by Rana Asfour
Independent Bookstore Day (aka Indie Bookstore Day) in the US is a one day only event and it falls on the last Saturday of April (April 27 this year). In its fifth year now, this is a great opportunity for the community to show the love and offer support to their favourite local bookstores.
It started in California in 2014 before becoming the national party it is today. But in addition to authors, live music, cupcakes, scavenger hunts, kids events, art tables, readings, barbecues, contests, and other fun stuff, there are exclusive books and literary items that you can only get on that day. Not before. Not after. Not online. And this year, a 'Book Crawl' is on the agenda so you can book yourself silly!
Bookstores and organisations in various locations in the US are having what is known as a 'Book Crawl' - think Pub Crawl only without so much alcohol although some will be on offer at certain venues - Austin, Boston, Brooklyn, Chicago, Connecticut, Indiana, Rhode Island, San Diego, The San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle, St Louis, Tucson, The Twin Cities, Vermont and Washington DC are all having their own version.
How does it work? Well, in the case of the DC Bookstore Crawl - which is the one I'll be attempting - participants aim to visit all ten participating DC bookstores on Saturday 27 by following the Bookstore Crawl Map which they can pick up at any participating bookstore or print one out HERE. Participants must get their map stamped at each location.
The map also entitles participants to discounts at many bookstores and cafés, including buy-one-get-one-free drinks at Peregrine Coffee. If you visit all ten bookstores, you win eternal glory and a limited-edition IBD tote!
However, if you're not up for that, here are some of the other cool events I've found in the DC Metro Area.
Hooray for Books Bookstore
From 10am – 8pm
They are hosting the 2019 Love Our Local Authors Festival (LOLA) that invites more than 20 authors/illustrators to present and sign their books in the bookshop as well as conduct a series of panel discussions and talks - See the full schedule HERE.
Bards Alley Bookstore
• An all day community-wide book hunt beginning at 9:00 am, with 100 books hidden in and around participating businesses. Use the hashtag #BardsAlleyBookHunt2019 to join in on the fun!
• An all day in-store scavenger hunt for all ages beginning at 10:00 am, with prizes throughout the day!
• 10:30 am-11:00 am: A visit from children’s author Barbara Carroll Roberts, author of the middle grade novel, NIKKI ON THE LINE (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, March 2019)
• 11:00-11:30 am: A literature themed concert with children’s musician Groovy Nate! Groovy Nate is a children’s entertainer who creates fun and educational shows using exotic musical instruments, comedy, and puppet skits—a la Sesame Street meets Parliament/Funkadelic, meshed with The Electric Company, Kraftwerk, and Dub Reggae.
• 2:00-3:00 pm: Portrait drawing with children’s book illustrator Zara Gonzalez Hoang!
• 5:00-6:00 pm: Live music, special drinks, and board games.
One More Page Bookstore
• The Bookseller Bake-Off from 3 pm - 4 pm
• Sip & Swoon from 4 pm - 6 pm
• Exclusive IBD books and literary items
• Branded OMP merchandise
• "Battle of the Books": For this year's Independent Bookstore Day, the OMP staff is sharing some of their favourite books - and competing to see whose picks sell the most! They’re offering a 10% discount for online purchases of their choice books plus a free mystery gift, too! (check link: https://www.onemorepagebooks.com/battle-books)
• Scavenger Hunt
• Selfie Station
• Hourly Raffles
• Libro.fm Audiobook Specials