American Booksellers Association Celebrates 10th Anniversary of Independent Bookstore Day

1100 Independent Bookstores Participate in all 50 States- Celeste Ng is Ambassador for nationwide event

This 10th anniversary is the largest Independent Bookstore Day to date! With a 21% increase in participation from last year, it is encouraging to see, as bookstores are central to communities”

— Courtney Wallace

WHITE PLAINS, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES, April 20, 2023/ — On Saturday April 29 almost 1,100 independent bookstores across the country will participate in the 10th anniversary of Independent Bookstore Day (IBD). This annual event celebrates the spirit and value of independent bookstores. The event is produced by the American Booksellers Association (ABA), the national trade association for indie bookstores; bookstores from all 50 states are participating with many stores offering exclusive merchandise and hosting special events.

IBD has spurred bookstore crawls, street fairs, and activities as unique and diverse as the independent bookstores the day celebrates. The IBD Map is an all-in-one hub to find what’s happening in your community on April 29. The map shows participating stores, as well as which stores have exclusive items from publishers and vendors. This year’s exclusives feature ABRAMS, Blackwing, Bloomsbury, Candlewick Press, Chronicle Books, Enviro-Tote, Harper Collins, Imprint5, Independent Publishers Group, Ingram, Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group, Out of Print, Penguin Random House, Picador, Quarto, Scholastic, Sourcebooks, Tor, and YOTTOY items.

Many independent bookstores have been planning for IBD all year. Some of those activities and participating stores can be found in our IBD plans article. “Each year we see more and more indie bookstores sign up and throw bookish celebrations on this day,” says Courtney Wallace, ABA’s Marketing Manager and Independent Bookstore Day Program Director. “This 10th anniversary is the largest Independent Bookstore Day to date! With a 21% increase in participation from last year, it is encouraging to see, as bookstores are central to communities and build support and loyalty. IBD is one big day out of the year to help keep indie bookstores front of mind.”

While this event is primarily sponsored by the bookselling community, this year American Express has recognized the importance of these small businesses and actively supported the day as well. Ray Daniels, Chief Communications Officer for ABA, said, “This partnership is a recognizable milestone for IBD’s 10th anniversary and illustrates that the reach of IBD is going beyond bookselling and the book world. Amex’s support represents a shared goal to recognize the importance of small businesses and keep them in our communities.”

Bestselling Author Celeste Ng is serving as this year’s Independent Bookstore Day Ambassador. She shared, “I could not be more thrilled to serve as Indie Bookstore Ambassador for 2022–2023. Independent bookstores have always been a refuge and an inspiration for me: a place where I can meet new ideas and new people, yet always feel that I belong. They’re part of the fabric of the neighborhood, staffed by booksellers who know books and their customers. And shopping locally supports our communities as well as the people who live there. In an increasingly impersonal world, independent bookstores are an antidote to feeling disconnected and dehumanized. Let’s make sure they not only survive, but thrive.”

“This 10th anniversary of Independent Bookstore Day, independent bookstores and their communities have a lot to celebrate! Indie bookstores survived and even thrived during the pandemic despite incredible challenges, and they continue to play an important and special role in their communities, said Allison Hill, ABA CEO. Hill continued, “Independent bookstores offer economic benefits; a recent Civic Economics report, Unfulfilled concluded that approximately 29% of all revenue at independent bookstores immediately recirculates in the local economy — more than 4x a corporate online competitor and more than 2x a chain bookstore competitor.” For additional information about what is going on in your community, email [email protected].

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The American Booksellers Association, a national not-for-profit trade organization, works with booksellers and industry partners to ensure the success and profitability of independently-owned book retailers, and to assist in expanding the community of the book.

Independent bookstores act as community anchors; they serve a unique role in promoting the open exchange of ideas, enriching the cultural life of communities, and creating economically vibrant neighborhoods.

Ray Daniels
American Booksellers Association
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