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Wayzata is a premier suburb located 11 miles west of downtown Minneapolis. With a population of 4,500 people, Wayzata is a tight-knit community which is known for its vibrant downtown and picturesque setting on Lake Minnetonka. A popular destination for visitors, Wayzata’s downtown is home to a number of specialty shops, boutiques, professional services, and restaurants.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Bookcase in Wayzata Closing, Read letter from owner Charlie Leonard

Bookcase owner Charlie Leonard posted the following letter on Facebook earlier today:

Dear Bookcase Customers & Friends:

It is with a great deal of sadness, disappointment and regret that I write to you today to announce that, after over fifty years in business, The Bookcase will be closing on October 18.

This has not been an easy decision to make, but the challenges that we have faced -- especially over the last couple of years -- have become insurmountable. Changing shopping habits and the physical reality of the redevelopment and road construction that have been ongoing in downtown Wayzata for several years now have caused a dramatic drop in sales. It was a drop that we hoped we could weather -- as we have a great deal of excitement and enthusiasm for what the "new" Wayzata is going to look like in a few years. But, in the end, we can no longer afford to stay in business. It's that simple.

Bookcase owner Charlie Leonard.
Image Courtesy Bookcase of Wayzata Facebook page.
While I have been the owner of The Bookcase for just over six years, I have been working at the store since I was a kid in college over sixteen years ago. In fact, some of my earliest memories as a child are of coming to the store to buy books. The Bookcase has been a part of my life for nearly my entire life, and having to be the person to make the decision to end it has been very painful.

A lot of love has been poured into the store over the last fifty years by all four of the families that have owned it: To the Case family, Gail See, and Peggy Burnet: thank you for creating a place that will forever be remembered as, in many ways, the heart of downtown Wayzata. I'm lucky to have had an opportunity to carry on that tradition for the last six years.

The Bookcase has been blessed to have amazing and passionate staff members over the years. They have served our customers well, and they deserve all the good things that the future will hopefully bring them. To the handful of people that are holding the store up until the end in a few weeks: Thank you.

To our loyal customers: We couldn't have lasted this long without you. Some of you we have been able to share this news with personally, in advance of this public announcement. Hearing your stories about the store and seeing your genuine sadness that it is ending has been heartwarming and heartbreaking at the same time. We will miss you as much as (we hope) you will miss us. We hope that we get a chance to see you all one more time before we close our doors.

I've lived in this community for my entire life. Many of you know that I have other personal projects that will keep me here and active (hopefully forever), so this is absolutely not a goodbye. Wayzata truly is a special place to live. And despite the struggles that The Bookcase has gone through, I remain very excited to see what the next chapter is in the life of our little town.

The Bookcase's story, though, has come to an end. It's not a happy ending -- to be certain -- but we all know that happy endings can sometimes seem too contrived and unfulfilling. So perhaps it's a fitting ending, because maybe the moral of the story is meant to challenge us in such a way that we will be a little different -- perhaps a little better -- the next time around.

Sincerely,

Charlie Leonard, owner
The Bookcase

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