New Bookstore, Upshur Books, Coming to Petworth

827 Upshur Street, NW

More exciting news for Upshur Street in Petworth – a new bookstore is coming next door to (from owners of) Petworth Citizen in the former Hair Impressions space. From an email:

“Join our Bookstore Founders Club and help open our new bookstore!

Slated to open later this Summer, Upshur Books is a small, independent bookstore with a strong connection to the Petworth community. The bookstore will focus on literary fiction and poetry, local authors, art books, and independent publications, and will also host free literary and cultural events. The bookstore will complement the thriving retail district that is growing on Upshur Street in Petworth.

To help raise funds for the new Petworth community bookstore, we’ve put together an innovative funding program. By joining the Founders Club, you receive store credit and additional discounts on future purchases.

Click here for more information and to sign up.

We also have a full-time position open for the Manager of the Bookstore listed here.”

42 Comment

  • I didn’t really notice this until last weekend (I live more south towards Park View), but that stretch of Upshur is pretty solid in terms of storefront and accessibility.

  • This is such a great little strip. I’m hoping some day it can compete with what 11th St has going on. It seems the folks at Petworth Citizen (who are also opening another restaurant there) see the potential. Where is everyone else? There are tons of store front possibilities on Georgia Av by the new (almost complete) Safeway.

  • WOOO HOOOO a brick and mortar bookstore, this is the stuff dreams are made of 🙂

  • This is really exciting. That little commercial strip on Upshur is great.

  • Wow, that is so cool! I hope for a cute little children’s books section in there too.

  • Sounds really cool – I just hope they can manage to stay open more than a few years. The bookstore business is ridiculously tough. They need to have multiple income streams in order to remain viable for the long haul.
    Good luck!

  • Very cool. Lighthouse Yoga Center is moving around the corner from there next week as well, on 9th and Upshur. That strip is really coming along.

  • Jealous. I want one in Shaw/Bloomingdale.

  • Please have a good children’s book section!

    • Now this may actually help them make some dough. There are few stores specializing in this in the area.

  • Man, these guys are going to make money hand over fist. Yup, tons and tons of cash.

  • Is there any sort of business/economic development group working to recruit restaurants and retail stores to Petworth?

    • gotryit

      I’ve heard of the Georgia Ave Business Association and something similar for Kennedy st.

      • I wonder if they do anything or if they are effective? I’ve seen similar orgs in DC do some great things. The quality of storefronts along Georgia Av speaks for itself.

        • gotryit

          They can make a difference. Just think of it as a lot of small differences that eventually add up to a big difference. They can’t snap their fingers and suddenly fill hundreds of vacant store fronts. But they can do things like spreading word of city grants for storefront beautification or energy efficiency, organizing group business buys, etc. that will help over the long run.

  • I couldn’t be happier about this! I live in Park View so its a little bit of a hike on foot, but a VERY quick bike ride. I love this little strip!

  • Kudos to the owners or renters of this space for giving this a shot. But most people view brick and mortar bookstores as a place where they can preview a book for free before going home to order it from Amazon. It will be interesting to see how well this works (or doesn’t work).

  • We buy a lot of books and greeting cards (esp gifts for kids) at Politics and Prose, so it will be nice to spend some of those dollars in the neighborhood. Can’t wait!

  • If anyone from Upshur Books is reading this, I suggest adding an option to donate at a sliiiightly lower bracket. For example, 100. I would support but I can’t afford 250!

    • I was thinking the same thing. I think that the Founder’s Club is a really interesting idea for crowdsourcing funding, but the $250 is a little more than my household would probably spend.

    sorry for shouting but…

  • What’s a bookstore? Is that like a giant Kindle?
    I hope they have wifi. I can sit in there with my iPad and read ebooks.

  • Absolutely amazing! Finally, something to get excited about. Second the suggestion for a strong childrens’ book section and a good selection of books in Spanish and/or French.

    • Do you really think that there’s a strong market for books in Spanish and/or French in the Petworth neighborhood? I’m delighted that the bookstore will be opening, but given how many people buy most of there books on Amazon, and given that there’s a library quite close to the store, my concern is that the store have a selection that encourages repeated purchases — to enhance their survival and longevity. I think that having a strong children’s book section is a good way to go, as well as literary fiction — things that lend themselves to impulse as well as regular purchases. BTW I believe that there’s a Spanish and French bookstore in Tenleytown.

      • I don’t know about French, but Petworth has a sizeable Latino population. I can absolutely see a market for books in Spanish.

        • Also, a lot of families in Petworth send their kids to the many charter immersion schools including Yu Ying families so some Chinese books would be great too. Would buy some loyalty from my family, especially if they held book readings in other languages.

  • You all do know there is a library about 100 yards away

    • Yeah, but for some reason they keep telling me to bring the books back after a couple weeks. So annoying.

  • Eric Ruppert, keep ’em coming! Next on our wish list: a bakery. Petworth rising!

    • +1. Absolutely!

    • OH GOD YES. I would looove a bakery.

      • Flip It Bakery is about 2 blocks from the future bookstore. I would like to see a gelato place on Upshur.

        • Eric’s bakery at Room 11 is awesome. Just a 10 minute walk from Petworth Metro.

          • The Room 11 bakery is fantastic! I feel like it doesn’t get the attention it deserves. Nor does their coffee. If they did a coffe/bakery only place near Upshur or near Chez Billy/Safeway it would go over like gangbusters.

        • I had high hopes for this place, but all of their naked goods taste stale. Or a chemical taste. Not sure how to place it… Sandwiches are average, but not enough to make me keep coming back. Definitely not on par to their other location.

  • As an author – I love the idea of more small bookstores. As a realist – though it breaks my heart – I know this is economically not viable.

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