The new bookstore, Garfield Book Company at PLU, is officially open for business.
Located on the corner of Garfield Street and Pacific Avenue, the store anchors the new retail complex Garfield Commons.
Unlike most college bookstores, Garfield Book Company targets more than the campus community.
“By and large, campus bookstores are sheltered from the real world,” said store director Kristi Dopp. “But we’re not just serving PLU; we’re serving the greater community and the school districts.”
In addition to items typically carried by a college bookstore – textbooks, PLU memorabilia, school supplies – the 15,000-square-foot, two-story store carries products for the greater Tacoma community, the Franklin-Pierce and Bethel school districts and home-schooled children.
A grand opening celebration will take place on Tuesday, September 4 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., with a dedication and ribbon cutting at noon. During the week prior to classes starting, the store will host receptions for faculty, parents, and new and returning students.
The store opened its doors for the first time on Friday, July 20 – just in time for a release party for the newest Harry Potter novel. Beginning at 8 p.m., the campus and Parkland communities explored the store while awaiting the book’s release at midnight.
The festivities include bookstore staff dressed as characters from the books, Harry Potter movies playing in the Fireside Lounge and a crafts table where visitors could make wands using colored pipe cleaners, straws and glitter.
Those interested in purchasing “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,” the seventh and final book in the popular series, were required to take a number to reserve a copy. As the clock struck midnight, nearly 50 people crowded around the three operating registers, waiting anxiously to receive a copy.
Among those waiting to receive a book was community member Sarah Rasmussen and her 17-year-old son, Tim. Both were impressed with the store.
“I’m thrilled with it,” she said. “It’s a fabulous, beautiful facility. It’s a wonderful thing for the community.”
Rasmussen’s son is a student at Franklin-Pierce High School in Tacoma. He said the bookstore is the first place he’s been able to buy apparel for his school.
“We’ve already bought the license plate frame and shirt,” he said.
The rooms and layout of the store add to its community appeal. It features a children’s learning area, large general book section, apparel and school supplies, fair trade global products and Pacific Northwest gifts.
Dopp said the store plans to host a variety of events, including story time for children, arts and crafts events and cooking demonstrations. Additionally, the independent nature of the store will give it the flexibility to meet the needs of multiple audiences.
“The great thing about being an independent bookseller is you get to make your own decisions,” Dopp explained. “We expect people to tell us what they want.”
The store is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. PLU employees receive a 10 percent discount on purchases of clothing, gift items, general books and PLU logo items when they present a PLU ID card prior to checkout.
The only other business currently open in Garfield Commons is Farrelli’s Wood Fired Gourmet Pizza. Other tenants slated to occupy space there include Origin 23 (formerly Firehouse Coffee), Pita Pit, Emerald City Smoothie, Desert Sun Tanning Salon, Tight Cuts hair salon and Uni Teriyaki.
The alumni office will hosts a discussion of the book, "The Matador’s Cape: America’s Reckless Response to Terror" by Stephen Holmes, on Tuesday, July 31 at 7 p.m. at the new store. The discussion will be facilitated by Christian Lucky ’89. To learn more, contact the alumni office at ext. 7415 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about Garfield Book Company, contact the store at ext. 7665 or visit http://luteworld.plu.edu.