The nonprofit collective bookstore Boneshaker Books, which closed abruptly in March due to financial problems, is set to reopen under a new group of volunteers. The store will open first online, and eventually in its original storefront at 2002 S. 23rd Av. in Minneapolis.
Opened 10 years ago in the Seward neighborhood, Boneshaker stocked mainstream and left wing books, which volunteers delivered by bicycle throughout the Twin Cities. They shared meeting space with the Women’s Prison Book Project and the Twin Cities Democratic Socialists of America.
But mounting debt eventually forced them to close their doors early last month. “It became unsustainable,” said Rachel Fettig, one of the 10 members of the new collective.
The new group started a fundraising campaign and has raised $11,000 so far, which the new volunteers will use to begin spending down the $20,000 debt and to order new stock.
They have opened a virtual storefront on the nonprofit website bookshop.org and eventually plan to start doing bike deliveries again, Fettig said.
In the meantime, volunteers have started two virtual book clubs — “The Politics of Pandemics,” and “Anything But Pandemics,” which concentrates on Utopian books.
How does reopening a bookstore during a statewide shutdown make sense?
“Boneshaker is a really important community space,” Fettig said. “Our whole purpose is to sell books that will bring people together. We stock amazing books that you can’t always find elsewhere."
And once the restrictions on businesses are lifted, Fettig said, “Our plan is to do a beautiful reopening.”