After 15 years at 115 Elm St. in Damariscotta, the Skidompha Secondhand Book Shop will soon have a new home nearby, in the building formerly home to the restaurants Backstreet Landing and Augustine’s.
The 17 Elm St. building, behind Elm Street Plaza and overlooking the Damariscotta River, was most recently occupied by Muscongus Bay Aquaculture, according to Colby & Gale Inc. President Robert Clifford.
Colby & Gale Inc., of Damariscotta, has owned the building in that location for more than 70 years. The building burned down and was rebuilt in the mid-to-late ’90s.
A few months ago, Clifford and Vern Verney, vice president of Colby & Gale, received a phone call from Skidompha about the possibility of renting the building to house the secondhand book shop.
“We thought it was a terrific idea,” Clifford said. “We wanted to keep the shop as a community thing, and we think this will be able to meet their needs and hopefully increase the traffic flow of people shopping locally.”
“We’re all excited to be moving into this lovely spot,” Skidompha Public Library Executive Director Pam Gormley said in a press release. “The space is double the square footage of our current shop. We’ll have more room to display books, and we’ll have more places to sit and enjoy them.”
“It’s a convenient location with a beautiful view, and it fulfills our objective of expanding while remaining downtown,” Gormley said.
Skidompha Secondhand Book Shop will remain at 115 Elm St. until 5 p.m. on Christmas Eve, Saturday, Dec. 24. Volunteers will set up the new location during the shop’s regular January break.
The book shop will open at its new location Feb. 1.
“Sometimes summer visitors say that the book shop is one of their first stops when they arrive in our area. Our new space gives us even more opportunity to turn the shop into a destination for visitors and residents throughout the Midcoast,” said Rosie Bensen, co-manager of the shop. “I expect that in our new space we’ll maintain the same cozy quirkiness that we and our customers enjoy now.”
Gormley thanked Valerie Seibel, owner of 115 Elm St., and Larry Holmes, who maintained the space, for their hospitality during the 15 years the shop has been located in the building known as the Red Barn.
The Skidompha Secondhand Book Shop is a major fundraiser for the library. All items are donated, all staff members are volunteers, and all proceeds go to the library. The hours at the shop are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Christmas Eve, Dec. 24.
Donations may be left at the shop whenever it is open. Starting Monday, Jan. 2, donations may be left at the new location.