Friday, November 10, 2023

Outside of a Dog Books & Games - Vermillion, SD

Outside of a Dog Books & Games, Vermillion, SD

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Just when I thought my journey was the unique journey and adventure, I meet Mike P., the friendly owner at Outside of a Dog.  I was telling him a little bit about my bookstore visits as he patiently and quietly listened.  Then he told me about HIS journey.  Yes, he’s a bookstore owner but he and his wife also have their own goals of visiting EVERY county in the United States!  All of his visits are marked on a map and he’s covered 52% of the country’s counties.  Astounding (Indie Bob, you’ve got to up your game, the bar’s been raised, get crackin’!)!  I found this to be as astonishing as the wonderful bookstore he created.  

Outside of a Dog is just off the Main Street of downtown Vermillion and is off to a great start, open now for about two years.  Mike’s experience was in higher education, including Ohio State University, with a background in math and linguistics.  For many years though, his wife had put the bug in his ear about opening a bookstore.  So after time spent in Cincinnati, New York City, and Chicago, they found themselves in Vermillion, SD, a college town without a bookstore.  An indie was born and is now thriving with numerous regular customers and a tight and supportive community of customers from the University of South Dakota.  And as good as things are going, I’m optimistic that they are going to get better and better.  Way to go, Mike!

A happy bookseller waiting for you!

Outside of a Dog offers all new books in a medium sized two-room setting.  I thought the books curated for the store were outstanding.  The room to the right and rear of the store offers all varieties of games and hosts active game nights every other Saturday.  In addition to these events, they also host author events that can be held in the store and they also have options for hosting on campus.  Even though the entire space is on the smallish side, they have a good assortment of sidelines. 

But the clincher (as always) for me at this indie is the lovable bookstore dog and bookseller, Waldo.  He saw me coming before I entered and was standing behind the front door window enthusiastically wagging his tail, anxious to have me enter the store.  You will be unable to resist the power of Waldo.  After all, as Mike told me, he runs the show.  

A charming college town that has now added a terrific bookstore to a welcoming business community.  Pay this place a visit for a wonderful bookstore experience that you’ll never duplicate online.  Go to an indie and buy a book.  Bonsoir. 

CURRENLTY READING:  The Drinker, Hans Fallada.  

RECENTLY PURCHASED:  I’m Possible, Richard Antoine White.  The Language of Food, Dan Jurafsky.  A hip Outside of a Dog t-shirt.  


This is who enthusiasitcally waited to greet me as I approached the entrance.  This picture will not do justice to the happy look on Waldo's face and the wagging tail  What a joy he is!
Lots of window display space. 

Looking into the store from the front entrance. 
Looking toward the right from the front entrance.  That area in the rear right is the game room.  Games for sale in that area and also playing the games. 


One of Waldo's stations, right behind the front display window.  He's anxious for EVERYONE who visits. 

If you're wondering how the store got its name, this explains it perfectly. 


Yes, you need more books and more t-shirts.  Be like Indie Bob and get one of these hip t-shirts. 


This is the room at the left rear of the store. 


Excellent table display near the front of the store. 

Go to theses shelves directly to the left after entering and browse a variety of sidelines. 


Many bookstores carry a variety of book-themed candles like these. 


A few of the greeting cards available. 

Overview of the room at the rear left of the store. 


Have fun doing a puzzle AND discovering books that you ARE allowed to read


Twist my arm. 


Variety of sidelines displayed near the front entrance. 

Excellent display of new non-fiction. 


Some of the staff picks. 


An overview of the room to the right rear of the store. 


Throughout the store you'll see pictures of dogs from families who helped with the store's start-up funding. 


Display of new fiction. 

Some families helped with the store's start-up expenses by dedicating a bookshelf to a loved one.  I don't think I've seen this anywhere else.  Great idea. 

Just the thing to nibble while enjoying your book.

Mike told me that hockey romance is a genre.  Who knew?

One of the perks of Waldo's employment is being allowed to take numerous breaks. 

With Mike on the left, the fine owner at Outside of a Dog Books & Gifts.  Thanks for a great visit. 

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