The signs finally went up and the e-mail finally went around announcing that the Penn Quarter Olsson’s and the Footnotes Cafe, one hometown bookstore in a local independent chain and a fixture for the last fifteen (that’s one-five) years at 418 7th Street, NW, will be closing its doors at the end of the day Friday, June 27. Everything in the store is now on sale for a 50 to 75% discount off the stickered price. We thought this part of the e-mail sums it up best:
Olsson’s was a pioneer in the Penn Quarter, with a number of other local independent businesses, years before it became the thriving downtown we have now. We have enjoyed being a part of this evolving neighborhood. We are proud of the staff at Olsson’s, Footnotes Cafe and our many customers, including the Shakespeare Theatre patrons, who have supported us. The store endeavored to offer a unique selection of merchandise, staff recommendations and a prestigious nationally known reading series, which featured such authors as Tom Clancy, Al Gore, General Wesley Clark, Jamie Lee Curtis, Goldie Hawn, Nick Hornby, Dinaw Mengestu, Anne Rice, Alexander McCall Smith, Cornell West, and Tom Wolfe, to name just a few.
This writer enjoyed the quick access to that last minute DVD rental, the book tour talks such as the one George McGovern gave on his views of America, a last minute literary gift purchase or discovering a serendipitous musical (albeit expensive) talent from the listening station. The e-mail also says they’re actively looking for a new location but it will be tough going given that the big boys like Barnes & Noble or Borders, with much deeper pockets, are having a tough time in the retail book and music business.
Thanks to a few PQ Living readers for tipping us off about the e-mail announcement.