Wildflower Bookshop Opens in Grand Rapids, Minn.
Wildflower Bookshop opened recently in the historic Pokegama Hotel Building at 4 NE 3rd St. in Grand Rapids, Minn. The Herald Review reported that owner Abby Daigle "has always been an avid reader ever since she was a kid, and dreamed of owning her very own book shop one day."
"I've always loved books. I bring books everywhere," she said. "I have safety books, I just tuck in my purse in case I have time to read. I'll read in the car or wherever, but on the beach is my favorite.... Last year I wanted to open up a bookstore, because we didn't have a bookstore in town, and whenever we go to other places I'm always like 'let's stop at the bookstore!' "
Although the Covid pandemic delayed her plans somewhat, Daigle decided to take a leap and open February 14. "I rushed through the weekend," she recalled. "I was like, I'm just gonna do it to do it because the longer I take the longer it'll take me to open. I just thought let's just do it, get it open, and I decided to plan my grand opening and there was a huge snowstorm." The grand opening was set for March 11, "and I thought I was going to have to cancel because the wind was just whipping and the snow was crazy. I was nervous, but this place was packed. You couldn't even walk around because there were so many people!"
Daigle added: "It was really nice to see everyone, and everyone was so excited! It was just really fun. It was really busy. We made paper cranes. My mom is an artist, so we're going to hang up the paper cranes in the windows and do a little art piece in there. A lot of the community has been making paper cranes and dropping them off so we can hang them, so part of the community is going to be in the bookstore."
One of the primary reasons Daigle wanted to open the bookshop was to expand the variety of books in general in the area, especially children's books. "I'm trying to get board books and baby books and I took some of the books my kids really enjoyed and that we loved to read over and over again, and I cannot keep the kids' books in stock," she said. "It's really exciting because people are reading to their children, and that's really awesome and we really need that." Wildflower Bookshop also features a selection of gluten-free foods, and Daigle is planning to expand the store's online presence with an improved website.
She also appreciates the bond that is developing with the community, noting: "I love it because the community is like 'Hey, do you have this book?' or 'You should really stock this book because we love these books,' so then I will stock them.... My favorite part is when people come in and they are so excited that there's a bookstore. The smiles on their faces makes me feel like I did the right thing, knowing that I opened something up that will make people feel good."