Saturday, November 21, 2009 Is America Unchained Day Where Consumers Across The Country Are Urged To Shop Small At Neighborhood Institutions

"American Unchained Day" Takes Over New York

Bank Street Bookstore

We love Barnes & Noble, we really do, but let’s face it, especially in a huge city like New York, it’s great to support the little guy--in this case, your local independent bookstore.

So you’ll be happy to learn that it’s the first ever Independent Bookstore Week NYC, ending on Saturday, Nov. 21 with America Unchained Day. (No actual chains are involved in this event.)

Break Free Of The Chains

Consumers across the country are urged to break free (Get it? Yes, it was an analogy…) of gigantic mega chain stores, and shop at neighborhood institutions.

Independent booksellers have banded together to promote interest in and awareness of their stores, and have tossed author appearances, readings, and special events galore into the mix. Participating stores include veterans like Three Lives and St. Marks, as well as newbies such as Idlewild in midtown Manhattan. Other well-known names include Bank Street Books; Bauman Rare Books; the Scholastic Store; and the Argosy Book store.

Join A Scavenger Hunt And Take Part In The Fun

There’s even a photo scavenger hunt for the plucky: To enter, participants take photos of themselves with various objects at designated stores across the city. (For more info. go to Despite the state of the economy and the inevitable closing of several independent stores, other bookstores in the city, continue, oddly enough, to thrive.

Some stores, like Book Culture in the Columbia University area, are actually expanding. So forego the big guys this week, and pick up that bestseller for Uncle Fred at that little shop around the corner, not the one with the two aisle-wide shopping carts.