Cinema owners add new chapter by opening bookstore
The Smiths will soon have both sides of the “Is The Book Better Than The Movie?” Argument. covered when they opened a bookstore in Rochester near their Med City microcinema.
Anne and Andy smith, owners of Gray Duck Theater and Café at 619 Sixth Ave. NW, recently announced its intention to open Garden Party Books in the old house next to Live local at 602 Seventh St. NW.
Paul Bennett reluctantly closed its Dwell Local store in Rochester during the pandemic, although it still operates a store in Zumbrota under that brand.
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The Smiths hope to open their second-hand bookstore in late summer or early fall. A bookstore appears to be a comfortable companion to the Smiths’ two-year-old micro-cinema and cafe. Anna Smith works for the Rochester Public Library and Andy Smith has a YouTube channel where he talks about fantastic books.
“Books are definitely something we love. After Dwell Local closed, we thought the neighborhood was lacking… We tried to recruit other people into the Dwell Local space, ”said Andy Smith. “Then we thought, ‘Why don’t we do something? We thought books were a natural fit, so we took the plunge.
Anna and Andy Smith, owners of the Gray Duck Theater & Coffeehouse at 619 Sixth Ave. NW, recently announced their intention to open Garden Party Books in the former neighboring Dwell Local home at 602 Seventh St. NW.Submitted photo
Their next step is to launch an Indiegogo campaign to raise money for opening fees, including a mural done by a local artist from Rochester. Maggie Panetta of Treedome. Panetta also painted a mural on the gray duck.
The Smiths used an Indiegogo campaign to help open Gray Duck. It is a model that literally creates a sense of belonging within the community.
“Coffee and movies have been great community builders, and we think books fall into that same category,” said Andy Smith.
The Smiths hope to host book release nights, author events, book clubs, story times, and craft sessions at the Garden Party. There will also be a space for people to work and drink Gray Duck coffee at the bookstore.