Sunday, May 8, 2022

Baine's Books & Coffee - Appomattox, VA


Baine's Books & Coffee, Appomattox, VA

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If you're a Civil War buff, sooner or later you'll probably pay a visit to Appomattox, VA to relive, read, and experience the history surrounding the end of the Civil War.  When you make this visit it will be an absolute must that you drop in and see Baine's Books & Coffee, right downtown on Main St.  Appomattox is a small town of approximately 1800 and this business is another part of the town's identity.  It is the perfect complement to the region's history and for those who come here on bus tours it should be part of the itinerary.  Clearly, owner Bryan B. has done a super job of maintaining the historical integrity of the store's space that really adds a lot for any customer's visit.

Baine's Books & Coffee has been in business for 17 years, a remarkable run in a town this size.  Obviously, the business is largely impacted by tourism.  But, as Bet, one of the staffers told me, she serves a large number or regulars in the cafe and can usually start on their drinks when they come through the door.  And you know the business is doing well when Bryan is able to open two more Baine's Books & Coffee stores in nearby Scottsville and Amherst.  Nicely done.

The cafe is a big part of the business offering coffee drinks, specialty drinks, and baked goods.  They also do a busy lunch service and as Bet told me, that's when the rush comes.  You'll love browsing books in a historical space, complete with creaking wood floors.  They offer some new but its mostly used books.  Bring in your good used books and you'll receive store credit for future use.  In addition to the books and cafe, the store has a real music vibe.  If you're a music fan, you'll see musical instruments in addition to music on vinyl and CDs.  They even have a weekly open mic night that usually features live music. 

I didn't get to meet Bryan on this day but meeting Bet was a highlight of my visit.  She was an absolute delight to meet and I enjoyed her wonderful conversation telling me about the store.  Sadly for Baine's, she'll be off to college soon but I'm certainly glad that my journey brought me to Baine's while she was still here.

Civil War buffs, history buffs, bookstore travelers, it's all here.  Make sure that you include Baine's Books & Coffee on your visit and enjoy the experience of a successful and long-running bookstore on your tour of this region.  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir.

 JUST FINISHED:  The Authenticity Project, Clare Pooley.  This is a book that would be a great movie for the Hallmark channel.  A retired and widowed artist decides to write a few lines in a notebook, life advice and regrets, and then leaves it abandoned soon to be picked up by someone else who writes an entry in the notebook and leaves it abandoned.  And on it goes.  Kind of a traveling diary that eventually connects everyone who contributed leading to friendships, romances, and positive life changes. 

CURRENTLY READING:  Appomattox: Victory, Defeat, and Freedom At The End of The Civil War, Elizabeth R. Varon. 

One of the easiest bookstores for me to find with this dominant signage on Main St. 

Historical storefront. 

A perfect display window. 

View looking into the store from the front entrance. 

Looking to the right from the front entrance. 

Looking to the left from the front entrance and a partial view of the cafe seating area. 

A timpani makes a good display table. 

Head to the right side of the store and let the browsing begin. 

A fraction of the Civil War books available. 

Just a few of the items of local and regional interest. 

The guitar and banjo are here, all you need to bring is your talent. 

A great use for two bass drums (Of course, I never would've said this in my former life).  Not sure I've seen bass drum display tables. 

Looking for a classic?  They've got you covered. 

You can find southern literature throughout the store. 

Lots of music on vinyl to browse. 

Books and... SAXOPHONES!  Yes, for sale. 

A variety of baked items are available. 

Partial view of the children's area. 

Another angle of the children's area. 

Overview of the store's main floor looking from the back toward the front door. 

On your way up the stairs to the 2nd floor is a mezzanine level with this group room.  A nice space available by reservation. 

The mezzanine level. 

View looking into the 2nd level, the upstairs reading room.  This is a quiet space, no cell phone zone.  You can get some serious reading done here. 

Some great places to sit and browse, on the 2nd floor. 

Another overview of the upstairs reading room. 

Was there a marching band in the upstairs quiet room??

With Bet, one of the fine staffers you'll meet at Baine's Books & Coffee.  Thanks for a great visit. 

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