Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Closing in Eldersburg: Little Professor

It's always a shame to see a bookstore close. Especially a non-megagallomoth family-owned small-business store such as The Little Professor.

I remember The Little Professor in the estranged Carrolltown Center when we moved to Eldersburg in 1999. They moved to their current location when Black Oak evicted all of the inner tenants (or made them an offer they could refuse). Black Oak wanted to close the interior of the mall and move all of the tenants to the perimeter of the mall. Most of the stores intelligently and rightly fled to better quarters.

I went there today and bought a book and talked to one of the employees. The Little Professor first opened in 1978, then moved to it's current location in 2004. Now the largest book distributor in Eldersburg will be Wal-Mart. Ugh....

The owners of the Little Professor sent this email to their customers:

The Little Professor Book Center is closing at the end of May.

This is an unpleasant decision to make because the store has been part of many of us for many years, but the expenses now seem to exceed the income regularly.

Book production and distribution is moving toward electronic books very quickly because of lower production and distribution costs. But there isn't a place for a neighborhood book store in the scheme of electronic distribution from the source direct to your computer, whether it is an I-pad, Kindle, Nook, Windows application, or something else. And there isn't enough business left to pay the bills.

We plan to sell down and close our doors on about May 25, to leave time to turn over a clean store to the landlord at the end of the month.

Also we will:

  • Continue to special order books for our customers as long as we think we can get them before closing date.

  • Use an expiration date for new gift certificates of about May 20 - a week after Mothers Day. Don't buy one for Fathers Day.

  • Honor the free book offer card on a basis of 1/12 of $5.00 for each stamp beginning in May - so no one gets caught with a useless partially stamped card.

As other issues arise we'll let you know.

We have really enjoyed your patronage during the years. It has been fun to talk with customers, and to feel that we have helped you solve your book-related needs.

I am sorry that part has to end. Come by and say good bye to us.

Sarah Itzel, Manager

Frank Spruill, owner

and all the staff


Dave B said...

A Likely Story in the town of Sykesville is still around

Kent Allard said...

Really sad. Looks like the bookstores are going the way of the CD/Record store and movie rentals due to downloads and streaming. Call me old fashioned but I really don't like buying just data. I enjoy having that tangible, CD, etc. I wonder if the internet will make libraries go the way of the dinosaurs as well one day? How about making O'Malley (and politicians like him obsolete?) Is there an app for that? I'd gladly pay to download that.

Rebecca @ Unexplained X2 said...

This stinks.

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