Three weeks ago, City Books developed a staged plan to deal with COVID-19 so we could continue to serve our customers and remain open as long as possible during this crisis period. At the moment, we are neither selling books out of our physical location nor selling online. However, with the continued support of our customers, we do not believe a short term closure of the bookstore will affect its overall viability in the long term.
Here is how we can help each other:
1. Let us help with your self care. In cooperation with North Ave. Candles and Hecatea & Me, City Books has developed a Care Package/Self-Care Box Set for sale on North Ave. Candles’ Etsy site. (Ordering begins Monday, March 23. Shipping starts Friday, March 27.) The box contains two 2-oz candles (each with a burn time of 10-12 hours, as sold in the bookstore), two artisanal tea bags (one caf, one decaf), and one randomly chosen & wrapped Blind Date with a Book. Bookmarks are courtesy of Bird and the Beard. Proper social distancing practices have been strictly followed during healthy, in-home assembly; individual items have been gathered by one vendor without face-to-face contact with the others and mailed via USPS with scheduled doorstep pick up. The price is $26 and includes free First Class shipping.
2. Our new City Books Customer Loyalty Plan will help us get through this dark time and earn buyers perks in the long run. For an investment of $20, customers will receive 20% off all in-store purchases for 1 year after the bookstore re-opens. For $50, customers will receive the one-year 20% discount plus ONE of the following: A private Arts & Literature tour for up to four people, including light refreshments OR two hours of private, evening browsing for up to four people with wine & cheese. Tours & browsing will be scheduled after the bookstore resumes normal operations and when health restrictions are lifted. The 20% discount applies only to in-store books and merchandise only; it is not valid on special orders.
3. Give someone the promise of a good book. City Books Gift Certificates are available for later exchange in the bookstore. Customers can pay via Venmo or PayPal (email@example.com / @citybookspgh) and receive a printable, customized gift certificate by return email. These can be applied to in-store books & merchandise only but are not valid for special orders. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the name of the recipient (if other than yourself) and we can email it either directly to you or them, whichever is preferred. A submittable form is available from the dropdown menu under the SUPPORT tab.
We may be developing additional avenues of support in the coming weeks as the COVID situation changes. Please follow @citybookspgh on social media (Facebook, Twitter, and/or Instagram) for the most interactive contact. We are unable to answer calls at the bookstore at this time.
In the meantime, we will continue limited business operations as long as we are not personally sick or attending to sick family members. Please stay home and stay well.