Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Parkplace Books Asks for Help

This e-mail was forwarded to us by a member.

A Special Request from Parkplace Books

Dear Customers and Friends,
In all the years we have been working at Parkplace Books, this is the hardest letter we have written to you. We need your help. We need it soon.

The challenges that independent booksellers face in competing with the Internet and the huge box stores have resulted in the closing of most of the independent bookstores on the Eastside. With your past support, we have just managed to keep up with those challenges.

But now we face new changes that force us to retrench. The downturn in the economy is pinching most small retail businesses. Parkplace Books faces another particular problem: the departure from Kirkland Parkplace Center of several compatible retail stores . Without them, we have experienced a continuing drop in the foot traffic we need to sustain sales and maintain a desirable selection level of inventory. As the owners of Kirkland Parkplace Center work toward a massive expansion and remodeling, our future becomes more uncertain.

This week is particularly tough. We have a large bill coming due Monday, April 28. We do not have the resources to pay this bill and we need your help. If many of you help us by donating small amounts, we will be able to pay this bill and continue forward on our plan for the future. Please help us by sending a donation to the address at the end of this letter.

To address the continuing survival for Parkplace Books, we have called together a group of longtime advisers/friends to assist us in developing a long range plan.
That plan is likely to include:
* a greater emphasis on the Internet and online sales
* smaller, more efficient quarters at a probable new location in the Kirkland area
* and new ways for fans of the bookstore to be involved and stay in touch
We are eager to add your ideas to this mix. Please send them to us.

In the immediate future, you can help us most by coming to the store, saying hello and buying books and art. When our advisers met with us recently, they all exclaimed that Parkplace Books is essential to the community of Kirkland. They pointed out how -- in meetings about plans for Kirkland Parkplace Center, speaker after speaker expressed concern for keeping two vital businesses -- Parkplace Books and the movie theater.

And what is the bookstore? It's selection and knowledge about books. It's a staff who can respond to your questions and help you find the books you want. It's a comfortable space where people can relax and chat while they browse. It's a place where children can read and dream. It's a community gathering place that supports diversity and the exchange of ideas. It's an independent bookstore on the Eastside owned by two people that are passionate about the inherent value of books and reading.

Without you, there wouldn't be a bookstore. So please come in, say hello and help us in any way you can. We are keeping in mind the adage that in Chinese the ideogram for crisis is the same as that for opportunity. This IS an opportunity for us to rethink both our short & long-range plans and find new ways for Parkplace Books to serve you, our community. We believe Kirkland deserves the continued presence of a quality independent bookstore as part of our city's identity.

Mary and Rebecca

Our mailing address:
Parkplace Books
348 Parkplace Center
Kirkland, WA. 98033

ParkPlace Books
Kirkland's Community Bookstore
348 Parkplace Center
Kirkland, WA 98033
Phone: 425-828-6546
Fax: 425-739-6876