Queens Bookshop Initiative Exceeds Fundraising Goal

When the only two Barnes and Noble bookstore locations in Queens closed last year, it left book lovers in the borough with a void. But, three women just reached a big fund raising milestone in their effort to give readers more options. NY1’s Van Tieu filed the following report on the Queens Bookshop initiative.

With Kickstarter campaigns, it's all or nothing. So, the trio behind the fund raising campaign to open a new bookstore in Queens now have something big to celebrate.

"We raised, you ready? $72,360," exclaimed Holly Nikodem and Castillo. 

With more than 800 backers, Nikodem, Castillo, and their partner, Natalie Noboa surpassed their fund raising goal in just two months. 

Their small business journey started when the only two Barnes and Noble bookstore locations in Queens closed last year. It left book lovers in the borough with a void.

There's only one general, English bookstore left in the borough in Astoria. So, the group started the Queens Bookstore Initiative to give readers in Queens more options. 

"It was really exciting and joyous and now it’s back to work!" Nikodem says. 

Now that the initiative is funded, Nikodem says they're hard at work opening accounts with publishers and vendors. They want to open a permanent, brick and mortar store by the end of the year, but for now they will open pop up bookshops in Queens.

The first pop up shop will begin at the Red Pipe Cafe in Forest Hills starting Thursday. They will sell used books. The group will also continue selling books and merchandise at the LIC Flea on Saturdays.

They say the support they've received speaks volumes about the need for more book stores and small businesses. 

"Even though there seems to be this great narrative that bookshops are dead and E-readers will rule the world, it doesn’t seem to be true," Nikodem says.

And, they aim to prove it. 

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