Loyal fans of One More Page Books in East Falls Church are helping the store keep the lights on — literally.
The bookstore, a staple in the community for 12 years that often works with Arlington Public Library and local schools, recently held a fundraiser to help pay for needed maintenance and to help the shop stick with its current slate of publisher vendors.
As of Monday evening, the well-loved bookstore at 2200 N. Westmoreland Street raised nearly $36,000 — surpassing its $35,000 goal — from some 400 donors over the course of 10 days. The largest was an anonymous $2,500 donation.
“We are overwhelmed with the response and the words of encouragement from our customers and the community,” owner Eileen McGervey told ARLnow. “It is difficult to ask for help and then to have such a rapid response is humbling.”
McGervey says she wishes the funds would go toward something “fun and exciting,” but instead it will go to fixing its lighting and HVAC system.
“About a third of our ceiling lighting units are no longer working, so there are certain parts of the store that are dark,” she said.
The funds will also make One More Page whole after paying for recent repairs to its air conditioning unit and plumbing.
“Since the overflow pan is in the ceiling, we have had water come down into the store — books and water are not a good mix,” McGervey said.
Any money leftover could help pay for “a few fun ideas for the store design,” she says.
McGervey says the bookstore is cutting costs where it can but that applies to future expenses, not those the store has already had to incur. In addition to fixing the AC unit, that includes ongoing costs associated with maintaining its website, which was upgraded during the pandemic to facilitate online ordering.
“The profit margin for small businesses is notoriously small, and over time, even new small expenses or slight revenue dips add up,” she wrote in the fundraiser. “And, like all of you, our rent and other expenses continue to rise.”
When rent rose by 30% in 2019, One More Page also turned to the community, hosting an online auction that ultimately helped it raise $20,374. That money paid the publisher vendors McGervey could not pay after covering rent.
The fundraiser for covering repairs and paying vendors this time around is ongoing. McGervey encourages supporters to continue shopping at the store, in person or online, and at Libro.fm for audiobooks. Supports can also attend events, become a Patreon member and buy branded t-shirts.
With the approach of summer comes a slower event schedule but One More Page does have a launch party scheduled for local author Jonathan Harper, for his book “You Don’t Belong Here” on June 4.
The store is also planning to support Arlington Public Library’s event with author Imani Perry at Central Library on June 22 and to likely host a repeat of its “highly popular” Puzzle Exchange night.
On July 18, the shop will celebrate the release of “The Inner Ear of Don Zientara” with Antonia Tricarico and special guests Don Zientara, Amanda MacKaye and Joe Lally, followed by an event to celebrate the July 25 release of “Ghosted” by store staffer Amanda Quain.
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Holiday Art Show featuring artists: Peter Fitzgerald, Claire Plante, Alanna Rivera, and Suzy Scollon. At the Barcroft Community House, 800 South Buchanan St., Arlington, VA. Dec. 8 from, 2 PM to 8 PM and Dec. 9 from 10 AM to