Independent Bookstore Day | Kitsap Week

Mark your calendars for May 2, the first of what is hoped to be many Independent Bookstore Days in Kitsap, and the nation.

Mark your calendars for May 2, the first of what is hoped to be many Independent Bookstore Days in Kitsap, and the nation.

“It’s a celebration of all of us — independent bookstores,” said Suzanne Droppert of Poulsbo’s Liberty Bay Books. “Folks come out to support their independent bookstores all across the United States. You don’t have to buy anything, just come for the experience.”

The special day commemorating local, independent bookstores has its roots in the California Book Store Day in May 2014. A total of 93 stores participated across California in that event. Now, bookstores in various states are taking the spirit of the indie holiday nationwide.

The event offers additional benefits to the shopping day with special offers, author appearances and more.

Liberty Bay Books, for example, will have Sherman Alexie tea towels for sale that day. Artist Dav Pilkey of “Captain Underpants” fame drew a poster and signed it. It will be for sale in the store. And the shop will host a grand opening of its in-store Borrowed Kitchen Bakery.

“The Borrowed Kitchen Bakery is a bakery in Kingston,” Droppert said. “They are now going to have a branch of it in the back of the bookstore. They will make coffee and bring in their baked goods to sell. They will do it Thursday through Sunday.”

Liberty Bay Books will also have children’s book author — and North Kitsap High School graduate — Rebecca Van Slyke at 2 p.m. At 4 p.m., author Jonathan Evison will appear for “Ask Jonny.” Participants can ask the best-selling author anything they want.

“It’s going to be fun,” Droppert said. “We’re going to give him a beer and he’ll answer whatever questions you ask of him.”

From 6-8 p.m., the day will be closed out with live music by guitarist Michael McCurdy; duo Christian Wolf and Rachel Neil; and Sammy Huges.

Eagle Harbor Book Co. on Bainbridge Island is the only other independent bookstore in Kitsap that will be participating.

“We will have several things going on,” said Victoria Irwin of Eagle Harbor Book Co. “Children’s story time with George Shannon and others in the (morning), an author meet and greet and then a trivia contest around 5 p.m. that uses works by local authors as fodder.”

Those local authors include Bruce Barcott and Susan Wiggs. The island bookstore will also give out prizes every hour.

Another attraction to the May 2 indie holiday is the Independent Bookstore Day Passport that 20 bookstores throughout the Puget Sound are participating in. Visit three or more of the participating bookstores and get a stamp; participants will be entered in a drawing for a variety of signed first edition books.

“We are going to have Kristin Hannah’s ‘The Nightingale.’ There will be very good first editions from this year or last year,” Droppert said.

If a participant gets a stamp from all 20 stores on May 2, they will be entered in a grand prize drawing.

“The grand prize is a 25-percent-off card for a whole year at all of the stores,” Droppert said.

The region’s book stores will use the hashtag #seabookstoreday during the event.

Participating Bookstores in the Puget Sound region

Third Place Books, Lake Forest Park

Ravenna Third Place, Seattle

Elliott Bay Book Co., Seattle

University Bookstore, Seattle

Queen Anne Books, Seattle

Liberty Bay Books, Poulsbo

Phinney Books, Seattle

Secret Garden Books, Seattle

Island Books, Mercer Island

Eagle Harbor Books, Bainbridge Island

Open Books, Seattle

Seattle Mystery Bookstore, Seattle

The Book Larder, Seattle

Edmonds Bookshop, Edmonds

Park Place Books, Kirkland

Fantagraphics Books, Seattle

Mockingbird Books, Seattle