We had a great crowd last night at the Billings Library for the rollout of the new name, along with investor information, updates on the space, and more. For those who missed the meeting, fear not! There will be plenty more of them around town. Watch this website or our Facebook page for details. Also, all of the handouts from the meeting are available on our download page as printable PDF files.
Board President Carrie La Seur explained what a cooperative is in Montana and how it applies to the new bookstore. The person who first suggested to her that it should be a co-op, former Billings mayor Chuck Tooley, was in attendance along with some of the other early instigators.
General Manager and CEO Gary Robson went over his plans for the store, with a major focus on events. A lot of published authors, including Robson and La Seur, have become member/owners of the co-op, and Robson plans to have book signings and talks with them and with other prominent authors from around the country. He is also planning game nights, poetry readings, tea tastings, standup comedy, and acoustic music events. In the spirit of community, there will also be meeting space made available to book clubs and writer’s groups.
Architect Randy Hafer then talked about the space itself, a 5,000 square foot building in downtown Billings that used to house a Wendy’s restaurant. Hafer talked about making the space more open and light right away, and adding longer-term improvements like outdoor seating for the tea bar.
We want This House of Books to become a new cultural hub in downtown Billings, and the support everyone showed at this presentation really made us feel like the city is behind us!