all of my bookstore visits. Thank goodness for that!
With the summer season approaching many of you will be planning some travels. There really is a lot to do and see in Des Moines and now you have one more thing to put on the list. Even if you're just passing through on I-80 or I-35, stop in for a break and browse the store. Check out this terrific indie making a name for itself in the state's capital city. Go to an indie and buy a book. Bonsoir.
JUST FINISHED: H Is For Hawk, Helen MacDonald. Memoir of a woman's attempt to cope with the loss of her father. She coped by taking up falconry. This book gets rave reviews from many and has received numerous awards so take my observations with a grain of salt. The author is a college professor in England and the book reads like the work of an academic to me. I call this one, B Is For Blah.
CURRENTLY READING: The Martian Chronicles, Ray Bradbury.
|Another exterior view and the front entrance.|
|Great view looking into the store from the front entrance.|
|View looking to the right from the front entrance. Notice one of the literary quotes on the wall. These are all over the store.|
|Looking slightly left of the front entrance.|
|Greeting cards do well here and these are a few, located directly to the left after entering.|
|A few more of the sidelines available near the front of the store.|
|I enjoy places to sit and try a book and this is a great place for it.|
|A nice display of recent releases.|
|Only at Beaverdale Books, of course!|
|Find some jewelry so you'll look good while you're reading your book.|
|A recognized and award-winning Des Moines business.|
|A portion of the children's section.|
|Another one of the literary quotes. I love these.|
|Bring your pre-schooler here for weekly story time.|
|View from the back of the store looking toward the front entrance.|
|With Catherine, one of the fine booksellers at Beaverdale Books. Thanks for a great visit.|